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    Clever smart home tricks you might be missing.

    February 21, 2020 6:45 AM by emily.bailey

    Friday, February 21, 2020

    Man holding smartphone | Schlage

    Never miss an opportunity to make your smart home smarter. Here are some features of common smart home devices you might not be using. You’ll wish you knew about them sooner.

     

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    How smart are your smart home devices? These electronics often do more than you realize. Sometimes they can be used in ways you hadn’t before imagined – although still within the limits of the warranty – giving you additional convenience, ease or security.

     

    Never miss an opportunity to make your smart home smarter. Here are some features of common smart home devices you might not be using. You’ll wish you knew about them sooner.

    Man holding smartphone in kitchen.

    Make smart locks smarter

    There are so many ways a Schlage smart lock can help you secure your home, it can be easy to overlook some of the most convenient and beneficial features. If you have a Schlage Encode™ Smart WiFi Deadbolt or the Schlage Sense™ Smart Deadbolt, try creating a virtual key for guest access. This step-by-step guide shows you how to create a virtual key with the Schlage Home app. Once you send the invite, your guest will receive a link on their smartphone asking them to activate the virtual key. They will then be able to lock and unlock the door using the Schlage Home app on their smartphone.

     

    The virtual key is a great way to control who can do what with your lock. For example, you may want your spouse to have admin access so they can also manage user codes, but you don’t want your teen to be able to change those codes. A virtual key is ideal for the kids. They can get in the house without a physical key, and you’re still in control of your lock’s other features.

     

    Note that guest virtual keys can only be used within Bluetooth range the door (about 40 feet) and when the guest has their phone’s Bluetooth turned on. If you’re using the Schlage Sense lock with Apple HomeKit™, you will not be able to use Schlage virtual keys. You can reset your lock to factory settings and re-pair it using the Schlage system setup to use virtual keys. If you have HomeKit, learn how to share access with other iPhone users at Apple Support.

     

    How about a more basic trick? Try your Schlage smart lock somewhere other than your front door. They’re secure and stylish anywhere on your home, including side doors, the entry leading into the home from your garage or even a home office.

    Keep an eye on the action

    Our favorite alternatives for motion sensors are more about their location than their actual use. Originally intended to be placed near doors and windows, these cameras can also alert you when someone opens your mailbox. Install one inside the postal box and, if it’s compatible with your smartphone, receive a notification when the door opens. You’ll know whenever someone puts something in your mailbox … or takes something out.

     

    A motion-activated camera can also be placed behind valuables. Burglars will typically look for the big-ticket items in the house first. Focus your camera on those spots and protect whatever that most prized possession in your house is, even if it’s inside a closet or a file cabinet drawer.

     

    Need to know when a pet has wandered somewhere he shouldn’t? Place your camera near that room or entrance. If it also has two-way speakers, you can to tell Fido to get off the couch, even if you’re still at the office.

    Let your phone locate your lights

    A century ago, Walter Schlage earned a patent for a deadbolt that turned on a light when you unlocked the door. He figured that if you were entering a room, you’d also want to be able to see where you were going when you got in. Unfortunately, this invention didn’t take off, but the idea is alive and well today. One current version is controlling your home’s lights with geofencing.

     

    With the right compatible devices – smart lights, plugs or switches – you can have the lights turned on when you are within steps of your front door. The location detector in your phone signals that you are home, triggering a reaction that turns on the lights without you having to do a thing. Cnet.com has more details on how to automatically turn on your lights when you get home.

    Plug in to energy management

    Smart plugs are a simple and increasingly cost-effective way to turn a “dumb” device into a smart one. If you’re someone who chooses smart devices to make your home more green, look for a smart plug that also gives feedback about how much energy you’re using. The WeMo Insight Smart Plug works like any other, but it also sends real-time reports to your phone. You’ll receive energy usage data for whatever device is plugged into the WeMo.

     

    Remember that smart plugs aren’t just for lamps, either. Think outside the box. What devices do you use every day that could benefit from more smarts? What about your coffeemaker? A heated blanket? Something in the bathroom?

    Simplify climate control

    Thermostats tend to be a “set it and forget it” device, at least until the seasons change. For maximum comfort and energy savings, though, you might want to make it part of your smart home automation and routines. There’s the popular “vacation” routine, which can automatically change your home’s temperature, lock the doors and turn on a random light schedule to make the house appear lived in. But have you tried a “party” routine?

