Customer Ratings & Reviews
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Customer ratings & reviews
HONEYWELL Steppin' UpPosted
For a number of years, I have been anxious to cut the cord to eliminate the annually rising cost of my conventional security subscription service. Although Honeywell doesn't allow a full divorce from the expense of a monitoring solution, the monthly subscription is a fraction of what I currently pay. And, so far, I don't see a need to subscribe for full cloud storage; so, I subscribed for a trial period to test features available on the Honeywell basic plan ~ $14.95/mth. Depending on the status of your psyche about emails and tech related tasks, the increase in independence from an expensive monitoring service requires an increased level of interaction to establish parameters and preferences. To minimize frustration, I scheduled a block of time to integrate this new set of app management duties into my already hectic life. As happened to me, a couple of snags required calls to customer service. New tech is always a trade off when we sacrifice our privacy for convenience. So, I was pleased that when I did not want 147 degrees of 1080p HD coverage of my activities, I was able to rotate the cuff over the camera to protect my privacy and turn off the microphone. But, I found that when the base station is unplugged, the back-up battery keeps coverage running for hours, good for when there's a power outage but not good if you want to disable the base station or the very intense alarm and don't have time for a 911 tech call. And, when the battery fully discharges, your solar/wind install kicks on that power wall for the'total smart home prepper few'. LoL! Though I have 3 doors I'd like to cover, I mounted the set of 2 access sensors that come with the unit at my back and front doors to compare to my existing service. Voice recognition of humans is already afforded via Alexa and Amazon; but, looking forward to a fix so I can stream music and cell phone service. For those with animal companions, I learned a forthcoming upgrade will deliver 'audio detection analysis' to give barking dogs a pass and, I suspect, your birds, cats, komodo dragons, et al. Moreover, I learned another new upgrade will be able to segregate the audio of your smoke and radon alarm as 'not intruder'. But, for those sensitive to EMFs (electro magnetic fields), bear in mind that, to quote the manual: "the system complies with FCC radiation exposure limits set forth for an uncontrolled environment. This equipment should be installed and operated with a minimum distance of 20 cm between the radiator and your body." But, every "body", dependent on blood type genetics and your current load of environmental toxins, has variances in tolerance for EMFs. So, know your limits before adding another load, especially if you are trying to sleep near the base station. The price point is ball park with the competition; but, looking forward to the updates that will make the base station compatible with other expandables such as the Apple Home Kit and other popular potentials. With the promised downloads installed, the start-up price is worth getting off the my more expensive monthly contract, especially with included features i.e. facial recognition, geofencing, sounds and lights to deter intruders and the ability to support multiple viewers via the app from any location. To side step the expense of add-ons, I have to evaluate the compatibility of cameras I have on hand with the Honeywell platform, something I should have thought about before signing on. But, when fully integrated with the basics, the separate purchases required for 1 additional door contact and 2 windows may still be a better deal than my long term contract.
I would recommend this to a friend
Easy to Setup, Easy to ExpandPosted
The Honeywell Wireless Home Automation Kit is an easy to use, easy to expand home security system. The kit consists of a wireless base station with camera and two sensors. The base station setup was extremely easy and can be performed through the Honeywell Home application in IOS or Android. The unit can also be controlled through Alexa or Google Assistant. In operation, the system performed well. We live in NC and during the recent hurricane Florence we had to evacuate for over a week. During that period, we were able to monitor our home through the base station camera and the remote application. The starter kit retails for $449 and does not require a monthly plan. I consider the price a little high for a starter kit. Also, if you want to have additional cameras, you incur a $14.95 per month cost.
I would recommend this to a friend
Potentially most comprehensive security systemPosted
There's a lot of DIY home security on the market now but many rely on the cloud and other devices in a smart home ecosystem. The Honeywell Smart Home Security System is a good start into consolidating devices but there's still a lot of room for improvement. +Setup is simple and still relies heavily on your smartphone, in fact you need a smartphone to not only set this system up, but to also get the most out of the system. +Good motion detection, facial recognition and alerting. You will want to make sure you have facial recognition for all household members as well as setting up their phones with the Honeywell Home app. +Geofence allows the Security Hub to change settings based on proximity of your smartphone, so if you leave the house it will change to away mode once all household members have left. The downside is if you leave your phone at home, it may not turn on to away mode. +Alexa and Security voice commands work well giving you another $50 echo dot type device in the House. +Video resolution is good and not too laggy. There's still a lot of negatives and kinks that need to be ironed out. -When manually changing modes, you can't cancel or interrupt the process. You can reduce the default 60s but it's annoying you can't cancel the change and switch modes. -Expensive, the security hub is a nice unit but the key fob is too large to be useful and has the same functions as the phone app. The entry detection sensors are nothing special and competitors sell 2 for the same price. -Lights on the base are obnoxious and constantly flash green. May be able I change this but I didn't see how. -Alexa music is not enabled yet. The hub recognizes the commands but no music plays and the app says the feature will be available later. -Storing video requires a $5 per month or $50 per year subscription. Local network storage options (NAS) would be ideal. -No mounting hardware or mounting holders like Linksys Velop. Honeywell clearly recommends mounting on a shelf or table but the option to sit it on a wall fixture would be ideal. I expect Honeywell will continue to make improvements as this is clearly one of the most advanced Security Hubs with the most upgradability and functionality on the market with Alexa and Google Home enabled. It will be interesting to see if other options come out that are as good or better.
