Wireless Security System Reviews
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Wireless Security System Reviews
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Frontpoint offers state-of-the-art wireless security systems at extremely affordable prices. Their forward-thinking approach to home security and focus on customer service has them leading the pack of wireless security systems. With Frontpoint, you're not required to have a landline phone, an internet connection, or any phone at all. The alarms from the Frontpoint control panel reach their monitoring center over a secure cellular network.
Installing the Frontpoint home security system is hassle-free. Unlike traditional home security systems, where a technician has to visit the home, drill holes in the walls, and hard-wire the system, Frontpoint offers a do-it-yourself solution that you can set up in as little as 30 minutes, straight out of the box. The Frontpoint home security components connect directly to their Control Panel over a wireless frequency, completing your installation in a matter of seconds.
Because the Control Panel signals the monitoring station using its built-in cellular device, you don't need to connect it with a landline or internet cable. This flexibility - both with respect to installation as well as the cellular connection - is a huge advantage over traditional home security systems, because you can modify your system as needed, adding sensors or features, as well as taking your wireless security system with you when you move to a new home.
Frontpoint's high-tech wireless security features aren't limited strictly to break-in monitoring. Once you have your wireless security system installed, you can start receiving instant alerts if a window breaks, but also when a door opens, the power goes out, or even when a child comes home. For even more convenience, you can access your wireless security system with any device that can connect to the internet. If you're on a computer, a\ laptop, or tablet, you can use their online customer portal.
Alternately, if you have an iPhone, iPad, Android, Blackberry, or Windows phone, you can take advantage of their free apps to check on your wireless home security system. Their advanced home automation features let you control lights, thermostat and door locks from anywhere, not only saving you money on your energy bills but also the worry over asking yourself, "Did I remember to lock the front door?" And, if you'd prefer to see for yourself that all's well on the home front, you can opt to use their video surveillance features.
You can choose from one of Frontpoint's 3 monitoring plan options:
To make things even more affordable, all of their wireless security equipment ships for free.
One major plus of Frontpoint's wireless security systems is the ability to add sensors and other features without incurring additional monitoring fees. Some of these extra home security sensors include:
We also love Frontpoint's strong emphasis on quality customer service, as evidenced by their numerous customer testimonials and A+ rating as an accredited company with the Better Business Bureau. They've also earned the Angie's List Super Service Award, which the highest honor is given by that organization to companies that have achieved a superior service rating.
As further evidence of their commitment to customer satisfaction, Frontpoint offers a 30-day risk-free money-back trial with their wireless security system. If you're unsatisfied for any reason, you can return your equipment within 30 days with no restocking fees and no return shipping charges.
Frontpoint sets the standard for wireless security systems. They offer cutting-edge technology that includes an impressive variety of sensors, free mobile apps, and numerous customization options. Their support staff is top-notch and their dedication to customer service stands out. If you're looking for an advanced wireless security system with the simplicity of DIY installation and smartphone/laptop controls, Frontpoint (1-866-363-8426) should be at the top of your list. They earn our highest rating.
Protect America offers one of the best deals in the entire wireless security industry. Their customer-focused wireless security packages include free equipment and all-inclusive monitoring solutions. Customer support is friendly and knowledgeable. If you're looking for a wireless security system, Protect America is an excellent choice, with a history spanning more than two decades and 400,000 customers.
Pricing is one of Protect America's strongest points: with an already-low entry package of just $19.99, they up the ante with their Lowest Price Guarantee, matching competitors' advertised offers on their monitoring services. Furthermore, customers can get the information they need without being pressured by salesmen pushing unnecessary features and upgrades. By calling Protect America's toll-free customer service department (1-888-951-5127), you can get a free, no-obligation wireless security consultation.
Protect America offers five wireless security plans that meet the security needs of any household. Every plan comes with a wireless GE home security system that includes a talking control panel, motion detector, internal siren, door chime, battery backup, one-button arming, a Lifetime Replacement Parts Warranty, three window decals, and a yard sign. Plans vary based on the number of entry point detectors needed:
For comprehensive home security, you'll want to place a sensor on all ground-level entry points, like doors and windows. The number of sensors you need will depend on the size and configuration of your home, but many houses will be adequately served by the 3 sensors provided in basic Copper package that Protect America offers.
