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  • Schlage Encode Smart Wi-Fi Deadbolt

  • Wyze Lock

  • August Smart Lock Pro

  • Schlage Sense Smart Deadbolt

  • How We Tested Smart Locks

  • What You Should Know About Smart Locks

  • Privacy

  • Other Smart Locks We Tested

  • Smart Locks We Tested That Didn’t Make The Cut

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Our Favorite Smart Locks of 2021

  1. Product image of Schlage Encode Smart Wi-Fi Deadbolt
    Best Overall

    Schlage Encode Smart Wi-Fi Deadbolt

    Pros

    • Up to 100 passcodes

    • Versatile passcodes

    • Amazon Key compatible

    Cons

    • Lacks some advanced features

    Skip to the full review below
  2. Product image of Wyze Lock
    Best Value

    Wyze Lock

    Pros

    • Wi-Fi and Bluetooth

    • Offers geofencing, virtual keys, and optional keypad

    Cons

    • Slightly less attractive than the competition

    • Separate components make for more complex setup

    Skip to the full review below
Schlage Encode Smart Lock
Credit: Reviewed / Sarah Kovac

The Schlage Encode is a solid, easy-to-use smart lock.

Best Overall
Schlage Encode Smart Wi-Fi Deadbolt

There's a lot to love about our top pick, the Schlage Encode. For starters, installation and troubleshooting are a breeze thanks to the app’s interactive, step-by-step guide. The lock and accompanying app are simple and intuitive to use, jam-packed with useful features, and the lock is very responsive when using remote access.

Not only is the Encode able to store and remember up to 100 permanent, temporary, or recurring passcodes, but it also works with Alexa. and Google Assistant as well as Ring, Amazon Key, and, of course, Schlage Home systems. If you’re on the hunt for a HomeKit-compatible smart lock, check out the Schlage Sense below.

The Encode offers compatibility with Amazon Key, which means you can allow Amazon delivery people to digitally unlock your smart lock to set your packages inside the door (an optional feature, of course).

Unlike a lot of other smart locks, the Schlage Encode has Wi-Fi built-in. That means that, even without a hub, Encode can connect to the internet, voice assistants, and your phone when you’re away from home. This, along with the well-designed app, makes it one of the easiest locks to set up and use of all the models we've tested.

The option to set up recurring passcodes is pretty ingenious and helpful for those who have regular housekeepers, babysitters, or other household employees, and only want them to have access every third Thursday (or whatever you'd like)—no need to create a new code. The lock doesn't include more advanced features like geofencing or fingerprint scanning, but the numeric keypad is easy and versatile enough to fit most people's needs.

Pros

  • Up to 100 passcodes

  • Versatile passcodes

  • Amazon Key compatible

Cons

  • Lacks some advanced features

Wyze Lock
Credit: Wyze

Easy to use and quick to install, the Wyze Lock offers plenty of smart features that are comparable to more expensive door locks.

Best Value
Wyze Lock

Wyze continues to impress us with its incredibly affordable smart home products. Coming off the heels of Wyze’s surprisingly good security cameras, the Wyze Lock offers a solid feature set at a great price. It uses your existing deadbolt and keyhole, so your front door will look the same to outsiders, packing all the smarts in a simple panel attached to the inside of the door.

That means you won't have to re-key anything. Wi-Fi connectivity requires a separate bridge you need to plug in near the lock, though it's bundled in the package. An optional mount-anywhere keypad is also available for numeric codes, though it's sold separately. On one hand, this is nice, because you can buy only what you need and skip the rest—but it also amounts to a bit more work than something like the Encode for those who want the full package.

Thankfully, the Wyze Lock's installation is quite easy, and even first-timers should have no problem installing the deadbolt. The mechanism is smooth and responsive whether you're locking it by hand, through the app, or through the geofencing feature, which uses your phone's location to unlock the door as you arrive home. You can also share access with others through the app, either long-term or on a recurring schedule. (We had to re-share after the other person made their account, so it wasn’t foolproof, but we got it working with minimal fuss.)

