Tech lets you run a smart home remotely

Jul 17, 2012 By Daniel Vasquez

A technology developed by a Florida company can transform any residence can into a smart home.

While you are away at work or on vacation, you can pull out your or , Blackberry or , and turn down the air conditioner, switch on the porch lights, or check whether anyone has opened the front door in the past two hours.

All of these features and more may be added relatively inexpensively, in many cases for hundreds of dollars rather than thousands, thanks to Boca Raton-based ADT. Known globally for its home alarm systems, the company's new line of Pulse remote interactive systems for homes and businesses enables users to remotely control cameras, arm the alarm system and more using a portable keypad or mobile device app, effectively making any home smarter.

That means your home can be safer while also helping you save cash on .

"While I am at sea I can log in, crank up the air conditioner and lights," said yacht captain Josh Kerrigan, of Pompano Beach. ADT describes Kerrigan as one of the first Pulse customers nationwide when it was released two years ago. "Since then they have added a lot of new features and the value just keeps getting better."

Kerrigan said he changes the thermostat or checks his home's four interior cameras, to see whether his dog is OK or to find out whether a UPS package has arrived at the front door. "This system makes everything easier for me, as a homeowner, and business owner."

Basic installation for ADT Pulse systems start at about $299 for installation, and monthly monitoring service costs about $45 per month.

Kerrigan estimates he saves about $100 per month, mainly from keeping the AC low when he is not around or making sure it doesn't turn on when plans change and he has to come home late. And Tucker says customers are generally eligible for up to 20 percent off homeowners' .

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