Replace house key with cell phone

SANTA BARBARA, CALIF. -- Do you hide a spare house key in case you get "locked out" or need to let someone else in? Do you think burglars can't find it? It's a conundrum for digital nomads, because we're away so often. But new deadbolts enable you to monitor and unlock the door to your house from a cell phone -- which means you can lock, unlock or check the lock on your house from anywhere in the world.

A company called Schlage today announced a new line of LiNK deadbolts that can be locked or unlocked over the Web or via cell phone (in addition to buttons above the door knob). You can also change the four-digit unlock code, or enable or disable the lock online.

You can give several people access to your house, each with his own access code, then monitor via cell phone who enters and when -- via TXT or e-mail alerts. Even if you work in an office in the same town, the system lets you know when your kids get home from school.

The locks use SSL protection and 128 bit encryption. A device plugs into your home's router that montitors communication between you and the lock over the Internet.

The Schlage LiNK Starter Kit costs $299 and includes one Schlage LiNK deadbolt or lock, a wireless Z-Wave Bridge and a light module. Addictional locks can be had for $199 each. Plus, the company charges a $12.99 monthly subscription fee.

The lock systems will go on sale at Fry's and elsewhere starting in late October, according to the company.

This is simply a great idea with no downside other than cost. 

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