Smart door locks have quickly become a staple of the home automation industry, and it’s a good bet that we’ll see them replace traditional residential locks in the coming years. But Master Lock has a more versatile product to offer – a smart padlock line that can be used just about anywhere.
The smart padlocks work like this: Buy a lock, and then download the Master Lock Vault eLocks app. This prompts you to create a Master Lock Vault account. Do it, and you have access to a number of smart features for your lock, including the ability to control the padlock at a distance, share digital keys (or cancel them) over the phone, and monitor who has used the padlock and when.
Battery concerns aside, a smart padlock certainly has its advantages, although it may be more of a boon to companies and professionals than the average home. There are two versions of the smart padlock, a 4400D indoor version and a 4401DLH outdoor version, and both have strongly competitive prices – $50 and $60 respectively. We’d love to see smart door locks enter that price range more frequently.
For physical unlocking, you simply approach one of these smart padlocks with your phone. The phone will create a Bluetooth connection to the lock, which can identify the proper authentications. Then walk out and touch the padlock to disengage the lock – presto, you’re done. The LED lights on the lock help out by showing if the lock is open, close, or has a problem. One of those problems is a low battery, so you will need to occasionally need an energy boost: This is one area where a traditional lock definitely has an advantage.
It’s a logical progression, and one fully expected from Master Lock, which has worked with electronic and Bluetooth padlocks before. In many ways, its new line of Bluetooth padlocks work much like a smart door lock, except, of course, that they can be moved around between padlock-oriented entry.