Editor's note, Jun. 27, 2019: Since this review was originally published in 2017, August has discontinued the second-generation HomeKit enabled Smart Lock. We've updated this review to include our Editors' Choice Award for the Smart Lock Pro model reviewed below.
Editor's Note, Aug. 20, 2020: In August 2020, PCMag and Bitdefender released a report alleging that August and Yale Android apps when working with Connect modules were vulnerable to a hack during setup mode that could give away Wi-Fi credentials. In August's latest response to CNET, it states, "If the Connect's firmware is up-to-date and the user's August Android app is up-to-date, their device will not be vulnerable to the original attack even if the unit enters into setup mode." The following review was published prior to this report and has not been altered.
Here's what you need to know about August's $279 US-only Smart Lock Pro:
1. Its design and performance are comparable to the $229 second-gen Smart Lock (available for $199 while supplies last).
3. It's Z-Wave-ready (hub not included). An open/close DoorSense sensor and a Connect Wi-Fi module accompany the lock.
This all sounds pretty great; you certainly can't beat the Pro's list of smart home integrations.
And, yes, you're paying more up front, but the price includes a bundled Wi-Fi accessory, Z-Wave compatibility and DoorSense. August's $229 Smart Lock 2.0, plus a $79 Connect (previously sold separately) would set you back more than $300 -- and it doesn't work over Z-Wave or come with DoorSense.
If (and only if) you want all of these options, August's Pro is an excellent lock at an excellent value -- better, even, than its predecessor.
Folks simply wanting to operate the lock over Bluetooth or with Samsung SmartThings or Wink shouldn't rule out the Pro, but it isn't as good a deal. You'll either have to spend the $279 bundled price for a Connect Wi-Fi module you don't need or go through August's list of approved dealers to snag a standalone lock without a Connect.
I really liked the previous iteration of the August Smart Lock -- I even gave it an Editors' Choice award. The Pro works similarly well. Not only is it incredibly simple to stick over an existing deadbolt, it was also reliable throughout testing.
I got prompt notifications via the August and Home apps, the hardware installed in minutes, and it responded quickly to my Siri commands.
DoorSense is the Pro's standout feature, though, a truly clever addition to a smart lock. Here's the gist: DoorSense is essentially the same as a traditional door/window sensor. But instead of having two tiny sensors, the lock itself acts as one of the sensors.
The other sensor can either be mounted on the outside of the doorframe or inside the strike plate for a more integrated look. DoorSense not only tells you when the Pro is locked or unlocked, but also if your door open or closed.
If you want choices -- from connecting over Wi-Fi or Z-Wave, to communicating via Siri or Alexa -- August's Smart Lock Pro is worth the $279.
But not everyone will want to deal with all of these protocols and accompanying tech. Bluetooth and Z-Wave loyalists are at a particular disadvantage, since they will have to spend the same bundled $279 for a Wi-Fi module they don't need, or go through a dealer.
If you aren't interested in Z-Wave connectivity, consider instead August's new $149 Smart Lock. It comes with DoorSense, but it isn't compatible with Siri or Z-Wave -- and it doesn't come with a Connect module. Still, you could add in a Connect accessory separately for an extra $79. For that $228 ($149 Smart Lock plus the $79 Connect), you get almost the exact same lock, features and accessories as the $279 August Smart Lock Pro.