For most homeowners, we think the Silver package offers the best value. This package provides an impressive amount of home security equipment - including 10 security sensors and a motion detector - for no upfront cost. The only fees are for your monitoring solution, which is very competitively priced at $37.99.
The wireless security systems from Protect America are designed to be installed by the homeowner. Installation is very straightforward and easy to understand, and supported by Protect America's knowledgeable and friendly staff. Choosing an easy-to-install wireless security system can save you hundreds or even thousands of dollars compared to a traditional home alarm system.
In addition to wireless security systems, Protect America has a number of security accessories that further enhance the safety of your home. Available home security equipment includes:
After activating your wireless security system, Protect America will send you a certificate of installation to show your insurance provider. In this way, getting a wireless security system from Protect America can even pay for itself by saving you as much as 20% on your annual homeowners insurance premium.
Protect America is a terrific way to get a wireless security system for no upfront cost. Each of their wireless security packages use cutting-edge technology and reliable nationwide monitoring to keep you and your home safe and sound. Because of their competitive pricing and top-notch customer support, Protect America (1-888-951-5127) earns very high marks and is a great option for your next wireless security system.
With the longest history in the protection business, dating all the way back to 1870 in New York City, ADT (short for American District Telegraph) is one of the most well-known names in the wireless security systems market. While they do still offer traditional home security systems that require the use of landlines and regular wiring, ADT has kept up with the times by focusing on the development of newer wireless packages.
We noticed right away that ADT has an installation fee of $99 for most packages. Although many of ADT's competitors offer do-it-yourself installation, ADT still requires customers to meet in person with a security advisor, who will help customize a wireless security system for the needs of the home and then install it (same-day installation is available in some of ADT's service areas). In-person sales representatives have a reputation for being pushy and pressuring customers to accept packages that go well beyond what they were looking for in terms of features and budget, which drops ADT somewhat in our rankings.
ADT also charges more for monthly monitoring than many of the providers we reviewed. There are three main packages offered by ADT:
The most popular package is the Pulse, primarily because of the ability to use any smartphone, tablet, or computer to monitor and adjust the system. We weren't overly impressed by ADT's extra charge to include those features, as many other providers of wireless security systems include that capability at no extra cost to customers.
On a positive note, ADT includes a free Personal Emergency Response System with the purchase of any security monitoring package. This consists of a waterproof pendant that can be worn as a necklace, on a wristband, or clipped to a belt. When the rescue alert button is pressed, a notification is sent to an ADT monitoring representative who will then either contact you by phone or using the two-way voice system provided in some ADT wireless security system packages. If needed, the representative will contact local emergency services.
We recommend that prospective customers check out the Special Offers page (accessed by following the link at the bottom of the site under the "Learn" heading). While the wording on the page made it unclear whether the offers listed there are for a limited time or always available, it would be worth your time to ask prior to making a commitment. At the time of our review, those offers included:
With more than six million total customers throughout its history spanning more than 100 years, ADT clearly does many things right when it comes to protecting people and property.
If you're looking for a contract-free wireless security system with simple, affordable monthly pricing for monitoring, GetSafe will likely be one of your favorite options.
In a market where companies often tend to nickel-and-dime you with cancellation fees, moving fees, multiple-year contracts, and extra service costs for every monitored device, GetSafe stands out. Although you do have to pay for your equipment outright the Starter Kit costs $249 and includes 1 Smart Hub, 1 door/window sensor, 1 (pet-friendly) motion detector, and 1 alarm siren, with additional products available for purchase/monitoring - your monthly costs for monitoring do not increase as you add sensors or other gear.
GetSafe offers two easy-to-understand monitoring plans:
Customers who live in Illinois, Maryland, Michigan, or Rhode Island should be aware that GetSafe only offered self-monitoring at the time of our review and should check with the company for availability updates.
Other than that, it's exactly that simple. Your GetSafe system is controlled through the Smart Hub, which connects through your home WiFi or using the installed AT&T 3G cellular connection should you lose your WiFi signal. (you will need to connect the hub to your router). This Smart Hub can control an astounding 64 security devices and supports up to 32 individual users. Some of the security devices available in addition to the Starter Kit include the following:
And, no matter how many devices you include (up to the Hub's capacity limit), it's all covered under your monthly monitoring package. This is an unparalleled amount of coverage compared with other wireless security systems currently available.
