You can never be too careful when it comes to home security. More than 2 million homes are burglarized each year in the U.S., and nearly one-third of Americans had packages stolen from their front porches in 2017.
Those sobering stats drove David Selinger, who cofounded homeowner marketplace Redfin, to launch Deep Sentinel, a home security startup that leverages cameras, AI, and around-the-clock monitoring to prevent break-ins, auto theft, and other domestic crimes. Roughly two years after the San Francisco firm closed a $7.4 million Series A round led by Shasta Ventures, with participation from Bezos Expeditions and others, Deep Sentinel is gearing up to launch broadly.
It’ll exhibit its home security solution next week at the 2019 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.
“Traditional security systems passively monitor, but don’t truly protect,” Selinger said. “Everyone should feel safe in their homes, and with Deep Sentinel’s personal security guards watching over you 24/7, you finally can.”
When it comes to deterring would-be car thieves and box bandits, Deep Sentinel takes a multipronged approach.
Its custom-designed smart cameras work in tandem with an on-premises AI processing hub to lay out a surveillance zone for a home in real time. The hardware was created in partnership with Ammunition — the design studio responsible for Lyft’s LED emblem and Square’s point-of-sale system — and is the culmination of feedback from more than 50 police departments. Selinger claims that’s one of the reasons police response times with Deep Sentinel are 70 percent better on average than with the competition.
The weatherproof, IP65-rated cameras alone — which record in HD with a 130-degree field of view, wake up from standby in less than 250 milliseconds, last months on a single charge, and pack motion-detected infrared LEDs with a 35-foot range — are able to distinguish between people, animals, cars, and other objects and detect suspicious behavior as it happens. As for the one-pound AI hub, its 64GB of flash memory can store up to six months of video footage, Selinger says, and its Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 system-on-chip processes up to 10 frames per second.
When the system detects that a crime is imminent, strobing red lights on the cameras light up to signal that they’re recording, and the video feed is beamed to Deep Sentinel’s remote surveillance center. There, staff can choose to intervene with two-way speakers and loud sirens — the loudest on the market at 104 decibels, Deep Sentinel claims — or contact law enforcement. Selinger says that response times are typically between 10 to 30 seconds.
It all sounds very impressive, to be sure, but peace of mind doesn’t come cheap. A pack of three cameras, one hub, and four rechargeable batteries starts at $400 (which includes a $200 upfront equipment deposit for new customers), and subscriptions are $50 per month with a one-year commitment. (Deep Sentinel for Business costs $499 and $100 per month for subscription service.) That’s quite a bit more than the $25 per month SimpliSafe charges for its top-of-the-line subscription; the $40-per-month cost of Brinks Home Security’s monitoring service; and Link Interactive’s $41-per-month tier.
But it is tough to argue that the demand for solutions like Deep Sentinel isn’t there. According to a report from MarketsandMarkets, the home security system market could be worth as much as $74.75 billion by 2023, up from $45.58 billion in 2018. Moreover, analysts from Park Associates forecast that 27 percent of U.S. households will have security systems by 2021.