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You’ve seen the SimpliSafe commercials — low cost, no commitment, etc. — too good to be true? There’s no long-term contract, and you can easily relocate the system if you move homes.
However, the equipment costs more than competitors, and it’s missing an outdoor security camera. We’ll help you decide if SimpliSafe can help keep your family and property safe from break-ins.
- Has 6 monitoring stations
- Excellent customer service
- No contracts
- Compatible with Amazon Alexa and Google Home
- 60-day money-back guarantee
- Self-monitoring functionality is tied to a monthly payment plan
- Equipment costs are higher than competitors
- Website and app do not indicate low battery alert
- No outdoor security cameras
- 6 monitoring stations, so if one goes down (e.g., due to a natural disaster), another is there as a backup
- Wireless via cell network — no landline or internet needed to function
- Protects home security and safety, including motion sensors, smoke and carbon monoxide detectors and more
- SimpliSafe system supports up to 100 sensors
- No contract required
- Professional monitoring starts at $14.99 per month
- BBB rating: A+
- SimpliSafe’s monitoring station, COPS, contacts you within 60 seconds
If the power goes out in your home, battery backup will keep your SimpliSafe system on and your home protected. SimpliSafe has a 24-hour battery backup, which is the standard in home security.
SimpliSafe sends a notification when there’s a power outage to keep you up to date on the status of your system. The backup battery is rechargeable, so once power is restored, the battery will recharge back to 24 hours, so it’s ready for any future needs.
Unfortunately, many online forums state that the battery backup lasts less than 10 hours, so it’s not the most dependable
We demo the SimpliSafe app and take you through its capabilities. You’ll find a video of the interface, features compared to other home security apps, pros/cons by users and more in our SimpliSafe app review.
We review SimpliSafe’s camera offerings, including the Video Doorbell Pro, the indoor SimpliCam and the available outdoor kit add on. The camera integrates with the SimpliSafe security system or you could even use it as a stand alone camera.
Below is a sampling of SimpliSafe’s packages. Visit SimpliSafe’s website to see all packages available.
|Build Your Own||The Foundation||The Essentials||The Hearth||The Knox||The Haven|
|Number of Pieces||100 maximum||4||6||9||13||14|
|Glass Break Sensor||$34.99|
|Video Doorbell Pro||$169.00|
You can purchase a SimpliSafe security system without adding on a monitoring plan; however, the system is almost useless without monitoring. You won’t be able to monitor it yourself or be notified if a sensor triggers unless you pay a monthly monitoring fee. The local alarm siren will still sound without monitoring.
|Price Per Month||$14.99||$24.99|
|24/7 Professional Monitoring|
|Unlimited Camera Recording|
This system, SimpliSafe, appears at the outset to be somewhat intimidating to install (self), but is very friendly. I am very happy with my system and the self install was actually fun. I chose the $25.00/mo plan. There is a one time purchase of hardware (various plans and peripherals) and no service contract. Customer service is also great. Highly recommended. – Roger, Consumer Affairs 8/6/2019
Best customer service i have ever received from a company. easy to get a hold of and love the services provided – Katlynn M., BBB 2/22/2020
Company is total jerks to deal with. Have plan with them. They cannot get entire system to work. They have replaced one of my cameras 3 times and it still does not work. This is a web based system and if cameras do not stay connected to internet how confident should we be that any of the system is connected. This leads to the question of how safe are you. The best they could offer today was to cancel monitoring. That is great after you have bought their inferior equipment. – Steve, Consumer Affairs 5/5/2020
Simplisafe does not truthfully advertise their doorbell camera. They fail to mention that you need a mechanical doorbell system and that it doesn’t work with digital doorbell systems. However, the packaging says “Requirements: Existing doorbell setup.” “Works with 8-24VAC.” I’ve met both of these requirements. I was unable to meet the last requirement because it was never mentioned. I’ll be returning this and getting my money back; never spending another dime with Simplisafe. – Jeremy M., BBB 4/25/2020
Our Experience With SimpliSafe
Two of Safe Smart Living’s staff purchased a system for their home and want to share their first-hand experience:
Setting up SimpliSafe was a breeze! The stickies were pre-applied, and removing a tag activated the battery and made it immediately recognizable by the hub. Even more helpful — the stickies are applied in a way that allows for easy removal. You can pull down, and the sensor comes off without leaving residue on the wall. Great for re-positioning, and they included extra stickies for this purpose.
