Author: Zara Taylor
TDSi’s exciting new GARDiS Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) Reader has just been launched, providing secure access control via a credential stored safely on a smartphone. Highly secure and convenient to use, it also provides a contactless solution which is vital during continued social distancing.
In the first part of this blog (Available HERE), TDSi’s Software Project Manager Tina Baker discussed the technological and practical concept behind the new reader. In this second part, UK Sales Director Alex Rumsey gives an insight into the market demands that helped to drive development and explains how the BLE Reader fits into the wider TDSi integrated security and access control product portfolio.
Whilst we were already highly confident of the powerful security and flexibility benefits of BLE technology, we wanted to also make sure it fitted well into our existing and planned product portfolio and was relevant to the market and our customers.
Full integration with other security elements (and the wider IT network) is essential for any component of a modern security network, so it was vital that the GARDiS BLE Reader would work well with both new and existing sites and systems. Therefore, from the beginning of the development process, we fully evaluated the options and the market forces to make sure it was the right choice.
The GARDiS BLE Reader works with all our existing controllers, ensuring immediate compatibility with the wider security network – both for new projects, but importantly, also for straightforward upgrades to existing installations. A central component of TDSi’s sales strategy is always to anticipate and meet market changes.
The GARDiS BLE Reader also embraces the pervasive trend towards Access Control as a Service (ACaaS). ACaaS is a term that is growing in popularity and it is a concept that pretty much does ‘what it says on the tin’. End users buy their security solution as part of a fixed contract and price from their supplier. There is no big capital expenditure cost, the installer fits the systems and maintains them, so the end-user has a fixed contract/cost (usually monthly or annually) with no hidden extras. The Installer also benefits from a guaranteed period of income, rather than constantly chasing sales of new products.
From an installer’s point of view, one of the key ongoing benefits is the ability to purchase credentials quickly and easily. Unlike physical credentials such as cards (which would have to be sent from a supply warehouse to a distributor, then on to the installer, and finally the customer – potentially taking three or four days), we can now process the order in the morning, electronically load the credentials onto the online portal and then implement the credits to the security user and be live within a matter of hours.
Despite the apparent complexity of the technology involved in the GARDiS BLE Reader, installation is actually remarkably simple and similar to a normal reader process. A cable connects the controller and the reader location (often this is already in place) and the GARDiS BLE Reader can simply be swapped with an existing reader to fully integrate with the security network.
There are wider benefits too. Removing the need for physical shipping lowers the carbon footprint and transportation costs. These savings are obviously passed on, making this approach more cost-effective than offering a physical smartcard. Housekeeping and management of the security credentials are also much easier than dealing with physical cards. From a security user’s point of view, there is the flexibility and convenience of being able to securely transfer credits from an old smartphone to a new one.
Security operators also have full control over the distribution and use of the credentials, all managed from either TDSi’s EXgarde or GARDiS software platforms. In many cases we are seeing security operators looking to upgrade their readers, perhaps initially placing them in a more centrally accessible location, adding new BLE Readers, and (when budgets become available) adding further units to further locations.
Obviously, the contactless nature of the GARDiS BLE product is a huge benefit in the new normal, but it is also very practical (with a mobile phone being highly accessible, in a pocket or already in your hand) and cost-effective. We are proud to offer such a well-placed product, and it has been an ideal opportunity for TDSi to re-engage with our customers and to talk about the new technologies on offer to meet their evolving needs.
To learn more about the GARDiS Bluetooth Lowe Energy Reader please contact your Account Manager or telephone +44(0)1202 723 535.
Alex Rumsey, UK Sales Director