InnovAlarm, a Web-based platform for security, safety and health monitoring services. Although their website has little information about the product, InnovAlarm CTO David Albert sent me more details. He told me their aim is "to 'Skype' the security monitoring and home monitoring businesses."One of the more ambitious and innovative Web apps I've heard of recently is
The overall goal for InnovAlarm is to create a large Internet community around free PC-based security, safety, and health monitoring services. As for the technology behind this vision, the disruptive part is Voice over IP telephony, which InnovAlarm thinks has the potential to usurp traditional alarm communication methods.
InnovAlarm is currently pre-beta - their beta testing will start in the Sept -Oct timeframe. The service roll-out is slated for Q1 2007.
InnovAlarm will get a cash injection of $10 million in Series B fund in Q4 2006, so they have money to spend on their big plans. One of their target markets, residential security monitoring, is a big one - with $7 billion in revenue in 2006 according to their estimates. $4 billion of that goes to ADT, the largest security monitoring company in the world. InnovAlarm estimates that, due to demographics, most of the 40 million homes with security systems have broadband. So they see a way to connect security services to the Internet.
How does it work?
You install a small, Internet-downloadable application on your home PC, which then communicates with InnovAlarm's monitoring center servers. The trick is that your PC must be turned on for the monitoring to take place. The "Sentry" app monitors for alarm sounds and communicates to the central servers - which sends email and text message alerts to selected recipients. When there is an alarm detection, the Sentry application initiates a call via a free VoIP service (from Skype, Microsoft, Yahoo, Google, or AOL). This then leads to an audible alarm to:
- The homeowner
- Family Safety Circle designated persons
- Central Monitoring Station
InnovAlarm will deploy a wide-ranging marketing schedule for their product, including attempting to get it installed by manufacturers on new PCs (e.g., Dell, HP, Lenovo, Gateway, etc.). They'll also look to distribute the app via viral marketing, partner bundling and the establishment of the concept of Family Safety Circles. So potential partners include portals (Yahoo, Google, etc.), retail companies (First Alert, Kidde, etc.), insurance companies, etc.
As I mentioned, InnovAlarm is definitely ambitious. Their goal is to have more residential and small business accounts monitored than the current security monitoring market leader, ADT (6 million as of now). They don't say what their goals are in the health monitoring market.
I think we'll see a lot more 'real world' applications of Web technology in the coming months. Monitoring the security of your home and the health of your body are obviously very important matters, so it's great to see Web-enabled solutions beginning to appear.