     

    When more people are in the house, for example during a holiday gathering, the guests’ extra body heat will help keep the house at a comfortable temperature, even if you turn down the furnace. So create that party routine and trigger a series of events – adjust the thermostat, start the music and set some mood lighting – with a single voice command or push of a button in an app.

     

    Different smart thermostats are compatible with different technologies and other smart devices. Be sure to do your research beforehand so that everything will work together as seamlessly as you want.

     

    If you’re wondering which smart locks are compatible with these devices or with the technology you already have in your home, try our Get Help Deciding Tool. Answer a few simple questions and we’ll recommend the Schlage smart lock that’s right for you and your lifestyle. You can also find more technology tips and tricks at Schlage.com/blog.

     

    5 HomeKit-compatible devices you’ll want for your home.

    February 10, 2020 9:02 AM by emily.bailey

    Monday, February 10, 2020

    HomeKit-compatible smart home devices | Schlage

    Here are a few HomeKit-compatible devices you might not have considered for making your home smarter and life less stressful.

     

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    When you set up Apple HomeKit™, it’s because you want to connect your smart devices and make them easier to control. (And because you’re a brand loyalist.) There are the basics everyone talks about, like compatible thermostats and lights you can turn on and off with Siri®. Here are a few other HomeKit-friendly devices you might not have considered for making your home smarter and life less stressful.
    HomeKit-compatible devices

    1. Nanoleaf

    If you haven’t heard of Nanoleaf, it’s worth a look. This smart lighting is touch-activated, offers remote control and can be incorporated into your favorite scenes. It’s customizable from a style perspective as well. Sold as individual canvas blocks, you can mount them in various shapes and designs. Want art work that also sets a mood for dinner parties? Create artistic lighting in your dining room. Looking for something whimsical and interactive for the kids? Place panels in the shape of their favorite animal on their bedroom wall. We’re not saying Nanoleaf is a necessity, but it looks pretty fun.

    2. Arlo Pro

    The HomeKit-compatible Arlo Pro is a step toward improving security in your smart home. It’s a battery-operated, wireless security camera with audio. Use the Arlo app to keep an eye on pets, kids and other activity in and around your home. The Arlo Pro is also weather-resistant, making it great for outdoor security monitoring, and comes with night vision and motion sensors.

    3. Schlage Sense™ Smart Deadbolt

    Schlage’s go-to electronic lock for those with HomeKit, the Schlage Sense Smart Deadbolt puts convenience at your fingertips and provides peace of mind. The Schlage Sense lock is compatible with HomeKit straight out of the box, at which point you can control the lock with the Apple Home app, create scenes and use Siri when you’re within Bluetooth range. To make sure the door is locked or unlock it from anywhere for trusted friends and family, all simply from your smartphone, you’ll want to connect the deadbolt with an Apple TV®, iPad® or HomePod®.

     

    Learn more about the Schlage Sense Smart Deadbolt at Schlage.com or see how to get the most out of your HomeKit-friendly lock on our blog.

    4. Eve Room Indoor Air Quality Monitor

    Air quality is a growing concern in many cities, especially if you have kids. The Eve Room Indoor Air Quality Monitor can detect volatile organic compounds – emissions that come from everything from cleaning chemicals to cooking vapors and even humans – and lets you know when to turn on an air purifier or take other steps to cleanse the air. It also detects humidity and temperature, which can affect your health. If you like the Even Room Indoor Air Quality Monitor, the company produces a number of other smart HomeKit-compatible devices, including window contact sensors and irrigation controllers.

    5. FIBARO Flood Sensor

    It’s not unreasonable to worry about flooding in the basement, but what about other areas of the home? The FIBARO Flood Sensor can also detect leaks under sinks or near the washer, and, because of its HomeKit-compatibility, it’ll send a notification when you need it most.

     

    Some of these products were reviewed on the podcast, Home: On. You can catch the full podcast at the Digital Media Zone.

     

    Smarten up your home with unique devices for every room.

    January 22, 2020 9:02 AM by emily.bailey

    Wednesday, January 22, 2020

    Smart devices for every room | Schlage

    Here are some of our favorite smart devices for every room in the house.

     

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    With some high-tech and smart gadgets, it’s obvious why you would want them in your home. But with rapid changes and the onslaught of products straight out of science fiction, there’s still plenty to be surprised about. Here are some of our favorite smart devices for every room in the house.
    Smart devices for each room in your home.

