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The ADT Pulse monitoring service starts at $28. 99 per month and requires a three year contract, but you also have to figure in the cost of things like hardware components, cellular backup, and installation. When we reviewed the Pulse system, our upfront cost was more than $3,000, with a monthly fee of over $60. Some vendors, such as LifeShield, will let you buy the components outright or lease them. For example, LifeShield's Security Essentials system will cost you $29. 99 per month for three years and includes monitoring, but you'll pay a $99 activation fee and you don't own the equipment at the end of the lease. Or, you can pay $299. 99 upfront for the hardware and still get monitoring but avoid the activation fee. If you live in a small apartment and want to keep tabs on things when you're not home, a security camera can get the job done for a lot less money than what you'll pay for a full security system. Nearly all standalone security cameras connect to your home's Wi Fi so you can see what's going on from your phone or tablet, and most have built in sensors that detect motion and sound and will send push and email notifications when those sensors are triggered. You can usually tweak the camera's motion sensitivity to prevent false alarms due to pet activity or passing cars if the camera is near a window, and you can create a schedule that turns the sensors on and off during certain hours of the day.

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If you want to add one or more SimpliCam security cameras the system supports up to four, they're $99 each. And the Video Doorbell Pro is an integrated 1080p smart doorbell with camera that you can add for $169. Currently, SimpliSafe doesn't offer any packages that include cameras or the doorbell. they're add ons. Setup requires placing the base station in a central location within 400 feet of your sensors and 100 feet of your keypads, and plugging in the included power cord. The new base station integrates a 802. 11n 2. 4GHz Wi Fi radio, adding another layer of connectivity with SimpliSafe's monitoring service. The Wi Fi is a boon for those living in rural areas who wouldn't be able to use the monitoring service because of patchy cellular coverage. If you're concerned about IoT threats, you don't have to connect SimpliSafe to your Wi Fi network, the monitoring works just fine without it, though you won't receive firmware updates. Inside the base, there's a siren, a backup battery the company claims will last up to 24 hours, and a SIM card for cellular communication.