We receive calls every day asking about the benefits of getting rid of their phone line and changing their Alarm System to Cellular.
Homes in the U.S.A. are ditching their land lines and switching to cellular for all of their phone calls. Just 71% of households had landlines in 2011, down from a little more than 96% 15 years ago. And that number dropped significantly in 2013/2014.
One obvious consequence is the probability of the cost of Land Line Phones increasing. It's a demand and supply issue. The less Demand, dries up supply, the less users the greater cost per user.
So, with so many households dropping their POTS (Plain Old Telephone System) the cost to those that continue to depend upon land lines is going to increase.
Another issue with using land line phone systems for Alarms is the ease of disabling an alarm system by cutting the phone line.
It's now rare for us to install an alarm system that uses a POTS land line. A few customers are using their Cable Service Phone option. That has the same weakness, but it's often not so easy to cut a Cable Line than it is to cut or disconnect (unplug) a land line phone service.
Alarm Cellular Communicators utilize data circuits rather than voice circuits. That makes them more efficient and less demanding upon the local cellular voice networks. Many Police officers use their cellphones to communicate when the local authorities have radio issues. So Cellular Communicators are very reliable.
Finally there is the cost of switching to Cellular versus Land Line. The equipment is not that expensive, most often it's around $200 for the equipment upgrade, although for new systems, the cost of the cellular is pretty well offset by the cost of installing the connection to the land line in the first place.
The monitoring rate via Cellular is more expensive, but typically around $10.00 per month, but that is far less than even the most basic land line service.
So to summarize:
- Land lines are becoming more expensive, Cellular is getting cheaper.
- Land lines are subject to being cut, Cellular is far more reliable.
- Land Line monitoring is cheaper but the cost of the land line is far higher than the monitoring cost via cellular.
And of course, all of the modern home automation systems that are integrated with the Alarm systems are available. They allow far more control over the Alarm system and improve the value of the system as it can now report via Text or Email when a Door is opened or closed, when the Alarm is Armed or Disarmed, even when the liquor cabinet is opened... if that happens just after school is out then...