I’m a big fan of SimpliSafe products. We’ve had it in our home for over 10 years and had zero issues. The company is expanding the coverage of your home with a new camera. The Smart Alarm Camera is one part motion sensor, one part indoor camera, and includes a new user opt-in 24/7 Live Guard protection system.
We spoke to the SVP of Product at SimpliSafe, Hooman Shahidi, and his team helped layout that this new combination of protection is advancing how customers can expand their peace of mind.
Smart Alarm Camera
The Smart Alarm Camera has a built-in motion sensor to actively monitor an area of your home. Once triggered, the camera will trigger an alarm on the SimpliSafe system and allow the monitoring team access to the feed if Live Guard is enabled.
The Smart Alarm Camera is battery-powered and includes its own dedicated siren to add to an intruder’s anxiety. It also features artificial intelligence to help distinguish if motion is a threat or just your pets wandering around while you’re not home. There is a microphone array as well for voice communications.
Smart Alarm Cameras have a few differentiators worth mentioning. A physical shutter is present over the camera lens and only opens once an alarm is triggered. The sensors in the camera also don’t start recording until a motion is detected. So for the Smart Alarm Camera to be fully activated you need motion, an alarm, and the shutter to open.
24/7 Live Guard
The Smart Alarm Camera is meant to be used in conjunction with 24/7 Live Guard protection. This new team of SimpliSafe agents has been created to offer real-time access to the Smart Alarm Camera feed to help triage the urgency of triggered alerts.
The agent also has two-way communication with the possible intruder. Studies have shown that a physical presence, even if not onsite, can help deter an intruder from continuing further into the home. The combination of 24/7 Live Guard and the Smart Alarm Camera offers SimpliSafe a truly unique option to protect your dwelling.
The idea is by opting into this version of monitoring, you close the delay of the normal process of an agent receiving an alarm and then trying to make contact with the policyholder. Instead, the team has instant access to verify a threat is real, capture potential evidence, enable priority dispatch, and lower the response times. Just to reinforce that previous sentence, the 24/7 Live Guard protection is completely an option the user has to sign up to use. The default monitoring doesn’t include this advanced feature.
Protection Focused with Privacy Foward
SimpliSafe has always taken the extra time and steps to ensure privacy is considered in all its products. The Smart Alarm Camera and 24/7 Live Guard are no exceptions. The team has offered the below safeguards to make sure your peace of mind doesn’t cost you privacy.
As far as safeguards around live viewing access:
- 24/7 live guard protection is an opt-in feature.
- Smart Alarm Camera features a physical shutter that only opens when motion is detected.
- Agents do not have live viewing access outside of live guard protection alarm events.
- If an alarm is canceled, access ends immediately after the agent processes the alarm.
- If the alarm is not canceled, access expires after 20 minutes.
As far as safeguards around video storage:
- The only time an agent can access recorded video is during an alarm event, and that is only for customers who opt-in to video verification or 24/7 live guard protection.
- Even then, agents only have access to video recorded during that alarm event and other alarm events that occurred within the hour before or the hour after the current alarm event.
- Furthermore, all SimpliSafe video recordings are automatically deleted from SimpliSafe systems after 30 days. *You still have the option to have these downloaded and stored locally inside this 30-day period for longer retention.*
The 24/7 Live Guard is currently in beta and the full retail availability of the Smart Alarm Camera is still under consideration. We hoped to get a full review in place once this happens and can report back on how this new addition to the SimpliSafe family performs.