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Friday, December 31st, 2021 12:24 PM

Backward Compatibility Question

I'm a new 3 GEN user and reading through the forum and noticed 2 GEN to 3 GEN compatibility questions. My system has 4 sensors, panic button, keyfob, camera, and doorbell on the way. I'm considering other accessories. When 4 GEN is released,

Will my accessories be updated or will they need to be replaced?

What happens if I decide to stay with 3 GEN? Will I eventually be forced to upgrade to 4 GEN and potentially have to buy new accessories?

Generally, how often is a new GEN released? 

2.8K Messages

2 years ago

I don't think we have to worry about Gen4 for some time.  And at that time, chances are, it won't be compatible with the current Gen3 (except maybe for cameras, but who knows, no one knows except SS).  We won't know about any new developments until a forum member reads about it on another tech site, or until SS announces one.

Hopefully, should the time Gen4 rolls around, SS will have learned a vital lesson in how to properly transition their customers'/options (with suitable upgrade discounts), because in the beginning, with the rollout of Gen3, there were a lot of unhappy customers not receiving a discount who had recently already bought the Gen2.    

2.2K Messages

2 years ago

The reason for the incompatibility is that Gen 2 (and 1) used communications "in the clear".  Gen 3 uses encrypted communications.   Thus Gen 3 communications are gobbledegook to Gen 2, and Gen 2 communications are seen as invalid to SS3.

I'd say the odds are at least 3 to 1 in favor that Gen 4 will work with Gen 3 sensors.  I'd also say that the odds are pretty good we won't see Gen 4 for a while.  I'd also say that once Gen 4 comes out, it is almost certain they will continue to support Gen 3 as long as their supply of product holds out.

As for how often, they started working on SS1 around 2006 and it took 2 or 3 years.  I don't know how long SS2 took, but SS3 was announced in 2018, so took 5 to 7 years, and that was with the RF weakness found looming over their heads for 4 years.

Community Admin


5.5K Messages

2 years ago

Some folks who have been with us for a long time might remember that Gen 1 and Gen 2 actually used the same communication. It's just that the Gen 1 Base Station couldn't be updated. So when we came out with new components, like the Glassbreak Sensor and the Carbon Monoxide Detector, they couldn't be added to a Gen 1 system. But Gen 2 Base Stations could definitely still use Gen 1 sensors.

But as was mentioned, Gen 3 introduced a fundamentally different wireless signal, that is more secure and way more efficient (which is how we got double the range). So Gen 3 Base Stations don't even speak the same language as any of the components from the previous gen.

I will say that we're not able to talk about anything relating to Gen 4, because it doesn't exist yet. Gen 3 was designed with constant firmware updates, so we're able to keep making it better, and we'll keep doing that for a long while yet.

697 Messages

2 years ago

I will say that we're not able to talk about anything relating to Gen 4, because it doesn't exist yet.

An official statement about the current state of progress of a SimpliSafe product? You're slipping Davey, get it together!

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