Making doors smarter: these are the main options

Almost every Star Wars fan has tried to open an automatic sliding door with the Force. This kind of automated doors has been reserved for shops, hotels and other companies over the past decades. But that is starting to change so slowly. Now that more and more everyday things are becoming ‘smart’, the main way of camerabewaking entering spaces can of course not be left behind. In this article we look at the possibilities to make your doors a bit smarter.

A smart door with a smart lock

The easiest way to teach a door some new tricks is to add a smart door lock. A smart door lock is, as the name suggests, a lock that you can open without having to put a key in the lock every time. There are many different types of smart locks, with just as many possibilities to secure them. We have recently tested models of Nuki and Yale among others, but there are also options of Danalock and Loqed.

Smart door locks are divided into two main categories. The first category consists of devices that you can connect to your existing lock to give it smart functions. You have to take into account that these can only be connected to a classic cylinder lock, and not to a padlock or three-point lock. With these locks, you first insert the key into the cylinder lock without any enclosures, after which you place the smart lock back on top of it. That lock then turns the key itself when the unlocking signal is given.

The second category consists of total solutions that completely replace the lock in your door. In addition, you need to know what cylinder size your door has before you can break the old lock out of your door. You will also probably need a different housing if the cylinder and the door handle are attached to each other. These solutions are often a bit more expensive than the first version.

Smart locks close

As said, there are many ways to secure a smart lock. After all, you don’t want other people to be able to walk into your house without a key. Most security methods are an alternative to the regular key, but there are also possibilities to unlock your doors remotely.

Anyone who has bought a smart gadget in the past decade knows that pretty much anything can be done with an app these days. So can smart locks. A number of manufacturers offer an app for their devices, with which the lock can be unlocked. The lock must first be linked to the app, after which an unlock code is generated. This code can then often easily be shared with family and friends so that they too can open the door. The disadvantage is that you have to trust them with this technology.
Remote control

With some locks you get a small remote control that can unlock the lock. These remote controls are similar to the models you get with retractable garage doors and awnings. The remote control usually only has buttons to open and lock the lock. Often this method complements other solutions. Because giving every desired guest a remote control does not really hurry.

PIN code

Another commonly used way is a self-designed PIN code. You enter it on the lock itself or in a corresponding app, after which the door opens. The downside of this is that you have to remember the PIN, just like your family and friends. Most people already have to remember several PIN codes.

Biometric scan

These are often the luxury solutions for smart locks. The lock then incorporates a fingerprint scanner that only responds to imprinted fingerprints. If you really want to throw your money against your door, there are even variants available with an iris scanner. The scanner will only open the lock if you or a confidant uses the scanner. The big disadvantage of these scanners is the higher price compared to alternatives. You also have to keep the scanners clean to prevent dirt from affecting their operation.

Another popular way is the use of a tag. This is in fact little different than a key with a built-in NFC chip. You can also easily attach the tags to your existing bunch of keys, and hand them out to family, friends, or roommates. Using tags has similar drawbacks to using a key. You can lose them, and they can break.


Finally, there is bluetooth with which you can open or close a door. Various smart locks offer the possibility to connect your smartphone and then use bluetooth to see if you are in the neighborhood. If the bluetooth connection is made with your smartphone, the door can be opened automatically in front of you.
Smart built-in locks here