The Wyze Lock also uses an interesting auto-sensing feature that can tell whether your door is ajar or not without the need for stick-on sensors. It worked well in our testing, though stick-on sensors may be more reliable for some folks—albeit with added complexity. The Wi-Fi bridge worked flawlessly, which isn't a given, allowing us to lock the house from afar with the app or using voice assistants like Alexa. While we wish it were built-in to the lock itself, the performance is on point, provided you have an outlet near your door.

That's ultimately the main downside of the Wyze Lock—it works incredibly well and comes at a killer price, but it's less attractive than pricier models, and extra pieces like the Wi-Fi bridge and stick-on keypad do require a little more forethought in terms of where everything goes. That said, the Wyze Lock provides such a smooth and hassle-free experience for the price, it's easily one of the best locks you can buy.

Pros

  • Wi-Fi and Bluetooth

  • Offers geofencing, virtual keys, and optional keypad

Cons

  • Slightly less attractive than the competition

  • Separate components make for more complex setup

Related content

Product image of August Smart Lock Pro + Connect
Best for Alexa, Best for Google Assistant
Best for Alexa, Best for Google Assistant
August Smart Lock Pro

The August Smart Lock Pro is one of the most well-known smart locks out there and has earned a well-deserved reputation for being a standout smart product.

It works with both Android/Google Assistant, iPhone/HomeKit, and Amazon Alexa and responds to voice commands to automatically lock. You can also use virtual keys to hand out temporary access, enable auto-lock and auto-unlock based on the proximity of your phone, and a history log of who comes and goes. But maybe most importantly, August uses your existing deadbolt mechanism, meaning installation is a breeze and gives you that extra peace of mind.

If you're interested in using the August with your Amazon Echo device or any other smart assistant, you'll have to plug in the included August Connect. With this bridge, you'll be able to move your August from Bluetooth over to Wi-Fi, which gives you control over your lock via your phone no matter where you are.

Alternatively, the Connect is what lets you use your Echo to control your lock via the August Home skill.

With the ability to interface with multiple assistants, the August Smart Lock Pro is as versatile as it is intuitive, making it a great choice for those who use Apple HomeKit or may do so in the future.

Pros

  • Uses existing deadbolt mechanism

  • Compatible with most smart assistants

  • Installation is a breeze

Cons

  • None that we could find

Product image of Schlage Sense Smart Deadbolt
Best for Apple HomeKit
Best for Apple HomeKit
Schlage Sense Smart Deadbolt

The Schlage Sense is a great smart lock for Apple HomeKit. You can ask Siri to lock or unlock the door, even through your remote control if you own an Apple TV as well. If you own an iPhone and have already taken steps to fill your home with Apple HomeKit-compatible products, the Schlage Sense is a standout smart lock that should be on your radar. We found the Sense to perform identically in our testing to the Encode in most categories. The big differences are the Sense’s lack of built-in Wi-Fi and its smaller memory for passcodes (but do you really need more than 30?).

This lock can still connect to the internet, but you need to invest in a Schlage Sense Wi-Fi adapter. This lock also comes equipped with built-in alarm sensors that will issue an alert if it senses an attack, which is great for those concerned about their smart lock being hacked.

Pros

  • HomeKit compatible

  • Built-in tamper alarm

Cons

  • Needs adapter for Wi-Fi connection

How We Tested Smart Locks

The Tester

I’m Whitson Gordon, and I’m a freelance tech writer charged with testing smart home gadgets (among other things) here at Reviewed. I’ve been writing about tech professionally for over 10 years, from building computers to set up smart homes. I served as the editor-in-chief of Lifehacker and How-To Geek before starting a freelance career writing guides for publications like the New York Times, PCMag, and Reviewed.

This isn’t just my day job—it’s my calling. I’m obsessed with researching, testing, and finding the best possible gadget in a given category, so much so that my brother made it a central joke in his best man speech at my wedding.

I've been decking out my house with smart home tech for a few years, including a major revamp after buying a new house in 2019. With all-new electrical, HVAC, and a robust Wi-Fi system, my house is primed for testing smart gadgets of all stripes—alongside my experience setting up smart home devices in my family's older, more challenging houses.

