Written by Stewart Wolpin
Smart front door locks that use Bluetooth, NFC or Wi-Fi to unlock via touch, your smartphone or a key are not yet even two years old. But entrepreneurs, startups and established smart lock makers are beginning to figure out exactly what we want to make it easier to technologically keep our castle more secure.
Perhaps the most startling development at last week’s Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas is not so much a “what” but a huge “who.” Yale, the 800-pound gorilla of the regular lock business, showed off its first smart locks at the Z-Wave Alliance booth.
The Assure Lock (available this spring) includes both Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, which means it can be unlocked either via the touchscreen keypad and locked or unlocked remotely by twisting your phone as you would turn a key near the Assure, or via a Samsung Gear S2 smart watch app. Like the Linus, you can transmit temporary or permanent “keys” to other occupants or visitors, so they can open the door with their smartphone.
Yale also exhibited its Look Door Viewer. Essentially a TV peephole with a doorbell, the 4.3 inch display lets you see who’s on the other side of door whether you’re home or not. When someone pushes the doorbell, your smartphone will alert you, even if you’re not home.
Smart Locks, Second Generation
Several startup smart lock companies at CES unveiled their second generation smart locks.
For instance, Kwikset’s Kevo, the first-ever smart lock, demonstrated its currently unnamed new model. To make installation and setup easier than the original, there’s an in-app interactive installation experience to eliminate user-initiated calibration. To enhance security, Kwikset’s patented SmartKey resists torque attacks, lock-picking standards and bumping, and is compatible with Android Wear, Nest, Ring video doorbells, Honeywell Wi-Fi thermostats and Moto 360 smart watches.
Smart Locks for Apartment Dwellers
Among the newer smart lock vendors at CES was French company IKILOCK—formerly known by its how-do-you-pronounce-it corporate name, GEMECOD—which demonstrated an elegant wood-tone, three-unit home security system, which will fascinate city dwellers.
The IKICENTER, plugged into any AC outlet, is the system’s hub, enabling you to lock and unlock doors from anywhere with a connected smartphone.
IKILOCK replaces your existing lock inside, but remains normal-looking on the outside. You can still use a regular key, but the lock can also be opened via your smartphone, locally or remotely.
Most intriguing is IKIPLUG, a smart “remote doorman” for apartment and condo dwellers. IKIPLUG sticks to the wall inside your apartment or condo, near your intercom. When a remote-opening order is sent through the IKILOCK smartphone app, IKIPLUG triggers the intercom to open the outer building door.
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