Embracing Automation

In this article for Window News, John Crittenden, Managing Director of Carl F Groupco explains that attitudes in the hardware sector are changing regarding automation.

Ten years ago some capability was offered, but Smart Tech hadn’t been embraced by the UK market and the appetite for electronic systems was embryonic.

Today that is changing, solutions have been created, capabilities are being recognised and people are putting real value on the technology.

Looking at why we are on the cusp of a boom in Smart Tech, John points to three things:

i)    The acceptance of, and confidence in, automation in other areas of our lives
ii)   The move towards Smart Homes supported by initiatives taken by major utility companies and technology providers
iii)   The impact of national media coverage and the lifestyle vision presented on programmes such as Grand Designs

With regard to the first point, we are immersed in automation and it has widely become the accepted way of life. Cars have been unlocked using key fobs for many years and are even being superseded with keyless entry systems. We don’t question this technology: it has become second nature, it simplifies the process and most of us would be reluctant to return to the traditional key. This significantly helps the evolution to electronic based technologies in the door hardware sector.

Smart Homes no longer sound like a futuristic prediction. Many people have some element of Smart Tech in their property and, spearheaded by major utility providers, we are moving towards full control and connectivity of home appliances.

New electronic era

The new era of electronic living is widely presented on television and in newspaper supplements – it is regularly featured in aspirational TV programmes including Grand Designs. It is also a topic that is taking centre stage at both business and consumer home exhibitions.

Additionally, other countries have been trail blazers setting out the stall for the scope and potential of the new technology. Germany, the home of locking specialists FUHR, has been particularly pioneering in developing and adopting the intelligent home and integrating this within their door fittings.

Against this backdrop, and supported by our long-standing partnership with FUHR, in 2016 Carl F Groupco introduced SmartSecure, our electronic locking and access control brand. With our track record working with FUHR understanding the practicalities and the needs of the market, we made the decision to fully embrace this opportunity.

The established FUHR multitronic 881 locking system is at the heart of SmartSecure – this gives all important validity to the solutions and assurance that it is tried and tested technology.

 

The traditional key is replaced with a range of access control options

‘SmartConnect easy’ is an optional access control package using a smartphone. Keyless operation and monitoring is provided via an intelligent WLAN-based system. Complete assurance is given with sensor monitoring of door leaf and bolt positions that enable verification of the locking status wherever and whenever required.

A second SmartSecure option is ‘SmartTouch’. This pioneering keyless access system enables easy entry by simply touching a sensor. Access to the property is gained if an active, moving transponder is within range and the sensor is touched. This means keys can be in a pocket when hands are full and the door will open – so, no more struggling up to your house with shopping, putting bags down, finding your key, unlocking the door and picking up your bags again. For a stylish, concealed solution, the sensor can also be fitted within a pull handle.

Radio-based access control systems are also available including a radio keypad, transponder and fingerprint scanner for keyless biometric access control.

The real value in Smart Tech, such as SmartSecure, comes from the benefits it affords to users, such as easy access when carrying shopping, as described above. The advantages can be value add aesthetics to create a ‘Grand Design’ style home or  practical and pragmatic reasons such as in the care sector e.g. controlled access to authorised nurse or welfare visitors.

Total support and tailored solutions

Total support is essential. Smart Tech can’t be gloss, hype and vapour ware – it has to be a tailored solution, it has to offer real benefits and it has to be supported. The technology is just the tip of the iceberg. Advice and guidance is needed to assist customers as they embrace the new Smart era – our service team was in place from the outset and we appointed a dedicated Business Development Manager. Additionally, all staff that have customer contact are trained in SmartSecure’s solutions.

These are exciting times for the industry where we are witnessing real change and a real opportunity. At Carl F Groupco we firmly believe that you can’t play around on the side-lines offering ad hoc products: total solutions are needed that are comprehensively supported and this is our focus for SmartSecure.

 

For more details on the FUHR multitronic 881 lock from SmartSecure, please click here.

For more information about our different access control options, please click here.