The previous round of testing was completed by Sarah Kovac, former editor of our smart home section here at Reviewed.

The Tests

We used a piece of an actual door for the installation process. We assembled each one, noting which had newbie-friendly instructions, and which ones made us want to pull our hair out.

Once each lock was installed, we tested the accompanying mobile app on Android and iOS, over Wi-Fi and cellular data (when applicable). We rated each one on lock/unlock speed, app interface, connection reliability, responsiveness when used with voice assistants, ease of installation, and more.

We paid special attention to ease of use and reliability. After all, if you're spending the money to upgrade to a smart lock, it needs to work well. Every time.

Our tests proved that not all locks are as smart as you'd think, and when it comes to your home's security, it might be better to opt for a reliable, easy-to-use lock over one that's loaded with potentially confusing and unnecessary features.

What You Should Know About Smart Locks

Can You Use a Physical Key With a Smart Lock?

Digital keypads are great when you don't have a spare key to loan the dog walker or babysitter, and also for those times when you lock yourself out of the house. Some smart locks even come with fingerprint sensors for super-quick unlocking, or geofencing so your house unlocks automatically as you arrive home. Ultimately, these are what make smart locks "smart," and will probably be the main ways you unlock your door.

However, most smart locks also come with traditional keys that you can use to lock and unlock the door as you normally would. It's a good idea to key the spare key on your keyring (or in a safe place where you can easily access it) in case something goes wrong—like you lose power or the batteries in the smart lock die (though many will notify you well before this happens). In addition, you might want to consider a lock that shares compatibility with the other locks in your house.

Can a Smart Lock be Hacked?

Yes. Like any smart product, it's possible to hack into a smart lock. Cybersecurity should be a consideration, but you should also consider the many ways a smart lock offers more security than a "dumb" one.

While possible, the odds of someone having the know-how and motivation to hack your smart lock are going to be much lower than the odds of a door accidentally left unlocked, a burglar finding your spare physical key hiding under a rock, or a burglar using that rock to smash a window. A smart lock prevents many unfortunate scenarios that can result from the vulnerabilities of a dumb lock.

A smart lock can auto-lock your door, ensuring it isn't left unsecured. It eliminates the need for spare/hidden keys and therefore lowers the likelihood one will be stolen, lost, or copied. And depending on the product you choose, your fingerprint or phone will be all you need to get in your house—no more fumbling for keys.

While the device introduces some risks, it eliminates others and adds a lot of conveniences. Just make sure the password to your smart lock isn't "password," and you're likely to come out ahead over a standard deadbolt.

Smart Assistant Compatibility

Whether you use Alexa, Google Assistant, or Siri, it’s important to make sure the smart lock you choose works with your preferred smart assistant. It may seem obvious, but not all smart locks play nice with certain voice assistants.

Many smart locks work with both Alexa and Google Assistant, but that’s not always the case with Apple’s Siri. To avoid any surprises or headaches, look for a model that’s compatible with the smart assistant you use the most. Compatibility information can be found on the product’s page or the exterior of the product’s packaging.

Privacy

There’s always a potential privacy risk involved when you use internet-connected devices at home. To help safeguard your smart home, there are some steps you can take.

First, look for devices that offer two-factor authentication, which sends a code to your mobile device to verify it’s you. That way, if someone tries to hack into your account, you will receive an alert and can quickly take care of the problem. Many devices also allow you to activate email or other push notifications in the settings to alert you if someone has logged on.

Additionally, make sure to use a unique, strong password composed of multiple characters, numbers, and letters for each of your smart home accounts. Data breaches feel like the norm as of late, making it all the more important to use different passwords across multiple websites and apps.

When using any devices with smart assistants like Alexa, Google Assistant, and Siri, you can further protect your privacy by regularly deleting your voice recordings and muting the speaker’s mic when it’s not in use.

Looking for more privacy tips? Read our guide to securing your smart home.


