Skip to main content

Over 25 years ago the Australian security industry was introduced to UniGuard with the  Robust iButton Attendance Verification Wand. From the start, the focus of UniGuard has been to provide indisputable proof of staff movements, asset tracking and attendance verification, thus delivering proof of service.

The Indestructible Robust

Many guards didn’t like the Robust iButton wand, as it finally gave managers a way of seeing whether they were doing their rounds properly. Over the years guards have tried all sorts of things to damage the wands, including:

  • Repeatedly bashing the wands as they do their rounds
  • Dropping the wands off tall buildings
  • Crushing and squeezing them
  • Driving over the wands
  • Throwing them into the sea. 
  • Cooking and microwaving them
  • Hooking them up to a car battery
  • And a few things we’d prefer not to mention!

During all this, the recorders survived to live another day; they just kept going and going! Which is why some are still in use today. Watch for yourself:

The Evolution of UniGuard

Since this time, the UniGuard software and hardware offering has evolved over the years as technology has improved and customer needs developed.

The original software that worked with the Robust iButton Wand was designed as a stand-alone system, with a server-based system coming later. The system works by guards physically touching the Robust wands to an iButton checkpoint. The time and checkpoint number is recorded. At the end of a shift the information is manually downloaded onto the computer where the data can be viewed.

Over time it was recognised that connectivity would help streamline business operations and enable growth. With improving technology, our first web-based platform, UniGuard 12 was created in 2011. UniGuard 12 was designed to work with our Real-Time Recorders that use mobile phone cell-tower connectivity to deliver tracking information in real-time to a central computer. An added benefit was that Real-Time Recorders can work with RFID checkpoints, which don’t need physical contact with the recorder to work.

Smartphone Apps, Bluetooth and NFC

The emergence of smartphones has widened the opportunities for what could be achieved with our attendance verification systems. From this we have developed the UniGuardX app and Dashboard.
The UniGuardX smartphone app works in a similar way to real-time recorders but using NFC checkpoints and Bluetooth beacons instead of RFID. Like Real-Time Recorders, apps do not require the phone to physically touch the checkpoint, and send the data in real-time across the phone networks.

Why Use Phone Apps Over iButton Recorders?

The main reason is the technological improvements; smartphone apps can do so much more than the Robust iButtton Wands. The benefits of using an app include:

  • A clean fresh design that works on the latest operating system and multiple devices such as tablets in the field, with updated data security features.
  • The software is continually being improved with feature updates that align with the current trends within the industry.
  • Data is collected, sent to the dashboard, viewed, analysed and reported on in real-time, allowing for timely responses and better resource management.
  • Integrated workflows using in-app forms, which can be set up to collect additional data to time and location, such as text, photos and signatures. Great potential uses include task checklists and incident forms.
  • Digital form data is easier to store, retrieve and analyse than paper forms. Idea for both legal and business performance uses.
  • Customisable and flexible to fit your business requirements and those of your clients.
  • Doesn’t require specialist hardware, and is easy to set up and start using.
  • Can be used on any phone so a new staff member can download the app on the way to a job, negating the need to go to the office first to collect the Robust wand.
  • For staff safety and compliance, UniGuardX apps offer man-down alerts in real time. When pressed, an alert pops up on the dashboard map, and can also be sent as a text or email.

The industry has gone a long way in the past 25 years, and UniGuard has been there for every step of the journey. Something we will continue into the future.

Want to know more about how UniGuardX can improve your business outcomes? Contact our sales team today.