    Bedroom

    We need our bedroom for sleep and that’s why we picked the smart pillow as one of our favorite tech products for our nighttime oasis. There are several to choose from and they address a range of needs so that you and your mate can get a better night’s sleep. Some connect to an app that will report back your breathing and heart rates, while others monitor bedroom conditions like temperature and air quality, and inflate when they detect snoring.

    Kids’ bedroom

    Help your kids sleep better with a device that fends off nightmares. The Lully Sleep Guardian 2 is a pad that you slide under your child’s mattress. When it detects movement from night terrors, it vibrates softly enough to keep them peaceful but not so hard that it wakes them. You’ll get feedback via your smartphone so you can track their sleep habits and keep a journal of how severe the nightmares are when they do occur.

    Bathroom

    Smart toilets do some pretty interesting things like clean themselves, warm your backside and feet, and light up, but they’re still new enough that their price puts them out of reach for many of us. Our next pick is privacy, or switchable, glass. Ideal for bathrooms with large windows that open onto the master suite or with an outdoor shower, the glass goes from transparent to frosted at the flip of a switch. Enjoy views when you want them, privacy when you don’t.

    Kitchen

    Smart ovens, refrigerators and even microwaves are top of mind when talking high-tech cuisine. For something a bit more modest (and maybe ideal as a gift for a loved one), we like Drop Scale. Along with the Drop App, you can receive recipes tailored to your cooking skill level and preferences, sync it to your smart appliances and get substitution suggestions when you realize you’re short an ingredient.

    Living room

    Your honey is sleeping on your shoulder or the cat is on your lap, and you want to turn the ceiling fan on. With a smart overhead fan, you can without disturbing anyone. The Haiku L from Big Ass Fans can be controlled via a remote, smartphone app or voice command. You might end up wanting one for your bedroom, too.

    Home office

    Writing in notebooks just became new-school again. Whether you have a home-based business or work remotely, you can use smart pads to jot down ideas and send them directly to the cloud through a smartphone or other device. One like the Rocketbook Wave is reusable. Just erase by popping it in the microwave.

    Laundry

    Sadly, the clothes-folding robot is not yet available. So in the meantime, we’ll go with a smart leak detector. Regardless of whether your washer and dryer are also smart, the FIBARO Flood Sensor will notify you if it detects water on the floor.

    Garage

    Once you’ve installed a smart garage door opener, expand your horizons to the smart bike lift. This one from Garage Smart holds multiple bikes that you can raise and lower from ceiling-mounted hooks using nothing but your smartphone. It helps to keep your bikes safe and your garage clean and organized.

    Entryway

    We know it’s obvious, but we honestly can’t think of a better smart device for your front door than a smart lock. Improve home security when there are no spare keys to lose. Gain peace of mind by being able to lock and unlock your door remotely through a smartphone app. Add convenience when you know trusted friends and family can come and go as they please by using an access code. It’s great for overnight holiday guests and everyday life.

     

    Schlage offers a variety of smart locks depending on your lifestyle and preferred technology. Find the right lock for you and your family with our Get Help Deciding Tool.

    Backyard

    Whether you want internet outside for backyard parties or need it for better connectivity with security cameras, garage door openers or smart irrigation, a WiFi extender can save you a lot of headaches. With a range of weather-resistant options available, CNET.com walks you through other considerations like choosing one that’s compatible with your router.

     

    Smart homes go beyond lighting, thermostats and smart speakers. The trick is to find the devices that best complement your lifestyle and add the greatest levels of convenience and security. For more smart home tips and ideas, visit the Technology archives at the Schlage blog.

     

    What you can do with Schlage smart locks and Google Assistant.

    January 14, 2020 9:02 AM by emily.bailey

    Tuesday, January 14, 2020

    Google Home Mini

    Connecting your devices to a Google Assistant hub has all kinds of benefits, both fun and practical, so why not consider making one of those devices a Schlage smart lock?

     

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    Voice commands, like those you give Google Assistant, are loved by many. You can control electronics without having to get out of bed. You can turn things on and off when your hands are full. In an emergency, you can often call for help even if you can’t reach the phone. Connecting your devices to a Google Assistant hub has all kinds of benefits, both fun and practical, so why not consider making one of those devices a Schlage smart lock?
    Google Home mini

    Which Schlage smart locks work with Google Assistant?

    Google Assistant is compatible with the Schlage Encode™ Smart WiFi Deadbolt, Schlage Sense™ Smart Deadbolt and Schlage Connect™ Smart Deadbolt with Z-Wave Plus.

