Level’s Latest Invisible Smart Lock Cuts a Few Features to Drive Down the Price

A Level Lock and all its parts
Level

When Level debuted its original Bolt lock, the fact that the entire smart lock hid inside the hole for the deadbolt was impressive. But it didn’t include the thumb turn or faceplate. The Level Touch addresses that and adds features for a much higher price. Level’s latest lock splits the difference.

If you haven’t seen a Level Home lock before, that might be your fault. The very design of the lock makes it “invisible.” Rather than packing the electronics into an ugly box connected to your door, Level miniaturizes and slides the electronics inside the door of your smart home.

It sits in the same cavity your deadbolt slides too, which often has spare room because deadbolts aren’t a complicated mechanism. But in its first incarnation, you had to use an app or key to unlock the door, which isn’t much more convenient than a standard lock. Still, it made for a much nicer-looking smart lock compared to some of the alternatives.

A smart lock that looks identical to a dumb lock---from the outside of the door.
Level

You also had to provide some of the parts. The kit didn’t come with a thumb turn or faceplate, so you needed to provide your own. Your existing lock’s parts probably work, but not all locks are compatible. And if you didn’t like the look of your lock, it was up to you to buy a new compatible system.

Later, Level followed up with a Touch Edition version of its lock. That version packs in a thumb turn and faceplate in several different styles. And it picked up new ways to unlock the door, like touch as the name suggests. So, for example, if you have your phone with you, it’ll connect to the lock and unlock the door when you touch the Level’s faceplate (where you would insert the key). Or you can open it with an NFC card.

But the Level Touch also increased the price significantly, from $229 for the Bolt to $329 for the touch model. And that’s where the new third model comes in. Dubbed simply the Level Lock, it sits between the first two models. Unlike the Bolt, the Level Lock comes with the thumb turn and faceplate. But it doesn’t include the Touch and NFC card features. The good news is, the original Bolt now drops down in price to $199. And that puts the Level lock at $249, just a little more than the Bolt’s original price.

On top of all that, Level announced today that all three of its locks are now Works with Alexa certified to give you more options for control. You can buy the new Level Lock at Level’s site today.

Josh Hendrickson Josh Hendrickson
Josh Hendrickson has worked in IT for nearly a decade, including four years spent repairing and servicing computers for Microsoft. He’s also a smarthome enthusiast who built his own smart mirror with just a frame, some electronics, a Raspberry Pi, and open-source code. Read Full Bio »

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