The best smart home devices for security
Electronics make life easier and fill it with fun activities like watching movies, playing video games and keeping in touch with friends and family. Quite a few modern products are also developed to enhance home security, whether you’re at your house or on vacation. From smart deadbolts to smoke detectors, the right smart home devices will lend safety and peace of mind. Even something as simple as a smart plug can make your home less of a target for bad actors.
Why smart security devices are worth it
Once upon a time, it took a decent amount of tech know-how to set up a home security system. Think back to before the advent of user-friendly systems such as Z-Wave hubs, Alexa voice control and IFTTT programming. Until recently, it wasn’t easy to configure video capture, two-way intercoms and audio/video recording systems.
Today, many competing manufacturers offer extensive security packages. Many are engineered for compatibility. Amazon’s Ring and Google’s Nest ecosystems, for example, both receive high marks for their abilities to interact with various smart home devices. Equipment such as smart locks, security cameras and carbon monoxide detectors have never been simpler to integrate.
Best smart devices for safety
Best smart locks
A dependable smart lock can do a lot of things. It can tell you whether it’s locked when you’re nowhere near the door. It also makes it easy to let guests in using their personal, temporary keys. You can even unlock many smart deadbolts remotely, in case couriers, dog walkers or other one-time guests show up when you’re not around or in the shower.
Possibly most convenient is the common geofencing capability that lets smart locks open automatically once you’re in range. That way, you’ll never have to put down the groceries and fish out your keys. Speaking of keys, do you ever get worried you’ll lock yourself out of the house? With a smartphone-controlled door lock, you can leave that worry in the past.
This is the latest version of a longtime owner and expert favorite, and it’s more compact and reliable than ever. Among other improvements, the wireless radio is now contained within the unit. It delivers more dependable connectivity and better compatibility than in the past.
It’s compatible with Alexa and Google Assistant via Bluetooth and Wi-Fi. It fits over your existing deadbolt to minimize installation hassles. Plus, it’s one of the most affordable and easiest to configure.
If you like the Google Assistant ecosystem, there aren’t any more powerful and dependable smart locks for you. Its in-depth geofencing, guest key and remote monitoring features are second to none and it’s as tamper-resistant as they get.
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Best video doorbells
Whether you’re at home or away, a video doorbell is a significant security measure worth investing in. It can make your life more convenient when receiving deliveries and safer in the event of bad actors showing up on your doorstep.
This doorbell sports many advanced features, including programmable detection zones and the ability to differentiate between people, animals and cars. It can even call 911 at the touch of a button.
If you want the best and are willing to make a decent investment, it’s hard to pass up the acclaimed Ring Pro 2. Its high resolution, effective motion detection, reliable two-way audio and in-depth customization make it the best premium video doorbell money can buy.
The RemoBell S offers motion detection, free cloud storage and Alexa and Google Assistant voice control. It even boasts a 180-degree field of view and an infrared camera. Plus, it’s affordable and easy to install.
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Best security cameras
Security cameras used to be difficult to set up and manage. They were reserved for only the most tech-savvy homeowners. That’s not even close to true anymore. If you want to secure a single angle, such as a dark alley next to your home, there are plenty of stand-alone cameras available. Various high-end systems provide high-definition security for your entire property.
If you don’t want the hassle of a base station and prefer not to spend much, you can’t go wrong with this stand-alone model. It does require wired power, but it communicates via Wi-Fi. It offers local and cloud storage plus two-way audio.
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It includes your choice of two or three cameras that connect to a base station, which handles transmission and storage processing to increase the cameras’ ranges and battery lives. It sports an IP67 dust- and water-resistance rating and captures clear HD video, day or night.
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Just like everything from the Ring family, the Stick Up Cam shines due to its reliable operation and user-friendly interface. It comes in wired and wireless versions and works well with other products from the same family, such as the Ring alarm and video doorbell offerings.
Other worthwhile security products
Protect yourself and your family from carbon monoxide poisoning and fires with this comprehensive smart detector. It alerts you over the Nest app to both fast- and slow-burning fires while offering a reliable battery indicator and dependable wireless connection.
This is just about the most comprehensive smart alarm available. It even includes an Eero 6 Wi-Fi router for streamlined connectivity. If you want a household alarm that’s both powerful and easy to configure, this is the right choice.
This versatile smart plug can provide many standard appliances with app-and voice-based control. This is especially useful when you’re out of town, as you can program lights and appliances to turn on and off at will to deter potential robbers who might be casing the neighborhood.
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Chris Thomas writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
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