I would recommend this to a friend
Like it, but want to love it….Posted
As the review title indicates, there are a lot of good things to like about this DIY home security system, but at the price point, I want to (and need to) love it, and I'm not there yet. The cost is a lot for what is a bit of a middling security experience. Packaged components out of the box are the base station, keyfob remote, a pair of sensors and power cord. Bear in mind this is a starter kit, and after installing the two door sensors, it feels short for my small house in terms of parts. The base unit itself is a stationary 1080p camera on top of an Alexa Z-wave hub and speaker unit, including a light feature base (colors and strobing for various modes and functions) and decently loud siren functionality. Well-constructed and sleek, but with its own shortcomings (see below). The key fob has four buttons covering the basic security modes- a little large for a keychain, and too small to be a real remote, this unit lies somewhere between. The door/window sensors are well made, and were easy to apply to both a standard front door and a sliding patio door. The setup was a breeze after downloading the intuitive looking app and essentially identifying and registering all of the aforementioned pieces. Everything went as advertised, and within no more than 10 minutes, we were ready to experiment and learn the system. This is where we started to identify what felt like shortcomings for the end user. This base unit is great looking, but as a stationary camera unit, the only place that made any sense for security purposes in my house was on top of a china cabinet, where it could capture both front and rear door. I love the 140+ degree angle of view, it really does well getting the whole house front to back in, but as a cylinder-based design, this really begged for some ability to pan or move the camera. I have a much lower end camera in my basement to watch my dog when we are at work, and for less than $40, I can pan almost a full 360 in most directions. This at least could look at left-to-right action. Night vision and motion detection were pretty spot on, although I was getting more than a few random motion alerts during the day with no corresponding video capture of anything of use, indicating a false alarm. The live-streaming was a good experience, but the feed would have difficulty loading about 25% of the time. Overall ability to review 15000 video clips over 30 days for free is great. In general, we loved the capability to peek in during the day while at work, whether to check on the house or see my kids get home from school. The two way mic works good as well, good for a quick hello to a child just home from school. The sensors worked spot on every time, and although the alerts seemed cumbersome to me at first (you can customize when and what type of alerts you get. @@@@@@@ , I really started to get a sense of personal security while away when I received indication that the front door opened and closed just when I expected the kids home from school, or my wife home from work. Facial recognition was not the opportunity it should have been, and isn't close to there yet. It (mostly) recognizes my face, not so much my wife, and only allows for two profiles in total. I could set up the kids, but the odd ability to only use the facial recognition for a two hour window has me ignoring the feature completely at this point. At the price point, it should be a home run feature, not a lingering unfinished detail. Another great feature is the Geofencing ability, which creates a circular zone around your phone location to auto-enable the away mode once you get out of a certain range. This starts with a 60 second countdown (beeps) before arming that allows family members without phones (kids) to hit the fob and let the system know they are still home. My only issue with this feature is that the smallest zone is still a little too large, I can be out at the convenience store getting milk and I'm still 'home'. I also happen to own an Amazon Alexa tall speaker, and was really hoping to retire that one to another room, but the Alexa functionality in this unit is so limited (at this time, Honeywell has promised it is seeking to expand this) it really offers no real reason to get rid of the other one yet. Outside of the basic command functions that allow you to set the level of security you want, it is otherwise really basic in scope, and misses some real opportunities with SMS, music streaming, etc. Some of those to come, from what I have read, but it doesn't live up to the price point. Some real shortcomings out of the box that may have you reconsider your choices is a lack of professional monitoring as an option, or cellular backup. It is really a simple self-contained solution, but one that is really small in its offering for the asking price, and a bit of a mixed bag for what you get. To feel complete for a small house, I will need another camera for a separate level, an exterior camera and at least two more sensors for other doors to complete a 'base' package, but that would bump the costs to almost $900. There are too many vendors offering similar parts and pieces or entire packages for less that are more feature-rich, I'm not sure that the benefits exist yet with this particular system to justify the costs. Honeywell could provide some software updates that unlock some of this potential and erase some of the doubt over lack of features, or polish to the features it has, but it isn't there yet. I like it enough to use it, but I should love it at the cost required to get in the door. Not recommending at this time, but I'm hoping time and updates to the overall software allow me to revisit my first impression. It really is a great base to start from, but not at the asking cost and 'alpha test phase' feeling. Needs some maturing.
