Locks have taken a long road to offer security to homes through years. From the very simply key lock device, they have improved to security locks until reaching the latest technology developments and in the latest years the market have been flooded with what has been called Smart Locks.
These devices offer a great array of features going from simply allowing the entrance and leaving of your home up to the assignment of special privileges to friends, family members or maintenance personnel. Some models can be smart phone operated and others can be voice activated or start pressing a button through a table or any smart home device.
But before deciding to get a smart lock, some aspects have to be taken into consideration before investing in a device of this sort. Some of them are:
- The cost.
Since the price of any of these devices exceeds the traditional lock, it should be taken into account the amount of money you are willing to invest on this upgrading of your house locks. There are some of them in the $100 range, but the features are very limited and they cannot be voice operated or being control away from home. A budget of $200 to $300 would be considered to get a very good smart lock which can include functions such as voice commands, e-mail notifications and alarms
The smart locks could offer you Bluetooth for activate it or using the device: Some of them come with built-in Wi-Fi electrical system or a Wi-Fi bridge which can give you a total control of the lock as long as it is connected with your router. Accessibility
Smart locks should offer the possibility to be activated through an app in your mobile with a simple tap on the application icon. Others offer a app from the web that allows the operation of the device using your desktop or laptop. These apps allow you to include permanent or temporary users and establish timetables for certain days and specific hours.
Be sure that activity log is a feature contained in the lock, so you can check people entering or leaving your home and the time the activity took place.
- Easy to install
One of the most interesting characteristics shared by almost every smart lock in the market is the easiness to be installed without making any mayor modifications in the door where they are going to be placed. Most of them will take an approximate time of 10 to 25 minutes to be installed, including the removal of the old lock and the placement of the new one.
Other features that would be looked for are:
- Voice activation, permitting with the use of your mobile the locking or unlocking of the door by simply saying the order to your phone.
- Geo-fencing allows creating a perimeter around your house that would limit the action of the smart lock. Once you are out of the area, the lock will automatically closed the doors and, thus, secure your house.
- Auto-locking is a feature that allows the smart device to be closed after a certain period of time when it has been unlocked.
- Keyless touchpads have to be included when your phone is out of reach.
- Tamper and forced entry alarms in order to warn you for any possible break in.
- Notifications via e-mail or texting to let you know who is entering or leaving home in real time.
In the following lines, some of the best smart locks in the market:
- August Smart Lock Third Generation
At a price of $150, this smart lock is smooth, secure and easy to use. Besides that, installation is not a big issue with this device.
It can support Bluetooth and Wi-Fi along with other connectivity programs such as Amazon Alexa and Z-Wave.
Its design allows the device to fit into a traditional padlock and includes a common thumb turn to open and close the door. Also, this lock brings a standard deadlock on the interior of the door, so traditional keys can be used to lock or unlock it. Installing takes about 15 minutes with the proper tools and some help from a friend or relative
- Yale Assure SL
The most attractive and easy to use device offered in the market can be yours by $249, including the network module. Designed for those who are more engaged to looks, the smart lock brings a network device that allows you to connect it to your smart home system. It features a numeric keypad that lights in broad daylight or at night. And when nobody is touching the pad, the numbers disappear and the beautiful onyx design can be admire.
- Kwikset Obsidian
This smart lock helps you get rid of keys definitely, and that would be thanked by those who always have trouble finding the right key to the door. With a price of $179, the product brings the best keypad offered by any smart lock in the market. With a LED display in the screen that can be seen day or night when it is touched, the Obsidian can be connected to your smart home system turning itself into a fully featured smart lock.
It also brings a function that allows an automatic 30- second adjusting time to lock the door after closing it, avoiding this way the worry about the security of the house or the forgetfulness of the owner to secure doors after entering or leaving.
- August Pro Smart Lock Third Generation.
This company has specialized in the smart lock department, so two of its products are presented in this list. This one comes with a Wi-Fi bridge that permits several connections and features a well-designed application. With a price of $280, this product could be considered one of the most advanced smart locks in the market. Its connectivity can support Bluetooth, Z-Wave Connection and HomeKit. The Connect application would allow the device to control even the thermostat when leaving home to work.
It also includes an auto-lock feature, a mobile control, and virtual keys. A novelty in the device is the function named DoorSense which has a sensor that tells you if the door is open or closed and gives the time it has been open. Furthermore, it can report if there has been a forced entry.
The best feature of the smart lock is the app which allows the control of the product by pressing a huge button for locking or unlocking the device. The color code for an open door (green) and a closed one (red) is the kind of simplicity desired in a smart lock.
These are some of the best devices of this sort found in the marketplace, but there many of them to choose. The decision has to be taken with your needs and budget considered before getting into one of these modern products, without forgetting the recommendations given above.