Tuesday, November 28, 2023
HomeTechnologySimpliSafe House Safety Overview: Nonetheless a High DIY Selection

SimpliSafe House Safety Overview: Nonetheless a High DIY Selection




SimpliSafe House Safety


  • Simple to put in and function

  • Nice customizability

Don’t love

  • Restricted sensible dwelling integrations

Product particulars

  • Set up

    DIY set up

  • Contract Required


  • Voice Assistant

    Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant

  • Further Charges

    24/7 skilled monitoring payment, storage payment

  • Service Bundles


Is SimpliSafe a great purchase in 2023?

The dwelling safety class continues to be a aggressive mixture of professionally put in providers and DIY choices. Amongst them, SimpliSafe takes a hybrid method with units which are simple to arrange and set up your self mixed with the choice of 24/7 skilled monitoring. It is nonetheless a comparatively good worth, notably compared with established names like Vivint and ADT, which may price a whole lot and even 1000’s extra for a full-home setup.

SimpliSafe’s choices have not modified a lot because the final time we examined the system within the fall of 2021. You will discover the identical mixture of sensors, cameras and different tools as you construct out your system, and for probably the most half, costs have held regular lately. That mentioned, the price of 24/7 monitoring, which was once accessible for $18 a month after we first examined it, has risen to $30 a month (you too can monitor issues your self with limitless storage for motion-activated digicam clips for $10 a month). In the meantime, the price of non-compulsory skilled set up (which SimpliSafe says 97% of shoppers skip) has risen from $99 to $125. 

SimpliSafe affords three monitoring plans for 2023. Probably the most complete one is a full-featured interactive plan with 24/7 dwell monitoring and different options like a mobile backup in your system that prices about $30 per 30 days. 

SimpliSafe/Screenshot by CNET

There’s additionally a sensible wi-fi indoor digicam that guarantees to permit SimpliSafe’s monitoring facilities to speak with anybody they see on digicam through two-way speak, and has a built-in movement sensor. The digicam is $140, which is $40 greater than the usual wired digicam. 

Present opponents, together with Ring, Wyze, Abode, Arlo and others, have labored to muscle their method into the DIY safety market lately, so it is value purchasing round to seek out the greatest safety digicam by itself. Nonetheless, as one of the well-rounded methods in the marketplace — and one that does not require you to name a salesman to listen to what it will price to arrange — SimpliSafe is a beautiful and easy choice for dwelling safety buyers in 2023. 

Our full overview, initially revealed in September 2021 and up to date in November 2023 to replicate current pricing modifications, continues beneath.



SimpliSafe House Safety has fairly a monitor file. It gained a CNET Editors’ Selection Award again in 2014 after exploding onto the still-burgeoning DIY dwelling safety scene. Then in 2018, when the third-gen system launched, it impressed us once more — and it is remained one in every of our high DIY dwelling safety picks ever since (solely Amazon’s Ring Alarm Professional system has bested its rating).

SimpliSafe’s dwelling safety packages begin at $245, technically talking, however you possibly can virtually all the time discover them at steep reductions on the corporate’s web site. On the time of immediately’s replace to this overview, as an example, the essential package deal solely prices $196 and probably the most beneficiant one (which incorporates two outside safety cameras along with the bottom station, two movement detectors and 4 entry sensors) prices $560. I will do a extra thorough breakdown of the costs in contrast with opponents later within the overview, however suffice it to say, it is a stable deal.

The system is simply as succesful as earlier than, too. It really works reliably, the units on provide cowl all the things you’d want, and you may bag 24/7 skilled monitoring alongside your native alarm for $30 a month. That is a steep enhance from earlier monitoring plans, which solely price $18 a month, however SimpliSafe lessens the sting by bundling in enticing options like a mobile backup in your system at no extra price.

Briefly, SimpliSafe remains to be implausible — even when it isn’t fairly as dominant a price because it as soon as was.

Getting began

We have examined SimpliSafe quite a few instances, however our newest take a look at, in August and September of 2021, was of a package deal that totaled about $827 — or $630 if I opted for a free two-week trial of the 24/7 skilled monitoring service. Sure, the corporate incentivizes signing up for a month-to-month subscription.

A part of SimpliSafe House Safety’s attraction is that you may additionally construct your personal customized system with the precise sensors that make sense in your residing house. To take action, you will begin with the obligatory base station and keypad, which collectively now price $80, down from $185, then add extra units a la carte. Here is the total menu, plus what I paid:


The $169 video doorbell is bought individually out of your safety package deal, oddly sufficient — which introduced my whole, with the promotion, to $630.

