Good luck with your project, here are some comments for you to consider.
I have not seen any alarm systems for things like sheds and outdoor buildings that integrate with a main house alarm system. There are battery powered alarm systems for sheds etc - including one from Yale but they are completely standalone.
Traditional alarm systems - even many so called smart alarm systems are still using ‘ye olde’ numeric keypad. This obviously works for turning the system on/off it is however for most alarm systems also used as the means of configuring the alarm system by typing long series of digits e.g. disable sensor 1 in zone 5. These days people are used to touch screen user interfaces (smart phones) and these are far more flexible and can therefore also display far more information as well as provide superior user interfaces. For example show a picture representing the layout of the house with the sensor that has been triggered flashing on it, or highlight the location of a faulty sensor. Also if being integrated with a smart home system you can then also display other sensors, e.g. water leak detectors, temperature, etc. I am therefore looking for an alarm system with a touch panel, a numeric keypad is so 1970s.
These days it seems the trend is for wireless battery powered sensors and sirens. Whilst I can see the convenience of this the need to keep changing batteries which in the case of an outdoor siren might mean getting a ladder out and climbing up to a considerable height is not desirable. I would therefore want - even for a smart home/alarm system the option of a wired and therefore powered siren, and the same for a dummy one. A compromise might be to provide power via a cable and signals via wireless, this could then be fitted by an ordinary electrician just like an external light.
It seems the traditional alarm companies have the following attitude -
- We don’t want anything to do with anyone else because we are scared, stupid and don’t want to change
- Any one else’s stuff is a potential security risk (possibly justified)
Frankly whilst I am not an expert in the alarm field it does not look like it has had any advances for decades.
ADT claim to have a smart home alarm system - even here in the UK. This is in my opinion a lie, their UK product only works by itself and has zero smart home integration, they do like the Yale systems have their own smart phone app and cameras but like the Yale will not integrate with smart home platforms. Even in the US where they have a partnership with Samsung Smartthings the integration between the Smartthings side and the ADT side is very limited, you don’t seem to be able to use the ADT sensors to trigger other Smartthings operations. I would however have been willing to buy it except it is not available in the UK.
Something that is blindingly obviously needed and would be a huge benefit - possibly greater than even a burglar alarm system is a water leak detector linked to an automatic electronic stop-cock valve. There are such systems available in the US but effectively none here in the UK. By far the best I have seen is this one https://leaksmart.com/ they have now expanded their product range so they also have one specifically to go between your water supply and your washing machine, I am sure many people would agree washing machines are probably one of the main causes of leaks. Sadly this company like far too many is a member of the flat-earth society and does not believe there is life outside the USA and therefore only sell to the USA.
Yes I am aware of this - https://www.uk-automation.co.uk/z-wave-water-gas-valve-actuator-popp-009501/ but it is clearly far inferior. Even British Gas with their Hive product range have not addressed the issue of smart stop cock valves. In the US insurance companies would give you a discount if you had such a solution since it would reduce the amount of damage. Arguably UK insurance companies are also like UK alarm companies still very backwards and do not do this.
Another gap in the market is that there still does not seem to be any smart locks for external gates. Whilst the reason is obvious in that it both has to cope with weather and also possible wireless range issues there certainly is a gap and based on the numerous posts I have seen a demand. Existing smart locks are all designed to have the main components fitted indoors e.g. August, Yale, etc.
Going slightly off brief, there are numerous smart home electronic blind systems for traditional vertical and horizontal blinds. For example various Lutron products and there is also this from Soma https://uk.somasmarthome.com/ however there is currently no solution for the increasingly popular choice of Plantation Shutters. Yes due to the style of Plantation Shutters you need far more motors but people including myself are still interested in such a solution. The security related aspect here is that you could automate their opening/shutting to give the appearance the house is occupied.
Note: Another common issue is battery life for shutter motors. However technology supposedly is getting more power efficient so maybe this can now be addressed.
There was this https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/2070556083/shuttereaze-home-automation-for-your-plantation-sh but like all the other motorised Plantation Shutters I found they have ceased to be available.
Most burglar alarm sensors fall in to the following categories -
PIR (changes in infra-red i.e. heat caused by a person moving)
Video (motion detection)
Noise (glass breaking)
However I not yet seen any alarm systems utilise a new technical possibility. It is now possible to measure the disturbance to WiFi signals to detect the presence and movement of people in a building. See https://www.popularmechanics.com/technology/security/a26312/aura-wi-fi-security/
Regarding putting a sensor in a car, other possibilities are to have a camera pointed at the car and detecting motion, or to use something like the Smartthings Presence sensor and trigger an alarm if it leaves the house. Neither of these approaches is really suited to alerting you if your in the house as the camera option would likely generate too many false reports and would be best for evidence, the Presence Sensor would only trigger as the car is already being driven away. Again this perhaps is an area were companies are way behind the times, theoretically the car industry could do something here to link the cars own alarm system to the house, so if the cars alarm system detects motion it would trigger an alert to the house system. Since many new cars have built-in 4G connectivity and obviously have built-in alarm sensors this only in theory requires software.