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

Jeffrey Cuebas

August smart locks are well known, and for good motive. They are easy to put in devoid of changing your deadbolt and smart more than enough to operate with smart household setups for Google Assistant, Apple HomeKit and Amazon Alexa. We gave a number of generations of August locks our Editors’ Decision Award for their easy set up, fantastic application and smart household integration. 

Like

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

You should not Like

  • However high-priced.
  • Shorter battery everyday living.

August is back with its new August Wi-Fi Good Lock. Slimmed down and additional smartened, it is the best a person but. It will come with built-in Wi-Fi, negating the want for the further August Connect ($58 at Amazon) plug-in modules. At $250, the new lock is dear but it is in the exact same rate assortment as the earlier era lock, and well truly worth your cash if you’re searching to get your front door on the web. I popped it on to the back of my door and lived with it for a 7 days. Here’s what you want to know. 

Scaled-down smart lock design

August’s distinctive retrofit design stays accurate to its roots in this fourth-era model. What is actually remarkably various is the sizing. The August Wi-Fi Good Lock is 45% lesser than its predecessors, measuring two.eighty three inches in diameter and just one.eighty one inches in depth. Though there is under no circumstances been anything at all specially unattractive about the lock, putting a large chunk of metal on the inside of your door isn’t really an inside designer’s aspiration. 


Chris Monroe/CNET

Almost all smart locks have to have this aesthetic obstruction, relying on a huge battery and thumb latch housings mounted on the inside facet of your door. I was delighted with the small scale of this August model. It is really so much much less distracting, partly because I’m a little bit extra accustomed to observing smart locks on doorways by now, but also because it is actually noticeably lesser. A smart household need to mix in, in my viewpoint, and August’s design is much improved in that regard. 

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The August Wi-Fi Good Lock (right) is 45% lesser than the August Good Lock Professional (left). 


Molly Cost/CNET

The design crew, which involves renowned designer Yves Béhar, stayed accurate to the unique design, when creating small updates. You’ll detect a a bit various ridge pattern close to the sides of the lock, created to improve grip. I are unable to discern a large distinction, but I’m not bothered by it, either. Alongside that ridge is a cleverly positioned August logo to support you convey to no matter if your door is locked or not. On the inside of, the August Wi-Fi Good Lock is driven by two CR123 batteries. I’ll talk extra about those people later on.

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The up-to-date facet texture of the lock is created to offer far better grip. 


Molly Cost/CNET

Putting in the August Wi-Fi Good Lock

As normally, setting up an August smart lock is a breeze if you have ten minutes and a screwdriver. You’ll also want to download the August application obtainable on iOS or Android, as there is a handy tutorial with animations to wander you via the method. Due to the fact it is retrofit, you would not want to much at all to your actual physical deadbolt, further than taking away the thumb latch on the inside facet of the door. Subsequent, you can in good shape on the August plate and appropriate adapter for your lock, and clip on the Wi-Fi Good Lock with its two locking wings. 

I’ll acquire a 2nd listed here to tackle my regular smart lock guidelines. 

  1. Be positive your door closes well in advance of you commence this method. Good locks have hassle calibrating and completely locking doorways that want an further shove to close wholly. 
  2. Make positive the deadbolt moves freely and there isn’t really any friction in the lock’s mechanics. 
  3. Make positive you have a good Wi-Fi relationship. This affects not only the set up, but the lock’s each day functionality, also.
  4. Keep your screws organized. Which screw length goes in which can actually make a difference on a smart lock. 

It is really significant to do your best to hold the cam bar (see beneath) centered in the August back plate when you secure the screws. If you come across that it is also far up or down, loosen and readjust the screws when holding a little bit of strain on the plate to hold it in location. It is really tricky to in good shape the important adapter if things usually are not lined up neatly. 

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The eco-friendly adapter delivered in good shape my Kwikset deadbolt. 


Molly Cost/CNET

The August method is the easiest smart lock set up out there, and the steering in each the application and printed, in-box recommendations are easy to comply with. No surprise there. If you’re worried about compatibility with your existing deadbolt, August has a handy website page listing appropriate styles from most makes. 

A far better smart household lock

Let’s begin with the noticeable. This is the initial August lock with Wi-Fi built in. That suggests you no extended want to purchase the $80 August Connect module to handle the remotely. Though it is the initial August lock to incorporate Wi-Fi, it isn’t really the only lock on the sector with the enhance. Schlage and Kwikset also have Wi-Fi styles (each also priced at $249), and it is probable the way of the potential for most smart locks.

Numerous smart locks join by means of Bluetooth to your phone, which allows you handle the lock when you’re in close proximity to it. For handle outside of that assortment, in truth for handle from any where in the entire world, you want Wi-Fi. Earlier, smart lock makers have relied on a plug-in Wi-Fi adapter, like the August Connect, to combine Wi-Fi, but the smart lock landscape has adjusted a large amount since the initial August lock. Redesigns in Wi-Fi chip know-how created it probable for corporations like August to operate it into lock design extra very easily. Following that, it is all about fine tuning lock and application functionality to get the most battery everyday living probable out when however hanging on to that Wi-Fi signal well. 

