Looking to change to the National Broadband Network (NBN)?

Make sure your alarm system is NBN ready

Keeping your security system up-to-date

The National Broadband Network (NBN) is getting rolled out Australia-wide. The existing fixed phone lines and Internet network infrastructure will be upgraded and you will no longer have access to a fixed-line telephone.

Many older alarms are designed to use a phone line to dial a monitoring centre and alert it when a sensor is triggered. Typically, each of these calls incur a charge on your phone bill in addition to a monthly fee paid to the alarm monitoring company. Internet-connected alarms contact the alarm monitoring centre instead making a call, and they do not require a phone service.

Transitioning to NBN security systems

Watchdog Alarms have been working with NBN Co to ensure customers enjoy a seamless transition. If you currently have a back to base alarm installed in your home or business and you are switching to the NBN, you should speak us about the issues. We’re ready to give you advice and the help you need.


Find out if your existing alarm is NBN compatible

The most certain way to find out is to ask your alarm service provider. They are best placed to know the alarm’s technical requirements and may have already undertaken compatibility testing with various providers’ phone services over the NBN.

If your alarm provider is not sure, you could ask what options they offer for upgrading the alarm to work over the internet (which could allow you to use it over a high speed broadband service through the NBN).

Wiring your alarm for an NBN phone service

Most back-to-base alarms that dial out over a copper phone line are installed with a special phone socket called a “mode 3” socket. This type of socket lets the alarm dial out even if the copper phone line is already in use.

Your alarm provider should be able to advise you whether your alarm is connected to a “mode 3” socket and whether any cabling changes will be required in order for your alarm to operate with an NBN phone service. If they cannot tell you this, you might consider speaking to your NBN internet or phone service provider, or a registered cabler for advice.

Please note, the advice above is general in nature and may not apply to your specific circumstances. Please contact the supplier of the alarm before arranging for your phone service to be connected over the NBN.

If your current alarm relies on a phone line and your alarm or retail service provider says it can’t guarantee that alarm will work over the NBN, ask your alarm provider about other options, or contact Watchdog Alarms for advice.

For the technically minded…

For those familiar with the technical aspects of voice over internet protocol (VoIP) services, the following are the key features that will most likely be required to ensure an existing alarm works over an NBN-based phone service:

1.The phone service should use NBN Co’s Traffic Class 1 (TC1)
(If not, the quality of the voice service might degrade if your internet connection is in use, which might prevent your alarm communicating with the monitoring centre successfully.)

2.The phone service should use the G.711 sound CODEC
(If not, the sound quality of the call might not be good enough for the alarm to communicate with the monitoring centre successfully.)

3.The phone service should provide reliable transmission of tones
(If not, alarms that use tones to communicate with the monitoring centre might not be able to connect successfully.)

4.The phone service should have battery backup to allow the alarm to dial-out for a period of time even if power is cut.
(If not the alarm won’t work if the power is out.)


Our recommendation

There are a number of ways that you can have you alarm monitored, and we would suggest using a cellular mobile network as your preferred method. There is a lot of hype around IP monitoring (using your internet connection) but it still has the same fundamental flaw – If you line is cut your signal won’t get through!

We recommend and install Permaconn. Here is some more information on how the NBN may effect your home alarm. For more information please refer to the NBN co website: nbnco.com.au

The NBN is capable of supporting the operation of most existing back-to-base medical, security and fire alarms, as well as a wide range of internet-connected alarms. High speed broadband over the NBN can make a whole range of new security capabilities possible.

Some internet-connected alarms may also provide new features, such as allowing you to receive messages and pictures on your smartphone, to check in on your house or business while you’re away to make sure everything’s OK, or to view a live video feed from your security cameras.

1. Connect using the Uni-v voice port. This will require some re wiring of the socket.

2. Connect using an IP gateway that can be added to your alarm

3. Installation of a Permaconn cellular data unit. All signals will then go via the cellular mobile network. As a back-up we can even link into the NBN data port as the primary path, so should the IP connection go down, we will revert to cellular.