AT&T Launches Digital Life Home Monitoring Service

ATLANTA (The Atlanta Journal-Constitution/MCT) —

AT&T Mobility entered the home-security arena Friday with new services in 15 markets.

Digital Life is a wireless-based service that provides around-the-clock monitoring by AT&T-owned monitoring centers. The company announced plans for the new service about a year ago.

The Atlanta-based operation joins competitors who already offer home-monitoring systems as a way of expanding core services to generate additional business. With advances in wireless technology, homeowners can now manage everything from lights to security from afar.

More companies are marketing “digital lifestyle packages” that integrate telecommunications, entertainment, home energy management and security. In a 2012 J.D. Power and Associates “Digital Lifestyle Study” involving more than 18,000 respondents who make household decisions, 45 percent indicated they would choose a digital lifestyle package from a cable provider; 19 percent would select a telecommunications provider; 17 percent a security company and 10 percent an energy provider.

AT&T sees room for another competitor in home monitoring, since only 20 percent of U.S. households have security systems, the company said.

“We conducted extensive research, listened to our customers and worked hard to build a single integrated solution with an unmatched set of assets all built around our customer’s needs,” Kevin Petersen, Digital Life senior vice president, said in a statement about the new service.

Digital Life customers will be able to check their systems from smartphones, tablets or PCs, AT&T said. For additional charges, the system can provide video feeds; let customers control appliances, lighting and thermostats; and detect water leaks and shut off water at its main source.

A central control panel can be programmed through a mobile application or web interface; the panel connects to AT&T’s wireless network, but it should also be connected to a wired internet modem for redundancy, AT&T told The Associated Press. AT&T said the system can be installed regardless of the customer’s wireless or wireline broadband provider.

Basic packages for Digital Life range from $29.99 a month plus $149.99 for equipment and installation to $39.99 a month plus $249.99 for equipment and installation.

Digital Life is being launched in Atlanta; Austin, Texas; Boulder, Colo.; Chicago; Dallas; Denver; Houston; Los Angeles; Miami; Philadelphia; Riverside, Calif.; San Francisco; Seattle; St. Louis; and parts of New York and New Jersey.

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