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As homes and businesses become smarter, so should the intelligence of their security. Concerns have been recently raised about conventional wireless products being susceptible to hacking, and characterized by a short battery life.

Security manufacturers have been building sensors for security devices with size, price, and battery optimization as core principles. Homeowners would rather not spend time changing batteries on a house full of sensors every year, especially when those devices are placed on ceilings and high up on the walls. And this to the fact, that most sensors lack that technology to notify you that their batteries are running low.

Thanks to new RF (radio frequency) technologies and communications schemes, however, new two-way sensors for the home market have been available for the past few years from vendors like Elk Products, a home and business security solutions manufacturer. ELK’s Two-Way Wireless products incorporate advanced features to ensure secure transmissions with extended battery life.

The company’s two-way capabilities are available on a diverse range of products including motion sensors, smoke detectors, and keyfobs. The company says the two-way nature of these products can actually save battery life because feedback can be obtained instantly, letting you know the message to the security system has been received.

According to the company’s website, every signal from each sensor is acknowledged by the transceiver to ensure reliability. This also stops repeat transmissions, saving battery life. Bi-color LEDs confirm signals have been received, saving installation steps and time. reports that two-way technology also translates into convenience and security, as in the case of keyfobs, one of the great conveniences offered with most security systems.

Typically, users arm or disarm a system by pressing a button on the fob, but they have no idea if the message was actually received from the security system. With two-way communications, keyfobs can receive a virtual thumbs up that a command was received. When a user presses the “arm” button, did the security system go into “arm” mode? If the red LED flashes, the house is indeed secured.

As the user approaches the home, a steady red light on the keyfob indicates the system is armed; a steady green indicates the system is disarmed; and a red flashing LED indicates the system has been compromised and it may not be safe to enter. The status inquiry button allows users to see if an alarm has been activated before entering to prevent confrontation with an intruder.