Other Smart Locks We Tested

Product image of Alfred DB2-B Smart Door Lock
Alfred DB2-B

Alfred is a lesser-known player in the smart lock space, but they made one of the best locks we tested this time around. Not only was the lock reliable, triggering every time we commanded it from the mobile app or with our voice, but it's rather versatile as well. Their DB2-B model offers a keypad on the front for numeric codes, a standard key lock hidden under a little door, and a geofence-based one-touch unlock, allowing you to unlock the door by touching your finger to it after returning home.

Having used a similar lock in the past, this is a convenient way to unlock your door—and Alfred's one-touch feature works in conjunction with geofencing. Once you re-enter the 250-foot radius around your home, you'll be able to unlock your door just by touching the keypad. This geofencing requirement can make the feature a bit fiddly for some users, as geofencing requires location permissions and battery optimization to be set a certain way on Android phones—not to mention it requires an always-on notification, which is rather annoying.

The lock's design is a bit large, but still sleek and attractive, with three colors to choose from (black, chrome, and gold). The lock itself connects to your phone over Bluetooth, though you can buy a separate Wi-Fi bridge or Z-Wave module for remote access and integration with other smart home platforms. (You'll need one of these if you want to control it with Alexa or Google Assistant.)

While we love that Alfred offers both Wi-Fi and Z-Wave bridges, the addition of a separate bridge introduces extra variables that can complicate things for many users. While Alfred's bridge worked very reliably in my experience, we tend to be wary of separate bridges since I've had them introduce frustration before—see some of the locks below—particularly if your house is laid out in such a way that there aren't any outlets near the front door.

I much prefer built-in Wi-Fi, particularly when recommending a product to less tech-savvy users. (Oh, and Alfred's bridge is rather unsightly, requiring a cable to plug it in and a weird plastic hanger, rather than a simple module with attached prongs). Still, it's a fantastic lock, and if you're willing to deal with the extra complexity, the Alfred DB2-B is one of the most versatile and reliable models we tested.

Pros

  • Attractive

  • Works well

  • Versatile and reliable

Cons

  • Bridge required

  • Setup may be complex for some

Product image of Kwikset Halo Touch Contemporary
Kwikset Halo Touch

If you like the idea of unlocking your door with your fingerprint—which is easily the quickest and most convenient way to get inside your house, short of geofencing—check out the Kwikset Halo Touch. It eschews the keypad for a fingerprint sensor that's quick to engage and very reliable (though notifications that the door has finished locking were a bit delayed in our testing). Its built-in Wi-Fi means you can use Alexa or Google Assistant to lock your door as well, though it doesn't contain any location-based features.

Kwikset also offers the ability to share virtual keys with other users, and add their fingerprints to your door. It isn't quite as versatile as a numeric keypad (since you can offer a code to anyone without them needing the app or being present), but if your primary concern is getting into your own house easily, a fingerprint is incredibly quick and easy.

Pros

  • Built-in Wi-Fi

  • Works with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant

Cons

  • No keypad

  • No location-based features

Product image of August Wi-Fi Smart Lock (4th Gen)
August Wi-Fi Smart Lock

August’s latest Wi-Fi lock refines the design that put August on the map. Its round locking mechanism replaces your deadbolt knob without requiring you to remove the deadbolt itself, or the keyhole on the outside of the door.

Its design looks a little ugly compared to the more traditional-looking locks on this list, but its built-in Wi-Fi means you can control it from anywhere, and the location-based auto-unlock feature worked flawlessly in our testing. Virtual keys worked similarly well, though we found that invites didn’t work properly unless our invitee already had an August account, which is easy enough to workaround.

We also found the iOS app slightly more confusing to use if you had more than one lock, and the lock seemed to prefer Wi-Fi over Bluetooth—the opposite of most locks—which means there’s sometimes a weird lag when you’re close to the lock and it switches from one to the other. Still, you'll rarely need to use the app when you're standing in front of the lock, so we're okay with this quirk for how reliable the Wi-Fi connectivity was.

