Commercial automation management systems have been in operation for a number of years, controlling temperature, lighting, appliances, security and access control in hotels, businesses and larger facilities. One of the developing forces for these systems in the hotel industry was to save money by automatically turning off the television set, excess lighting, closing the drapes and raising or lowering the guest room temperature when the room is not occupied.
In addition, automation has made it possible to delete the prior “guest” cards upon check out and enable a “new” card when a guest checks in. Through automation, no one needs to go to the room and physically make the changes. They are accomplished using remote controllable modules, components and locks that are standalone, part of or connected to the lighting, drape, television or thermostat.
The initial costs are minimal compared to the significant savings accruing over years of operation. In addition to making adjustments in guest rooms; hotel ballroom, conference rooms and corridor temperatures can be automatically regulated for specified time frames.
When new technology is introduced, many of these automation systems can incorporate the products without having to replace existing hardware.
Schlage has taken automation technology to a new level with the Schlage LiNK home management system that controls and monitors the home’s environment. Schlage LiNK provides residential control (including access) and monitoring capabilities by means of a computer equipped with broadband Internet capability.
Since Schlage is at heart a lock company, the Schlage LiNK home management system includes a wireless electro-mechanical cylindrical door lock or deadbolt. The Schlage LiNK System is capable of controlling and monitoring a variety of electronics including thermostats, cameras and light modules.
In addition to computer communications within the residence, the Schlage LiNK System can be monitored and controlled from almost any location through the Schlage LiNK interface/application using web-enabled mobile devices (including cellular telephones) or computers equipped with broadband Internet access.
The Schlage LiNK System incorporates low power, Z-Wave Radio Frequency (RF) technology designed specifically for two-way communication remote control applications. This technology is optimized for simple commands including on-off (i.e. light switch) and raise-lower (i.e. thermostat). The Z-Wave technology (hardware) is embedded or retrofit into the electronic devices.
Important: The Schlage LiNK System and Z-Wave technology is resistant to interference from most common household wireless electronics including cordless telephones.
Having lighting, thermostat, and lock hardware equipped with Z-Wave technology, it is possible to control and monitor household functions and activity without having to be there.
The Schlage LiNK System can transceive commands in real time. For example, the Schlage Wireless Keypad Entry Lock can be remotely unlocked or locked using the residence computer or a web-enabled mobile device, providing entry for someone who is locked out. Multiple commands can be entered such as also turning on an interior light(s) for the locked-out person or remotely turning lights on and off to create a lived-in look while away on vacation.
To complete the Schlage LiNK home automation system, Schlage incorporated the ability to remotely operate their Wireless Keypad Entry Lock and Deadbolt with the Z-Wave. To ensure security, Schlage has implemented the secured device class and the lock class. All communications with the lock are fully encrypted using AES 128-bit encryption, and all communications with the remote access server are encrypted using SSL technology. In addition, Schlage employs a third-party firm to do regular security testing on the system to ensure that high standards for security are maintained.
The Schlage Keypad Entry Lock can be programmed with up to 19 user codes including one temporary code. Once programmed, the temporary code stays in effect for 24 hours. Each family member can be given his or her own user code. There is no need for the child to carry a key in order to gain access into the house.
Up to 232 Z-Wave devices can be connected to the Schlage LiNK system. These can include any combination of wireless locks or deadbolts, thermostats, light modules and various other Z-Wave devices.
Text message alerts to mobile devices and/or emails to computers can be pre-programmed to automatically occur when specific functions have been accomplished. Text message and emails can be sent to an unlimited number of mobile devices or computers. Schlage does not charge a fee for text messages. Consult your cellular device service provider for more information regarding text messaging charges.
Working parents can program their mobile devices and office computers to receive alerts, instantaneously notifying them as each child arrives at home. An email and/or text message is transmitted when a child has entered his/her user code to gain access through the keypad entry lock. This eliminates the need to depend upon the child to call when s/he arrives home.
An additional Schlage LiNK benefit is access to a 90-day lock audit trail showing the date and time each user code accessed the lock.
There are two methods for determining if your mobile devices (cellular telephones) are compatible with the Schlage LiNK System. Go to the web site http://link.schlage.com. At the bottom of the home page, there’s a link that will help you find out if your mobile device is compatible. As an alternative, you can text PHONE to MyLiNK (695465) and you will receive a text indicating if your mobile device is supported. If yes, you can download a demo of the phone application.
The Schlage LiNK System provides the ability to program alerts for just about every operation. The alerts include notification when the lock batteries have less than 20 percent of life. A second alert will arrive if the batteries are not changed and remaining life becomes less than 10 percent.
When a Z-Wave-equipped Trane Remote Energy Management Thermostat is installed, an alert can be programmed when the temperature in the residence changes a specific number of degrees. Another alert can be set to notify when the filter requires changing.
Schlage has introduced two styles of IP video cameras, permitting homeowners to real-time monitor the interior of the residence. The WCE100 wired model camera and WCW100 wireless model are preprogrammed for plug-and-play integration with the Schlage LiNK System. The cameras are compact, measuring 3.8” height by 3.5” wide by 1.4” deep. The cameras are supplied with a mounting bracket, AC power adapter and an Ethernet cable.
Note: Schlage is in the process of developing a line of outdoor Internet Protocol cameras that will have pan and/or zoom capabilities.
The Schlage network cameras connect to the Internet through the computer router used to operate the Schlage LiNK system. Live video can be viewed on any Internet-connected computer and most Internet-enabled mobile devices. The Schlage cameras feature VGA resolution (640 x 480) at 30 frames per second. As a reference, VGA resolution is 72 dpi, the resolution of most computer monitors/displays. There is support for MPEG-4 and M-JPEG. The output video is compatible with Internet Explorer 6.0 and higher, Mozilla Firefox, Opera and Apple Safari.
The Schlage LiNK Wireless Remote Entry Starter System contains a wireless keypad lever lock or deadbolt, the Schlage wireless bridge and a light module. The wireless bridge connects the Z-Wave devices to the computer via the router, making it possible to remotely operate them.
Note: The Schlage LiNK Starter System is compatible any standard computer router. To operate the wireless camera, a wireless “G” or “N” router is required.
Over time, Schlage will be releasing additional Z-Wave-compliant products to expand the functionality of the LiNK System. Schlage has a specific release format where each Z-Wave product must pass all Schlage testing to ensure smooth operation and security. Another release of products will occur in 2009, with additional releases in 2010.
To gain all of the functionality of the Schlage LiNK System, there is a monthly subscription fee of $12.99 plus local taxes. A discounted annual subscription fee is $142.89 plus local taxes. There is no increase for the total number of devices. The subscription fee provides 24-hour access to the Schlage LiNK Web and mobile interface portal for monitoring and access capabilities that make it possible to remotely control the devices..
For more information, contact your local locksmith distributor, call Schlage LiNK Customer Service at 877-288-7707 or visit http://link.schlage.com.