Once you've installed your GetSafe system - customer reviews across the board indicate that the do-it-yourself installation is very easy and takes less than 20 minutes to install the items in the Starter Kit - you'll use the smartphone app to activate the sensors. GetSafe's reps will help you test the system if you're still not sure if it's working properly. And, if you have family members without smartphones (such as young children) who need to be able to control the GetSafe system, consider purchasing a key fob that can arm and disarm the system.
GetSafe's customer service is extremely friendly and knowledgeable. From their toll-free number to their online chat representatives, we found that we got our questions answered quickly and with a minimal amount of pushy sales tactics. If you need guidance to determine what system components you'll need for your home or apartment, their reps can walk you through the process and make sure you get it (without recommending extras that you don't need). Their return policy is equally pro-customer: within 14 days of receiving your equipment, you can return it for a full refund, minus any shipping costs.
Although GetSafe is a newer addition to the wireless security system world, we give them high marks for their DIY installation, no monthly contracts, low monthly monitoring fees, and extremely positive customer reviews.
LiveWatch was created by a Kansas paramedic who wanted to create a cutting-edge home security system that would provide fast communication and response times during an emergency. In the last 10+ years, LiveWatch has gained more than 200,000 customers, and the company aims to treat each one of them like family.
Three plans of service are offered by LiveWatch. Every plan includes 24/7 monitoring, remote arm and disarm, LiveVoice Assist (which allows you to talk directly to the control panel in an emergency), and the ASAPer alert system that can be used to resolve alarms from a smartphone or computer. These include the following:
In order to start coverage, you'll need to choose an equipment purchase. There are two primary options: the Plug&Protect Basic ($99) and the Plug&Protect IQ ($299). The lower-priced package includes a somewhat retro GE Keypad Alarm Panel, 2 wireless door sensors, 1 wireless motion detector, a siren, 2 yard signs, 6 window stickers, and a keychain remote.
The IQ set includes everything in the Basic package, but the GE Keypad is replaced by a 7" Android touchscreen panel with dual-band connectivity and a built-in camera. Additional products are available for an extra cost, such as door sensors ($29 each), motion sensors ($78 each), and keychain remotes ($30 each). The monthly monitoring covers as many devices as you would like to add, all for the same monthly price.
Unlike most of the companies in our review, LiveWatch doesn't have a multi-year commitment to access their protection plans. Customers sign a 1-year contract, after which the service switches to a month-to-month plan. Also, LiveWatch has an excellent money-back guarantee: if you cancel within that first year, you can get a full refund when you return the equipment, with no restocking or cancellation fees.
Where LiveWatch left us confused was in the disconnect between the services listed as included in the Total Home packages and the products available during the checkout process. When we entered the highest level of equipment (IQ) and coverage (Total Home + Video), there was no option to add products one would expect, such as smartphone-controlled thermostats.
When we clicked on the live chat (which had popped up as soon as we went to the site, offering to answer any questions and offering discounts on the $99 starter kit), the representative said that the site was under construction and gave us a link to an external site with home automation products. We also saw that the IQ system was only $99 in our cart, despite being listed as $299 elsewhere - a good "problem" to have, but also indicative of inconsistencies with the site. Similarly, we were excited to see a 4.6/5-star rating as a Google seller, but the link took us to a page that said rating details were not available for this seller.
However, the customer service representative was very helpful with answering all of the questions we had and helping us put together a package that would meet our needs, so it may be that the site itself is going through some growing pains that will be resolved in the near future. We found many positive customer comments regarding the actual service provided by LiveWatch, so it could be worth your time to give them a look if you're shopping for a wireless security system.
If you're looking for a wireless security system with all of the latest technology bells and whistles, Vivint should be on your list of candidates. From Nest thermostats to Amazon Echo, Vivint's home security packages make it possible to change the temperature of your home, watch your kids playing in the living room, or even lock your front door from anywhere you have internet access.
