Talking tech since 2003

If you haven’t heard of iSmartAlarm yet, you will soon.  The company has developed what appears to be the ultimate smart security system for your home.  We recently covered the launch of its IndieGoGo campaign, where to date it has raised almost $37,000 (with 15 days to go in the campaign).  I spoke with Raymond Meng, the co-founder and CEO of iSmartAlarm the other day to see where he has his sights set and to talk about the upcoming launch of the iSmartAlarm system.

Mr. Meng, a fan of Steve Jobs, who happens to live close by the late Apple co-founder’s home said the inspiration for the product came when he learned that Steve Jobs’ home had been robbed late last summer.  And a quick look at the iSmartAlarm unit will show where the company incorporated its inspiration from Apple, from its name using the iconic “i” to the units sleek white design.

But Mr. Meng knows that looks alone won’t be enough, he went on to tell me that he wanted to build a home security system that followed three key principles: it has to be easy to use, convenient, and user friendly.  “Traditional home security systems have two problems,” said Mr. Meng, “they are not user friendly and are expensive.”  he went onto say.

It’s true, most traditional home security systems are old, outdated, and don’t integrate easily with new technology.  Not to mention, most of the traditional security systems have monthly fees.  None of this is the case with the iSmartAlarm.  Not only does the iSmartAlarm have an app that works on your iPhone (other apps, such as Android, Windows Phone are coming too), but there are no monthly fees associated with the iSmartAlarm.

Once you purchase the iSmartAlarm, you own it.  Right now with the IndieGoGo campaign, you can save $100 to $150 on each package by pre-ordering.

I asked Mr. Meng to talk about some of the features of the iSmartAlarm that make it stand out from traditional home security systems, one of the things he mentioned to me was the iSmartAlarm’s ability to notify home owners when someone enters their home even if the iSmartAlarm is “unarmed.”  According to Mr. Meng, you can have his product identify with certain smartphones or make use of a remote tag that will identify someone entering the home.  This means that if your husband, wife, significant other, son, daughter, etc walks into or out of your home when you’re not home, and you receive a notification on your smartphone, you don’t need to freak out since you know exactly who caused the notification to be sent.  A nice touch.

The difference between the iSmartAlarm being “armed” and “unarmed” is simple, if the unit is armed, a siren will go off if someone enters the home who isn’t supposed to be there.  Additionally, the 350 degree directional camera can take photos and send them to your smartphone, allowing you to assess the situation and take immediate action if necessary (such as calling the police).

According to Mr. Meng, the iSmartAlarm can work in essentially any kind of home, from a one bedroom apartment to a large house because of its flexibility and ability to handle additional sensors, motion detectors, and other devices.  In fact, the iSmartAlarm can theoretically handle up to 1,000 additional devices, and I’m pretty sure most home owners won’t need that many.

Aside from security, Mr. Meng hopes to see the iSmartAlarm start turning homes into “smart homes,” with its ability to allow developers to hook into the device and control other aspects of a home, such as the lights, thermostat, etc.  The possibilities could be endless.

The company is in good shape financially, and Mr. Meng just returned from a trip to Asia where he worked to finalize the manufacturing details.  He assured me that even if the company doesn’t reach its crowd funding goal, the product will ship and that they are using the campaign mostly as a way to spread awareness and generate interest.

The iSmartAlarm will start shipping in April and the iPhone app will hit the App Store by then as well.  We will be receiving a review unit of the iSmartAlarm, so be on the look out for our complete review.

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