The ability to automate and remotely control door locks, lights, thermostats, and other smart home products — also known as home automation — used to be a luxury. Now, it’s commonplace. It has even gotten to the point that home automation has become integral to home security.
Security systems that offer home automation are what we like to call smart security systems, and they deliver more than just convenience. By automating smart home devices, they can elevate our home security to the next level. If paired with a smart lock, for example, a security system can lock your door and arm your home security automatically every night. Isn’t that just smart?
That said, not all security systems that advertise smart home features are equal. In this guide, we’ll take you through the best smart home security systems we’ve tested and why they are the best.
- ADT – Best Smart Home Security App
Compared to security systems today, ADT is a relic that has been around for over a century. But that doesn’t mean it’s behind when it comes to technology. In fact, one of the reasons that ADT managed to last this long is its penchant for quickly adopting new technology.
With the ADT system we had installed, we were provided the option to control lights, locks, thermostats, even garage doors. And when it comes to keeping us safe, ADT installed smoke alarms, carbon monoxide detectors, and flood sensors as well.
ADT Smart Home Equipment
Wireless ADT systems under the ADT Control brand use a touchscreen control panel. The slim, wall-mounted device uses Z-Wave to connect to sensors and smart home devices wirelessly, and then gives you complete control over everything connected to it.
Here’s a sample platter of ADT equipment compatible with the ADT Pulse and ADT Control systems.
- Garage Door Controller – ADT’s mobile apps let you remotely check and adjust the open/closed status of your garage door.
- Smart Lights – ADT smart lights and bulbs let you control lights from anywhere you have mobile access. ADT Pulse can also change standard lamps into remote-controlled dimmers.
- Smart Locks – Use your smartphone as a house key. Smart locks in ADT security systems let you remotely lock and unlock your doors.
- Smart Plugs – ADT smart plugs give you the convenience of controlling appliances remotely.
- Vivint - Best Smart Security with 24/7 Monitoring
Vivint is a longtime leader in smart home security. Everything about Vivint looks and feels smart. From the touchscreen control panel that controls every component to its AI-powered outdoor cameras, Vivint uses nothing but top-notch hardware.
Vivint offers countless customizations. The system is a professionally installed system, but even once the system is installed, you can create automation schedules and rules to improve your smart home experience. You can also integrate a number of devices such as sensors, smart locks, video doorbells, and smart cameras.
Vivint Smart Home Control
A Vivint security home system lets you control equipment in three ways:
- Home control with the Vivint Smart Hub, a computer with 7” touchscreen. The Smart Hub plugs into a standard outlet and has a 24-hour backup battery. In case of security breaches, it sounds a 100-decibel siren. The hub also has emergency call buttons and supports two-way talk for communicating with emergency operators.
- Voice control at home with a Google Nest or Alexa smart speaker or display. Not all controls are supported with this method, but you can at the very least arm your security system, turn connected smart devices on and off, and check the status of sensors.
Vivint Smart Home Equipment
Vivint Smart Hubs are Z-Wave compatible to give you endless add-on options. Listed here are some types of smart home devices that work with the Vivint hub. Some are made by Vivint, and others are third-party products.
- Doorbell Camera – This clever security device has a camera triggered by motion. The Vivint doorbell camera has night vision and lets you respond through the intercom as if you’re at home.
- Ping Camera – This indoor security camera has a motion trigger and gives the option to record continuously. It also has a video talk button for connecting with your mobile phone. Soon, it will be replaced by the Vivint Indoor Camera Pro, which offers a lot of the same features but with a sleeker look, better video quality, and a local video storage option.