Smart on the inside

August Wi-Fi Smart Lock

August Wi Fi Smart Lock

A whole new look

Yale Assure SL

Yale Assure SL

The August Wi-Fi Smart Lock isn't just easier to install, it's also the most capable smart lock around. Keep your old lock and gain a host of new smart features with this option. That's a win-win for renters and homeowners, alike.

$250 at Amazon

Pros

  • Fits over your existing lock
  • Proximity lock and unlock
  • Remote locking/unlocking
  • DoorSense knows if your door is closed
  • Doesn't need an external hub
  • Great integration with Alexa, Google Assistant, and more

Cons

  • No local smart home network support
  • Shorter battery life

Yale offers something for everyone with the Yale Assure SL, and it even packs in many of August's best features. If you're looking to ditch the keys forever, this is the smart lock for you.

$300 at Amazon

Pros

  • Proximity lock and unlock
  • Remote locking/unlocking
  • DoorSense knows if your door is closed
  • Great integration with Alexa, Google Assistant, and more
  • Some versions have local smart home network support
  • Long battery life

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Confusing compatibility with other products
  • Needs an external hub to connect to the Internet

Right off the bat, you might be a bit confused if you're looking to buy a Yale Assure SL. Which version do you get? Yale sells a version that works only with Apple HomeKit, one that works with Z-Wave, and another that works with Zigbee. However, the Coup de grâce to all that craziness is the Connected by August version, which packs in lots of great once-exclusive August tech and eschews proprietary connection protocols for good old-fashioned Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. That makes it a perfect comparison to the new August Wi-Fi Smart Lock, which has nearly identical features but caters to very different needs.

Touchscreen vs touching your screen

Yale Assure Lock SlSource: Yale

Design-wise, it's clear these are two products with two different foundations. August aims to make the smart lock less intrusive by adding smart features to your existing deadbolt, while Yale wants that old deadbolt replaced completely. This is most evidenced by the sleek touchscreen number pad that adorns the front of the door that the Yale Assure SL is installed onto. So, right from the get-go, you've got a big decision to make: do you want it to be obvious that your home is smart and modern or would you rather have a low-key look?

Aesthetics are just one piece of the puzzle that you'll need to identify before buying here, though. If you don't have your phone with you or are unable to otherwise unlock the door virtually, what sort of backup solution would you prefer? Both locks support virtual keys within the August app, which you can use yourself to lock or unlock the door remotely and even assign temporary guest keys.

The difference here is that the August Wi-Fi Smart Lock requires a physical key or phone in order to unlock the door, while Yale requires a 4-8 digit PIN or a phone to unlock it. That physical key is by far the biggest difference, as it might bring peace of mind to some folks while others will be happy to never have to deal with physical keys again. Both locks also support August's proximity unlocking feature, which locks and unlocks your door automatically when you're within range.

August Wi-Fi Smart Lock Yale Assure SL
Dimensions (inches) 2.8 x 2.8 x 2.75 2.56 x 3.56 x 0.69 (outside), 3 x 6.88 x 2.13 (inside)
Power 2x CR123 batteries 4x AA batteries
Wi-Fi Built-in, 2.4Ghz only Requires an external bridge
Bluetooth Yes Yes
Remote lock Yes Yes
Remote unlock Yes Yes
Auto-lock Yes, via geofencing on app Yes, via geofencing on app
Door open detection Yes Yes
Physical entry method Key PIN code
Phone as a key Yes Yes
Guest keys Yes Yes
Virtual assistant support Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa, Siri Google Assistant

In addition to automatic proximity locking and unlocking, both of these locks feature August DoorSense, which helps the lock to understand whether or not the door is actually fully closed before locking. That means you can pull up the August app, no matter where you are, and see that the door is both locked and closed.

A tale of two apps

August Yale Smart Lock AppsSource: Nick Sutrich / Android Central

Depending on the version of the Yale Assure SL that you purchase, you'll either be using August's highly-rated app, or Yale's own Yale Secure app. In the case of Yale's own apps, Yale's software doesn't quite match up with their hardware quality. If you're looking for a specific type of connectivity, whether it's iM1 (HomeKit), Zigbee, or Z-Wave, Yale's offerings seem to leave a bit to be desired. It's for this reason that it's best for most folks to choose the Yale Assure SL with the Connected by August module, which will connect to your Yale Assure SL lock locally and get it connected to the Internet.

Regardless of which type of Yale Assure SL lock that you choose, they all require some sort of external bridge to connect to the Internet and the subsequent app. The August Wi-Fi Smart Lock builds Wi-Fi and Bluetooth right into the tiny lock, which means you don't ever have to deal with an external bridge.

Simplicity is king

August Wi Fi Smart LockSource: August

Both the Connected by August Yale Assure SL and the August Wi-Fi Smart Lock support full integration with your favorite virtual assistant. Both utilize the August app and feature most of the same smart features, including DoorSense and remote unlocking. However, the August Wi-Fi Smart Lock, in the end, is just an easier product to choose, install, and use. There's one SKU, one set of features, and one app to use.

On top of this, it's totally renter-safe since you don't have to remove any existing door hardware, and you can even get a keypad if you absolutely hate relying on keys. You'll even keep that external key for backup purposes, or just to keep your landlord happy. It's also $50 cheaper, and who doesn't like that?

Sometimes, easier is best

August Wi Fi Smart Lock

August Wi-Fi Smart Lock

Safe for renters and homeowners, alike

The August Wi-Fi Smart Lock is the easiest smart lock you'll buy and, yet, it's the most feature-rich.

A new paradigm

Yale Assure SL

Yale Assure SL

Lose the keys, forever

Tired of keeping track of keys? Get rid of them forever with the Yale Assure SL, and get all the awesome August smart features, as well.

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