Editor’s Note: This blog post was originally published in March 2019 and has been revised to reflect industry updates.
Most likely you’ve fumbled to open your front door while carrying groceries or assisting children and loved ones. What if you could unlock it, activate lights, and disarm your security system, even before entering your home? You can, with geofencing technology.
Utilizing your location to trigger specific actions, geofencing enables control of household lighting, door locks, thermostats, and electronic devices. It also monitors and manages your home’s security measures, such as burglar alarms, cameras, and fire and life safety devices.
When pulling into your driveway, the home security system will sense you’re within 100 feet or less, unlocking the front door. Many people have a set routine upon arrival home from work, school, or even a vacation—and geofencing remotely manages these with enhanced convenience and comfort.
Paired with the Alarm.com app, these smart modules can be pre-programmed and adjusted from any mobile device.
Below we’ll outline this technology’s purpose, features, benefits, security functions, and more.
What Is the Purpose of Geofencing?
Geofencing secures a home and property while providing extraordinary functionality of interconnected devices, features, and appliances to improve users’ lifestyles. Available within smart home security systems, it is also easy to set up and implement. Using the Alarm.com app, choose your location and distance to concurrently define a perimeter, or fence, around a set point. The app constantly monitors specified areas, prompting a transmission upon a user reaching its virtual fence. This signal then initiates desired, pre-programmed actions based upon departures or arrivals.
How Does Geofencing Work?
Similar to smart home devices and other security settings, geofencing is controlled and managed via a Z-Wave-powered smart hub or panel. Much like Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, this wireless feature has an extensive range.
Geofencing takes smart home technology further, by combining all these devices and controls into one cohesive network. Its virtual fencing, or border around a specified area, can be set via the Alarm.com app and accessed by your mobile device’s location data. This then speaks to your security system, setting the pre-programmed stage or scene to activate as you arrive closer to your destination.
Geofencing With Smart Security & Home Automation
When used in conjunction with various smart components, geofencing offers easy and comprehensive home automation. Each of these can be adjusted and controlled together, or separately, for maximum flexibility.
Consider the following technologies:
- Smart Outlets & LED Bulbs
- Security Cameras
- Door Locks
- Alarm Arm/Disarm
- Electronic Devices
- Sprinkler Systems
- Garage Door Openers
- Flood & Temperature Sensors
- In-Home Sound Systems
Utilizing your location to trigger specific actions, geofencing enables control of household lighting, door locks, thermostats, and electronic devices.
Is Geofencing Secure?
Geofencing can also control security cameras within your home and around your property. It’s recommended to add smart-compatible devices for easy integration. These can include activating indoor, outdoor, and doorbell cameras once you’ve left your pre-programmed boundary. Alarm systems can be armed and disarmed, and doors can remotely lock—even if your position is outside the pre-designated settings.
Geofencing Offers Money-Saving Opportunities
Geofencing is a win for the environment and your budget. Setting the thermostat to savings mode when you’re away and back to comfort when home can help reduce utility costs. The thermostat will activate once you leave work, adjusting to the comfort setting as you arrive home.
How to Set Up Geofencing Scenes
All General Security Smart Home Systems include a geofencing-capable Alarm.com app. One of its most common functions is called Scenes, enabling users to save a group of pre-determined settings in frequently used configurations. These devices can also be programmed to change based upon location and other variables.
The following are just two common examples of possibilities available with Scenes and geofencing:
“Home From Work”
Many people have a set routine when returning home from work. They might pull into the garage, for example, go inside, switch on lights, adjust the thermostat, turn on the television, and/or play relaxing music.
All of these actions can be easily automated with Scenes and geofencing. Power up all pre-programmed devices during your drive home, and as you pull into the driveway, the garage door is already opening, indoor lights switching on, music softly playing and temperature adjusting.
“Kids Home From School”
Geofencing can also be coordinated with your family’s school schedules. With a few adjustments, the app can activate many home features and devices as dismissal time draws closer. In addition to setting lights and thermostats, you can power down televisions and electronic devices, and program sound systems to play calming tunes for homework and studying time. You can also set real-time video notifications to ensure children and other loved ones arrive home safely.
Setting the Geofencing Stage
Whether you require added reassurance of a secure home as you leave for work, or wish to pre-set your in-home functions, it’s best to work with a reputable provider, such as General Security, for a comprehensive geofencing solution.