Pros

  • Built-in Wi-Fi

  • Reliable

  • Location-based features work well

Cons

  • iOS is slightly confusing

  • Lags behind when using Bluetooth

Product image of Eufy Smart Lock Touch
Eufy Smart Lock Touch

Anker’s Eufy brand aims to provide versatile smart home products at an affordable price (see our list of the best robot vacuums). Its Eufy Security Smart Lock Touch works very well, providing an extremely smooth deadbolt mechanism that's easy to set up and use. It's also versatile, offering both a numeric keypad and a fingerprint sensor, though the sensor is a tad slower than other fingerprint locks we tested.

Unlike other Eufy products, though, the Eufy Smart Lock was on the costlier side. And for that cost, you only get Bluetooth connectivity—no Wi-Fi, which means no voice assistant and other automation features. The physical key also uses a non-standard design, so you can’t re-key it to match the other locks in your home and it's a bit on the bulkier side. Ultimately, it's extremely easy and reliable; we just wish it were a little cheaper for the sacrifices it makes over other models.

Pros

  • Smooth deadbolt mechanism

  • Easy to setup and use

Cons

  • Bluetooth only

  • Bulkier than some other smart locks we tested

Product image of August Wi-Fi Smart Lock + Connect
August Wi-Fi Smart Lock + Connect

August’s standard Smart Lock is more affordable than August’s other locks, with many of the same features: you can unlock from the app or using geofencing, and virtual keys allow you to give access to friends and family. It doesn’t have Wi-Fi built-in, but it comes with a Connect bridge that connects the lock to your Wi-Fi network, as long as you have an outlet near your door. (Strangely, it kept telling us the signal from the bridge was weak, even though it worked just fine.) Setting the Connect up on Android was a bit quirky, though, since you have to turn off the “Smart Wi-Fi Connect” setting, which may exist in different spots on different phones.

Once you get it set up, though, locking and unlocking works as reliably as the other August locks we tested. It does, however, make an incredibly loud, nails-on-a-chalkboard style noise whenever it locks or unlocks, more so than any other lock we tested—locking it by hand doesn’t produce the noise, but if you’re in the house when it goes off, it’s rather grating.

Pros

  • Geofencing

  • Remote unlock

Cons

  • Android setup can be tricky

Product image of Level Bolt Smart Lock
Level Lock

Most smart locks require a bulky panel on at least one side of your door, if not both. If you want a smart lock that’s truly incognito, the Level Lock replaces the deadbolt mechanism inside your door, without any other circuitry necessary—you use the same keyhole and indoor lever you have right now, making for an incredibly sleek setup.

However, that does mean that the Level Lock is a bit short on features—it only works over Bluetooth, and doesn’t currently support virtual keys. It is compatible with Apple’s HomeKit, though, and allows geofencing through that or through the app itself. (Though it does have a rather annoying always-on notification when geofencing is enabled on Android.) It’s a fascinating design, and if you’re building a HomeKit-powered smart home, it's worth a look—but other locks offer more features for the price.

Pros

  • Incognito design

  • Works with Apple HomeKit

Cons

  • No virtual keys

  • Bluetooth-only

Product image of Kwikset Kevo Convert
Kwikset Kevo 2.0

The Kwikset Kevo Convert is a simple way to keep your exterior lock and keys, and instead replace only the interior deadbolt lock mechanism. Much like the Kevo 2nd Gen, the Kwikset app will guide you through an interactive installation process that should leave you with a fully functioning lock in about 10-15 minutes. It's a bit more affordable than a full assembly smart lock while keeping all of the same benefits.

The bad news is that in our testing, the Convert took upwards of 10 seconds to lock and unlock the door. That might not seem very long, but try saying that when it's 90 degrees outside and you're stuck waiting for your lock to let you inside.

Pros

  • Works with existing lock and keys

  • Easy installation

Cons

  • Slow response time

Product image of Lockly Duo
Lockly Duo

The Lockly Duo is a high-end smart lock that aims to do what most smart locks can’t: combine two locks into one (hence the name). It offers reliable performance but has a few limitations that caused it to rank toward the bottom of the bunch.

