Interview with Kevin Raposo from Simplisafe

One of the most frustrating characteristics people have when dealing with telecommunications companies is their heavy use of locking a user in with a 2 year contract. From personal experience I can attest to how frustrating it is to be half way through a two year contract and want to switch to a different plan but can’t because of the terms of the contract. A similar story can be told of the monitoring services provided by many of the most popular home security system companies.

We had the fortunate opportunity of getting to interview Kevin Raposo from Simplisafe Home Security about their mission to give consumers a top-of-the-line home security system without the attachment that comes with a contract. What is Simplisafe?

Kevin Raposo: SimpliSafe is revolutionizing the alarm industry by providing wireless security systems and alarm monitoring to our customers free of long-term contracts, install fees, expensive monitoring fees, and gotchas. We can do that because we designed and manufacture our own alarms: SimpliSafe security systems are easy to self-install, and you can get alarm monitoring, with cellular connectivity, for just $14.99/month. Now compare that to ADT’s 3 year lock-ins that tie customers to $40/month plans. Our competitors often bait consumers with small “$99” install systems in exchange for signing contracts. What they don’t tell you is that you will pay through the nose for any extra alarm components. And if you’re like millions of Americans that don’t have a home landline phone, you’ll need to pay $150 for cellular equipment and $10-15 dollars extra per month for cellular connectivity.. We give that cellular feature to everyone for free. Apples to apples: SimpliSafe is a no brainer for value minded consumers.

HSS: How does SimpliSafe differentiate itself from the numerous other Home Security System offerings currently on the market?

KR: It’s all in our name—SimpliSafe. Everything about our system and service is aimed at being easy and customer friendly. SimpliSafe offers 24/7 alarm monitoring at a low cost with no long term commitment. Our alarm systems arrive cleverly pre-programmed with the most desirable defaults, ready to plug-n-protect, without any need to look under the hood.

Our customers are happy, loyal, and safe—and it’s because we don’t treat them like ATM’s. What people need to remember is that once you’ve signed a contract with an alarm company, they have absolutely no incentive to keep you happy…you are legally obligated to pay the monthly fee, even if your alarm equipment doesn’t work. We think that’s just wrong, and we’re growing like crazy because consumers are just sick of being treated that way.

HSS: What will be some of the online capabilities offered through SimpliSafe2’s Online Command?

KR: SimpliSafe2 is pretty cool—you can arm/disarm your alarm system from anywhere in the world. If you’re drinking sangria in Madrid and want to let your friend into your home to feed the cat, boom. You just press a button on your computer or smartphone and it’s done. You can give all your sensors a name like “back door”, so it’s easy to know which sensors are triggered. For folks that like digging into settings and making precise calibrations, we got cool new features like the ability to determine at the individual sensor level whether you want it to be on “instant trigger” mode, allowing you to zone your home precisely as you want it. You can also designate certain sensors to be “alert only” sensors, these will send you and those you designate Secret! alerts via SMS text, telling you that they’ve been triggered—which is pretty handy for knowing if private drawers, jewelry boxes, medicine cabinets with prescription medicines, or closets have been accessed. You also get SMS text alerts when your system is armed, disarmed, and get notified of any alarm events.

HSS: Is there a way to incorporate video into my SimpliSafe home security strategy? If no, will there be an implementation in the future?

KR: Cameras are currently in development; stay tuned for more details.

HSS: The SimpliSafe Base Station is built with a cellular module for wireless connectivity. Is it possible to disrupt the Base Station’s signals with any of our other at-home wireless gadgetry?

KR: That’s a great question. No, your typical home wireless equipment like a Wi-Fi router or cordless phone won’t interfere with the cellular signal.

HSS: A lot of companies, like Microsoft with their HomeOS, are trying to make smart home technology more accessible to the general public. What sort of smart home capabilities are on the horizon for SimpliSafe?

KR: We haven’t ruled anything out!

See our Review of SimpliSafe

Posted on Friday, June 8th, 2012