This year we've seen many ups and downs for smartlock companies - for example Goji, Lockitron and August all had delays to their promised delivery dates. Kwikset's Kevo, also behind in their promised delivery date, finally released their smartlock at the start of this year, and since then they've been moving amazing volumes - 30,000 a month.
And we had Assa Abloy install 30,000 smartlocks into Starwood Hotels later in the year, with even Steve Wozniak getting excited by the technology (see video here). Hilton Hotels and Accor Hotels also announced plans to begin rolling out smartlocks/digital keys into all 650,000 of their hotel rooms over the next few years.
When August and Kevo finally started shipping they got alot of mixed reviews in newspapers and journals (see some examples here and here).
This year we've also seen loads of partnerships, collaborations, mergers and acquisitions in the smarthome space. But the smartlock as part of the smarthome so far has essentially been locked out of all that action (pardon the pun!).
We had the big smart-thermostat acquisition of Nest by Google for $3.2 billion. Then the big acquisition of the smart camera of Dropcam by Google for $555 million. And smart lights companies, and smart security systems, and smart hubs have all seen plenty of action too (e.g see here).
But so far we haven't seen any real action yet with smartlocks in the smarthome. By real action we mean, there has been no smartlock acquisitions yet, and there has not been any smartlock start-ups aligning with big IoT players, other than Apple with August, and Yale with AT&T.
So its shaping up to be a massive 2015 then for smartlock/digital keys companies. We're just going to have a quick look at why perhaps we haven't seen much action yet in smartlocks/digital keys by looking at the AT&T Digital Life Yale smartlock offering as an example.
Firstly these are your choices for smartlocks if you sign up with AT&T's Digital Life - you have 2 choices - a Yale Deadbolt with keypad, or a Yale Deadbolt with touchscreen. And that is it. See them below.