Kevo – From Shark Tank to Success Story

kevo best buyPhil Dumas, inventor of Kwikset’s Kevo, is not one to let setbacks or obstacles stand in the way of success. For any true innovator there’s going to be obstacles, critics, and those that just don’t believe in your dreams.

The Unikey smartlock was first pitched to the Shark Tank panel during Season 3, which is an accomplishment in itself. Phil was probably pretty confident that the sharks would bite, and why wouldn’t they? The Unikey is a clever device that makes shuffling for your keys in the rain, snow, or with a bag of groceries in hand, obsolete. Working with your smartphone, the device automatically takes you within one easy touch of a finger or elbow to opening your front door. Not only is this convenient, but also completely secure. So, what could go wrong? [Read more...]

Sales, Service and Social Media; Updates on Smart Locks

For most companies, smart locks are the home access systems of the future. For one, UniKey, they are the home access systems of now.

As these companies have raced to be the first and the best smart lock providers many have fallen short while one has prevailed.

Lockitron: Although Lockitron has pushed back shipping dates time and time again and continues to do so, they are one of the only companies who has managed to actually get a shipment out. [Read more...]

The First Lockitron Smartlocks Have Been Shipped, Installed & Reviewed

lockitron smartlock reviewThe timeline of our four smartlocks, Goji, Kwikset’s Kevo, Lockitron, and August have been an exciting journey for all involved. Having seen startups surface, fail and disappear more than a few times, we made some pretty accurate predictions right from the beginning. Now it’s time to hear from you. The first Lockitron smartlocks have been shipped, installed and reviewed. Are you ready?

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The Risks of Buying From a Startup Technology Company

startup technologyStartup technology. With the introduction of crowd funding and the endless possibilities to develop free (or practically free) advertising campaigns online, there are more startup businesses offering the latest gadgets and techie solutions than ever before. So, what’s wrong with that? This is a good thing, right? Well, that depends.

It used to be that new product ideas took years to come to fruition. Now there’s an entirely different playing field. Just as long as you can advertise properly and raise enough awareness, you can get backers without actually having the ability to bring your product to fruition. The internet has pretty effectively become a way to circumvent the beaten path inventors used to take, and that’s a good thing, –for the most part. The only problem is the fact that crowd funding only requires there to be an idea or a theory in place. If a startup comes to Kickstarter or Indiegogo with an idea, a video and a good pitch, they’re in. They don’t have to prove they have a manufacturer in place. Unfortunately, the average consumer who decides to put their money into a startup doesn’t look at all the things that can go wrong and the very real possibility of waving goodbye to their investment. [Read more...]

Who Will Win The Smartlock Ship Date Race?

smartlock ship dateWhich Smart Lock Will Ship First?

We’ve been “down to the wire” on more than one occasion, but with each missed deadline it has been difficult to predict which smart lock would make it to fulfillment first. Of course, we all know that slow and steady wins the race, but it did appear that Lockitron was just moments away from scheduled shipping. We watched, we waited, we were not surprised when the date was pushed back, yet again.

Are any of the four smart lock developers on track for shipment? Let’s take a look: [Read more...]

Delivering or Disappointing? Which Smartlock Can You Trust?

smartlock reviewsThe smartlock race is still on and we’ve been following it every step of the way. We’ve charted out and compared every detail from the very beginning, bringing you the pros, cons, milestones and mistakes of four start ups –each attempting to take the lead and become “America’s smartlock.”

With so many of the conversations and reviews focusing on features and design, it’s important to come back to the very core and revisit the key factor for any successful company –trust.  Companies small and large fail in this all important area daily and unfortunately, once a product or company is labeled as unreliable, it is a difficult reputation to recover from.

Under-promise and Over-deliver is the mantra of many a successful start up. Let’s take a look at our contenders and see what’s happening: [Read more...]

Smart Lock Production and Shipping Updates – Concept to Creation

smart lock productionIt’s easy to come up with a product in theory. Video representations offering prototypes and information based on ‘best case scenarios’ can be pretty convincing as well. But what happens when a product is no longer a demo or an elevator pitch? When orders begin and the companies start to feel the stress of production planning, computer glitches, missed details –and even worse, missed deadlines, will they be able to move forward without unraveling?

The production process is much more complicated than many entrepreneurs envision. A couple of mistakes can cost thousands of dollars of loss and sometimes even cause the entire project to fail.

Our four smart lock contenders, Goji, Kwikset, August, and Lockitron, have a wide range of scenarios. Two were crowdfunded projects, one was originally pitched to the Shark Tank crew, and one was funded by angel investors. Which has the upper hand now? Let’s take a look: [Read more...]

Goji vs. Lockitron – Smart Lock Comparison

smart lock reviewsSmart Phone Enabled Door Locks

Smart phone enabled door locks are the latest must-have items in home innovation technology, and for good reason. These “smartlocks” combine the security and reliability of a trusted deadbolt lock with the innovation and convenience of technology. Now, instead of fumbling through our bag or pockets for a set of keys, new, proximity technology allows you to unlock your door automatically, as you approach it.

How does it work? In simplest terms, an electronic device attached to the deadbolt ‘talks’ to   an app on our Smartphone, which essentially becomes our key –and why not? We always have our phone with us, right? What better option for the replacement for our house key. If you think about it, our smartphones have already replaced our cameras, watches, calendars, rolodexes. Replacing our key seems pretty logical. [Read more...]

Goji vs. August – Smartphone Enabled Door Lock Comparison

smartphone enabled door has been comparing strengths and weaknesses of each Smartphone enabled door lock (Kwikset Kevo, Lockitron, August and Goji) while also bringing you the latest news, production updates, and even delving into the likelihood of each company to grow or fold based on their prior track record, business relationships, and capital.

We’ve also brought you an in-depth and helpful product comparison chart  outlining the features of each lock. Let’s pull out Goji and August for an inside look at where they are today with features, production, and reliability.

Both Goji and August offer Smartphone enabled door locks that seem similar, but as you know, we like to dig into the details. These two contenders have some interesting updates. [Read more...]

Smartlock Update – What is BLE?

Bluetooth In the war between the smartlocks, there’s a good deal of confusion brewing, especially when it comes to BLE or Bluetooth 4.0 technology.

Two of the smartlocks have ‘BLE only’ capabilities, August and Unikey.  BLE only means no Wifi is needed. Lockitron and GOJI use both. According to their advertisements, you may be fooled into thinking Bluetooth + Wifi is more advanced, but this couldn’t be farther from the truth.  First of all, we know that Bluetooth and Wifi don’t often play well together. One needs to be turned off for the other to work properly, etc. So what does this mean for smartphones? A couple of facts stand out as problems for Wifi + BLE capable smartlocks. [Read more...]