The Lockly mobile app works well for unlocking, locking, and checking in on the door's current status. In addition to the mobile app, you can also lock or unlock the door with your fingerprint, eKeys, a PIN code via the digital touchscreen, offline access codes, and, of course, a physical key. The Lockly Wi-Fi Secure Hub, which comes with your purchase, is required to access the lock remotely, as well as via voice control with Alexa or Google Assistant. Without the hub, you will only be able to control this lock via Bluetooth.

The setup process is fairly involved and time-consuming (about 30 minutes). It runs on four AA batteries, which are included. We tested the lock on a tabletop frame provided by Lockly because the smart lock has specific spacing requirements to accommodate the interconnected latch and deadbolt that don’t match up with pre-drilled door holes. Because of this, the lock is better suited for a new door so you can line it up exactly where you want it before drilling.

While the price is higher than many other smart locks, the Lockly Duo feels incredibly sturdy, well-built, and long-lasting. If you’re willing to spend up on a fancy door lock and don’t mind some extra work on the install, then the 2-in-1 Lockly Duo is a mighty fine choice.

Pros

  • Two-in-one lock

  • Multiple ways to unlock

Cons

  • Long setup

  • Hub required to access smart assistants and remote control

  • Specific spacing requirements

Product image of Lockly Secure Pro
Lockly Secure Pro Deadbolt

The Lockly Secure Pro has some promising features. It comes in latch and deadbolt versions, and you have your choice of Satin Nickel or Venetian Bronze finish. But this is more than just a pretty lock. The keypad has a unique security feature that helps protect your entry code from would-be lock hackers.

The numbers on the virtual keypad randomly group to make up four buttons. The numbers on each button are different each time the lock is used, so someone watching your hand in an attempt to figure out your entry code will see different movements each time you enter. Pretty smart.

Lockly comes with a Wi-Fi hub, a lifetime limited warranty covering the finish and mechanics, an easy-to-install door sensor, a fingerprint sensor, and a two-year warranty covering the electronics. We loved Lockly's PIN protection and thoughtful features, but locking and unlocking from the app was slow and finicky. Sometimes our phone wouldn't connect to it at all.

After a few app updates, this lock may prove to be one of our favorites. But until then, we'd recommend something a little more simple and reliable, like our No. 1 pick.

Pros

  • Randomized number pad

  • Latch or deadbolt

  • Fingerprint sensor

Cons

  • Connectivity issues

Smart Locks We Tested That Didn’t Make The Cut

  • The Yale Assure Lock SL (available on Amazon) unlocked almost instantaneously. It works with Alexa and Siri, and setting up the lock was fairly uncomplicated given all of the smart features it offers. While locking the door by voice is painless, unlocking requires a spoken passcode instead of a punch in access code or pin code. The Yale Assure Lock SL has a spot under the cover that allows for a smart home module to be plugged in. Our only issue with this lock was that, while using it with Alexa and Siri was a dream, Google Assistant could only lock it, and wasn't ever successful in unlocking.

  • The Ultraloq U-Bolt Pro (available at Amazon) is small in size but big on features like sports numeric codes, fingerprint unlocking, and a traditional keyhole hidden behind the panel. The setup was difficult and you’re limited to Bluetooth only unless you purchase the optional Wi-Fi bridge that allows for remote control.

Meet the testers

Sarah Kovac

Sarah Kovac

Editor, Accessibility

@sarahkovac

Sarah Kovac is an award-winning author and smart home editor for Reviewed. Previously, she worked with a multitude of outlets such as Wirecutter, TIME, PCMag, Prevention, The Atlantic, Reviews.com, CNN, GOOD, Upworthy, Mom.me, and SheKnows.

See all of Sarah Kovac's reviews
Rachel Murphy

Rachel Murphy

Senior Staff Writer

@rachel_murphy

Rachel Murphy covers smart home for Reviewed. She holds a journalism degree from the University of Central Florida. Previously, she worked as a freelance writer for several major outlets and as an associate editorial producer for ABC News' Good Morning America.

See all of Rachel Murphy's reviews
Whitson Gordon

Whitson Gordon

Freelance Writer

Whitson Gordon is a valued contributor to the Reviewed.com family of sites.

See all of Whitson Gordon's reviews

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