Honeywell launches another response for dealers looking to escape POTS ties

Two-way voice over GSM 'something we were waiting for'
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Monday, February 1, 2010

MELVILLE, N.Y.—Continuing on a trend made more urgent with recent reports that AT&T and others are looking to discontinue POTS service in the next three or four years, Honeywell on Jan. 21 announced its newest product line, the LYNX Plus, a self-contained, wireless, residential system that supports two-way voice capabilities over GSM with SMS network backup, allowing it to cut out disappearing POTS lines and often patchy VoIP service. Despite its GSM capabilities, however, LYNX Plus can also communicate using standard phone lines and broadband transmission.

PERS provider Critical Signal Technologies worked as a beta dealer to test the enhanced two-way voice capability of LYNX Plus. According to CST project manager in charge of multi-tenant Doug Lint, the LYNX Plus was a boon that allowed CST to access whole new segments of the market and grow its business. “Our primary business is PERS and within PERS we had markets we couldn’t reach. So this is creating business opportunities we did not have because people couldn’t get a phone line or they couldn’t afford a phone line to be dedicated to PERS, or VoIP was inconsistent,” Lint said. “This is something we were waiting for. This opened up whole new markets for us. Two-way voice over GSM was the key, because everything with the PERS market is two-way voice, so for PERS this is excellent.”

The LYNX Plus is a combination control panel/keypad/siren/dialer/two-way voice-enabled system/speakerphone with an integrated signal-strength meter. LYNX Plus also helps dealers differentiate themselves and generate incremental RMR through Total Connect Remote Services, a suite of web and mobile applications that allows homeowners to remotely arm and disarm their security systems. The system can also send emails to alert homeowners of critical and non-critical events, such as a child returning home from school. When utilized with devices such as motion detectors, IP video cameras, asset protection and environmental sensors, end users can use Total Connect to access a complete picture of their protected premises

Ralph Maniscalco, director of marketing communications for Honeywell Security & Communications, said LYNX Plus paved the way for a POTS-less world. “We know VoIP is inconsistent at best and we know POTS is going away. So the GSM radio allows a dealer to place this unit anywhere. It also has SMS backup, so if GSM for whatever reason was not available, the SMS would communicate,” Maniscalco said. “This is also one of the first units to have two-way voice over GSM and that allows the dealer to differentiate themselves because there’s another opportunity to add RMR.”