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Wireless, mobile first and rich in data? The future of access control is within reach of almost everyone

The 2020s will be a wireless decade in access control, says Russell Wagstaff of ASSA ABLOY Opening Solutions EMEA. It examines trend data and looks beyond mobile keys to discover new security roles for the smartphone. The advantages of wireless electronic access control are well known. They are also more relevant than ever. A wireless solution gives facility managers deeper and more flexible control over who needs to have access, where and when, because installing, using and integrating them is easier and less expensive than wiring more doors. Battery Locks Many procurement teams are now aware of these cost advantages, but perhaps not the magnitude. Research for a benchmarking exercise of ASSA ABLOY (AAOS) opening solutions found that the installation step was the biggest contributor to cost reduction. Comparing a typical installation of Aperio battery-powered locks to wired locks on the same scale, research has projected an 80% savings in installer labor costs for customers who go wireless. Battery operated locks all consume significantly less power than traditional wired locks Operating costs are also lower for wireless: Battery operated locks all consume significantly less power than traditional wired locks, which operate normally through magnets permanently connected to electricity. Wireless locks only “wake up” when they receive an ID for which they must make an access decision. The AAOS has estimated an energy saving of 70% over the life of a comparable lock. Learn more about wireless access control at ASSA ABLOY’s upcoming webinar on June 29 Wireless lock deployment In short, any time a business chooses a wireless lock over a wired door, it benefits both installation savings and operating costs. A recent report from IFSEC Global, AAOS and Omdia reveals just how much the benefits of wireless are being felt. Responses to a large survey of security professionals – end users, installers, integrators and consultants serving large businesses and small and medium-sized organizations in education, healthcare, industry, commerce, infrastructure, retail, banking and others – suggest nearly four in ten sites (38%) have now deployed wireless locks as part or all of their access solution. The corresponding data point from the 2014 AAOS report was 23%. Electronic access control Electronic access control is less dependent than ever on wiring Without a doubt, electronic access control is less dependent than ever on wiring: even after a year when many investments have been deferred or reduced, data shows rapid adoption of wireless locks, technologies and systems. Is mobile access control, based on digital credentials or “virtual keys” stored on a smartphone, an ideal security technology for this wireless future? In fact, the same report reveals that mobile access is growing rapidly right now. Among those surveyed, 26% of end users already offer mobile compatibility; 39% plan to deploy mobile access within two years. By the mid-2020s, around two-thirds of access systems will be using the smartphone in one way or another. The smartphone is also handy for collecting information about the system. Fostering rapid adoption What drives such rapid adoption? The convenience benefits for everyday users are obvious: witness the boom in banking and mobile payments, travel or event ticketing, transportation, food delivery and countless other areas of modern life. Access control is a natural choice. If you have your phone, you are already carrying your keys: what could be simpler? IBM predicts that 1.87 billion people worldwide will be mobile workers by 2022. There is less talk of how mobile management is also making life easier for facilities and security managers. Of those polled for the new wireless access control report, nearly half (47%) agreed that “mobile is more flexible than physical credentials, and 36% think mobile credentials make it easier to get started. at the level of employee access rights at any time ”. IBM predicts that 1.87 billion people worldwide will be mobile workers by 2022. Workers in all affected industries need solutions that can do the job from anywhere: Smartphone Access Management offers that. Site management device The smartphone is also convenient for collecting information about the system. For example, a new reporting and analysis tool for CLIQ key-based access control systems uses an application to collect, visualize and evaluate access data. Data from the security system could contribute to the success of the business. The app’s clear and visual layout helps managers instantly spot relevant trends, anomalies or patterns. It is easy to export, to share information throughout the company. Reimagined for learning, and not just as a “key” or site management device, the phone will help businesses make smarter, data-driven decisions. The smartphone will also play a major role in security – and everything in between – for an exciting new generation of smart buildings. These buildings will derive their intelligence from interoperability. Over 90% of those interviewed for the report stressed the importance of integrating building functions, including access control, video surveillance, alarm systems and visitor management. Truly Seamless Integration They offer greater peace of mind than proprietary solutions that “lock you in” for the long haul. Yet, in practice, obstacles remain in the way of deeper and truly transparent integration. More than a quarter of those questioned felt held back by the lack of solutions developed according to open standards. “Open standards are critical to the momentum behind the transition to systems integration,” the report notes. In addition to being more flexible, open solutions are more sustainable. Shared standards ensure that investments can be made today with the confidence that hardware and firmware can be built seamlessly in the future. They offer greater peace of mind than proprietary solutions that “lock you up” for the long haul. Open solutions and mobile management are essential to achieve the goals pursued by end users across industries: scalability, flexibility, sustainability, cost effectiveness and convenience.



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