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Problem: This block was in a socio-demographically improving area. The block’s management board decided to capitalise on that and to fit video intercom system, to replace their current clapped-out audio intercom.

Occasional vandalism had been a problem in the area. The board was concerned that a new and shiny big intercom panel with 47 call-buttons and a nifty integrated camera would virtually beg for vandalism.

Their other main concern was cost. Upgrading to a video system often requires a complete rewiring, unless… well, read on.

Solution: After lengthy discussions, Metrolocks had the board agree a GSM based intercom system.

By the main entrance is a vandal resistant keypad with a built-in camera and an LED display. The visitor types the flat number into the keypad. The keypad will then make a telephone call to the tenant’s landline or his mobile phone, or one after the other.

If the tenant gets the call on his mobile phone, the outside camera will show him the video feed from the front door. A certain button sequence entered in the tenant’s phone will then release the door. The LED display serves to display to the visitor the progress of his call.

The small size and robust allure of the outside intercom keypad put paid to the vandalism concern. The absence of any wiring, combined with the absence of expensive video intercom handsets allayed any fears over costs.

To be fair, a GSM intercom can be much cheaper than a traditional wired one, but there are small monthly line rental and telephone call costs. Also, the list of the tenants’ telephone numbers needs to be administered and programmed in to the keypad (this can be done from remote).

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