Screenshot by David Priest/CNET

Housebreaking sensors

  • Entry sensor: $15
  • Movement sensor: $30
  • Wi-fi Outside Digital camera: $190
  • Wi-fi Indoor Digital camera: $140
  • Wired Indoor Digital camera: $99
  • SimpliSafe Video Doorbell Professional: $169
  • Glass break sensor: $35
  • Panic button: $20

Hazard sensors

  • Smoke and Carbon monoxide sensor: $60
  • Smoke Detector: $35
  • Temperature Sensor: $30
  • Water Sensor: $20


  • Keypad: $70
  • Key fob: $25
  • Siren: $60
  • Yard signal: $4

I used three entry sensors, one movement sensor, one in every of every digicam, together with a glass break sensor, leak detector (now known as a water sensor), freeze detector (now known as a temperature sensor), panic button and key fob. The one greatest consider my whole value was the three cameras — with out them, my whole with a subscription would’ve ended up at $272 (extra on the cameras later).

On the subject of the sensors, SimpliSafe’s pricing is properly positioned: It is not as low-cost as Wyze’s Monitoring system, the place movement and leak sensors are each $9 every, and entry sensors are $24 for 3. But it surely’s persistently cheaper than, say, Abode’s comparable units (Abode’s entry sensors, for instance, are $40 every, although you may get them at a major low cost by catching a sale or getting a six-pack).

Regardless that SimpliSafe’s units price a bit greater than Wyze’s business low, they really feel way more stable, and so they look higher, too. In my time with SimpliSafe, all of the sensors carried out as anticipated.

As soon as your system arrives, it is as much as you to put in it your self. SimpliSafe made this actually, very easy. Every sensor comes with a preapplied sticky tab on its removable backs. Simply peel and stick — no wiring vital. If you have to transfer one thing, the sensors detach from their backings, exposing the sticky tabs for straightforward elimination that will not harm your partitions. The one factor you will have to plug in is the bottom station.

That mentioned, SimpliSafe does provide skilled setup assist for $125 if you happen to want it, but in addition says 97% of its prospects set their methods up themselves.

Along with your sensors in place, you will put the keypad into pairing mode, then pair all the things up by urgent a button on every sensor, then giving it a reputation on the keypad. From there, you can also make any ultimate tweaks to the system settings by logging in to SimpliSafe’s net portal, or through the use of the SimpliSafe app. The entire course of took me lower than an hour; it isn’t fairly so simple as with Abode (the place all of the units got here already paired), however it’s about as painless as self-installs can get.

SimpliSafe expenses $30 a month for the interactive plan, which incorporates 24/7 skilled monitoring alongside different options just like the mobile backup, alarm texts and video alarm verification. The opposite choice is to observe your system your self with a $10 month-to-month plan that features limitless storage of motion-activated digicam clips for as much as 5 cameras. Each are smart sufficient, however it’s a disgrace that SimpliSafe eradicated the middle-ground plan that provided 24/7 monitoring for $18 a month.

The SimpliSafe base station quarterbacks all your sensors and homes a siren in addition to Wi-Fi and mobile connections to the corporate’s monitoring service.

Chris Monroe/CNET

The way it works

The SimpliSafe House Safety system’s sensors hold in fixed contact with the bottom station, which relays all the things to your telephone (or, in an emergency, to authorities) through Wi-Fi. The bottom station additionally features a 24-hour battery backup and a fee-free mobile connection to the corporate’s monitoring service — if the ability or the Wi-Fi ever goes out, it will nonetheless have the ability to name for assist. This cell backup is one in every of SimpliSafe’s standout options, and it is one of many huge methods the service differentiates itself from extra inexpensive options like Wyze and Ring Alarm, which do not provide that further security measure (though the newer and costlier Ring Alarm Professional does).

SimpliSafe’s method additionally separates probably the most delicate system elements from the keypad, the half that beeps and asks for a PIN if the alarm is ever tripped. In lots of instances, that beeping keypad might be the very first thing that an intruder would attempt to smash to be able to shut down the system, however doing so would not make a distinction.

You’ll be able to arm and disarm the system utilizing the keychain fob accent.

Chris Monroe/CNET

The system affords three modes throughout use: Off, which is fairly self-explanatory; Away, which arms the sensors; and House, which leaves some sensors on however disarms issues like movement detectors so you possibly can transfer round inside with out setting something off. By default, SimpliSafe provides you 30 seconds to disarm the system upon entry (you possibly can customise that size of time within the app).

To disarm the system, press the off button on the important thing fob or within the app, or enter your code utilizing the keypad. You’ll be able to assign particular codes to particular customers or company, and you too can set a duress code for conditions the place somebody is forcing you to disarm the system in opposition to your will. Punch it into the keypad, and it’ll seem as if the alarm is canceled and the system disarmed, however SimpliSafe will nonetheless ship within the authorities.

