Lake Forest, Calif. — Kwikset launched its first stand-alone touchscreen-equipped electronic deadbolt, which joins a model that integrates with home-automation systems and is sold only though home-automation installers.
The 915 lets users enter a numeric code on a capacitive touchscreen to unlock the door. The company also has a selection of stand-alone door locks with hard-button keypads.
The new $179 Smart Code 915 is available now at Amazon, Build.com, and the online stores of Lowe’s and The Home Depot. It will roll out to brick-and-mortar stores in the fall, said Kwikset marketing VP Marty Hoffmann.
The 915 can also be opened by a traditional key as a backup to touchscreen access.
For additional security, the lock is hard to pick because its uses a rack-and-pinion design instead of a pin-and-tumbler design. The design also makes it possible for consumers to re-key the lock themselves in 15 seconds, he said.
Also to enhance security, the lock features SecureScreen technology, which prevents crooks from guessing a user’s code by glancing at the touchscreen for smudge marks that indicate frequently used numbers. Before authorized users enter a passcode, they’re prompted to touch two numbers that light up randomly. The technology encourages the use of all numbers on the screen to mask authorized access codes.
Up to 16 four-digit access codes can be shared with family members and friends and deleted at any time to prevent access.
Besides improving security, Kwisket also set out to improve the product’s aesthetics, downsizing the size of the module that mounts on the interior-side of the door by 40 percent, thus making it more acceptable to females for front-door use.
The 915 operates for about a year on four AA batteries if used 10 times per day. It comes in three finishes.
The 915 joins the SmartCode 916, which adds ZigBee and Z-Wave for integration with home-automation systems at around $249. It connects to home-automation hubs from cable companies such as Cox and Comcast. It became available several months ago solely to professional home-automation installers, Hoffmann said.
Kwikset also offers other ZigBee and Z-Wave-enabled deadbolts that work with the Wink and Iris home automation hubs sold at retail.
Hoffmann called the smart lock business booming, growing at double-digit percentage rates for the past seven years when including non-networked electronic door locks with mechanical keypads. Growth accelerated in the past two years because of the growing acceptance of home-automation systems and technologies such as Bluetooth, he said.
Kwikset is part of the hardware and home improvement division of Spectrum Brands. The division also sells Weiser locks in Canada; Baldwin locks, Pfister plumbing and Stanley-National builders’ hardware in the U.S.; and Fanal residential hardware in Mexico. Spectrum Brands is a consumer products company that also sells small household appliances, batteries, personal care products, specialty pet supplies, and lawn and garden products.