     

    The Schlage Encode deadbolt, because it has built-in WiFi does not need a smart home hub or adapter to work with Google Assistant. However, to pair the Schlage Sense lock with your Google Assistant-enabled device, you will need the Schlage Sense™ WiFi Adapter. If you have the Schlage Connect deadbolt, you will need to sync it with your Nexia Home hub for Google Assistant capabilities.

    What app do I need to control my Schlage smart lock with Google Assistant?

    For all three Schlage locks, you will need to have the Google Home app on your smartphone to sync devices and to add your lock to Google routines. To take advantage of other features like creating and managing access codes remotely or viewing the access history log, you will still use other apps like the Schlage Home app for Schlage Sense and Schlage Encode locks, or the Nexia app for the Schlage Connect lock. Visit our smart locks overview pages for more details on the specific features available.

    What can I ask Google Assistant to do with my Schlage smart lock?

    There are currently two voice commands that allow you to control your Schlage smart lock via Google Assistant. “OK Google, is my door locked?” lets you check the status of your deadbolt. This is particularly handy when lying in bed, cozy with a cat on your lap and you can’t remember if you locked up before turning in.

     

    If you did forget, you still don’t have to disturb Fluffy. “OK Google, lock my door” will secure the deadbolt for you.

    Can I include my Schlage smart lock in a Google routine?

    With Google Assistant, you can create routines that allow you to trigger multiple actions with a single command. For example, “OK Google, go on vacation” can turn off the lights, adjust the thermostat, lock your Schlage smart deadbolt and take care of many other tasks before you hit the road. Unlocking is not supported in Google Routines.

     

    Learn more about Schlage’s smart locks and the home automation systems they’re compatible with at Schlage.com.

     

    8 robots you’ll want to bring home in 2020.

    January 9, 2020 9:02 AM by emily.bailey

    Thursday, January 9, 2020

    Home robots | Schlage

    This might not quite be the year that we see full-sized humanoid robots, but there is plenty of other artificial intelligence for the home that could make daily life easier, safer and more fun.

     

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    With a new year comes exciting possibilities, especially when you’re talking technology. And in 2020, it will be impossible to talk technology without bringing up robots for the smart home. This might not quite be the year that we see full-sized humanoid robots, but there is plenty of other artificial intelligence for the home that could make daily life easier, safer and more fun.
    Roomba in living room.

    Robots “maid” for you

    In a recent poll, more than 70 percent of people said their homes would be cleaner if they had robots to do their chores. Luckily, we already have access to robots that will help with some of our chores. Here are some of our favorites.

    iRobot Bravva Jet 240

    iRobot Bravva jet 240

    Vacuuming can be a never-ending task, especially if you have pets. Robotic vacuums have been making the chore easier for several years now. For those ready to take it to the next level, you’ll see more mopping robots to help tackle more floor – and dirt – types. You’ll definitely want one for those hard-to-reach spaces like around toilets.

    Gladwell Gecko Robot Window Cleaner

    This robot will do the dirty work whether you have expanses of windows or very tall ones like those that span multiple stories in an entryway. No more hauling in a ladder and perching on it perilously or paying someone to clean your windows for you. Suction keeps it attached to the window, while AI helps determine where the windows’ edges are and makes sure all of the glass gets a good scrubbing.

    Worx Landroid robotic mower

    Using much the same technology as robotic vacuums, this robotic lawnmower trims your grass while you stay cool inside or focus on other activities like playing with the kids. The Worx Landroid also has rain sensors that will send it back to the docking station when the weather turns, as well as security features like a pin number to start operation and alerts if it strays from your yard.

    Artificial intelligence, true companionship

    Yes, many people have a fear of robots. While they’re always trying to take over the world in movies, robots can actually bring us all closer together in real life. We already ask Alexa to tell us jokes. We say, “Hey Google, text Mom.” Experts expect 29 percent growth in the market for “social robots” annually over the next few years, so it’s not a far leap to think that some of these companionable robots will soon take up residence in our homes.

    Kids holding BOCCO emo communications robot

    BOCCO emo

    More popular today in Japan, BOCCO is a communication robot that helps send text and voice messages, even if someone is too young for, or otherwise unable to use, a smartphone. Kids can talk to the robot, which will then send you a text with their message, or you can send a message from your phone for BOCCO to deliver to the kids. It’s continuously being developed, so compatibility with other devices in the Internet of Things is on the rise, making it a robot to keep an eye on in the upcoming year. Also, he’s super cute.

