What’s the Deal With Smart Locks? Are They Worth It?

These days, it seems like ‘smart’ appliances—home furnishings and technologies connected to the Internet—are spreading to every corner of the average San Antonio home. From thermostats you can adjust in real time from your smartphone to blinds and shutters that let you effortlessly set the amount of light in your living room, there is no shortage of innovative and unique products changing the way San Antonio residents live.

So it’s no surprise that home security is the next area of home design that’s under the microscope. A ‘smart lock’ is any locking mechanism that aims to increase security for homeowners by taking advantage of wireless technologies or innovations in design. Most smart locks operate over WiFi or Bluetooth, but some use RFID. Because WiFi and Bluetooth are more popular, we’ll look at the pros and cons of each.

What Does a Smart Lock Do?

A smart lock is a mechanism that either sits over or bypasses your front door’s traditional deadlock model. Some have keyways, and some do not; it all depends on the make and model that you choose. Some have cameras to add increased security, some integrate with your home security system, and most of them offer apps for your smartphone that make it easy to keep track of who is coming and going.

By removing the need for a key, your smart lock also can drastically reduce the number of lockout situations you might deal with over the course of a year!

Some smart locks also create new and novel locking mechanisms that might entirely replace your home’s need for a deadbolt. However, we’re going to focus on the traditional ‘keyless’ Bluetooth and WiFi models, because most smart locks you can find online or at your local hardware store fit this description.

Bluetooth Vs. WiFi Smart Locks: What’s The Difference?

If you’re not tech-savvy enough to know the difference between WiFi and Bluetooth, don’t worry! This article isn’t a technical exploration of the methods behind it, just a comparison of the pros and cons behind each technique.

The long and short of it is that both Bluetooth and WiFi-enabled smart locks use wireless technology to bolster your home security. Bluetooth uses very little power and transmits within a short radius. It can connect to your smartphone, but only to a range of about 30 feet. WiFi makes use of your home’s wireless Internet network. You can access your smart lock from anywhere, but you need to make sure your home’s wireless network is secure, or anyone will be able to open your front door!

Pros of Bluetooth Smart Locks

  • Use encryption
  • Most models can’t be lockpicked
  • No keys required
  • Can use when power is out

Cons of Bluetooth Smart Locks

  • Only usable from a short distance
  • Can’t give access to friends or guests

Pros of WiFi Smart Locks

  • Powerful and flexible
  • Can be used from long distances
  • Can integrate with your home’s security cameras

Cons of WiFi Smart Locks

  • Can’t be used in a power outage
  • Need extra security

We hope you’ve enjoyed this guide to smart locks in San Antonio. For more information, call Champion Lock & Safe Company today!