Carl F Groupco Limited: Tel: 01733 393330
For more information, contact sales@carlfgroupco.co.uk
Follow Carl F Groupco on Twitter using the handles @Carl_F_Groupco and @_SmartSecure.

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SmartSecure lock achieves Secured by Design accreditation

The FUHR 881 multitronic lock, which is at the heart of Carl F Groupco’s SmartSecure electronic door locking and smart access control solutions, has achieved Secured by Design accreditation.

The FUHR 881 multitronic lock, a central element of Carl F Groupco’s SmartSecure solutions, has gained Secured by Design accreditation.

The FUHR 881 multitronic lock, a central element of Carl F Groupco’s SmartSecure solutions, has gained Secured by Design accreditation.

As the latest in a series of hardware products offered by Carl F Groupco to achieve Secured by Design, the company was confident of gaining the certification as the lock design, consistent with the established process for all FUHR locking systems, had already passed rigorous security testing.

Commenting on the importance of being able to display the Secured by Design logo for the FUHR 881, John Mitchell, Carl F Groupco’s Technical Manager said:

“As an officially recognised accreditation body, Secured by Design reassures home owners that products are tested to the most stringent and current security standards. It also aids fabricators and installers in demonstrating the quality of their offer.

“This achievement affirms our commitment to the evolution of our range and underscores our objective of providing the very latest in technology without compromising security.”

The FUHR multitronic 881’s intelligent technology, combined with a modular construction, has made the versatile locking system ideally suited for SmartSecure’s range of solutions including the smart phone / tablet based SmartConnect easy; the transponder / sensor variant SmartTouch comfort and the brand’s radio-based access control systems.

 

For more details on the FUHR multitronic 881 lock, please click here.
You can demo our SmartSecure solutions on our FIT Show stand, to register as our VIP guest click here.

Carl F Groupco Limited: Tel: 01733 393330

For more information, contact sales@carlfgroupco.co.uk

Follow Carl F Groupco on Twitter using the handles @Carl_F_Groupco and @_SmartSecure.

Safe as Houses

SmartSecure from Carl F Groupco: the new generation in electronic door locking and smart access control

No safety and security feature for the window and door industry would be complete without the inclusion of SmartSecure, the high profile brand launched by established hardware distributor Carl F Groupco at this year’s FIT Show. Providing a state-of-the-art solution for electronic door locking and smart access control, SmartSecure captured the market’s attention at its premier. And, as Carl F Groupco illustrated to hundreds of people with its on-stand demonstrations, the technology is proven in operation, fully tested and taking centre stage as a leading new generation lock and control solution.

 

SmartSecure – the state-of-the-art electronic door locking and smart access control from Carl F Groupco.

SmartSecure – the state-of-the-art electronic door locking and smart access control from Carl F Groupco.

As Carl F Groupco said at the FIT Show:

 

“If companies want to secure their place in the smart revolution with a brand they can use with confidence, they should look no further than SmartSecure.”

 

The traditional key is replaced with a range of access control options – the radio fob, supplied as standard, can operate up to four different entrances.  ‘SmartConnect easy’, a USP for the new brand, enables easy door opening and activity monitoring using a smart device. ‘SmartTouch comfort’ is also available – this simple to use variant operated by an active transponder and a sensor provides keyless opening. Other options are a radio fingerprint scanner using advanced biometrics, keypad and transponder. The door lock from SmartSecure is particularly attractive as it is compatible with virtually any access control solution.

 

Sophisticated smart technology

Featuring the FUHR 881 multitronic fully motorised multipoint mechanism, which has received continued investment over the last decade, customers are assured of the most sophisticated locking capabilities, combined with latest smart technology, to offer a highly advanced solution.

 

Throughout FUHR’s 150 year history, which includes a long-standing partnership with Carl F Groupco, the company has earned a well-deserved reputation for progressive thinking backed by strong direction, investment and R&D. The product range includes some of the most advanced door locking solutions – the multitronic is the flagship line in FUHR’s latest generation innovations.