    Miko 2

    This adorable little robot can hear, speak and relate to your child using a variety of speakers, algorithms and cues from your child. Miko 2 is also programmed to help them learn, providing knowledge and skills that are right for their age and that you can control. As more research finds that robots can get kids excited about reading, devices like this one will become increasingly popular.

    Walabot HOME fall detecting robot panel set up in bathroom

    Walabot HOME

    Falls are a concern for many, but this robot can help remove some of the worries. Walabot HOME uses radio frequency to tell if someone in the room has fallen. Then, even if they’re conscious, the device will contact a caregiver. It works anywhere in the home but is especially popular in bathrooms both because falls so often happen in that space and because Walabot HOME does not use cameras. There are also no wearables or buttons that need to be pressed to send an alert.

    Robots on the rise … we hope

    Maybe they aren’t real yet and maybe no one knows what exactly they’re capable of, but it’s fun to dream about how some of these space-age robots could improve our daily lives.

    XR-1 Cloud Robot

    Described as a “coffee-serving humanoid machine,” this robot uses 5G connectivity. It’s still under development, but that 5G is what CloudMinds, the company that makes XR-1, says is going to make it revolutionary. Because of the faster connection, the robot will be able to respond to our commands with almost no lag time. Eventually, it could help with household chores and more.

    SpotMini

    This robotic dog is a spinoff of Boston Dynamics’ original Spot. While Spot is better suited for construction and public safety uses, they anticipate SpotMini to be of greater use in homes. It already has figured out how to help with dishes and open doors. What sets SpotMini apart from other household chore robots is that it operates on four legs rather than wheels. That opens possibilities for assisting on uneven ground and stairways.

    Whether for yourself or loved ones, technology can have a lasting and positive impact on lives. Find technology-related gift ideas on our gift giving guide, or learn more about Schlage smart locks work with the technology you already have on our blog.

    Top home robots of 2020.

     

    How to pair your Schlage smart lock with your new smart device.

    December 27, 2019 9:02 AM by emily.bailey

    Friday, December 27, 2019

    Schlage smart locks | Schlage

    So, you received a new smart home device for Christmas? Here’s a list of resources to help you get connected with your Schlage smart lock quickly and easily.

     

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    We know a deadbolt might be a bit of a strange Christmas gift. But we also know it happens (and we thank you). More likely, perhaps, you got a new smart home hub like Samsung SmartThings, Wink, Apple HomeKit™ or Nexia for the holidays. Maybe it’s a new voice control assistant like Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant that you want to sync with your Schlage smart lock. Here’s a list of resources to help you get connected quickly and easily.

     

    Before you can sync your devices, make sure the lock is properly installed on your door and that you have the smartphone app that coincides with your hub and lock. You may need to create an account and complete some initial start-up steps via the app before pairing your devices. Find step-by-step interactive installation instructions for the Schlage Encode, Schlage Connect and Schlage Sense deadbolts online.

     

    Now let’s get connected.

    Schlage smart locks.

    Samsung SmartThings

    Why pair SmartThings with the Schlage Connect™ Smart Deadbolt?

     

    • Let in trusted friends and family or secure the deadbolt if you forgot by locking and unlocking your door from anywhere using the SmartThings app

    • Gain peace of mind by checking the status of your lock from your smartphone

    • Get app alerts when a user code is entered so you know who is coming and going from your home

    • More advanced features with the Schlage Connect lock with Z-Wave Plus

    To pair your Schlage Connect Smart Deadbolt with Samsung SmartThings, open the SmartThings app on your mobile device and tap on Home. Under Things, choose Add a Thing and follow the directions in the app. At the end of enrollment, a green light on your lock indicates success.

    Wink

    Why pair Wink with the Schlage Connect Smart Deadbolt - Z-Wave Plus?

     

    • Let in trusted friends and family or secure the deadbolt if you forgot by locking and unlocking your door from anywhere using the Wink app

    • Add and delete user codes at any time and from anywhere via the Wink app, like when you need to give access to a trusted friend while you’re stuck at work

    • Check the battery level via the Wink app

    • Create convenient shortcuts and more advanced features

    To sync your Schlage Connect Smart Deadbolt with Z-Wave Plus to your Wink hub, open the Wink app on your mobile device and follow the app’s instructions. When you have successfully connected your devices, you will see a flashing green check mark on the lock. The Wink app will also indicate that it has found the lock.

    Nexia

    Why pair Nexia with the Schlage Connect Smart Deadbolt - Z-Wave Plus?

