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Lockitron Bolt Review

Editor's note: The Lockitron Bolt is currently out of stock at time of writing. When we contacted Lockitron for more information, a representative told us that more will be available soon, we'll update our review at that time.

Our Verdict

The Lockitron Bolt is an extremely affordable and capable smart lock, though it's not ideal for most smart home systems.

For

  • Lockitron Bolt responds to mobile app commands faster than any other smart lock.

Against

  • This smart lock has limited smart home compatibility compared to the competition.
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Editor's note: The Lockitron Bolt is currently out of stock at time of writing. When we contacted Lockitron for more information, a representative told us that more will be available soon, we'll update our review at that time.

Lockitron was one of first companies to sell app-controlled smart locks, laying the foundation for many products that followed. Its latest product, Lockitron Bolt, wasn't available during our 2016 smart lock tests, but we finally got a chance to test it in our latest round. We think it's a capable smart lock, but it has limited smart home compatibilities and lower security potential than most other smart locks.

The Lockitron Bolt is the most affordable smart lock available, with a list price of only $100, well below the industry average of $175. However, we noticed that it has chronic inventory problems that often inflate the price. For example, the lowest price was $180 when we started testing smart locks in June 2018. If the lock was available for its intended price, it would be a good starter lock for homeowners.

During our security tests, we found Lockitron Bolt was good enough for most homes but lacked some specific security features we looked for. Among the positive notes are an ASNI/BHMA Grade 2 rating, it also detects when someone uses a key and can notify you in the app when the lock jams. The lock is also difficult to turn by hand, which affected it in our ease of use ratings, but also means it's a more difficult lock to pick without a heavy-duty tension wrench.

One of the biggest problems we found with Lockitron Bolt's security is that it's the only smart lock we tested without an auto-lock feature to secure the door after you come home. Furthermore, the lock can't detect and has no accompanying siren for when someone's tampering with or trying to force the door open. These issues ultimately mean it's less likely to improve your security than Schlage Sense and Nest x Yale.

As with most smart locks we tested, this Bluetooth lock is incredibly easy to use. When we tested lock response times, the Lockitron Bolt was faster than any other smart lock. For example, it averages 1.22 seconds to execute a command after you tap the unlock button in the app. The next fastest lock, August Smart Lock Pro isn't far behind at 1.35 seconds, but Lockitron Bolt's snappy click is a much more satisfying experience.

The Lockitron mobile app lets you add guests and activate the auto-unlock setting but doesn't let you change many settings beyond that. We found the lock easy to install, but since it replaces your existing lock, it takes about 20 minutes. If you want remote access options, you need to buy to Lockitron Bridge, a $79 add-on that gives the Bolt a Wi-Fi connection.

If you want a keypad for the Bolt, you can get the keypad version, which costs around $150. However, you can't buy the keypad as an add-on accessory as with August's smart locks, even though the base version has all the appropriate cable hookups.

As far as compatible smart home platforms, Lockitron only works with IFTTT, which puts it at a disadvantage compared to Z-Wave, ZigBee and HomeKit compatible locks. However, you can use the Lockitron Bolt alongside a Ring Video Doorbell, making it a good option if you need a doorbell and lock for your smart home.

The battery life on the Lockitron Bolt is only eight months, which is shorter than the industry average of 12, but better than August's three-month lifetime. The one-year warranty is average but doesn't match the three-year warranty from Schlage. Lockitron Bolt comes in two finishes, quicksilver and modern gold, which will match most brass and nickel handle sets available.