Best Smart Security Products in 2017

Product Features / Benefits Price / ROI Buying Options
Nest Cam Outdoor image Nest Cam Outdoor

Weatherproof

24/7 1080p video

Two-way audio

$199

Best Buy

Amazon

Arlo Q image Arlo Q

In-app scheduling

1080p video

Free pivoting

$150

Best Buy

Amazon

Flex image Flex

Rechargeable battery

View timeline in app

Membership benefits

$179

Best Buy

Amazon

Piper NV image Piper NV

Tracks temperature and humidity

Two-way audio

180 degree view

$212

Amazon

Smart Security Wireless Camera image Smart Security Wireless Camera
by

Tracks temperature and humidity

Motion sensing

Membership benefits

$200

Best Buy

Amazon

Smart Lock image Smart Lock

Clamps over existing deadbolt

Provide virtual keys

$178-$183

Best Buy

Amazon

MyQ Garage image MyQ Garage

Make custom rules in app

Wireless garage control

Built-in Wi-Fi hub

$99

Home Depot

Smart Security Products Buyer's Guide

What is a smart security product?

The concept of a “smart home” has become widespread amongst people looking to have more control and flexibility in their lives. “Smart home” has come to represent the interconnectedness of the appliances, devices, and systems in a home, and the power and ease of control that comes with wireless connectivity. 

A smart home device makes managing a part of your home easy and accessible by connecting you wirelessly to the objects in your home that make your life run seamlessly. Smart home devices can help save energy and money while connecting your home to the internet and giving you access to many of its functions. In a way, smart home devices are turning our homes into pieces of tech themselves, accessed through a wireless connection and your voice, a web page, or mobile app.

Smart security products, including smart cameras, locks, and garage door openers, are devices meant to give you more control and information about your home. Like many smart devices, smart security products often boast mobile apps for wireless access and information about your home. This is the main difference between a normal home security device and a smart one – smart security means that you can control your home remotely. Your smart security devices perform intelligent and useful functions that typical products can’t, like automatically lock doors when you leave the house or detect for motion and sound.

Why buy a smart security product?

Smart security devices are all about peace of mind – their function is similar to traditional security setups, but with the huge additional benefit of mobile accessibility. Smart locks can be locked and unlocked from anywhere to allow friends and family members into your home, or to make sure you locked the door on your way out to work. Smart detectors can alert your phone when smoke, water, or any type of toxin is detected. With a smart camera, you can receive alerts right to your phone based on motion sensing, sound detection, facial recognition, and more.

A smart home security device is right for you if you want the peace of mind that your home security and safety is always right on your smartphone. Smart security devices are also great options for people who want to ditch traditional house keys: with full mobile access to your home security, you can observe who is in and around your house at any time, and lock or unlock your doors accordingly. Simply put, smart home security devices are bringing our homes into the wireless world and putting full control over your home’s security and safety in your hand. 

What smart security features are important to consider?

When shopping for smart home security products, you should pay attention to product compatibility, mobile app functionality, and battery backup features. 

Compatibility

The ability to connect to and work with smart speakers, hubs, and other connected devices is key for the functionality of your security system. If you use a smart hub, being able to access your security devices from one all-encompassing application makes home control easy. Support for automation tools like IFTTT can be particularly useful and make monitoring your security system hassle-free. 

Battery backup

A common issue with home security can be power outages. Traditionally, security systems are at the mercy of the grid, and cannot function properly without a wired electric connection. An important feature to consider in your smart security device purchase is the option of backup battery power. Having a backup battery attached to your smoke detector, for example, makes sure that even if you experience a power outage you are still able to monitor the air quality in your home.

Mobile app functionality

As with just about all smart home devices, smart security products use mobile apps to let you access their features and control them remotely. If you use a smart hub, you may be able to use the hub’s mobile app, but for many users, a smart security device will be a standalone home product. A comprehensive, powerful, and easy-to-use application that pairs with your smart monitor makes for a more enjoyable and streamlined security experience.

Technology features

Especially among smart cameras, there are several features that differentiate among products. Features like night vision, viewing range, motion detection, facial recognition, and video recording resolution all vary between devices, and depending on what you want out of your security system, it is important to pick a product with the right balance of useful features.

EnergySage Smart Security Products Reviews
  • Review: Nest Cam Outdoor by Nest

    Nest Cam Outdoor image

    The Nest Cam Outdoor is a great solution for outdoor security monitoring. It has a weatherproof camera module and a rugged power cord to prevent damage from heat, cold, rain, or any other type of extreme weather. The Nest Cam is constantly recording in 1080p high definition video, and can also record in high quality night vision. It also has two-way audio, meaning you can both send and receive audio using the camera.

    A great feature of the Nest Cam is the Sightline option within the mobile application. Sightline makes browsing through recorded video easy, by using dots and still images to pinpoint an event in the recording. It also lets you fast forward and rewind with ease. Nest’s Sightline feature with its intuitive mobile app and myriad other features makes this camera perfect for someone looking to expand their smart home into outdoor security.