     

    • Let in trusted friends and family or secure the deadbolt if you forgot by locking and unlocking your door from anywhere using a compatible app

    • Add and delete user codes at any time and from anywhere from your mobile device, like when you need to give access to a trusted friend while you’re stuck at work

    • Check the battery level via the Wink app

    • Get app alerts when a user code is entered

    • Use Google Assistant to control your Schlage Connect lock with voice commands

    Get step-by-step instructions for how to add your Z-Wave Schlage Connect Smart Deadbolt to your Nexia Bridge.

    Apple TV®, iPad® or HomePod

    The Schlage Sense™ Smart Deadbolt is compatible with a variety of Apple® devices, including Apple TV, iPad and Homepod. Why pair one of these devices with the Schlage Sense lock and Bluetooth technology?

     

    • Control your lock and manage settings from anywhere with the Schlage Home app and one of the Apple devices above, which can give you greater convenience and security

    • Allow your lock to work in tandem with other Apple HomeKit™-enabled devices in your home through the Apple Home app

    • Use Siri® to lock and unlock your door for hands-free convenience

    • Receive notifications when the lock is used so you know who is coming and going from your home when the lock is connected to the Apple device or within Bluetooth range

    To set up remote connectivity with Apple HomeKit using a compatible Apple TV, iPad or HomePod, open the Schlage Home app on your iOS device and choose “Continue with HomeKit.” Once you’ve chosen the “Continue with HomeKit” option, follow the instructions provided in the Schlage Home app.

    Voice Assistants

    Don’t forget that you can use voice assistants with your smart deadbolts, too. In most cases, you’ll need to use one of the smart hubs above to take advantage of the compatibility between your lock and Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant or Siri.

    Amazon Alexa

    Because of its built-in WiFi, you don’t need a smart hub to connect your Schlage Encode™ Smart WiFi Deadbolt with an Alexa-enabled device. To start using your Schlage Encode lock with Alexa, access the Alexa app on your smartphone, choose the Schlage Home skill and follow the instructions in the app.

     

    If you have the Schlage Sense Smart Deadbolt, all you need is the Schlage Sense™ WiFi Adapter to use Alexa. Find instructions here.

     

    If you have the Schlage Connect Smart Deadbolt with Zigbee technology, you’ll need Amazon Key, Echo Plus or Samsung SmartThings. Use the links below for instructions on how to connect your Schlage Connect deadbolt with Zigbee to Alexa.

     

    Samsung SmartThings is also compatible with Schlage Connect Deadbolt with Z-Wave Plus technology, as are Wink and Nexia. Use the links below for instructions on how to connect your Schlage Connect deadbolt with Z-Wave Plus to Alexa.

     

    Google Assistant

    To pair Google Assistant with your Schlage Encode Smart WiFi Deadbolt, follow these instructions.

     

    If you’re a Google Assistant user and have the Schlage Sense deadbolt, make sure you have the Schlage Sense WiFi Adapter to take advantage of voice control capabilities. Find instructions here.

     

    With Schlage Connect Smart Deadbolt with Z-Wave Plus, you’ll need Nexia to access voice control through Google Assistant. Find instructions here.

    If you’re still considering which lock is right for you, try our Get Help Deciding Tool. You can also learn more about all of Schlage’s smart locks and find additional partners like Ring that help you get the most from your deadbolt every day at Schlage.com.

     

    50 holiday Alexa commands that will make the season bright.

    December 19, 2019 9:02 AM by emily.bailey

    Thursday, December 19, 2019

    Amazon Alexa speaker | Schlage

    We guarantee these questions to ask Alexa will make you want to laugh, hang more tinsel and ask, “Why didn’t I try this earlier?”

     

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    When you don’t have a private secretary to handle all your holiday engagements, a voice assistant might be the next best thing. Here’s a list of our 50 favorite Amazon Alexa commands. We guarantee these questions to ask Alexa will make you want to laugh, hang more tinsel and ask, “Why didn’t I try this earlier?”

     

    Before we get started, note that some of these commands require you to activate Alexa Skills, to have a certain version of Echo such as the Echo Show or to pair your Echo with a compatible device or appliance first.

    Amazon Echo speaker by Christmas tree.

