How useful is the Smart Keyless Lock

What is a Smart Lock? The most important questions about electronic door locks

This attachment contains a small motor that turns the key in the lock and thus unlocks and locks the lock. Power is often supplied by conventional (rechargeable) batteries.
However, the motor in the Smart Lock only turns when it is instructed to do so. To do this, the Smart Lock must be connected to the associated app on the smartphone and set up. This mostly works via Bluetooth (but there are also other transmission standards).

This process may initially seem unfamiliar to you at the door of your house or apartment. However, you probably also lock or unlock your car door with a remote control. So you will quickly get used to this new comfort.

“Key” factor: Protecting your own home

The topic of smart homes in general and smart locks in particular arouses suspicion and doubts, as it is about access to our home. Ever since man settled down, he has constantly tried to improve his home. The key, which made it possible to protect one's own four walls accordingly, became correspondingly important.

How important the role of the key is can also be seen from the fact that until recently there were actually no alternatives to it. Hardly any concept has remained almost unchanged for such a long time in the past. Only the most modern encryption methods (with the software behind it), as used in digital door locks, are now able to replace the traditional key by offering at least the same level of security.

Is a Smart Lock Safe?

How can unlocking and locking with a Smart Lock really be safe? This process involves the connection between the small motor that turns the cylinder and the smartphone that gives the command via the app.

The attachment on the cylinder itself does not pose a security risk, because most devices are mounted on the inside of the door and are not visible from the outside. A smart door is therefore usually indistinguishable from a conventional door. The decisive factor lies in the connection, i.e. the communication between the smartphone and the attachment on the locking cylinder.

We perceive keys to be secure because they are individually adapted to a lock. With a digital lock, however, your smartphone is the key. But how can you be sure that other smartphones cannot operate the Smart Lock without your knowledge? This is where the encryption concept comes into play: As the owner of a Smart Lock, you define access to your electronic door lock by connecting your smartphone to the Smart Lock. The communication between the two is then encrypted in such a way that a third-party smartphone cannot influence it. Nor would your Smart Lock react to “requests” from someone else's smartphone. In order to guarantee this level of security, you need really good software with a highly secure encryption concept. The Smart Lock from Nuki works, for example, via so-called end-to-end encryption, which is also used in online banking.

What makes a Smart Lock smart?

A digital door lock is just as secure as a conventional door lock, but offers you many more options! In addition, with a Smart Lock you can easily solve well-known problems in everyday life by digitizing processes. With a Smart Lock, if you lose it, you never have to change the lock and have a replacement key made or hide physical keys under the doormat. Instead, you simply assign access authorizations via the app, i.e. digital keys to family members, friends, service providers, etc. With the appropriate extension, you can also control your Smart Lock when you are on the move.

This is incredibly useful in many everyday situations: if you rent out a holiday apartment, for example, you save yourself the hassle of handing over keys thanks to Smart Lock technology: Just conveniently assign secure access authorizations that are limited to the booking period to your Airbnb guests. But digital door locks also make everyday life easier in the care sector - for the person in need of care themselves and for the caregiver.

Smart Lock is not just Smart Lock! You should pay attention to this

As we have already seen, the issue of security is central: You should therefore give preference to manufacturers who have been certified by renowned test institutes such as AV-Test or Avira. The software's encryption concept is difficult for laypeople to understand, but it is still important that manufacturers disclose their encryption concept.
Nuki uses a so-called end-to-end encryption concept right from the start. In addition, in May 2019, Nuki was certified for the second time by AV-Test as a “secure smart home product”.

Smart locks are designed to make everyday processes much easier. But what use is that if the installation process itself becomes a hurdle. The Smart Lock from Nuki was therefore designed in such a way that you can mount it yourself on the existing cylinder on the inside of the door without screwing or drilling. No prior technical knowledge is required for the installation and there are no changes or residues on the door - also ideal for rental apartments.

A good Smart Lock should also work for people who don't like to use their smartphone or who don't have one at all: The Nuki Smart Lock has well thought-out extensions for this case, such as the keypad (the connected Smart Lock can be accessed via Code entry) or the Fob, a Bluetooth remote control that controls the door very easily at the push of a button.