Xfinity Home, the brainchild of Comcast’s Mitch Bowling is the new home monitoring system, now available for all Comcast customers who use the company’s wireless data network.
Xfinity Home combines smart home monitoring functions such as remote lighting and temperature controls with an inclusive home security system. This intelligent combo can control all aspects of home monitoring for its customers, remotely.
There is a basic and a preferred option available. Both options monitor homes twenty four hours a day, seven days a week. The basic model provides home security protection that includes burglary and fire alarm protection. The preferred system also provides home security monitoring and combines this service with home controls including remote ability to turn lighting off and on, adjust thermostats, and stream video from home monitoring cameras placed in the home directly to their Smart Phones or lap tops anywhere in the world. The preferred system also provides monitoring of carbon monoxide and offers email and text alerts as well.
Both types of monitoring systems offered by Xfinity home run over Comcast’s enormous
The product was test marketed in the Houston, Texas area in 2010 as Xfinity Home Security. The service has since rolled out to over twenty markets, with the security portion of the products name dropped, indicating that security options are only one element of Xfinity Home’s services.
Comcast views Xfinity Home as a major growth area for the company. Potential sales are predicted for home security services in the US at $9 billion annually. And, with a forty-three percent growth rate estimated, Comcast is looking forward to getting a piece of the home monitoring pie. With the company’s already-existing customer base, sales force, technical and call center staff already in place, Xfinity Home is poised to make a splash in the home monitoring market place.
Pricing is reasonable. Xfinity Home’s basic package runs $29.95; the preferred package costs
$49.95. Installation is extra, but is currently being offered at a substantial discount. Home owners will use a touch-screen control panel, water-proof security cameras, and sensors for home thermostats and monitoring.
Of course Comcast isn’t alone among communications providers in venturing into home monitoring. Verizon Communications Inc., and established security operator ADT, have both entered the remote home monitoring market. Growth seems limitless with the continued increase in Wi-Fi equipped portable consumer devices, and with portable Internet access has come an increased interest in home monitoring systems that can be operated from any remote location.
Comcast’s aware of the growing trend for mobile device activation of home systems. And they are already planning to expand Xfinity Home to include the use of mobile devices to DVR television programming, control door locks, garage door openers, and provide water control sensors.
Xfinity Home designer Mitch Bowling views it as a life style system, for home owners who want to be connected on the go to their home.
Although Comcast’s cable television offerings have lost customers recently, its broadband internet consumers are growing. With predictions of home automation systems expanding to the tune of ten million customers by 2016, Comcast is driven to prove their system is the one customer’s will select.
While Comcast is competing with established home security purveyors, Xfinity offers a wide range of services for a reasonable cost. The control unit, tablet-sized, has easy to use icons to control security and home monitoring, the capability to display video feeds from cameras in the system, and panic buttons that can be used to directly reach emergency service personnel. The panel uses Wi-Fi and 3G connections to prevent connection failures.