    Food and cooking

    1. Alexa, set the timer for 30 minutes. (Learn how to set multiple timers for holiday meal multitasking at CNET.)

     

    2. Alexa, how do you make gingerbread cookies?

     

    3. Alexa, how many teaspoons are in a tablespoon?

     

    4. Alexa, ask Sub It about molasses. (For when you need to know ingredient substitutions.)

     

    5. Alexa, how many calories are in latkes?

     

    6. Alexa, open Wine Finder. (Great when you aren’t sure about the wine pairings.)

     

    7. Alexa, ask The Bartender how to make a peppermint martini.

     

    8. Alexa, ask Save the Food how to store leftover Christmas pudding.

    Entertainment

    9. Alexa, track Santa.

     

    10. Alexa, play holiday music.

     

    11. Alexa, search for “Charlie Brown Christmas” on Fire TV.

     

    12. Alexa, spin the dreidel.

     

    13. Alexa, ask Santa Claus if I’m naughty or nice.

     

    14. Alexa, ask Elf Names to elf me.

     

    15. Alexa, tell me a snowman joke.

     

    16. Alexa, is “Die Hard” a Christmas movie? (Maybe we’ll finally get an answer!)

     

    17. Alexa, play a trivia game. (For festive family fun.)

     

    18. Alexa, what can you tell me about Santa’s reindeer?

    Home and security management

    19. Alexa, lock the door.

     

    20. Alexa, close my garage.

     

    21. Alexa, run Burglar Deterrent. (Make it sound like your home is occupied while you’re away.)

     

    22. Alexa, turn on the lights.

     

    23. Alexa, dim the lights. (Set the mood for an intimate holiday gathering.)

     

    24. Alexa, set the temperature to 72.

     

    25. Alexa, arm Ring.

     

    26. Alexa, how do I get wine stains out of carpet?

    Shopping and gift giving

    27. Alexa, reorder toilet paper.

     

    28. Alexa, what are today’s deals?

     

    29. Alexa, track my package.

     

    30. Alexa, create a gift list.

     

    31. Alexa, shop for kids’ stocking stuffers.

     

    32. Alexa, make a donation to the Red Cross.

    Staying organized

    33. Alexa, what reminders do I have tomorrow? (Because your holiday schedule can get hectic.)

     

    34. Alexa, remind me to call Aunt Linda today.

     

    35. Alexa, what time is it in France? (For when you’re wishing someone a long-distance joyeux Noël.)

     

    36. Alexa, ask KAYAK to track Delta 1119. (So you know when out-of-town visitors will arrive.)

     

    37. Alexa, what’s the weather?

     

    38. Alexa, will it snow on Christmas Day?

     

    39. Alexa, what’s the traffic like? (Know what that holiday traffic will be.)

     

    40. Alexa, find the business hours for the post office/pharmacy/grocery store.

     

    41. Alexa, help me relax.

     

    42. Alexa, open Calm My Dog. (Because sometimes Spot gets holiday stress, too.)

    Getting in the seasonal spirit

    43. Alexa, turn on Christmas tree lights.

     

    44. Alexa, send a holiday card. (Great for last-minute e-cards.)

     

    45. Alexa, open Christmas Kindness. (For tips on completing random act of kindness.)

     

    46. Alexa, ask Jewish Blessings for the blessing on Hanukkah.

     

    47. Alexa, ask Menorah Aid how many candles I should light tonight.

     

    48. Alexa, wake me up at 6 a.m. to “Jingle Bells.” (Join the kids for presents already in a jolly mood.)

     

    49. Alexa, get me a ride on Uber. (For when things get a little too festive.)

     

    50. Alexa, Drop In on the living room. (For when you want to use Alexa like an intercom.)

    We think you’ll find these things to ask Alexa will make your holiday merry and bright thanks to the added convenience and fun they deliver. For more tips on building a smart home, visit the Schlage blog Technology archive. If you’re looking for inspiration to get you in the seasonal spirit, find us on Pinterest and Instagram.

     

    50 Holiday Alexa Commands

     

    Give Santa his own code the night before Christmas.

    December 16, 2019 5:15 AM by emily.bailey

    Monday, December 16, 2019

    How Schlage saved Christmas storybook

    How Schlage gave Santa an easier way in and saved Christmas.

     

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    Red book titled How Schlage Saved Christmas

    ‘Twas the night before Christmas when all through the house, not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse; the stockings were hung by the chimney with care, in hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there. The children were nestled all snug in their beds, while visions of sugarplums danced in their heads; and mamma in her kerchief, and I in my cap, wishing I could settle in for a long winter nap.