In the event you’re paying $30 a month for the total system controls, you’ll arm and disarm the system from the SimpliSafe app, or arm it in your method out the door with a fast voice command to Alexa or Google.

If the alarm is ever tripped, your telephone will ring and a SimpliSafe consultant will ask if all the things’s OK. They will additionally ask in your secure phrase — a secret password of your alternative that acts like an additional vocal PIN for the system. Fail to offer it, and so they’ll nonetheless ship the authorities, it doesn’t matter what else you say. Just like the duress code, it is a good, further layer of safety.

SimpliSafe additionally helps you to specify which sensors will set off an entry delay and which of them will set off an instantaneous alarm. You will in all probability need an opportunity to disarm the system if you happen to journey a contact sensor or a movement detector, as an example, whereas a glass break sensor alert may advantage an instantaneous alarm with no delay (once more, you possibly can personalize this, in case you are liable to dropping plates or have children round the home).

You can too set secret alerts that may ship you a SMS, e-mail or app notification with out tripping the alarm in any respect. Cover a contact sensor on the within of your liquor cupboard, as an example, and you will get an alert in case your teenager ever tries to sneak a sip.

Our take a look at canine Dolly wasn’t capable of set off the SimpliSafe movement detector. It does an incredible job of distinguishing between folks and pets.

Chris Monroe/CNET

You are on, cameras!

SimpliSafe’s system has been amongst our favourite dwelling safety methods for quite a few years — however that does not imply it would not have room to develop. Positive, the sensors — these essential bits of connective tissue for any good dwelling safety system — provide stable worth for the value, however the cameras aren’t fairly as unmitigated a hit.

Lately $99 indoor cameras and $169 video doorbells are pretty commonplace units, even whenever you’re shopping for them stand-alone from high manufacturers like Google Nest, Amazon Ring or Arlo — and SimpliSafe’s choices merely do not stand as much as these high units.

The video doorbell affords all of the fundamentals you’d count on, like two-way speak, movement alerts, night time imaginative and prescient, dwell feed monitoring and storage (with digicam plans beginning at $10 per 30 days). However its wide-angle lens means you do not get an incredible view of your precise doorstep, the place packages are normally left. What’s extra, the doorbell cannot be arrange wirelessly — which is an actual bummer, since many purchasers searching for DIY dwelling safety kits will not have doorbell wiring, or will not be allowed by their landlord to fiddle with it.


SimpliSafe’s new outside digicam is a stable addition to its safety lineup.

Chris Monroe/CNET

The indoor digicam, which once more comes with all of the fundamentals, like a 120-degree area of view, movement detection and night time imaginative and prescient, is a bit more spectacular. It features a privateness shutter, like Arlo’s indoor digicam, and individual alerts utilizing warmth sensing.

The outside digicam prices $190, however you will get lots out of it: dwell monitoring, two-way speak, 8x digital zoom, night time imaginative and prescient and a built-in siren. The outside digicam was a breeze to put in and use, and I cherished that it got here with a built-in highlight. The one disappointment there was that I could not manually management the sunshine, setting instances for it to activate or off, or just switching it on once I needed.

For $190, although, the outside mild/digicam is a stable deal.

System efficiency

SimpliSafe’s method to DIY safety is interesting, however it’s all for nothing if the sensors do not work reliably effectively. Again in 2018, we put the sensors by way of a weeklong battery of exams, and the outcomes have been stable.

The open/closed contact sensors have been probably the most dependable, triggering the alarm each time they have been speculated to. The movement detector carried out effectively, too. It was capable of distinguish between folks and small pets simply superb, and it caught our reviewer strolling by way of the room about 95 % of the time. The different 5%: a take a look at the place one thing appeared to hiccup and it was a couple of minutes earlier than any movement was sensed. That wasn’t an incredible outcome, however it was the one true misfire throughout a number of days of testing.

The leak detector (water sensor) was one other standout, firing off an alert as quickly because it entered water in every of my exams. The one downside to that stage of sensitivity — it additionally went off at one level when somebody picked it up and moved it. That is not an enormous deal although, particularly for one thing you are going to toss beneath your sink and neglect about.

Subsequent up, the freeze detector (temperature sensor). By default, it’ll ship an alert if it ever senses ambient temperatures beneath 41 F or above 95 F, however you possibly can set these thresholds to no matter factors you want. It labored as anticipated over the long term, however it solely takes readings and sends them to the bottom station as soon as per hour. That is a contact extra sluggish than you need for particularly delicate temperature monitoring, however for most individuals, it will do the job you want it to do.

The ultimate barrage of exams was aimed on the glass break sensor. Just like the identify suggests, it will sound the alarm if it ever hears a window break — and SimpliSafe claims that its calibrations are exact sufficient to tell apart between a damaged window and a damaged plate. Translation: It was time to interrupt some stuff!

