August Wi-Fi Smart Lock review: The best smart lock just got better

Maria J. Danford

August good locks are popular, and for fantastic reason. They are simple to put in with no changing your deadbolt and good enough to get the job done with good residence setups for Google Assistant, Apple HomeKit and Amazon Alexa. We gave a number of generations of August locks our Editors’ […]

August good locks are popular, and for fantastic reason. They are simple to put in with no changing your deadbolt and good enough to get the job done with good residence setups for Google Assistant, Apple HomeKit and Amazon Alexa. We gave a number of generations of August locks our Editors’ Option Award for their simple set up, fantastic app and good residence integration. 

Like

  • Smaller design.
  • Wi-Fi built in.
  • Smoother mechanics.
  • Is effective with Google, Alexa and Siri.

Do not Like

  • Continue to pricey.
  • Shorter battery existence.

August is again with its new August Wi-Fi Smart Lock. Slimmed down and even further smartened, it’s the ideal a single however. It will come with built-in Wi-Fi, negating the will need for the extra August Join ($fifty eight at Amazon) plug-in modules. At $250, the new lock is pricey but it’s in the exact same rate selection as the preceding generation lock, and effectively worth your revenue if you might be seeking to get your front door on line. I popped it onto the again of my door and lived with it for a week. Here’s what you will need to know. 

Smaller good lock design

August’s distinctive retrofit design stays true to its roots in this fourth-generation design. What is actually remarkably different is the size. The August Wi-Fi Smart Lock is 45% smaller sized than its predecessors, measuring 2.eighty three inches in diameter and just 1.81 inches in depth. While you will find under no circumstances been anything particularly unappealing about the lock, placing a significant chunk of metal on the interior of your door just isn’t an interior designer’s desire. 

august-lock-2

Chris Monroe/CNET

Just about all good locks need this aesthetic obstruction, relying on a large battery and thumb latch housings mounted on the interior aspect of your door. I was delighted with the modest scale of this August design. It’s so substantially significantly less distracting, partly since I am a little bit additional accustomed to looking at good locks on doors by now, but also since it’s truly significantly smaller sized. A good residence should blend in, in my impression, and August’s design is substantially improved in that regard. 

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The August Wi-Fi Smart Lock (correct) is 45% smaller sized than the August Smart Lock Pro (left). 


Molly Price tag/CNET

The design team, which contains renowned designer Yves Béhar, stayed true to the original design, though making modest updates. You can detect a slightly different ridge sample all over the sides of the lock, created to enhance grip. I won’t be able to discern a big variation, but I am not bothered by it, both. Along that ridge is a cleverly placed August emblem to assistance you notify no matter if your door is locked or not. On the within, the August Wi-Fi Smart Lock is driven by two CR123 batteries. I am going to discuss additional about individuals afterwards.

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The updated aspect texture of the lock is created to present far better grip. 


Molly Price tag/CNET

Setting up the August Wi-Fi Smart Lock

As always, setting up an August good lock is a breeze if you have ten minutes and a screwdriver. You can also want to obtain the August app readily available on iOS or Android, as there is a valuable tutorial with animations to stroll you via the system. Mainly because it’s retrofit, you will not likely will need to substantially at all to your actual physical deadbolt, past eradicating the thumb latch on the interior aspect of the door. Future, you can expect to healthy on the August plate and suitable adapter for your lock, and clip on the Wi-Fi Smart Lock with its two locking wings. 

I am going to take a 2nd here to tackle my normal good lock ideas. 

  1. Be guaranteed your door closes effectively in advance of you start off this system. Smart locks have trouble calibrating and totally locking doors that will need an extra shove to close totally. 
  2. Make guaranteed the deadbolt moves freely and there just isn’t any friction in the lock’s mechanics. 
  3. Make guaranteed you have a fantastic Wi-Fi relationship. This influences not only the set up, but the lock’s daily overall performance, far too.
  4. Continue to keep your screws arranged. Which screw length goes in which can truly matter on a good lock. 

It’s essential to do your ideal to preserve the cam bar (see down below) centered in the August again plate though you protected the screws. If you come across that it’s far too much up or down, loosen and readjust the screws though keeping a little bit of tension on the plate to preserve it in place. It’s tough to healthy the necessary adapter if things usually are not lined up neatly. 

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The environmentally friendly adapter offered healthy my Kwikset deadbolt. 


Molly Price tag/CNET

The August method is the most basic good lock set up out there, and the guidance in equally the app and printed, in-box directions are simple to abide by. No surprise there. If you might be involved about compatibility with your current deadbolt, August has a valuable website page listing suitable designs from most models. 

A far better good residence lock

Let’s get started with the apparent. This is the very first August lock with Wi-Fi built in. That indicates you no for a longer period will need to purchase the $eighty August Join module to control the remotely. While it is the very first August lock to include things like Wi-Fi, it just isn’t the only lock on the market place with the upgrade. Schlage and Kwikset also have Wi-Fi designs (equally also priced at $249), and it’s possible the way of the foreseeable future for most good locks.

Several good locks link by way of Bluetooth to your mobile phone, which lets you control the lock when you might be in close proximity to it. For control outside of that selection, in fact for control from wherever in the environment, you will need Wi-Fi. Previously, good lock makers have relied on a plug-in Wi-Fi adapter, like the August Join, to integrate Wi-Fi, but the good lock landscape has improved a ton since the very first August lock. Redesigns in Wi-Fi chip technological know-how manufactured it possible for companies like August to get the job done it into lock design additional effortlessly. Following that, it’s all about fine tuning lock and app overall performance to get the most battery existence possible out though still hanging onto that Wi-Fi sign effectively. 

