This story was originally published and last updated .
Our homes are increasingly filled with gadgets that connect to the internet in ways that rightly have us concerned for our privacy and security. But when discussing those concerns, it's important to keep a level head and consider just what kind of privacy and security concerns actually stem from using these products, and in what instances they might actually enhance both for you in real, tangible ways. And like surveillance cameras, we think smart locks fall into such a category: they can actually make your home safer and more secure than a traditional, "dumb" lock, and they do it all while bringing a tremendous amount of convenience.
If you've been drooling over Kwikset's Bluetooth-powered, Android-compatible power door locks, but you've been wary of the high entry price, today is the day to bust out your wallet. Best Buy is offering refurbished versions of the Kevo smart lock for $129.99. While that doesn't quite make it into impulse buy territory, it's a generous $60 off the regular price of the refurbished version and $70 off of a new retail unit. You can get free shipping (store pickup is not available), but the price is only good for today.
For the uninitiated, the Kevo is an electronic lock that works with conventional metal keys and can also be controlled via mobile devices or home automation systems.
The Kwikset Kevo Bluetooth-enabled door lock lets owners unlock a door just by tapping a finger against it, as long as their phones are in range. It's a cool piece of tech, something we reported on over a year ago when it first hit the market. Android compatibility was in the works, but a few roadblocks popped up along the way.
The primary issue centered around Android's lack of proper support for Bluetooth Smart. To explain the situation briefly, Bluetooth Smart has two roles: Central and Peripheral. With the release of KitKat, Android gained support for the necessary Central role, but it's only with the release of Lollipop that it can handle Peripheral as well.
The key is a beautiful creation. It's small, portable, cheap, and effective. What's the problem? They're annoying. No one likes fumbling for them before opening the door, scratching up the area around a lock at night, or leaving them on the coffee table at work. This is why you probably want the Kwikset Kevo Bluetooth-enabled door lock, which can turn your smartphone into your house key. Security without the hassle. This is what technological advancement is for.
Now for the details. The lock works by using UniKey technology and Bluetooth Low Energy 4.0 to trigger a deadbolt. Owners just have to tap a finger against the Kevo to unlock it, as long as their phone is in range.