We began by making an attempt to trick the sensor into sounding a false alarm. We tried dropping a light-weight bulb, loudly clinking glassware collectively, enjoying glass-breaking sound results at full quantity and even tossing keys in opposition to the wall, as one follower advised on Twitter. Nothing labored — the glass-break sensor wasn’t fooled.

That each one made for a promising begin, however then we tried breaking a small pane of precise glass. (We stole it from an image body — apologies to the CNET Sensible House staging crew!) To our shock, that did not set the glass break sensor off, both. Possibly it thought it was a plate?

The workforce at SimpliSafe advised we attempt dialing the sensitivity up — turns on the market’s a slide change on the again of the sensor with three settings. We set it to “excessive” and tried once more, this time with an precise window bought at a junk retailer. That did the trick — throughout a number of exams, the glass break sensor caught us smashing the window each time.

Ultimately, we might name {that a} profitable outcome, however we might undoubtedly advocate beginning along with your glass break sensor set to “excessive” and dialing down from there as wanted. As for us, the glass break sensor may be one that we would be comfy skipping.

Sensible safety, sure; sensible dwelling platform, no

One thing else value occupied with as you are looking for a house safety system is whether or not you are all in favour of one thing that may tie in with a bigger dwelling automation platform. In that case, SimpliSafe may not be your best choice. 

Positive, the SimpliSafe system works with Alexa and Google Assistant, and it affords an integration with Nest that’ll allow you to monitor your thermostat from the SimpliSafe app and tether its dwelling and away modes as to whether or not your system is armed. That is ok for many, however if you wish to add issues like sensible bulbs and sensible switches to your setup, you will have to regulate them individually out of your safety system. As talked about already, you are additionally caught with SimpliSafe’s cameras — and there are loads of cameras that we like higher.

In the meantime, the SimpliSafe Sensible Lock is an honest and comparatively cheap addition to the system, however it’s kind of extra restricted in options than some stand-alone sensible lock opponents.

The world of sensible dwelling integration feels notably underdeveloped since Amazon shook up the sensible dwelling safety business in late 2021 with its best-in-class Ring Alarm Professional — which not solely provided safety measures to rival SimpliSafe’s, but in addition loads of stunning and genuinely helpful integrations with issues like cameras, lights, video doorbells, Alexa and Wi-Fi 6. 


The outdated SimpliSafe system in its awkward teenage years.


Different considerations

With an old-school, wired safety system, you’d need to dwell with the fear that somebody might deactivate your system by reducing a wire. Wi-fi methods like SimpliSafe eradicate that problem — however what if somebody manages to dam the system’s wi-fi transmissions? Would not which have the identical impact? As commenter Joe Duarte factors out, safety researchers haven’t any scarcity of questions like these about SimpliSafe and different methods prefer it.

We regarded into jamming again in 2015, and examined SimpliSafe’s protections in opposition to it. The corporate says that it makes use of a proprietary antijamming algorithm to detect if a classy thief is making an attempt to mess along with your system. If it does, SimpliSafe will instantly notify you about it. That is what occurred after we examined it out. With the suitable tools, we have been capable of block a transmission to the bottom station, however not with out SimpliSafe sending us an alert informing us of the jam. 

Backside line: Jamming assaults like these are completely doable, but in addition exceedingly uncommon and tough to drag off. A SimpliSafe consultant claims that, to this point, the corporate has no file of any buyer ever being jammed. Even so, if a would-be thief have been to attempt it, they’d come up in opposition to a practical layer of protection. That is greater than sufficient for me — simply be certain to concentrate to any interference alerts, and do not simply dismiss them.

As for different considerations like replay assaults the place a hacker would attempt to intercept your keypad’s code, SimpliSafe says that each one system transmissions are encrypted, and likewise factors out that its {hardware} permits for over-the-air firmware updates, making it a lot simpler for the corporate to answer evolving threats and vulnerabilities in actual time.

SimpliSafe House Safety: Ultimate ideas

SimpliSafe’s method combines do-it-yourself attraction with dwell monitored peace of thoughts. The SimpliSafe system affords glorious worth relative to the competitors, it is remarkably simple to arrange and use, and it would not really feel (or look) like a compromise choose. In reality, its layers of safety are about as complete as DIY safety will get. We would wish to see extra sensible dwelling integration as SimpliSafe continues to develop, however the firm can also be rising in different methods — introducing an out of doors digicam, as an example, and partnering with RapidSOS to enhance 911 response instances.

We have seen new competitors emerge from names like Ring, Wyze, Abode, Vivint and ADT. Procuring round is all the time smart, however for most people all in favour of simple dwelling safety, we really feel assured saying that SimpliSafe is among the many greatest choices in the marketplace.




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