Announced alongside the unveiling of retail giant Walmartβs in home delivery service yesterday, a new HomeKit smart door lock will be coming soon. Created by a team consisting of ex-Apple and Google (to name a few) engineers, the Level Smart Lock, which is currently slated for a retail release in January 2020, takes a different approach to connected locks, installing inside of a door, completely hidden from view. This allows the lock to work with your existing keys, and forgoes keypads and bulky that scream smart device.
According to Levelβs website, the lock will support Appleβs HomeKit platform, which is featured prominently on their product page. This connection is facilitated through Bluetooth, which will require a HomeKit hub, such as the HomePod, for out of home control and notifications. Other features include smart lock essentials, such as auto unlocking/locking, guest invitations, activity logging and instant notifications.
Despite its in-door design, installation of the Level Lock appears to be fairly simple, similar to the process that older August door locks use. Installation involves removing an existing deadbolt and replacing the latch with the Level Lock, followed by reassembly, and inserting a battery. The battery looks to be a half size double A type, which is housed inside of the latch itself, which is a clever way to make replacement accessible at all times.
For those who live within the Walmart in-home delivery service launch cities (Kansas City, Vero Beach, Pennsylvania, Pittsburgh), the Level Smart Lock can be purchased today, for a discounted price of $49, which includes installation. Of course, this price is on top of the monthly service fee for in-home delivery, which is $19, as well as actually agreeing to allow a Walmart employee to deliver goods inside of your home. The retail release will follow in January of next year, and will come with an MSRP of $249. Level is offering a special discount for pre-order customers through a reservation program bringing the cost down to $199.
What do you think of Levelβs smart lock design? Will its discreet installation method finally get you to join the smart lock world? Let us know in the comments below, or on Twitter, @HomeKit_Hero.