No, I would not recommend this to a friend
Basic Do-It-Yourself Home SecurityPosted
Honeywell is among the brands who continue to innovate with regards to home technology. Their new Smart Home Security Starter Kit,* for instance, brings many sought-after features, and not simply for those having a'smart home.' For one, it's Alexa-enabled, if you want to make use of that. And being able to control the Honeywell base unit from an app is super convenient. @@@@@ Please note: this is a Starter Kit, but you are able to purchase additional accessories with which to supplement this basic home security system. Getting the Starter Kit connected and set up, was just as easy as described. This is one of many positives about the variety of home tech available on the market today. Companies really do seem to understand that we may have many devices on our home network, those which we use every day, and they need to be able to work together, as well as, be simple to set up and manage. So how does this work? Simply put - the Honeywell Smart Home camera base station senses motion and/or unexpected activity and records a video clip with audio, which is stored in your free 24-hour cloud storage (once you create a Honeywell Home account). Using the Honeywell Home mobile app you can set up facial recognition, change security modes, review video alerts and activity history, and look in on your home while you are away. There's also the option to add other users, and the app even gives you the weather temperature for your local home area. One of the most useful (to me) and quite frankly, most fun aspects of this Honeywell security system, was being able to give the base unit voice commands - you can find a list of commands in the device settings. There are also corresponding lights and sounds, depending on the particular mode setting. Although the camera boasts 1080p HD video, I found the picture coming through on my smart phone to be a bit laggy, even with my high-speed internet connection. The remote control key fob is to be used when you are at home to change your security modes, and while this is a nice accessory, it was somewhat redundant to me, since you can do the same things via the app (which I prefer). Something I consider worth mentioning would be the cost. As more and more choices are becoming available on the market for home security technology, most specifically those in the "do-it-yourself" category, for what you get in this basic starter kit, it does seem a bit 'pricey' to me. The expense of a device of this type should at least make it a viable alternative to what is offered by security services for monitoring your home environment. Overall, however, I found this Honeywell Smart Home Security Starter Kit adequate for my needs, though I myself would definitely want to get some more window alarms to go along with it, so as to really feel more secure.
I would recommend this to a friend
Wait for the promised Future EnhancementsPosted
The Honeywell Smart Home Security System is a great idea that is executed poorly and not ready for prime time: it has Alexa built in and looks better than an Amazon Echo, however, it will not perform one of the most important features of an Echo; music playback. It is promised as a future enhancement, but there is no ETA for it. As a security device, it is a camera/speaker combo that watches your home when you aren't there. It has a long-lasting battery backup, pairs seamlessly with Honeywell and other branded motion detectors (indoor and outdoor) and window alarms, and reports to your smart phone when any of the sensors are triggered. There is no monthly service fee required unless you want images saved in a database for up to 30 days. First you must download the Honeywell Home app and set up an account. That was pretty quick and easy, but the setup was a little troubling. It did not connect to my android phone right away, finally I reset my phone and it worked. There was no mention of this troubleshooting step in the app. The system does have people detection and you can add faces the system will recognize. This feature is supposed to tell you who has entered your home. It took several tries to get good enough pictures of each member of my household, and when those people entered the house, it wasn't always sure who it was. Maybe this will improve in future releases. One thing that I did not like was when I armed the system, there was no way to stop it. I had to wait for it to arm before I could set it back to home (disarmed). There is also no way to have the system call the authorities if there is a break in. You do get an alert on your phone and the siren sounds, but if you are away from home and do not have your phone at hand, you wouldn't know about it. You can only hope that the loud siren will scare them off. Overall, I found the Honeywell Smart Home Security System to be fairly weak. I could see this being a quick and easy system for a small apartment or perhaps an RV, but for a house, this wouldn't be adequate protection. For the price, this system should have all the items that are listed as future enhancements already available and working. It seems that Honeywell rushed this to market. Considering Honeywell's other high quality products, I expected better.
