This is my long term iSmartAlarm review of this “startups” smart phone capable alarm system.
I purchased this alarm system in a flash sale about a year ago.
My initial impressions were great, the box and quality of the items felt great. So I fairly excitedly set the system up in my house.
My Kit included:
- Two Magnetics sensors for the doors
- A PIR sensor
- Two iCamera Keep’s
- Two remote Tags
- A Main Cube one control box
The system was easy to setup with a few minor issues with camera range which was sorted out fairly quickly.
The PIR and contact sensors were deployed and operated fairly flawlessly for many many months on the same batteries.
I had setup both iCamera Keeps in the house, which felt fairly intrusive so I fairly quickly placed these in the window sils pointing out of the window, that worked well for in the daytime but the infrared LED’s just bounced off the window rather then lighting up the yards – This would happen on any camera not just the keep.
The camera itself worked pretty well, although the motion abilities of the camera proved a bit of a novelty quite quickly.
The issues came when trying to setup motion and sound detection along with event recording. It just didn’t work reliably, that along with the slightly painful speed of the application logging on to the cameras resulted in the cameras being consigned to looking at the reflections in the windows 🙂
It also took me several months to get the recording to SD card working properly, its also such a shame you could NOT access the recordings to the SD remotely, instead you had to pull the camera from its nesting place and remove the micro SD card and place it in a computer (with SD adaptor).
I had not given up hope on the iSmartAlarm at this point, and ended up purchasing some newly released Spot cameras (720p).
These were such a great idea and actually another good camera with push to speak and audio listening in. The viewing angle was good as was the picture. However these cameras were marred by the same application and motion control detection issues early on.
As time went by I grew a little bored of the cameras as they were not as useful as I hoped. But this changed mid last year when I needed to keep an eye on the house, as some major building work was going on and the rear of the house was secured by polythene for some time.
During this time the camera application and firmware was updated on all the Spots and the Keep’s which resulted in a much much better experience. I just wished it hadn’t taken so long to release!
All in all the iSmartAlarm is a great product with zero subscription, but I feel they need additional funds to work faster on making many of the features either work as advertised or just work well. The application has had another update in April 2017 which looks a lot cleaner and is now much faster.
The iSmartAlarm hardware is pretty well designed and the software generally works as you would expect. It offers somthing different by not charging a subscription and is at a very low price point. So that being the case I would recommend it for its basic functionality. However the integration into other products and platforms (IFTTT) needs to be a priority for the company or risk being left behind…