 

As one of the leading players in the UK’s hardware supply sector, Carl F Groupco also has a strong reputation for innovation, which has been reinforced with the introduction of the cutting-edge SmartSecure package. And, with an excellent reputation for highly responsive and comprehensive technical support, no company understands better the importance of safety and security when it comes to hardware.

 FUHR_Finger_Scanner

Strong security and safety benefits

With strong security and safety benefits, the wide ranging appeal of SmartSecure includes housing associations, the growing retirement living sector and care homes. Advantages include the fact that doors are automatically locked on closing, which means that occupants are always secure.

 

Carl F Groupco advises that housing association feedback includes comments that elderly people can be overly trusting, or may forget to lift a traditional lever handle. Both issues are addressed with SmartSecure technology. The system’s flexibility also ensures that all components can be concealed, which reduces the risk of tampering.

 

Phil Rice, Carl F Groupco’s Business Development Manager for SmartSecure expands on the security and safety enhancements offered by SmartSecure:

Phil Rice - SmartSecure Bus Dev Mgr_New pic

“There are a number of ways in which SmartSecure provides security advantages. Importantly, the FUHR multitronic 881 locking technology at the heart of the solution automatically locks all points securely and reliably by a patented twin motor in just seconds after closing the door… this means there are no nagging doubts as to whether a door has been locked and increased protection against unwanted intruders is afforded. The multitronic 881 automatically locks the door to a maximum level of security, which avoids human error and enables the door locking status to be checked at any time.

 

“For visual confirmation that the lock is engaged, an illuminated light on the inside of the door is one indicator.  Locking status can also be identified, if required, using building management systems or bus systems connected to modern building services.

 

“Sensor monitoring of door leaf and bolt position is also available with the ‘SmartConnect easy’ app: this means that if locking status verification and reliable display is required it can be given from any location, whenever needed.”

 

Smart, straightforward and stylish

Carl F Groupco stresses that smart locking technology is here to stay and the early adopters will be the companies that set themselves apart. For the very latest locking technology that is not only the ultimate in safety and security but also simple to fit, extremely stylish and a true differentiator for any organisation, Carl F Groupco can provide further details and demonstrations. The company’s technical experts are also on hand to answer any questions.

 

For more details on the FUHR multitronic 881 lock, please click here.

 

Or you can visit our dedicated SmartSecure website for detailed information on the whole range.

 

Follow Carl F Groupco on Twitter using the handles @Carl_F_Groupco and @_SmartSecure

SmartSecure from Carl F Groupco: state-of-the-art access control

In this report for The Fabricator, Phil Rice, Business Development Manager for SmartSecure – Carl F Groupco’s new smart door locking and access control brand, confirms the high levels of security afforded by the new generation keyless technology.

Phil Rice, Carl F Groupco SmartSecure Business Development Manager

Phil Rice, Carl F Groupco SmartSecure Business Development Manager

“For hundreds of years people have turned keys to secure their locks and, as a result, this process has been deeply ingrained in our psyche.  However, our attitudes, and confidence in, keyless technology has come on leaps and bounds with the proven abilities of smart systems for cars.

Today, very few people use a traditional key to open their car doors or start their engines and use of a fob has become second nature. The electronic evolution is now gathering pace in the UK’s door industry with widespread recognition of its convenience, energy conservation and enhanced security benefits.

There are a number of ways in which SmartSecure provides security advantages. Importantly, the FUHR multitronic 881 locking technology that is at the heart of the solution automatically locks all points by a patented twin motor, securely and reliably in just seconds after closing the door… this means there are no nagging doubts as to whether a door has been locked and increased protection against intruders is afforded. Additionally, the multitronic 881 automatically locks the door to a maximum level of security which avoids human errors and enables the door locking status to be checked at any time.

An illuminated light on the inside of the door is not the only indicator that the lock is engaged, locking status can also be identified via bus systems connected to modern building services, or building management systems if required. Sensor monitoring of door leaf and bolt position is also available with the ‘SmartConnect easy’ app based control, this means locking status verification and reliable display can be provided at any time, from any location.

