Keys have been around for thousands of years. We all have them, we all know basically how they work and that by and large they do a pretty good job. Over the years locking mechanisms have evolved to become ever more complicated in the face of our increased desire to secure our homes and valuables and the criminal fraternity’s equivalent desire to relieve us of them.
Back to the Future
Like any established technology there are plenty of companies out there willing to take on a tried and tested formula and show us how the future of physical security should look. And that future is – you guessed it – “smart”. But by “smart” we mean “intuitive”. We’re not just talking about cameras, motion sensors, alarms and key cards – the security industry is moving much quicker than that. We are looking at a not-too-distant future where your home will be protected by electronic door locking mechanisms that will not only recognize you as you approach the door but open it for you, turn on the TV, close the blinds and turn up the thermostat without the need to put down your shopping and search for a tedious bunch of metal keys. This is especially useful if you’re disabled or have limited mobility but does it solve all our home security concerns?
How smart are we talking?
Some of the best known names in home security have been making advances in smart protection for some time and many smart locks are now readily available on the open market, or soon will be. Prices are also coming down. It’s only taken the prevalence of the Internet of Things, multiple device connectivity and smartphones for it all to come together into one impressive array of keyless majesty. Most smart locks operate via a Bluetooth dongle, a smartphone app or a wearable device. You can program them for different users and at different times of day. In some cases the locks have integrated cameras so you can see who’s at the door and let them in from wherever you are (for example, giving access to the plumber while you’re still at work).
Should I throw away my house keys now?
Of course like any other keyless technology smart locks are not fool proof. They need batteries to run so coming home to a dead door lock is a real possibility. Your home insurer might not accept it. And if you lose a master key or backup key a replacement will cost a fortune. Your phone battery might be dead or the app might stop working just at the wrong moment. There’s also the question of built-in obsolescence – how will you know that the smart lock you install today will still be compatible with the smartphone you buy in a year’s time? And like anything that uses the internet, smart locks are hackable.
Burglars are more deterred by cameras and security systems than locks and smart locks don’t make doors any less vulnerable to being kicked in. We don’t believe the humble house key is going to be made obsolete just yet.
Want to speak about your options? Give our locksmith business a call right now.