Since Kevo has set this innovative door lock to be released in late October 2013, I’m gonna have to go out on a limb to review this thing. The first time I spotted this cylindrical Bluetooth enabled deadbolt for smartphones, it was at Amazon. There was this little ad in the right sidebar and the lock itself was looking pretty cute, so I was kind of intrigued.
Upon further inspection of the Kevo Kiwkset 925 Lock, I found out that a lot of people were joking about being locked out of your own house because the batteries ran out of this “god damn” thing, and how anyone would just bump it with a pressure powered lock breaker etc. Well, those guys do have a point, but Kevo still managed to upgrade the concept of security in the long run. Here’s a small analysis of the Kiwkset Kevo Door Bolt for all the potential home security buffs out there.[spacer height=”20px”]
Good Stuff about Kevo Kiwkset 925 Lock with Bluetooth Enabled Technology:[spacer height=”20px”]
- It’s a God damn innovative lock![spacer height=”20px”]
- Kevo guys provide the liberty of opening the 925 Kwikset locks via smartphones.[spacer height=”20px”]
- Fingerprint sensing technology enables “touch to open” function.[spacer height=”20px”]
- You can share eKeys among your family members to centralize the locking system.[spacer height=”20px”]
- Intrusion messages are sent to you via text message notifications.[spacer height=”20px”]
- Features adjustable latch covers to fit in a variety of door bolt models. Though I am skeptic how this will work on older door latches because a lot of people wouldn’t want to head over to the home décor dept.[spacer height=”20px”]
- The Kevo 925 Kwikset locks are from the company’s signature series products.[spacer height=”20px”]
Side Note about CNET Reviewing Kevo Kiwkset 925 Deadbolt Bluetooth Operated Lock:[spacer height=”20px”]
I am guessing that Kevo sent out a special request to CNET for a review. ‘Ry Crist’ did an amazing job by providing an in depth analysis of how the lock works. However, a very small portion of the review was focused on the idea of hacking, intrusion and by-force lock busts. These are tough times, and even though Kevo gives an innovative touch to the home/ office security field, I am thinking the lock can be easily picked.
I’m sure this is Ry Crist’s Finger on the Lock | CNET Images
Here’s another idea. You share eKeys with trusted members of the family/ office. What if one of those people breaks in? Kevo lock active users do receive messages whenever the said door is Locked / Unlocked, but this won’t prevent the perpetrators from anything. By the time you will have someone come over to check the situation; I fear that something bad will have happened already.[spacer height=”20px”]
Irritating Stuff about Kevo Kiwkset 925:[spacer height=”20px”]
The only thing that’s causing a bit of irritation is this smart lock’s calibration mechanism. The setup process for 925 Kwikset deadbolt can be painstakingly long. But you’ll have to go through it, and that the lock really prevents multiple unwanted entries when it shouldn’t have. Otherwise, there’s no use installing a $200+ door lock.[spacer height=”20px”]
Lock the Doors – They’re Coming In![spacer height=”20px”]
So what does the Kwikset Kevo protect you from? In worst case scenario, it is gonna save your juicy fleshy hide from a Zombie apocalypse. The product works as advertised – i.e. you can enable/ disable locking mechanism by tapping it. The system has a built in Bluetooth 4.0 compliant technology which is capable of pairing with a number of smartphones.
Zombies definitely don’t know anything about Smart Locks
In other words, your smartphone works like a key; only this time, this key is unique and non- replicable. For old fashioned people, each new order of Kevo Kiwkset 925 comes with keys and a handy keychain. In case you have lost your smartphone or the battery is awfully low, you can still get inside without the possibilities of running into some kind of hassles.
Apart from its standard mechanical lock system, the concept of eKeys is cool too. As stated earlier, you can share these eKeys, which are in fact just unique IDs set to open the desired lock, among your friends and family members. The next time Cousin Nikko comes to your house, while you are not there, he’ll use his eKey to barge right in.