All of Vivint's packages include the following:
There are three main packages that Vivint offers:
We like that Vivint offers free equipment and installation with certain packages. Be sure to read the fine print on the offer, however: depending on which state you live in, you'll need to commit to a hefty five-year contract (four years in a handful of states) with a plan of at least $60.99/month in order to qualify. We weren't able to find anything on Vivint's site to indicate that they have any sort of customer satisfaction guarantee, so making a five-year commitment (or paying the remaining contract balance) may be too much for many people. Also, if you move, you'll be charged a $99 moving fee if you've been a customer of Vivint for less than a year; the fee is waived if you renew your contract and you've been a customer for at least a year.
Vivint does have a warranty and service plan. For customers who choose Premium Service ($10/month), Vivint will repair and/or replace any defective part of the wireless security system at no charge. For all other plans, the warranty period is only 120 days after installation; beyond that point, Vivint will provide replacement parts at no extra charge, but you'll have to pay a $49 fee for the service call as well as taxes.
So, what will it cost to protect your home with Vivint? The easiest answer is "it depends". Vivint makes it very difficult to find out their package pricing, insisting that customers speak directly with a representative. We even tried using the chat function on the website but were told that pricing is only done over the phone or in person. Numerous customer reviews describe pushy salespeople knocking on their doors at late hours and signing people up for 5-year contracts without being explicit about the length of the commitment. You can be certain that for every feature added, you'll pay more - so with base packages starting at $53.99, Vivint is undoubtedly one of the costliest wireless security systems in our review.
We were glad to see that Vivint does have an A- rating with the Better Business Bureau. On the other hand, we were stunned to see that there have been nearly 4,000 closed complaints with the BBB alone in the last three years.
Overall, Vivint is a mixed bag. If having the latest technology in wireless security is a priority and you have an ample budget, Vivint should be on your list of possible companies. Just be prepared for the longest contract terms in the industry, and be proactive with contacting Vivint's customer support if you have issues with any of the equipment after installation.
Touted by celebrities like Dave Ramsey and others, SimpliSafe provides wireless security systems that can be installed easily by the average consumer and that have no contracts to sign. As with most no-contract systems, SimpliSafe requires that customers purchase equipment outright, starting at $229.99 for the starter set, but their low monthly monitoring costs - less than $25/month - definitely result in savings over time.
So, what's included in the starter package? Ideal for small homes and apartments, this set includes one base station and wireless keypad, one entry sensor, one motion sensor, and one keychain remote for $229.99. Larger packages include the Economy package, which adds two more entry sensors for a total cost of $259.99; the Classic package, which adds a smoke detector and siren to what's included in the Economy set, for a cost of $349.99; the Master package that has a total of two motion sensors and six entry sensors, along with the smoke detector and siren, for $449. 87; and, finally, the Ultimate package for $539.85, which has a total of two motion sensors, four entry sensors, the siren and smoke detector, along with a panic button, water sensor, carbon monoxide detector, and freeze sensor.
And, for additional savings, SimpliSafe is the only wireless security system we found that has refurbished equipment for sale. This could save you as much as 30% on the purchase of your wireless security system.
SimpliSafe breaks their monitoring into two easy-to-understand plans:
We like that SimpliSafe offers free shipping on all products, a 3-year product warranty, and an exceptional money-back guarantee for 60 days after purchase.
On the other hand, we felt that SimpliSafe falls short in two significant ways. First, most wireless security systems are based on the concept of using technology to control everything from arming the system to changing the temperature in the home, and it seems stingy of SimpliSafe to charge extra just to be able to use their app to change the system features. SimpliSafe doesn't currently offer thermostat controls, door locks, or camera monitoring, while many of their competitors do.
Also, we were discouraged to see a considerable number of customers who said that they were awakened by false alarms on more than one occasion, and that the monitoring service took as long as five minutes to contact the homeowner. Those same customers often had difficulty in getting a timely response from SimpliSafe's customer service department when trying to resolve the issues (which often required switching the system's cellular coverage from T-Mobile to Verizon or vice-versa).
We strongly recommend that customers start with one of the smaller, less expensive equipment packages - possibly refurbished or purchased second-hand - and giving it a thorough testing in the first two months, in order to take advantage of the 60-day return policy if needed.
Pennsylvania-based Guardian Protection Services has been in business for more than 60 years and recently expanded their traditional home security systems to include wireless-based packages.
