iControl Advanced Starter Kit

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iControl Advanced Starter Kit

This month, we also reviewed the larger of iControl’s two starter kits, which consists of a wireless camera, a motion detector, an Intermatic Z-Wave lamp module, a door/window detector, a motion detector, a keychain remote, and a control module that plugs into your wireless router.

The starter kit is just that: It can be expanded with more than a dozen additional components, including smoke and water detectors, freeze sensors, thermostats, and more. While the WiLife system is limited to video cameras, cameras are but one aspect of iControl’s product: It moves far beyond monitoring visual events in and around your home, enabling you to control your home’s lighting and climate over the Internet. It also comes with a feature we’re not nearly as enthused about: a $15-per-month (or $150 per year) subscription fee.

The WiLife system is limited to generating alerts when its cameras detect motion; iControl’s software is more sophisticated: It can not only generate an alert based on readings from any of its sensors, but also alert you when an expected event doesn’t happen. If your front door doesn’t open by 3:00 PM, for instance, you can program the system to send a notification to your PC or smartphone that your child hasn’t arrived home from school.

IControl’s system is much broader than WiLife’s and it’s entirely web based, so you don’t need to install a software client on your PC. But that $15 per month service charge is hard to swallow.

Watching

Delivers much more than just video surveillance.

Being Watched

Video surveillance segment is weaker than WiLife's offering; monthly subscription fee.

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