Our expert, award-winning staff selects the products we cover and rigorously researches and tests our top picks. If you buy through our links, we may get a commission. Reviews ethics statement
When it comes to smartening your garage door, there are two basic options: Replace your garage door opener, motor and all, with a smart model, or add a smart garage door controller accessory. If you're going the add-on accessory route, I'd recommend the reasonably priced $119 Gogogate2 for its camera integrations, user management and customizable smarts.
You can purchase the Gogogate2 individually for $119 or as part of a kit. The $139 Gogogate2 Kit For Garage includes the Gogogate2 and a tilt sensor that attaches to your garage door. There's also the $219 Ultimate Garage Kit that adds an iSmartGate IP camera to the tilt sensor and the Gogogate2 device for live images of your space.
Setting up the Gogogate2 involves connecting the device to a 2.4GHz Wi-Fi network, pairing it with the sensor and registering it in the app. Gogogate's online instructions walked me through the somewhat tedious setup well enough. Once the tilt sensor was paired with the device, registering everything in the app was a longer process than any other controller I've tested, but nothing about it was particularly confusing. Installing the Gogogate2 takes just a few minutes and a screwdriver. The Gogogate2 connects to your garage door either by wiring into the push button on the wall of your garage that traditionally controls the garage door opener or by wiring directly into the opener itself.
I chose to use the provided adhesive strip to mount the Gogogate2 to the bottom of the garage door opener at the CNET Smart Home. Next, you'll attach the two wires to the open and close command nodes of your opener or push button. The Gogogate2 comes with three sets of two-wire cable for controlling up to three garage doors with one unit.
Along with installing the Gogogate2, you'll also need to install the tilt sensor. This small, white device adheres to your garage door to transmit the door's position (horizontal for open and vertical for closed) to the Gogogate2 via a 2.4Ghz wireless frequency. Powered by two AAA batteries, the sensor also provide provides temperature readings displayed in the Gogogate app. Though it's an added cost, the tilt sensor does make setup easier than systems like the Garadget which rely on centering a laser on a reflective tag to pinpoint door position. If you need to control multiple doors, additional sensors cost $35.
The IP camera by iSmartGate, parent company of Gogogate, connects to the Gogogate app for live images of your space. You're not limited to using the iSmartGate camera, though. Gogogate works with several other cameras, including the Nest Cam and cameras from makers like D-Line, Foscam, TP-Link and Insteon. You can take a look at the full compatibility chart. The catch? You'll likely have to do a significant amount of work to set these up. With D-Link, you'll need to download and run the D-Link Wizard software to retrieve information about your camera's IP address. In Nest's case, you'll need to put your camera into public sharing mode to copy a sharing URL and input it into the Gogogate app. You can find specific instructions for each camera brand on Gogogate's website.
The iSmartGate cam captures video in 720p resolution, along with night vision with a 116-degree field of view. Features like two-way audio and sound detection are also included, though you'll need to use the camera's separate iSmartGate Cam app for those. If you have to work between two different apps for advanced camera features, I'd probably prefer a nicer camera, but $219 isn't a bad price for this bundle of devices.
Video clip storage isn't free, however. After a 30-day trial, you'll need to pay $30 for a 3-year subscription in order to have 24 hours of video clip storage. That feels like a very all-or-nothing approach, but it breaks down to an affordable $0.86 per month. You'll get up to 1GB of rolling video, and clips can be viewed and saved in the app's event calendar.
The Gogogate app displays door status as a graphic, or if you have a compatible camera connected, as a live feed image. From the app you can view a calendar with activity history, open or close the door remotely, setup alerts and add users. You can also add and configure users. With the purchase of a Gogogate, you'll get 10 free users. If you need more than that, you'll have to make a purchase. The Pro plan costs $49 per year and grants access to 100 users. An Unlimited user plan costs $99 per year. Admins can restrict users to specific days and times, as well as control which users have access to any connected cameras.
Like other controllers we've tested, the Gogogate2 relies heavily on IFTTT (If This, Then That) for smart home functionality. With the Gogogate2, Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa and geofencing capabilities are all made possible with IFTTT applets. If you're comfortable with IFTTT this shouldn't deter you from purchasing the Gogogate2. Even if you're an IFTTT novice, the Gogogate2 has several applets ready to be used for most common garage needs. Geofencing applets worked well for me, as did Google Assistant commands and Amazon Alexa triggers.
What I really like about the Gogogate2 is the option to integrate a camera into the app. It seems natural to want live video confirmation of your garage door closing. However, the Gogogate2 isn't the only product out there to give you video confirmation. Garager is an all-in-one system we tested that's both camera and controller, but it fell short without geofencing and voice commands and with its less-than-pleasant app experience. Chamberlain's MyQ is another close competitor in terms of smart home integrations, and although MyQ needs IFTTT to work with Alexa, it does have Nest integration for Nest Cam surveillance of your garage door.
If you don't need seamless Amazon Alexa skills to control your door, I'd go with Chamberlain for quality and quantity of smart home integrations. The Gogogate2 still works well as a smart garage door controller. Overall, the Gogogate2 is a good option for anyone looking for customizable, smart garage door control, especially if you have more than one garage door.