AT&T barges into home security and automation

May 07, 2012 By PETER SVENSSON , AP Technology Writer
In this Oct. 19, 2009 file photo, the AT&T logo is on display at a RadioShack store in Gloucester, Mass. AT&T Inc. will start selling home automation and security services nationwide, taking on incumbents led by Tyco International Ltd.’s ADT. The installations and services will be sold in AT&T stores, starting with a trial this summer in Dallas and Atlanta. (AP Photo/Lisa Poole, File)

(AP) -- AT&T Inc. will start selling home automation and security services nationwide, taking on incumbents led by Tyco International Ltd.'s ADT.

The installations and services will be sold in AT&T stores, starting with a trial this summer in Dallas and Atlanta.

Several of AT&T's competitors, including cable TV company Comcast Corp. and phone company Verizon Communications Inc., have ventured into the home and field. Dallas-based AT&T is showing more ambition with its stated goal of selling nationwide, rather than sticking to its landline service territory, as Verizon does.

Steven Winoker, an analyst at Sanford Bernstein, said about 23 percent of U.S. homes have security systems, so there's plenty of room to grow. Even fewer have automation systems for controlling appliances, lights, heating and cooling.

The biggest player in the field is ADT, but it has only 25 percent of the market. Many smaller companies make up the rest, according to Winoker.

It's a very profitable business, Winoker said, but it's not big enough to significantly affect the earnings of a company of AT&T's size even if it's successful, given that it's a relatively small market.

AT&T's technology comes from Xanboo, a it bought in late 2010. Its central control panel can connect wirelessly with cameras, thermostats, appliance controls, lights and sensors for doors, windows, smoke and carbon monoxide. Through the panel, home owners can then control their home from their cellphones.

It's highly recommended that the control panel is connected to wired broadband, but it doesn't have to be service through AT&T, said Glenn Lurie, AT&T's president of emerging devices. As a backup, the panel can connect to AT&T's wireless data network.

AT&T didn't say what its services would cost.

AT&T made its announcement on the eve of the U.S. cellphone industry's annual trade show, which starts Tuesday in New Orleans.

Explore further: Tech giants look to skies to spread Internet

not rated yet
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Cox agrees to sell wireless spectrum to Verizon

Dec 16, 2011

(AP) -- Cable company Cox Communications on Friday said that it has agreed to sell some of its airwave licenses to Verizon Wireless for $315 million and will resell Verizon service in its stores.

Verizon to set up streaming service with Redbox

Feb 06, 2012

Challenging Netflix, phone company Verizon Communications Inc. says it will start a video streaming service later this year in cooperation with Redbox and its DVD rental kiosks.

Verizon pays $3.6 bn to buy spectrum from cable firms

Dec 04, 2011

US cellphone giant Verizon Wireless said Friday it will pay $3.6 billion to buy wireless spectrum from three leading cable providers which are bowing out of plans to plunge into the cellphone business.

Cox kills Sprint-based cellphone service

Nov 16, 2011

(AP) -- Cox Communications, the country's third-largest cable company, stopped offering cellphone service Wednesday, saying it's too small to compete with the big phone companies.

Recommended for you

Tech giants look to skies to spread Internet

40 minutes ago

The shortest path to the Internet for some remote corners of the world may be through the skies. That is the message from US tech giants seeking to spread the online gospel to hard-to-reach regions.

Wireless industry makes anti-theft commitment

2 hours ago

A trade group for wireless providers said Tuesday that the biggest mobile device manufacturers and carriers will soon put anti-theft tools on the gadgets to try to deter rampant smartphone theft.

Dish Network denies wrongdoing in $2M settlement

11 hours ago

The state attorney general's office says Dish Network Corp. will reimburse Washington state customers about $2 million for what it calls a deceptive surcharge, but the satellite TV provider denies any wrongdoing.

Netflix's Comcast deal improves quality of video

Apr 14, 2014

Netflix's videos are streaming through Comcast's Internet service at their highest speeds in the past 17 months now that Netflix is paying for a more direct connection to Comcast's network.

New research on gigabit wireless communications

Apr 10, 2014

Research on gigabit wireless communications has been presented by researchers from the University of Bristol at the world's leading wireless communications and networking conference, IEEE WCNC 2014, in Turkey ...

User comments : 0

More news stories

Tech giants look to skies to spread Internet

The shortest path to the Internet for some remote corners of the world may be through the skies. That is the message from US tech giants seeking to spread the online gospel to hard-to-reach regions.

Patent talk: Google sharpens contact lens vision

(Phys.org) —A report from Patent Bolt brings us one step closer to what Google may have in mind in developing smart contact lenses. According to the discussion Google is interested in the concept of contact ...

Wireless industry makes anti-theft commitment

A trade group for wireless providers said Tuesday that the biggest mobile device manufacturers and carriers will soon put anti-theft tools on the gadgets to try to deter rampant smartphone theft.

Astronomers: 'Tilt-a-worlds' could harbor life

A fluctuating tilt in a planet's orbit does not preclude the possibility of life, according to new research by astronomers at the University of Washington, Utah's Weber State University and NASA. In fact, ...