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Internet of Things will Enhance Residential Security Apps

Security system monitoring via the Internet is still a growth business. According to the latest market study by Berg Insight, the number of monitored security alarm systems in the European market is forecast to grow from 8.7 million subscribers in 2016, at a CAGR of 4 percent, to reach 10.6 million in 2021.

In North America, the total number of monitored security alarm systems is now forecast to grow at a CAGR of 2.9 percent from 32.1 million at the end of 2016 -- eventually reaching 37.1 million at the end of 2021.

Small alarm systems for businesses and private homes can be divided into two main categories -- local alarms and monitored alarms. The simplest type of local alarm only reacts to activation by ringing bells or sirens to alert the people in the surrounding area and potentially deter intruders.

Security Alarm Market Development

A more advanced type of local alarm is a self-monitoring security alarm. Monitored alarms are connected to an Alarm Receiving Centre (ARC) that can respond to an activated alarm by contacting the police or dispatching a security patrol.

ADT is the leading provider of monitored security alarm systems in North America. In 2016, ADT merged with Protection 1, which makes the combined company the clear market leader.

Vivint and MONI Smart Security are other players with well over a million monitored alarms. Comcast and Slomin are two other major actors on the very fragmented North American market.

In contrast, Verisure is the leading player on the European market, with monitored security alarms in a dozen countries. Securitas, G4S and the rising star Sector Alarm are all sizeable players, especially in the northern part of Europe.

In the southern part of Europe, Prosegur and EPS are two dominant players. United Technologies Corporation with its Climate, Controls & Security business as well as Stanley Security and Johnson Controls (acquired Tyco in 2016) are also important players active in both Europe and North America.

According to the assessment by Berg Insight, there is still a significant growth potential for monitored small security alarm systems, especially in Europe where the total penetration reached only 3.7 percent of all businesses and households at the end of 2016.

"The penetration of monitored security alarm systems in North America is much higher than in Europe, and the corresponding figure in this region was 22 percent at the end of 2016," said Anders Frick, senior analyst at Berg Insight.

Outlook for Alarm Systems Growth in 2017

The most important factor for market growth today is active marketing and sales led by specialist security alarm service companies and new market entrants from the home automation industry. Moreover, the adoption of Internet of Things (IoT) sensor technology will drive demand for new residential security applications.

"Alarm systems are becoming more valuable for customers as the scope of offerings are being expanded to include detection of fire, carbon monoxide and water leaks, as well as home automation features such as smart plugs, locks, cameras, lighting and thermostat control," concluded Mr Frick.

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