This article is about the August smart lock, but first I want to tell you a bit about the Works with Nest partnership program.
As some of you have probably caught on through this smart home review series on Plug-In, I think Nest is a fabulous smart thermostat to add to any connected home. Already in the few weeks since it was installed in my home, it’s been a handy way to control the temperature as well as circulate fresh air throughout my Toronto house. I am keeping an eye on our next hydro bill, but I know with certainty it is saving us money compared to using the stock thermostat model the renovators had installed previously. That one had no remote way of controlling it from my smartphone when spending extended time away from home.
In addition to the benefits of using Nest noted above, the Works with Nest partnership program is something I am excited to maximize. Put simply, Works with Nest allows you to connect other smart home products directly with a Nest product (Nest Thermostat, Nest Cam or Nest Protect smoke and CO2 detector). To identify which products belong to the Works with Nest program, click here and discover the list that’s growing each month.
The biggest benefit I see with the Work with Nest program is to not need an additional “bridge.” A bridge is a separate gadget to serve as a connection hub for several connected home devices together and control them through a single app. A major downside of hubs is that not all of them are created equal: different ones support separate connections and separate devices.
I digressed a bit from the headline of this article, which is a review of the August Smart Lock, but it was good reason. I believe it’s important to understand the merit of Works with Nest as that $100 or so that may go into buying a hub is better spent on exciting home automation products, like August.
Meet August, the smart lock that turns a door into an intelligent one
I first met the August Smart Lock last fall inside the Best Buy Smart Home that was presented to media and influencers in a townhouse located in Toronto’s Leslieville neighbourhood. I liked the way it looked and it could “work with Nest” to set rules on the simple premise of unlocking and locking the door. Check out that smart home featuring August and Nest in this video here:
August was co-founded by designer Yves Behar and Silicon Valley consumer tech buff, Jason Johnson. Their flagship product, the August Smart Lock, is a home access system that allows the smartphone to replace traditional keys.
A light went off inside my head after learning that August was co-founded by a famed designer, as I always thought it looked sharp, was functional, and the four colour finishes made available are practical and even fun. I opted for the red finish inside our home. Take a look at it, unboxed for you in all its glory:
Inside the box, here’s what you’ll receive:
- The August Smart Lock in the colour of your preference
- Mounting hardware, including lock adapters for you to screw August to your existing deadbolt
- Batteries, four “AA” ones to ensure the lock is ready to go right from the start
- Installation guide
August transforms your ordinary entrance door into a smart one. Keys become a thing of the past and guests keys can be created to allow family and friends into the home wirelessly. I appreciate this feature as I do find moments where I may have an unexpected visit from a family member, and it’s convenient having the ability to “send” them a key through text message or email and as long as they have August’s app installed on their mobile device, they’re in, literally.
On top of this handy feature, the lock provides real-time updates and maintains a 24-7 activity log to let our household know who has entered and exited the home.
In my trials using August, my favourite feature is the app knows when I am arriving at home or have left and automatically unlocks or locks for me. As a result, there is no more fumbling for keys or dropping them when arriving home with a full lot of groceries or when it’s time to bring the dogs outside or march them indoors!
August looks discreet
It’s important to note when considering August, it installs on the inside of the door, so only you—and guests that pay attention to the details—will notice. If you live in a condo where strata or board rules are strict on altering hallway items, like door hardware, then the August Smart Lock is a perfect way to upgrade the living space and not worry about receiving a notice letter from the condo board to take it down.
Equally important to noting August is designed to install with most standard deadbolt door locks. Double-check you have a standard deadbolt and not a rim cylinder, mortise or integrated lock system before purchasing.
Aside from the lock itself, I do appreciate the fact August’s team thought of the details, right through to providing the batteries needed to have a seamless installation experience. And don’t worry about running out of power from the batteries. The August Home App will notify you when juice is low and it’s time to install a fresh set.
And if things feel a bit too high-tech for a guest or someone needing a key inside the home, there’s a solution for that too. Since August uses existing hardware, you can still access locking and unlocking the door using the original door key.
The August Home App brings it all together
The free August Home App serves as the command centre for the August Smart Lock. This free download works with both iOS and Android devices and is easy to use. Bluetooth is what is required to synchronize the lock with your mobile device.
If you are concerned about security using August, don’t be. The lock uses highly secure, low-energy Bluetooth (LEB) when syncing to your smartphone.
An added bonus: the August Smart Lock also works together with the Apple Watch. If you have this wearable watch, you can enjoy several main features of the lock right from the comfort of your wrist and a simple swipe, including:
- Lock and unlock the home
- View the lock’s most recent activity
- Instant notifications to find out when the door has been unlocked, providing full peace of mind
August Smart Lock Works with Nest
For more than a year now, August Smart Lock users have been enjoying a relationship with Nest through its Works with Nest partnership. Thanks to this home automation relationship, the Nest Thermostat inside our home can be set to home or away mode simply through the unlock or lock function of the door. Additionally, I can check the temperature of the home when we’re not home through the August app.
The August Smart Lock is a superb way to almost instantly convert a front or rear entrance door into a smart one. In addition to being easy to install and simple to use through the August Home app, it is functional through its ability to mount to existing deadbolt hardware, looks great inside the home and provides peace of mind who is entering or exiting the home through real-time notifications.
To see all the beautiful colours available from the August Smart Lock collection, click here.