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Security giant ADT plans to offer a DIY security service plus Nest integration

A security sign for ADT is seen outside a home in Port Washington, New YorkA security sign for ADT is seen outside a home in Port Washington, New York
A security sign for ADT is seen outside a home in Port Washington, New York, September 30, 2014. Photograph by Shannon Stapleton — Reuters

ADT, the home security monitoring service provider, whose signs at least are in almost every suburb in America, is prepping the launch of an all-in-one security device. The product, set for later this year would let a new segment of consumers monitor their homes without necessarily buying into ADT’s expensive monthly subscription plans. After an investor meeting Thursday, the company announced a partnership with LG Electronics to build a sleek, home security camera that also contains a variety of sensors and would connect to a consumer’s broadband network.

ADT security camera

The product, which doesn’t yet have a name, an official launch date outside of fall 2015, or a price tag, would be a break with ADT’s business model, and would compete with offers from startups such as Canary and the Piper product owned by Icontrol Networks. Arthur Orduna, the chief innovation officer at Boca Raton, Fla.-based ADT, explained that the plan is to offer the product to consumers on a no-contract basis with the idea that a new generation of customers might use it to connect to ADT’s services.

ADT’s existing installed home security product may be great for homeowners who can install a network of door and window sensors on their home, but renters are cut out entirely. Plus, a new wave of connected sensors and DIY home security products are causing homeowners to look at monitored home security as archaic and expensive. There are also new entrants in ADT’s traditional market as broadband companies like Comcast and AT&T are building up their own monitored security offerings to compete with ADT.

In addition to a completely new piece of hardware, ADT also said that it will integrate with the Nest thermostat with its Pulse home security and home automation service. Later this summer it will revamp its mobile app and it is continuing to develop its ADT security platform that will feature services from partners such as Life360, an app that helps you track your family members, and If This Then That, a web service that lets you connect your physical devices and web services to each other easily.

Orduna is very vocal about ADT’s need to move from thinking about security as monitoring a person’s home to securing what’s important to people across a wide variety of places, whether it’s their devices or their children out in the world or in their homes. As such he’s thinking of ADT as a platform with monitoring only as one asset of that platform—albeit an expensive and valuable aspect of the platform.

The company has been working for almost two years to get in front of the disruption that low-cost hardware, sensors and new connectivity models are bringing into the home, and in 2016 after the launch of the new LG all-in-one security device and the new mobile apps and services, we’ll start to get a sense of how well ADT’s big bet on its transition is going.