Ina Fried

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AT&T Aims to Break Into the Home-Security Business

After hinting at opportunities in the automation and security markets, AT&T is just about ready to enter the fray.

At CTIA on Monday, Ma Bell is announcing AT&T Digital Life, its competitor to ADT and other security services. The idea is that AT&T installs a home base unit that taps AT&T’s cellular networks and can connect via Wi-Fi and other methods to any number of devices in the house, from cameras and window sensors to locks, thermostats, appliances and motion detectors.

The company plans to have trials of the service this summer in Atlanta and Dallas. During the trial, customers can use their own wired broadband to connect to their system and then remotely control the system from phones, tablets or PCs.

“We’re planning a unique suite of services, from start to finish, that will give homeowners control of their property and their possessions through an easy to navigate user interface,” AT&T Senior VP Kevin Petersen said in a statement.

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I think the NSA has a job to do and we need the NSA. But as (physicist) Robert Oppenheimer said, “When you see something that is technically sweet, you go ahead and do it and argue about what to do about it only after you’ve had your technical success. That is the way it was with the atomic bomb.”

— Phil Zimmerman, PGP inventor and Silent Circle co-founder, in an interview with Om Malik