State-of-the-art Security

The all-inclusive SmartSecure multitronic 881 kit includes harmonised lock, patented twin motorised drive mechanism, concealed transformer, wireless power transfer between frame and sash and full range of accessory components. Pre-assembled plug-in connectors ensure easy mounting.

As well as radio key fobs supplied as standard, additional SmartSecure radio-based access control systems are available to meet consumer demand for state-of-the-art solutions. With a strong security benefit, a radio fingerprint scanner provides keyless biometric access control with 2-channel opening technology. A radio keypad allows users to open doors with two individually-selectable 4 to 8 digit codes and a radio transponder reader option enables easy, and secure, door opening.

Smart access technologies within the range are  ‘SmartConnect easy’, an app based access control as previously mentioned. In addition to this, ‘SmartTouch comfort’ is pioneering access control technology designed to make life more convenient for users of the multitronic 881. All you need is an active transponder in your pocket – you can then open the door just by moving towards it and gently touching a sensor. All these variants were demonstrated at the FIT Show drawing large numbers of people to the Carl F Groupco stand.

The reliability of the multitronic 881 has been independently verified. Numerous tests have confirmed a consistently high locking force. Depending on the lock type, system tests can be carried out to EN 1627 class 4 resistance. Add to this the fact that the lock mechanics have been tested to 200,000 cycles and the patented twin motor has been tested to 500,000 cycles, and the result is a smart locking solution that offers the highest levels of security.”

For more details on the FUHR multitronic 881 lock, please click here.

Or click on the Access Control options below for more details:

Radio Access Controls

SmartConnect easy

SmartTouch comfort

Follow Carl F Groupco on Twitter using the handles @Carl_F_Groupco and @_SmartSecure

Carl F Groupco’s Frog Racing Fund Raiser

The charitable staff at Carl F Groupco entered the world Frog Racing championships to raise funds for MacMillan Cancer Support. With the entire workforce of the company’s Cambridgeshire distribution centre cheering them on, a team of five people successfully eased an eight foot high plywood frog along a rope achieving semi-finalist status. Competing against 36 other teams, the event took place at the Peterborough Greyhound Stadium.

The fittings firm said the competition was fierce and that it was ‘frog eat frog’ during the races. Having taken the leap to enter the event for the first time, Carl F Groupco had so much froggy fun that the hardware supplier is set to enter next year’s event with a boys versus girls challenge.

CFG Frog Racing B

CFG Frog Racing

Carl F Groupco cements credentials with Ingenious Launch

The new Ingenious multi-point lock Professional range is available from Carl F Groupco. The exciting addition to the company’s catalogue reinforces Carl F Groupco’s position as a leading UK hardware distributor. Based on the company’s expertise in locking solutions, established credentials and focus on customer support, Carl F Groupco was selected to be one of the launch partners for product distribution.

The Professional dual spindle door lock series, which features three hooks, two rollers, latch and serrations, is a significant contribution to Carl F Groupco’s hardware catalogue. Commenting on the inclusion of Ingenious lines in the company’s offer, Managing Director John Crittenden said:

“The Ingenious range is an important addition to our portfolio that succeeds in being exceptional value for money while combining innovative engineering.  We are delighted to have been selected as a launch partner and to be able to offer this exciting new hardware innovation.”

Also available from Carl F Groupco is the pioneering Duplex series manufactured by Ingenious which features five hooks, two rollers, latch and serrations to allow the addition of shootbolts. The double hook locking points on the Duplex visibly offer heightened security giving peace of mind to the home owner. Both the Duplex and Professional ranges feature an ergonomically designed hold back snib on the face place to prevent accidental lock outs. All Ingenious multi-point locks have adaptive compression rollers, which engage before the locking points for smooth operation, and unique slider technology ensures a long product life.

The Ingenious door locks are available to suit standard residential doors for PVCu, French master and slave applications, plus options for composite and timber doors which feature no rollers and rounded end faceplates.

View the Ingenious range here