Getting the keypad up and running was also simple. The hub is constantly talking to you and telling you what to do next as you go through the setup process. The manual is easy to read and straightforward and includes helpful explanations of what each sensor does as well as setup instructions. The way the manual is laid out makes it easy to skip over sections that don’t apply (e.g., sensors you may not have as part of your system).
SimpliSafe came out with a new equipment design in 2018, and their app and website got a facelift. The new SimpliSafe is more modern and sleek looking. And while they finally introduced the long-awaited indoor camera, we’re still waiting on an outdoor camera option, home automation features and more robust features in the app and website.
See the key differences between SimpliSafe and other leading home security companies.
- SimpliSafe has 6 monitoring stations and uses cellular monitoring with broadband as a backup, while Abode has 1 monitoring station and uses broadband with cellular as a backup.
- SimpliSafe’s panel has 24-hour battery backup; Abode’s is only 6 to 7 hours.
- Abode is compatible with Z-Wave and Zigbee; SimpliSafe is not.
- ADT offers a wider variety of equipment than SimpliSafe, including an outdoor camera.
- ADT has no equipment fees for introductory systems but requires professional installation with a fee. SimpliSafe charges for its equipment and has a DIY installation.
- All of SimpliSafe’s plans use cellular monitoring, while ADT requires you to upgrade.
- Neither SimpliSafe nor Frontpoint requires long-term contracts, so you can cancel whenever you want.
- Frontpoint’s equipment lineup is more thorough than SimpliSafe’s, including an outdoor camera.
- Frontpoint has exceptional customer service.
- SimpliSafe’s monitoring plan is $20 cheaper per month than Frontpoint’s.
- SimpliSafe has a 3-year warranty, and Ring’s is 1 year.
- Ring is compatible with Z-Wave and Zigbee devices; SimpliSafe is not.
- All of SimpliSafe’s plans use cellular monitoring, while Ring’s is broadband.
- SimpliSafe has no long-term contracts, so you can cancel whenever you want. Protect America requires a 3-year contract.
- Protect America’s equipment lineup is more thorough than SimpliSafe’s, including an outdoor camera.
- Protect America’s app is much more thorough and has more features than SimpliSafe’s app.
- SimpliSafe has a DIY installation, and Vivint’s installation requires a professional.
- Vivint has a more extensive list of equipment options with more advanced technology than SimpliSafe has.
- Vivint requires a 4-year contract, and SimpliSafe has no longterm commitments.
SimpliSafe was founded in 2006 by two Harvard Business School students, Chad and Eleanor Laurans. They were inspired to build the brand after friends experienced break-ins but couldn’t find a security system that worked for renters. It wasn’t until 2009 that SimpliSafe launched with its initial funding. Hellman & Friedman LLC bought controlling interest of SimpliSafe in 2018.
SimpliSafe is widely known because of its advertisements heard on the radio, in podcasts, TV and magazines. But does that mean it’s better than what the lesser-known competition has to offer?
Just because SimpliSafe is a household name doesn’t mean it’s necessarily the best fit for you. You may opt for SimpliSafe over the competition because of its DIY installation, no long-term contracts and low monitoring fees. But if you want an outdoor camera and lower equipment fees, for example, you may want to consider other options. Our experts review over a dozen competitors in our home security systems reviews.
Are you considering SimpliSafe for your home security needs?
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