iControl sues Alarm.com and Frontpoint.com

iControl sues Alarm.com and Frontpoint.com

This was interesting news to hit the web today.  It was on the Wall Street Journal at 10am.   Othermedia sources also picked up the story from the press release.

It was only a matter of time before the two major Home Automation/Security Cloud services clashed. Alarm.com and iControl.  iControl supplies their service to known companies like ADT and Comcast. They also provide service to manufacturers like DSC (owned by Tyco) and Telguard.  Alarm.com sued Telguard earlier this year already for patent infringement on four patents.

It is now iControl’s turn to return the volley with a lawsuit claiming Alarm.com and Frontpoint have taken part in 6 patent infringements.

Why did Alarm.com sue Telguard? They dont really make anything they just hired iControl the same as ADT or DSC (with their Connect 24 product)

Why is Frontpoint (a DIY alarm company that ships alarms to customers for self installs) part of the lawsuit?

This is what was from the pr newswire website.

REDWOOD CITY, Calif., July 10, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — iControl Networks, a leader in connected home technology and innovation, announced today that it has filed a patent infringement lawsuit against Alarm.com and FrontPoint Security, an Alarm.com customer, in U.S. District Court in the Eastern District of Virginia.  The complaint seeks damages and an injunction to stop the further sale of the infringing Alarm.com and FrontPoint Security products.

“Intellectual property is crucial to the type of technology innovation that defines our company, and so we will do all we can to protect our most valuable assets,” said Bob Hagerty, CEO of iControl Networks. “As a pioneer in interactive home security, iControl has invested millions of dollars in research and development to bring to market the iControl OpenHome™ Software Platform.”

The complaint asserts that the technology in Alarm.com’s interactive home security system infringes one or more claims of iControl Networks patents: United States Patent Nos. 7,911,341, 7,262,690, 8,073,931, 8,335,842, 8,473,619 and 8,478,844.

“The six patents asserted against Alarm.com are only part of the breakthrough technologies being designed and developed at iControl Networks,” Hagerty said.  “We have filed this lawsuit to stop Alarm.com and FrontPoint Security from incorporating our patented technology in their products. We will protect our innovation, investment and future by defending our broad patent portfolio.”

About iControl Networks
iControl Networks is a venture-backed software and services company providing interactive solutions defining the broadband home management market. The iControl OpenHome™ Software Platform, an award-winning software solution that has made the Connected Home a reality, enables home security companies, broadband service providers and utilities to offer the next generation of home management, security and connectivity to their customers. Venture investors in iControl include Charles River Ventures, the Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers iFund, and Intel Capital, with strategic investments from a variety of service providers including ADT, Comcast Interactive Capital, Comporium and Rogers Communications. For more information, please visit www.icontrol.com.

Security Info watch mentioned that the patents are these things

  1. Method for Defining and Implementing Alarm/Notification by Exception
  2. Method and System for Monitoring Events
  3. Networked Touchscreen with Integrated Interfaces
  4. Premises Management Networking
  5. Security Network Integrated with Premise Security System
  6. Forming a Security Network Including Integrated Security System Components and Network Devices

Most of those do not make a ton of sense to me, but I can make out that #3 shows that iControl believes that the color touchscreen that puts security and automation controls on the same screen is off limits.

You can read iControl’s complaint here.

Both Alarm.com and iControl are dedicated to defending their innovation in the home automation / cloud space.  It will be interesting to see what the outcome of this and the Telguard suit are.  Most believe that Alarm.com is far ahead of iControl in innovation so it is pretty interesting that iControl is suing them. Maybe the perception that many in the alarm industry have will be changed soon.

What are your thoughts?

Guest post from Zions Security Alarms

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