DIY Home Security: SimpliSafe vs Frontpoint
When it comes to wireless home security systems many homeowners have been looking for affordability and simplicity of use. As technology continues to develop, there has also been an increase in systems that integrate with other smart home devices, which give the added benefit of being a full home system.
SimpliSafe and Frontpoint are both do-it-yourself installation systems that work by connecting central devices to sensors around the home. There are added elements that consumers can invest in, such as video cameras for both indoor or outdoor, and email or text alerts if the system is activated.
One of the main benefits of both systems is its use of cellular signals for power. This means the system can continue to work even if the landline wires to the home have been cut or there is a loss of power.
Cellular signals have been considered the safest way to monitor homes and most of the top-line security systems use it exclusively. This includes Simplisafe and Frontpoint.
While landlines can be interfered with and are prone to outages and broadband communications are not reliable around the clock, cellular monitoring remains the best choice.
How they Work
Both companies have also developed a way to guard against a thief smashing the control panel, which adds further security for homeowners.
With Frontpoint, if the system senses an intruder it sends a message to the monitoring center then waits for a message from the control panel that the system is disarmed. However, if a signal is not received (such as in the case of the panel being smashed), the monitoring center will treat the situation as an emergency and use the protocols set in place to respond.
SimpliSafe have devised a different method of guarding against control panel destruction. They have made the base unit separate from the control panel, which means customers can place the items in different areas of their home. So, if a thief smashes the control panel, the base unit can still communicate with the monitoring center.
Essentially, the experience of each user on the different platforms will depend on the plan they opt to purchase. Naturally, those who pay more get access to more features both with SimpliSafe and Frontpoint. However, at this point Frontpoint offers a more feature rich package to users willing to subscribe to their Ultimate plan, which happens to be their most expensive plan.
SimpliSafe is the ideal system for those who don’t want to be tied down to a contract or those on a budget. It is also perfect for renters because the equipment can be easily removed and placed in a new environment. Frontpoint is the best choice for homeowners who want their system to do a little bit more, particularly to connect to smart home devices around the property.
Depending on what you want your system to do, you may opt for a less expensive plan to secure your home. Either way, both systems offer peace of mind to homeowners.
Simplisafe vs Frontpoint
Offers alerts via email or text on Plus Texts and Interactive plans
|Offers alerts via email or text on Interactive and Ultimate plans|
|App available for Interactive plan subscribers||App available for Interactive and Ultimate plan subscribers|
|Does not require contracts||Does require contracts (at least a year)|
|Indoor use camera||Indoor and outdoor use camera|
|60-day money back policy||30-day money back policy|
SimpliSafe is just that – a simple home security system. It is one of the most affordable on the market and while very basic does the job of securing a property quite well.
The system connects to the monitoring center using a cellular signal, but the equipment can also function without being connected to the monitoring center.
There are three different level of accounts that users can sign up for including the Standard ($14.99); Plus Texts ($19.99) and Interactive ($24.99). The Standard and Interactive plans both offer 24–hour monitoring.
Although it has been critiqued for not having the sleekest looking devices, the company has recently updated their product line and systems, making them more compact and 5 times as powerful as their original system.
Users that have SimpliSafe’s Interactive plan can also access the company’s app, which allows homeowners to connect and monitor the system on their smartphone even when they are away. The SimpliSafe app works on iOS and Android devices.
Customers can arm and disarm the system through the app and can also look at live video and manage alerts and sensors from their smartphone.
There is a straightforward installation process can have the system in place and operational in minutes.
The system can also be set up to detect water leaks and smoke.
Video surveillance is available forSimpliSafe’sStandard and Interactive plan holders.
SimpliSafe devices are compatible with smart home systems and can be used to do things like remotely control the temperature in a home. The company’s products offer some automation for consumers who have Nest or August devices, but this is only for Interactive tier customers.
SimpliSafe sells its equipment in packages and individually, which gives customers the freedom to customize the setup.
There is a video camera with night vision that can help enhance security by capturing clips of any security incidences.
One of the biggest perks of SimpliSafe is that there is no contract needed. Customers can opt to pay month-to-month and discontinue their service whenever they want.
Unfortunately, the SimpliSafe security system is very basic with limited automation capabilities. It also lacks an aesthetic appeal that other, more expensive systems offer.
There is an extra charge for video history.
Frontpoint offers a fully wireless home security system that uses a cellular signal to monitor the premises. All the company’s plans come with 24-hour monitoring, which adds to the peace of mind of homeowners.
The company has online instructions to guide the installation process step-by-step. Their website indicates it can take about 30 minutes to get the system set up and running.
More than just monitor the perimeter of your home, Frontpoint can detect other problems like smoke, water leaks or carbon monoxide.
Users that have the Interactive or Ultimate plan can access the company’s app and monitor their home via their smartphone. Their app is available for iOS, Android, Apple TV and Kindle Fire, which also allows users to customize their system.
The system runs an hourly check to make sure the sensors and system are online and active, so customers never have to wonder if they are protected.
Frontpoint has designed a keychain remote for their system as well as many other devices that can be purchased to add extra security to a property.
Video surveillance is available on the Ultimate plan.
Frontpoint offers consumers more automation options including a voice-activated control over the system. It works with Alexa and Google Home and for Ultimate plan subscribers, it can also be integrated with some August devices. This means that Ultimate plan subscribers are able to take advantage of fun features like remote temperature control.
Customers have a variety of cameras they can opt to use with their system include an indoor or outdoor camera or a doorbell camera, which has two-way audio, so you can talk to whoever is at your door, even if you are not home.
The equipment can be bought and monitored by another company, so consumers are not tied to Frontpoint’s monitoring plans.
Customers will need to buy the equipment they want upfront, which costs $99 for the lowest subscription or $199 for their Ultimate package.
Users are expected to subscribe to a one–year or three–year contract.
One of the main differences between the two systems is the price. Each company offers three levels of coverage, with SimpliSafe’s most expensive plan, the Interactive, costing $10 less (at $24.99) than Frontpoint’s basic plan, the Protection plan, which is $34,99. Frontpoint also offers an Ultimate plan with extra features for $49.99.
As well, Frontpoint’s Ultimate plan is the only one that offers video history while SimpliSafe charges $4.99 for users who want video history access.
Frontpoint Ultimate plan subscribers have a door lock automation feature, while SimpliSafe does not. Frontpoint also offers light automation and a geofencing feature for its Interactive and Ultimate customers.
Both companies require customers to purchase equipment, whether with or without a contract. While they offer equipment packages, consumers are also able to buy the specific devices they want, such as door/window sensors, motion detector, glass break sensor, smoke detector, flood sensors, indoor or outdoor camera and key fob.
Renters will like that they can take equipment from either company and move it from home to home.
When deciding between SimpliSafe and Frontpoint consumers should consider their budget as well as what they want their system to do. For those on a tight budget who are looking for a very efficient, but basic home security system, SimpliSafe is the best choice. Homeowners who want more pizzazz from their system would do better to sign up with Frontpoint.