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Tim Talk: Pleasanton firm Deep Sentinel prepares product launch

 

Pleasanton-based Deep Sentinel is breaking new ground in the home surveillance industry and, like many other innovative solutions, hopes to completely disrupt it.

Home alarms have been common for years and have improved in recent years with cameras and two-way communication.

Company co-founder Dave Selinger, a serial entrepreneur, brought artificial intelligence into the scheme to offer a ground-breaking solution. His firm released a survey last week of major metropolitan areas across the country that showed the need for a reliable system that does not have law enforcement responding to false alarms.

False alarms are a huge problem across the U.S. (up to 95%) and have led many cities to have policies of no-respond or no-guaranteed-response to alarm calls. The survey showed that in the New York/Newark/Jersey City area that 85% of the population is affected by the response policies.

San Francisco/Oakland/Hayward ranked No. 4 on the list, with half of the cities with no-response policies that affects more than 2 million people or 60% of the population. It's similar in San Jose/Sunnyvale/Santa Clara where half of the cities have such policies and that touches 71% of the population.

Enter Deep Sentinel and its system of three wide-angle cameras. The system utilizes artificial intelligence to differentiate a potential human invader from animals and the wind. Once that the computer does it job, then the 24/7 human surveillance kicks in to evaluate the situation. The monitoring person can see the potential intruder through the camera and communicate with built-in speakers. The camera also has a loud siren as well as flashing red lights on the camera showing it is recording.

If the police are required, the monitor will call them while continuing to engage with the intruder. In addition, the system will record the incident. The entire system is wireless and designed to deter break-ins.

The company, founded in 2016, is set to release its product next month. It's priced at $299 ($100 off for early orders). It includes three cameras, the computer base station and monitoring at $49.99 per month with a one-year commitment.

In a press release, Selinger wrote, "Because the overwhelming majority of home security alarms are false, there is a 'boy who cried wolf' mentality surrounding these calls. It's unfortunate because many of these calls are legitimate, but can go unanswered leaving people and their property at risk. Deep Sentinel is dedicated to putting an end to false alarms and ensuring that when an alarm is activated, it will be taken seriously."

Prior to launching Deep Sentinel Selinger developed the first commercial product recommendation system for Amazon. He subsequently co-founded Redfin, the next-generation real estate brokerage, and RichRelevance, the No. 1 provider of personalization for brands like Office Depot and Costco. Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos was the lead investor with seed money for Deep Sentinel.

Selinger also is one of the five founding partners of Tri-Valley Ventures, the valley's local venture capital fund.

Editor's note: Journalist Tim Hunt has written columns on the Tri-Valley community for more than 40 years. He grew up in the valley and lives in Pleasanton. His "Tim Talk" blog appears twice a week at PleasantonWeekly.com.

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