As for compatibility, the August Wi-Fi Smart Lock performs with Alexa, Google and Siri for voice commands as effectively as routines and automation with your platform of selection. Assigning virtual keys to extra lock people stays totally free, a spotlight of August’s policies, and you can expect to also get plenty of options for placing notifications when anything happens, or isn’t going to, at your door. The August Wi-Fi Smart Lock will come with a DoorSense sensor, so you can know if someone leaves the door open up or closes it but leaves it unlocked. 

I have always been fond of August’s geofencing automobile-lock and -unlock capabilities, and that stays true for this design. When your cellular gadget is two hundred meters (656 toes) from your residence both leaving or returning, the lock will lock or unlock, if you have decided on to change on that perform. It demands that you preserve Wi-Fi enabled on your cellular gadget, and it labored effectively in my screening. That’s a significant assistance not acquiring to fiddle with keys or an app to open up the door. Car-lock can also be customized for time, so you can set the door to lock wherever from quickly soon after it’s unlocked all the way up to thirty minutes afterwards. 

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The August Wi-Fi Smart Lock runs on two CR123 batteries.


Chris Monroe/CNET

Wi-Fi just isn’t simple on batteries, and this is the very first August design with the CR123 battery. The team at August estimates the lock’s batteries should last three to 6 months. That’s a shorter prompt lifespan than the 6 months to a yr promised for the more mature, AA designs.

In accordance to August, the selection a single component in battery existence is the excellent of your Wi-Fi relationship. If the lock requirements to constantly reconnect to an access issue or wake up thanks to polling from the access issue, you can expect to see a a lot quicker drain. Battery existence will also be afflicted by how typically you lock and unlock your door, in particular more than Wi-Fi or details connections. 

If you don’t like the idea of retaining up with the batteries on a good lock, obviously this just isn’t the merchandise group for you. A two-pack of CR123s at your regional significant box store should expense all over $8 to $ten. The fantastic information is, as with preceding generation August Smart Locks, even if the batteries are lifeless you can still use a actual physical vital to unlock your door.

Observe: I did come across a reduced battery warning just three days into screening the August Wi-Fi Smart Lock. I knew my batteries shouldn’t be reduced so shortly. I was applying a beta edition of the August app and soon after chatting with the team, they found a bug in the battery prediction algorithm that led to a premature reduced-battery notification. August engineers resolved the bug on the again conclusion, and I failed to have any troubles soon after that. The August team confident me that consumers will not see this at the time the good lock is readily available for order.

When it will come to protection, August implements enough capabilities to make me truly feel fantastic about placing it on my door. It works by using two-component authentication to log into your account or create a new a single. It also works by using Bluetooth encryption, AES 128-little bit and TLS encryption for the cellular app. You can even disable your August app and all virtual keys at any time by way of a specific desktop web site if your mobile phone is lost or stolen. Voice unlocking by way of the a variety of virtual assistants demands a spoken PIN. 

August designs compared

Price tag

Sizing (in inches)

Wi-Fi

Z-Wave

Google

Alexa

HomeKit

August Smart Lock

$150

2.7 W x 4.8 H x 2.1 D 

Requires August Join ($199 for bundle)

No

Indeed

Indeed

No

August Smart Lock Pro

$280

three.4 W x 2.2 D

Requires August Join (included)

Indeed

Indeed

Indeed

Indeed

August Wi-Fi Smart Lock

$250

2.eighty three W x  1.81 D

Built-in

No

Indeed

Indeed

Indeed

Examine additional: How to use your good lock securelyWhat to know in advance of acquiring a good lock

A reviewer’s anecdote 

In advance of I examined this lock at my residence, I experienced a good keypad ($fifty at Walmart) on my front door. My spouse and I are recognised to operate or stroll the doggy with no our keys and telephones, so a keypad is a fantastic way to get in and out of the residence with no pockets entire of hardware and let loved ones and neighbors in with their very own codes when desired.

The day soon after I set up the August Wi-Fi Smart Lock, we walked the doggy all over the community with no our keys or telephones. It’s a  good, digital detox. In set up, I opted for the lock to relock soon after 5 minutes. When we bought again soon after fifty percent an hour, I recognized I experienced no way to open up the door since my mobile phone and keys have been within.

Luckily for us, we would left a aspect door unlocked, but I experienced a enjoyable 60 seconds of panic. If you might be switching more than from a keypad or some other keyless exterior method, you can expect to will need to retrain your mind. If you very own an Apple Watch ($399 at Apple), you can steer clear of this issue completely by setting up the August app, which will get the job done by way of geofencing just like your mobile phone. An add-on August keypad ($60)  is also an alternative. 

To purchase or not to purchase?

If you might be intrigued in a good lock, but want to preserve your exterior hardware conventional, this is the lock for you. It’s not inexpensive at $249, but preserve in mind that you will not likely have to invest any extra revenue on a Join module to get Wi-Fi remote access advantages. That addition of Wi-Fi tends to make August truly feel clean and updated. The reduction in size is fantastic, far too. 

Other locks with Wi-Fi built in expense just as substantially and need changing your total deadbolt. The August Wi-Fi Smart Lock turns substantially additional efficiently than preceding August designs, takes up significantly less area and is just as good and protected. If you appreciated preceding August good locks, you can expect to enjoy this a single. 

For individuals causes, we have resolved to award it our Editors’ Option for Best Smart Lock, dethroning the August Smart Lock Pro ($195 at Walmart)

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