Is Mobile A 'MUst-Have' For Access Control?

A member asked about the importance of mobile device app for administering Electronic Access Control. Several providers offer 'apps' for controlling an access system, but how important is this feature to end users?

We agreed that it seemed uncommon, but what about you? Do you see end users demanding and using mobile platforms to control their EAC systems?

It is definitely not a "must-have" although it sure would be a "nice-to-have".

We've distributed access systems into 3000+ sites in the last 5 years and we have only had this request less than 10 times (all of them being in the last year). So we're seeing this feature being requested more often but it is still not common.

I think end-users demand what integrators propose to them. As these features become more common and start being proposed by integrators, you will see end-users (and consultants) requesting these features from competitive bids.

I've seen mobile apps for controlling/administrating, and I've seen them as a credential. I find more folks interested in the later rather than the former. But that probably makes sense to some degree just based on that there are more users that need credentials to pop doors than users to manage the system. "Must have" though... no.

For right now, nice to have, but as more manufacturers offer it, it will become one of those specification "gotchas" and everyone will have it. The Genetec mobile app works well and is pretty handy.

I have had some customers request mobile card readers for events on college campuses to verify if a student ID is still valid.

Not a must have. I think most large (even mid size maybe?) end users have 24/7 Security or Operations so there is always someone in the "office" to assist with access control. For me personally would it be nice to have as an added feature? Sure. Must have? Not even close.

Thanks for the replies!

"I think end-users demand what integrators propose to them."

This is a great topic all it's own. In some cases, this is true, but it becomes noise if additional costs are involved. (Hosted video, for example.)

Or what engineer's specify...

"Or what engineer's specify..."

Absolutely John. A&E Specs are driving more and more decisions these days. An emerging trend I (unfortunately) have seen more and more of in the past year or so is consultants who do up the A&E specs are taking a "sample" of the best features of many systems and slamming them into a spec that the integrator is supposed to magically produce. It's getting trickier to bid on these large projects because the product being specified may not exist natively and delivering a mythical spec may be cost-prohibitive.