No, I would not recommend this to a friend
Decent, but not worth the pricePosted
I used to having a self-monitored DIY system since that's what we've had for the last 13 years. Why pay someone to call the cops when I can do it myself when my alarm calls me (old one could call any specified number). So being as old as it was I figured why not get something a lot more modern. First of all, set up was a breeze. Turn it on, connect it to Amazon for the Alexa features (more features to come soon, like music), pair the fobs, motion sensor, and portal sensors - I bought an extra FOB and have orderded 4 more door/window sensors and just waiting for them to arrive. First thing I noticed about these sensors are that they're huuuuuge! My old sensors are about 2.5"x1" and use three watch batteries. These new sensors are roughly 1.5"x4" and use a lithum battery. I don't know if the lithum battery is better, but the watch batteries haven't been changed in 13yrs and the signal is strong enough to reach from one end of the house to the other. The smaller sensors are barely noticeable, but the huge sensors are big eye sore! That said the portal sensors work well. They have to be no further than .25" apart - I tested it and going even .375" caused quite a bit of miss readings on opening and closing - which is reported every dang time by the app. Door open, door closed, door open, door closed. Makes we want to revoke the notification permissions, but then I'll lose the ability to be warned when a real alarm comes in. Door open should be enough of a notification. If I wanna know if it's closed I should be able to just check the app instead of being bugged every time the door moves. The motion sensor is a bust. I think you have to be a pale person with white clothes in a bright room for it to register movement. My signal is strong and even when I put the sensor on top of the base it wouldn't reliably sense motion. The base unit senses motion very well with it's camera. Because of this I can't use the facial recognition since I now have to put the base unit in the more vulnerable area and the poor performing sensor at the front door. Another note, I now have two tears in my wall because of the motion sensor. I placed it where I wanted it and did the test, failed, check signal and it said poor, so I took it off the wall and moved it. Second location same problems, this time part of the all came off. Moved it to a third spot - same poor signal and results, another hole... then I saw the signal change to strong while I was holding where the second hole was. I doesn't give an immediate result for signal strength - I'd say it's about 30 seconds or more before it tells you the real signal. They freaking could have used a spinning "Hold on there" icon until it actually got the real signal instead of giving a false weak signal for a long period. After figuring that out I put it back in the original spot (which it doesn't stick to well anymore since it had parts of the other wall on it) and it said strong this time after I waited a while. Still doesn't sense worth a cuss. The base station is pretty nice and the camera performs exceptionally well. You can set it to use 720 or 1080 to ease up on bandwidth. It doesn't record all the time, but only when motion is sensed. I haven't checked to see how long it records and if it keep recording while motion is sensed (unlike that popular doorbell that only records for 30s whether or not the motion is still chilling in front of the camera). Even at 720 the video quality is very good, far better than the doorbell at the same res. I haven't checked the bitrate but the doorbell is ~800kb/s. Watching the bandwidth it seem the Honeywell may be about 1.5Mb/s but I haven't verified. 1080 has uploaded up to 4Mb/s but I'm not sure if that's my limit or theirs since I have this going through a cell connection. Speaking of connection it's ridiculous how so many of these devices don't allow advanced network settings. It's DIY yet they don't let the network be DIYed. I had to set up a rule in my router DNSMasq to route the unit to a different gateway - it has it's own hotspot and router that are connected to a UPS to keep it going when the power goes out. Seems all these Smart devices think we're to dumb to know how to set up a network. I recently reviewed a scanner that won't even let you connect without WPS which is disabled on all my routers and I WILL NOT enable it. The app is a weird one. It like inception where you have windows inside of windows and back arrows inside of the embedded window with it's own back arrow. There were quite a few times I hit the wrong back arrow (the main one) and then have to tap again to hit the correct arrow. There features are extremely bare. I like options and tweaking and signal strength (which you can do but not as easily as if it were just a menu option), adjust sensitivity on sensors, etc. It just not enough control for a DIYer. There is Geofencing which I haven't tested because 1) I don't know how it would work with multiple people who work on different schedules 2) wife doesn't wanna use the phone app (hence why I wasted $25 for another FOB). It would be nice to use, but being able to check the status while you're away is just as good. A couple features I'd like to see added are a glass break sensor. Since it has a mic it seems it should be easy to add with a firmware update. Another would be the ability to have custom alarms or alarms that go off when a knock or doorbell is rung - like a dog barking or any other random noise to make it seem like someone's home. The mic is already there. Make it more useful than for tell it to arm the system or tell me the weather. Honestly, if I had to buy it I'dn't. It's just too expensive for the features (some of which were unreliable) and the extra sensors run up the bill also (extra $200 for me - coulda bought a whole new system for that money! @@@@@@@ . One good thing about "Smart" devices is that things can improve with firmware. Maybe in a few months I'll learn to love it... right now it's not much of an improvement over a 13yr old system in guarding the house - the Alexa stuff is just useless fluff since the security is weak.
No, I would not recommend this to a friend
Hi MadSquabbles! Thank you for taking the time to give us your feedback. These comments go a long way and will be forwarded for further review. Thank you for helping make Honeywell better. -Jordan