Nexia Home Security Bundle review: The future of iPhone home automation is now
Nexia Home Intelligences lets you control entry to your home, and monitor it remotely from your iPhone, from anywhere
The Nexia Home Intelligence system isn't just a smart way to manage your home security but it's literally the future of home automation, in your hand, today. It lets you control your house locks, your lights, your security cameras, from wherever you are, right from your iPhone, iPod touch, iPad or the web, from anywhere you have an internet connection.
Formerly known as Schlage Link, now known as Nexia, they've been in the home automation business for years and their focus and experience really shows. I tested out the Nexia Home Security Bundle, which is a great way to get started with the Nexia system. The Nexus Home Security Bundle includes the following products:
The Nexia Bridge, which is the command center, and the brain that connects all the other home intelligence components together.
Home Dimmer Module, which lets you control any plug-in light in your home remotely, over the internet.
Home Keypad Lever, which lets you secure your home with a deadbolt and one or multiple programmable keycodes, as well as open or lock your door remotely.
Home Indoor Camera, which lets you monitor the inside of your home, or watch your property out a window, right from your iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad.
Installation was simple and straight forward. If you're comfortable changing your front door lock, you'll be comfortable installing the Keypad Lever. Likewise, if you can install a home router, you can install the Nexia Bridge. (If not, buy a handy, savvy friend a pizza and beer and they'll help you get it done in no time.)
Once the hardware is in place, you'll need setup an account with Nexia (more on that later) and download the App Store app to your iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad. Once that's done, your home security is just a button tap away.
If the idea of controlling access to your home via a mobile device scares you, don't worry. Nexia lets you create a passcode for the app so if you lose your iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad you don't have to worry about random people suddenly popping into your door. (Which is more than can be said about losing tradition keys.)
If you've never experienced the power of home automation before, there are a lot of cool things that you can do with it.
- If you forget to feed the cat or dog? You can call a neighbor and just unlock the door for them remotely. (And lock it again when they leave!)
- Don't want to give your in-laws a key to your house? Just make them their very own passcode that doesn't work early in the morning, late at night, or any other time surprise guests would be unwelcome. (You can even make one-time or limited duration access codes!)
- Hate coming home to a dark house? Have your lights turn on whenever you open the door. (Or log in from your iPhone and turn them on any time!)
- Worried about your teenagers throwing a party when you're away from home? Keep an eye on things remotely with the Security Cameras. (And rush home if needed!)
The great thing about Nexia is that it's an expandable system. If you want another Dimmer Module, just buy it and add it right in. Want another deadbolt for the garage door? Same thing. It really does "just work".
Now there is one catch -- you do need a Nexia subscription for all the really cool stuff to work. It's not like an alarm company where you're paying for monitoring, with Nexia you're paying for the system itself to work. For example, neither the multiple keycodes nor the remote video cameras will work unless you're subscribed to Nexia's service. (It would be nice if you could run the cameras over your own home network if you so chose.)
At $8.99 a month, the Nexia service isn't expensive, however, and it's well worth the functionality you get. There are no hidden fees and cancellation is an easy, painless process. There are no contracts, no risks, and Nexia offers a one month trial subscription to make sure you like the service before you start paying for it. That's excellent.
Nexia doesn't do everything yet -- you can't control all aspects of your home. There is a thermostat component, for example, so you can set your temperature remotely, but it would be great to support everything from the living room to the kitchen to the garden. One day, perhaps?
- Easy to install
- Provides powerful remote access
- Expandable to suit your needs
- Reasonably priced
- Can't be run on your own network
- Needs more/different types of components
The bottom line
Nexia Home Intelligences lets you control entry to your home, and monitor it remotely from your iPhone, iPod touch or iPad, from anywhere. It's a great way to get started with home automation, and the Security Bundle is a great way to get started with Nexia. If you've always dreamed about controlling your house from your iPhone, stop dreaming -- it's a reality!