As for compatibility, the August Wi-Fi Good Lock will work with Alexa, Google and Siri for voice instructions as well as routines and automation with your platform of option. Assigning virtual keys to supplemental lock buyers remains absolutely free, a emphasize of August’s guidelines, and you can also get loads of solutions for location notifications when some thing comes about, or does not, at your door. The August Wi-Fi Good Lock will come with a DoorSense sensor, so you can know if somebody leaves the door open or closes it but leaves it unlocked. 

I’ve normally been fond of August’s geofencing auto-lock and -unlock abilities, and that remains accurate for this model. When your mobile gadget is 200 meters (656 ft) from your household either leaving or returning, the lock will lock or unlock, if you’ve got picked to switch on that functionality. It needs that you hold Wi-Fi enabled on your mobile gadget, and it worked well in my screening. That is a large support not obtaining to fiddle with keys or an application to open the door. Vehicle-lock can also be custom made for time, so you can established the door to lock any where from promptly just after it is unlocked all the way up to thirty minutes later on. 

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


Chris Monroe/CNET

Wi-Fi isn’t really easy on batteries, and this is the initial August model with the CR123 battery. The crew at August estimates the lock’s batteries need to previous three to six months. That is a shorter proposed lifespan than the six months to a 12 months promised for the more mature, AA styles.

In accordance to August, the range a person element in battery everyday living is the high quality of your Wi-Fi relationship. If the lock requires to constantly reconnect to an access stage or wake up owing to polling from the access stage, you can see a more rapidly drain. Battery everyday living will also be impacted by how frequently you lock and unlock your door, specially more than Wi-Fi or information connections. 

If you do not like the concept of preserving up with the batteries on a smart lock, naturally this isn’t really the item category for you. A two-pack of CR123s at your nearby large box retail store need to charge close to $8 to $ten. The good news is, as with earlier era August Good Locks, even if the batteries are dead you can however use a actual physical vital to unlock your door.

Observe: I did face a reduced battery warning just three times into screening the August Wi-Fi Good Lock. I knew my batteries shouldn’t be reduced so quickly. I was utilizing a beta edition of the August application and just after talking with the crew, they found a bug in the battery prediction algorithm that led to a premature reduced-battery notification. August engineers solved the bug on the back finish, and I failed to have any difficulties just after that. The August crew certain me that clients will not see this at the time the smart lock is obtainable for buy.

When it will come to stability, August implements more than enough attributes to make me feel good about putting it on my door. It makes use of two-element authentication to log into your account or produce a new a person. It also makes use of Bluetooth encryption, AES 128-little bit and TLS encryption for the mobile application. You can even disable your August application and all virtual keys at any time by means of a particular desktop site if your phone is misplaced or stolen. Voice unlocking by means of the different virtual assistants needs a spoken PIN. 

August styles in comparison

Cost

Size (in inches)

Wi-Fi

Z-Wave

Google

Alexa

HomeKit

August Good Lock

$a hundred and fifty

two.7 W x four.8 H x two.one D 

Needs August Connect ($199 for bundle)

No

Yes

Yes

No

August Good Lock Professional

$280

three.four W x two.two D

Needs August Connect (incorporated)

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

August Wi-Fi Good Lock

$250

two.eighty three W x  one.eighty one D

Built-in

No

Yes

Yes

Yes

Read extra: How to use your smart lock safely and securelyWhat to know in advance of obtaining a smart lock

A reviewer’s anecdote 

Before I tested this lock at my house, I had a smart keypad ($50 at Walmart) on my front door. My spouse and I are identified to operate or wander the canine devoid of our keys and phones, so a keypad is a fantastic way to get in and out of the house devoid of pockets entire of hardware and let family members and neighbors in with their very own codes when essential.

The day just after I established up the August Wi-Fi Good Lock, we walked the canine close to the neighborhood devoid of our keys or phones. It is really a  good, digital detox. In set up, I opted for the lock to relock just after five minutes. When we received back just after fifty percent an hour, I realized I had no way to open the door because my phone and keys had been inside of.

The good thing is, we might left a facet door unlocked, but I had a pleasurable sixty seconds of panic. If you’re switching more than from a keypad or some other keyless exterior method, you can want to retrain your mind. If you very own an Apple Look at ($399 at Apple), you can stay away from this difficulty altogether by setting up the August application, which will operate by means of geofencing just like your phone. An include-on August keypad ($sixty)  is also an solution. 

To purchase or not to purchase?

If you’re interested in a smart lock, but want to hold your exterior hardware classic, this is the lock for you. It is really not low-cost at $249, but hold in brain that you would not have to spend any further cash on a Connect module to get Wi-Fi remote access added benefits. That addition of Wi-Fi will make August feel clean and up-to-date. The reduction in sizing is fantastic, also. 

Other locks with Wi-Fi built in charge just as much and have to have changing your full deadbolt. The August Wi-Fi Good Lock turns much extra easily than earlier August styles, can take up much less place and is just as smart and secure. If you favored earlier August smart locks, you can like this a person. 

For those people explanations, we’ve resolved to award it our Editors’ Decision for Ideal Good Lock, dethroning the August Good Lock Professional ($195 at Walmart)

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