Their current offerings include four plans:
In order to find out what a Guardian Protection Services plan will cost you, you have to call and set an appointment with one of their specialists. Be aware that Guardian itself only services a handful of markets themselves (which you can find hidden away in the About Us section of the website), any other areas are "serviced by Guardian authorized dealers". From what we were able to sleuth out, packages start at $34.99 and go up considerably from there. Guardian requires professional installation of all equipment, and we would have liked to see more transparency with respect to costs - both for the installation itself as well as a baseline for their different tiers of service.
Another detail we would like to see spelled out more specifically is the contract length required with their wireless security systems. Reviews we read described three-year contracts with hefty cancellation fees; one customer even continued to be billed for their system after their house burned to the ground and took a year to rebuild, despite having notified Guardian of their situation.
One positive of Guardian Protection Services is the number of accolades they've received: their award-winning monitoring center, which was given a five diamond rating by the Central Station Alarm Association, an A+ rating and accreditation with the Better Business Bureau, and a Super Service Award with Angie's List.
We give Guardian Protection Services middling marks for their wireless security systems; that score would easily improve with greater transparency in their pricing, both for packages and installation, and in the terms of their service contracts.
AlarmForce brings more than 25 years of experience to the wireless security systems market. While their business previously focused strictly on traditional wire-based systems, they've done a good job of keeping up with the times and moving to newer technologies.
It should be mentioned upfront that AlarmForce's market coverage is shockingly limited, and we might have missed it if we hadn't seen the "Service Locations" link at the bottom of the page under the Support heading. At the time of our review, the only areas covered by AlarmForce were Canada and selected cities in Ohio and North Carolina. Unfortunately, no matter how excellent their services or pricing, they can't offer protection to the majority of households in the United States.
That being said, here is what AlarmForce has to offer in the markets it does cover:
We also saw an offer for getting the first three months for free, but there was no further information given on the site to describe how customers can take advantage of that special pricing.
A perk of AlarmForce's wireless security systems is the free lifetime warranty: no charge for labor, replacement parts, or equipment. Most competitors charge, at minimum, a service call fee even for replacing parts under warranty, so this gives AlarmForce an edge in the market.
Also, their monitoring system has won a five-diamond rating for the quality of their service, one of only two wireless security systems in our review to have earned that accolade.
So, if you live in Canada or one of AlarmForce's market areas in North Carolina or Ohio, they may be a good choice for your home protection needs. However, their limited coverage drops them in our ratings.
Wireless Security Systems
Now more than ever, homeowners are looking for ways to protect themselves and their property. With more than 2 million burglaries each year - and an average loss of $2,000 per incident - wireless security systems are at the forefront of safeguarding against intruders.
It is true that there are other ways to make your home safer from burglary and invasion. For example, a well-lit exterior can discourage criminals from approaching your property, and high-quality deadbolts make it more difficult to enter your home. Unfortunately, even these measures will not prevent a determined criminal from picking the lock, smashing a window or slider door, and entering your home to steal your belongings or worse.
For that reason, experts in home protection strongly recommend that you invest in a wireless security system, particularly those that have round-the-clock monitoring, to give you the greatest possible peace of mind. Most criminals will bypass homes that have a monitoring system, simply because it puts them at greater risk of being caught in the act.
Compared with traditional home security systems, wireless versions allow you to install them on your own and can easily be moved from one location to another - a convenient advantage for those who move frequently, such as students living in dorms or those who move around the country for work reasons.
Having a wireless security system can also save you money. Many homeowners insurance policies will give you a discount on your annual premium - as much as 20% - with an installed home protection package.
Wireless security systems can vary widely with respect to the protection they offer, the equipment provided, and the overall cost. Also, some offer 24-hour live monitoring of your system, while others leave that responsibility to you.
What should you look for in a wireless security system? Be sure to consider the following aspects:
TopConsumerReviews.com has reviewed and ranked the best wireless security systems available today. We hope these reviews will help you find the ideal wireless security system to protect your home and your loved ones!
Wireless Security Systems In The News
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One might think things couldn't get any better than the Arlo Pro home security camera system, but then Netgear went ahead and released Arlo Pro 2. The newly updated version includes everything that made Arlo Pro cameras great, but so much more.
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