November 17th, 2022
Must-have smart home security systems to protect your home
When it comes to the safety of your family, home, and belongings, smart home security systems give you peace of mind. But there are so many products on the market, it's hard to figure out which one is right for you.
Asurion provides protection, repair and expert support for all the tech in your life – including smart home devices. Whether you're interested in a budget-friendly option ($) or a top-of-the-line product ($$$), here's our guide to help you explore some of the best smart home security devices available.
Ring Alarm Pro
Price: $$ | Compatible voice assistant(s): Alexa™ | Installation type: DIY or professional | Monitoring price: $3.00 per month or $39.99 per year for one camera or doorbell, up to $20 per month or $200 per year for all home devices, professional monitoring, and more | Subscription required: Not to watch live footage or receive texts
The Ring® Alarm Pro is a DIY smart home security system as well as a mesh router, which creates a larger, more stable wireless network throughout your home. It's a great choice for someone looking for self-monitoring (where you monitor your own system rather than letting the system monitor itself), easy DIY installation, and the ability to use your Alexa and Amazon Echo® devices as part of your system. (If you already have a Google® smart home, skip it.)
As a bonus, Ring's system upgrades your home network to Wi-Fi 6, the latest and most efficient wireless standard. It also comes loaded with real-time alerts and 24/7 backup protection in case of a power or internet outage. A supplemental battery can keep it running for up to 24 hours. And you control the security system via the Ring App, which works with iOS® and Android™ tablets and phones. (To manage Wi-Fi, use the Eero™ app.)
Keep in mind, some of the Ring features require you to get a subscription, and the system doesn't work with Google Assistant™, Apple® HomeKit®, and IFTTT® support. But it is compatible with other Ring and third-party devices. Also, the other devices on your network need to be compatible with the Wi-Fi 6 standard to make full use of its capabilities.
Wyze Home Monitoring
Price: $ | Compatible voice assistant(s): None | Installation type: DIY | Monitoring price: $9.99 per month or $99.99 per year | Subscription required: No
The most affordable DIY security system worth your time, Wyze™ Home Monitoring is easy to customize and install—just stick the sensors where you want them. The cameras are inexpensive, too, and work quite well for the price. The system is compatible with other Wyze devices, and the hardware is free with a 1-year professional monitoring subscription. While it's not required, the Cam Plus subscriptions costs $1.25 per month per camera and lets you save your history, record full-length video when motion is detected, download footage to your phone or tablet, and more.
A few caveats: Wyze Home Monitoring includes battery backup, but there's no cellular backup, so if there's a power outage and your network goes offline, your system will too. There is no backup storage for camera feeds, events, or logs for sensors, either, and Wyze doesn't support HomeKit.
Still, for the price, it's worth considering. As the company points out, it's “cheaper than Netflix."
SimpliSafe Smart Home Equipment
Price: $ to $$$ depending on the package | Compatible voice assistant(s): Alexa and Google Assistant | Installation type: DIY | Monitoring price: $17.99 per month to $27.99 per month | Subscription required: No
The SimpliSafe Smart Home Security System is for the budget-conscious buyer who wants a DIY security system that protects against intruders, floods, and fires—without a long-term contract. It's also great if you aren't wedded to a Ring- or Amazon-only security system. SimpliSafe is easy to install, set up, and use, and lets you switch between 24/7 professional monitoring and self-monitoring.
There are a variety of preset packages, including the Essentials, which covers your main entry points and one main passageway; the Foundation, for apartments and small homes; and the Knox, for large homes. Or you can create your own custom alarm system.
Vivint Smart Home Control
Price: $$$ | Compatible voice assistant(s): Amazon Alexa and Google Voice | Installation type: Professional ($99) | Monitoring price: Starts at $39.99 | Subscription required: Yes
If you're looking for a full-scale, professional security system—including 24/7 monitoring, pro installation, and easy control over cameras, door locks, lights, and thermostats—the Vivint Smart Home is for you. It's expensive, but that price buys you top-of-the-line protection, without a contract or really having to do much yourself. You'll also receive fast emergency response times, quality tech support, and the ability to control your system via a touch-screen video panel, mobile app, or Alexa and Google Assistant. Looking to monitor your car while you're away? Vivint can do that, too.
The subscription service gives you round-the-clock monitoring, so if your back door alarm is tripped, or a window breaks, or a smoke alarm goes off, someone will call immediately. If you're home, a live agent can contact you directly through the two-way intercom built into the panel.
Cove Protect Smart Home Security
Price: $$ to $$$ depending on your package | Compatible voice assistant(s): Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant | Installation type: DIY or Professional | Monitoring price: $27.99 per month | Subscription required: Yes, to use the mobile app
Cove Protect Smart Home SecurityAnother option for DIYers looking to save money but while keeping the option for professional monitoring is the Cove Home Security System. It's easy to install—you can do it yourself, ask a representative to walk you through the process by phone, or hire a Cove professional to do the install for you. Kits are customizable, and add-on components are reasonably priced, including indoor and outdoor cameras, door and window sensors, glass break and motion detectors, environmental detectors, and a 7-inch color touch-screen panel that connects to all of your sensors as well as a 24/7 monitoring center. There's also a medical alert button you can add on.
If an alarm goes off, Cove contacts you by text on your phone and then by phone call to the actual panel in your home; if they can't reach you, they send help. The monitoring plans are affordable and contract-free, though cameras only work with the Cove Plus plan, not the Basic plan. Also, you need the premium subscription to access the mobile app.
Blue by ADT Home Security System
Price: $$ | Compatible voice assistant(s): Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant | Installation type DIY | Monitoring price: $19.99 per month | Subscription required: No
If you already have Blue by ADT® cameras and are looking to use them to create a home security system, Blue by ADT is for you. It's reasonably priced, easy to install yourself, and works with many third-party devices you already have in your home, not to mention the suite of outdoor, indoor, and doorbell cameras from ADT®. It supports voice control, Z-Wave, and IFTTT applets, and lets you self-monitor or pay for professional monitoring.
There are a few drawbacks: Blue by ADT doesn't support HomeKit, the cameras can be expensive, and if you like a brightly lit keypad, this isn't it. Blue by ADT isn't the brand's high-end offering (that's called Command security system), but it's a great, affordable choice.
Note: All costs are at time of publishing and may vary.
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