    Buying Options: Best Buy | Amazon
  • Review: Arlo Q by Netgear

    Arlo Q image

    With its simple aesthetic, free pivoting capabilities, cloud storage plan, and many other features, the Netgear Arlo Q is a powerful and useful home monitoring tool. The Arlo Q has built-in motion and sound detection tools, which can be toggled easily in the mobile app. And with its 4-megapixel camera, you get high quality 1080p video and high-quality night mode viewing as well.

    One of the biggest reasons to choose Netgear’s Arlo Q as your next indoor smart security camera is its powerful scheduling feature. Using either the mobile app or webpage, you can set recording times during the week (you can have several active time slots each day) and pick the recording mode you want to use (video or snapshot), among other features. You can access your library of recordings in the intuitive mobile app, which allows for several viewing modes and browsing methods. The Arlo Q is a great camera for someone who wants a powerful recording device for inside their home.

    Buying Options: Best Buy | Amazon
  • Review: Flex by Canary

    Flex image

    The Canary Flex adds a unique element to the smart security game: portability. The Flex has a rechargeable battery that lasts for two months, easily allowing for you to monitor different rooms at your leisure. It is mounted on a magnetic cradle, allowing for versatile positioning both inside and out, with its weatherproof outer design. Its well-designed app utilizes a Timeline feature, allowing you to review the events captured on camera over the past 24 hours (30 days if you pay for Canary membership).

    A big draw of the Flex is Canary’s membership program. At $10 per month (or $100 per year), membership gives you access to 30 days of automatic cloud backup, warranty coverage, incident support, and more. If you don’t mind paying slightly more for the membership upgrade, the Canary Flex is an impressive and flexible smart camera option for any home.

    Buying Options: Best Buy | Amazon
  • Review: Piper NV by iControl Networks

    Piper NV image

    The Piper NV is a high quality security camera option with many robust features. In particular, its night vision camera mode is especially noteworthy, as is its 105-decibel built-in alarm. It has the unique capability among smart cameras of being able to remote control other smart home accessories through Z-Wave, a wireless technology that lets products with Z-Wave chips communicate via radio waves. This allows the Piper NV to act as a smart home hub for a variety of products that can all be controlled via setup in the partner mobile app. The Piper NV is a high quality smart security camera with unique smart hub capabilities, and will enhance any smart home setup.

    Buying Options: Amazon
  • Review: Smart Security Wireless Camera by LG

    Smart Security Wireless Camera image

    Smart security cameras are great options for monitoring, but if something goes wrong, what next? The LG Smart Security camera is a smart home camera with a twist – it comes with compatibility for ADT’s Canopy service. For an extra $19.99 a month you get all the benefits of ADT’s 24/7 monitoring service, which can contact you if your alarm goes off and then dispatch the local police if you don’t answer the phone. You don’t have to sign a contract with ADT, and only need to purchase the Canopy extra service when you want it.

    Like the Piper NV, the LG Smart Security Wireless Camera also can act as a Z-Wave automation hub, helping to connect your home wirelessly. With its features, the LG Smart Security Wireless Camera will make your home security setup effective and simple.

    Buying Options: Best Buy | Amazon
  • Review: Smart Lock by August

    Smart Lock image

    Smart locks connect your front door (or any door you choose) to your mobile device, and allow you to unlock and lock your house from your phone or tablet. If you have the August Smart Lock installed, you can simply pressing an on-screen button on your phone to unlock your door (as long as you are within Bluetooth range). Additionally, you can provide virtual “mobile keys” through your smartphone to let anyone you want unlock your door.

    The Smart Lock also stands out because of the ease of installation. Most connected locks involve a complete reinstallation of your deadbolt system, but not with the Smart Lock. It is designed to work with just about any existing deadbolt, so installation only involves a few screws, 15 minutes of time, and no internal changes to your locking mechanism. For homeowners who want to ditch traditional keys and control their door lock from their phone, the August Smart Lock is a practical and innovative solution.

    Buying Options: Best Buy | Amazon
  • Review: MyQ Garage by Chamberlain

    MyQ Garage image

    Chamberlain’s MyQ Garage Door Opener performs a relatively simple task – opening and closing your garage door – but give you connectivity to your home you’ll wonder how you lived without. Besides simply opening and closing your door from anywhere with an internet connection, the MyQ allows you to monitor the status of your garage door and set custom alerts based on the status of your garage. 

    Installation of the MyQ is straightforward, but like all smart devices that require extra installation steps, it may be smarter to call your electrician to make sure you get the installation right and don’t damage your new tech or existing electrical wiring. The Chamberlain MyQ Garage is a useful and easily integrated smart security product for customers who want to keep expanding their wireless home control.

    Buying Options: Home Depot
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