Is it Time to say Goodbye to Conventional Locks?[spacer height=”20px”]
Meh… this is where it kind of hits a curveball. Even though Kevo has a truly innovative product to offer, what about its competitors? I bet someone has already heard about August, Goji and Lockitron (really a generic name made up by someone who was into Voltron Cartoon series). The good old fashioned word of mouth says two things:[spacer height=”20px”]
- People are reluctant to switch to smart locks.[spacer height=”20px”]
- People do not want to spend a little over $200 on a lock.[spacer height=”20px”]
Kevo Kiwkset 925 is said to be 7 times more expensive than ordinary smart locks. The price factor, alone, is the only thing that’s sending potential buyers to the edge. However I bet you will fall in love with this Bluetooth enabled lock because it makes up for its price in every possible manner. Those “other new cheap” smart locks come a few features shy against Kevo.[spacer height=”20px”]
Kevo is Deceptive – That’s why it’s Good:[spacer height=”20px”]
The visual appeal of Kevo Kiwkset 925 or its entire product line is pretty ordinary. The LED halo effect is attractive, but the overall look of the lock is old fashion. I liked that. Thinking that this lock is going to face the outside world, the ordinary look fools everyone into believing, “Oh look, it’s just another one of ‘those’ locks; let’s just break in and steal everything.”
Goji locks have a sci-fi look. It already gives the impression that the locks needs to be broken by force because it is a smart lock. On the contrary, Kevo locks only light up when you touch them. The blue LED circles the area just like the Xbox 360 Power LED. The lock makes the decision of granting access. Once the identity is confirmed, the LED turns Green.
Likewise, if the FoB or your smartphone is not within range, the Lock’s LED color will turn Magenta. This only happens when the locking system verifies a presence outside the house. If you are inside, you will never see Magenta; unless and until you have installed the lock the wrong way!
Calibrate it Once and Leave it Be:[spacer height=”20px”]
In the end it is the calibration part which really matters. Now I am thinking of Al Pacino’s keynote speech as the coach in ‘Any given Sunday.’ Let me rephrase it for you, “When you get a Kevo Kiwkset 925, you really need to calibrate it. One half a step too left, or one half a step too right on the door mat, the lock will not be able to identify you.”
This locks figures out whether you are inside or outside your house. Even if you do have your smartphone within the lock’s range, you will need to stand EXACTLY in front of the lock, on the doormat. Otherwise, the recognition process will not work. You will also need to go through Kevo Kiwkset 925 manual for calibration settings.
According to the manual, it says that the calibration process is a one-time setup. You do not need to repeat it if you have it figured out in one go. Hold the device, which would be your smartphone, next to the indoor side of the lock’s calibration panel. There is a QR code on the lock. Just hold the phone for a few seconds and then step outside as soon as the lock’s LED turns green in color.
Now tap the lock three times on the outside panel and that’s about it. If the Kevo Kiwkset 925 LED flashes green, it means that the process is complete. If it flashes RED, you are in for the long haul. It will take you well over 10 attempts to set up this lock.
Folks at Kevo Kwikset agree that the calibration process takes a little longer than expected. The manual is clear on the set up instructions. Follow them and you will eventually calibrate the lock. Should you fail to set up the smart lock, you can call Kevo helpline to get immediate help. In case, the helpline representative is busy or not available, you can download and install the Kevo lock application in your smartphone for a copy of instructions.[spacer height=”20px”][spacer height=”20px”]
Closing thoughts about Kevo Kiwkset 925 Bluetooth Smart Lock:[spacer height=”20px”]
Apart from the pricing issue and the jokes about the lock being broken, this is an amazing product. A guy at CNET said that he was expecting a critical analysis of this lock. He has a point. He also went as far as to state that Consumer Reports have a high rating for old locks, where smart locks like Kevo’s land in at a whopping 59 rating.
Well, maybe it is because of how these locks are not common right now. Give or take a little over a year and we’ll see where those ratings for smart locks and traditional locks stand. If you have $219 to spare on a genuinely interesting lock, go for it. From what I gather, the company will offer you a discount on bulk orders for Kevo Kiwkset 925.[spacer height=”20px”]
Word from Kevo Kwikset:
With Kevo, your Smartphone is now your key. No more fumbling for your keys. Keep your phone in your pocket or purse and just touch the lock to open. No Smartphone? No Problem. Enjoy the same touch to open convenience with the fob.