August Wi-Fi Smart Lock Review

August has put together a nice “bolt on” smart lock for existing deadbolts locks. Through their app you can create revokable virtual keys for guests, house cleaners, etc that can allow access on a certain schedule. You can see my full review here and find one here at the best price (affiliate link). These go on sale from time to time and I’ve seen it sold as low as $179.

I reviewed the prior model in this product line and this new one definitely feels more refined. It’s more compact, has better battery longevity, and integrates Wi-Fi in addition to Bluetooth for connectivity. It supports the “big three” (Apple Homekit, Google Home and Amazon Alexa) but the Wi-Fi connectivity doesn’t work with Apple Homekit. So you’ll need an Apple device like an Apple TV or an old iPad within Bluetooth range to access the lock remotely.

What I like the most about the August products are the virtual keys you can assign to users. These keys are revokable, meaning you can delete them without having to call a locksmith, and you can set them to be valid only during certain days or times of the week. Guests accessing the home will need a smartphone (iPhone or Android) running the August app, however.

The lock also comes with a sensor that will detect when your door is ajar or open.

While most of the door locks I’ve reviewed run on AA batteries this one runs with an odd size – it requires two CR123 lithium batteries. Battery life will depend on whether or not you’re using the Wi-Fi and how often the lock is triggered to open and close.

It runs on CR123 lithium batteries

I did have to use the included trim piece (the black circle you can see behind the silver lock) because the lock was so small that it didn’t fully cover the hole cut for my deadbolt lock.

If you’re looking to make an existing dumb deadbolt smart this is a good solution. You can keep your physical keys for yourself and share virtual keys for those you want to grant access to your home.

The Sensibo Air Makes Dumb AC’s Smart

I got in the Sensibo Air (compensated affiliate link) a little while back for review free of charge from the company and finally got around to setting it up. This will integrate most dumb AC units or ductless split systems into your home automation system. It supports the trifecta: Amazon Alex, Google Home, and Apple Homekit. Check out my full review on Amazon.

I tested it with my LG split system that I use for heat and AC down in the basement studio. I haven’t touched my LG’s remote since. It’s super simple to set up – in my case I just needed to point my LG remote at it and hit the power button. After that I had full control from my phone.

They have a lower cost version called the “Sensibo Sky” (affiliate link) that has many of the same features. The Air adds homekit compatibility, a faster processor (presumably for future feature releases), person sensing when paired with one of their room sensors, and it can be placed flat on a table. The Sky needs to be vertically mounted.

Both Sensibos have a built in thermometer and humidity sensor that can be used like a thermostat. It can turn your AC on and off based on temperature, humidity or a combination of the two.

It’s a little expensive for what amounts to be an IR blaster but its simplicity of operation will have you very quickly configuring your AC to consume a lot less power. I’m quite pleased with this one. Just be sure to check their compatibility page to ensure it’ll work with your unit.