     

    But sadly I knew someone must wait up to open the door, let St. Nick in and prepare for presents galore. So I sat by the entryway with spare key in hand, trying not to doze while I waited for the man. Before long my eyes became heavy, my chin fell to my chest and my breathing went steady.

     

    Then I awoke with a start and with the sun pouring in, the children rushed to the tree to open their presents; they couldn’t wait to begin. It didn’t take long before everyone saw, a distinct lack of packages stacked ‘round the skirt. “You didn’t let him in,” scowled mamma, looking hurt. She spoke not another word, but went straight to work, and filled all the stockings with socks and underwear; I felt like a jerk.

    Kid pouting next to Christmas tree.

    My glance dropped to the floor as my kids began to whimper, when from the corner of my eye I caught a slight glimmer. The spare key I’d grasped now laid on the ground; I’d meant to give it to Santa last night when he came around. I knew then and there, this would never happen again, never would St. Nick be unable to get in.

     

    I rushed to the store a day later, and made a dash for the lock aisle; my path couldn’t be straighter. The options were plenty but I knew a smart lock with multiple access codes was what I needed; I’d give a code to Santa so my kids wouldn’t feel cheated.

     

    So I picked up a Schlage and grinned from ear to ear, I was getting remote access and security, even when I wasn’t here. I could program the lock and control it with my phone. Then I’d give unique codes to my kids to let them in after school, even when they were alone. Our pet sitter could use their code to check on our dalmatian, and the neighbors could water the plants when we go on vacation.

    Letter to Santa with smart lock access code.

    I paid for my new smart lock at the counter with glee, and knew that mamma would be happy again with me. I delayed not a moment when I arrived home with pride; I installed the lock in minutes then sent a letter to Santa full of yuletide. I included an access number, one of his own, and now while we slumber, he can enter the home. Not 1225, that’s too easy to guess, so I programmed 54636377, the numbers for KINDNESS. I closed my letter with a humbling plea, bring a dolly for Molly and a bike for Mike, and mamma would like a new set of skis. As for me, I’ve got all I need – peace of mind and home security.

     

    When the night before Christmas rolls around in a year, I’ll join my family in revelry knowing there’s nothing to fear. I can just see it now: as I lay in bed welcoming sleep, St. Nick in his sleigh driven by his reindeer fleet. He’ll give his team a whistle, and away they’ll fly like the down of a thistle. And I’ll hear him exclaim, ere he drives out of sight, “Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night!”

     

    Sharing access is easier than ever with Schlage smart locks.

    December 2, 2019 9:02 AM by emily.bailey

    Monday, December 2, 2019

    Sharing access just got easier with the Schlage Sense™ Smart Deadbolt

    Sharing access with your smart lock is much safer and more secure than hiding or copying keys. Here's how to do it.

     

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    Every home is as unique as the family that lives in it. That’s why Schlage continues to offer a variety of ways to protect and allow access to your house. With smart locks that work with different types of technology and plenty of options for remote access, our goal of creating innovative security solutions just for you is now a reality

     

    Thanks to smart locks, sharing access with unique user codes or virtual keys is much safer and more secure than hiding or copying keys. You may even save money – and time by never having to head to the hardware store to copy a key again. No more headaches trying to keep track of the keys you’ve handed out or worrying when one is lost or stolen, and no more keys weighing you down on your morning run. Adding an electronic lock to your home is definitely a lifestyle change – for the better.

    Smart lock - Access codes - Virtual keys - Schlage Sense

    Easy access for everyone

    The Schlage Encode™ Smart WiFi Deadbolt and Schlage Sense™ Smart Deadbolt hold multiple unique access codes that are entered on the lock’s touchscreen. This lets you create a personalized code for each trusted individual – friends, family or service providers – you’d like to allow into your home, even if they don’t have a smartphone. That means Mom, Dad and the babysitter can all have their own codes.

     

    The Schlage® Home app makes it easy for you to add codes for your Schlage Encode and Schlage Sense deadbolts in just a few taps. Keeping track of codes is simple because you can name each one according to who it was shared with. (Please note that the Schlage Home app is not compatible with the Schlage Connect™ Smart Deadbolt.)

    To add new user codes through the Schlage Home app:

    Schlage Home app lock status screen.

     

    Tap the “Users” icon in the bottom right of the screen.

    Under the “Access Codes” tab, tap the “+” in the upper right of the screen.

     

    Schlage Home app access codes screen.

    Enter a name and digits for the access code. Choose between granting “Always” or schedule the code for a specific time period. Keep reading for more tips on scheduling codes.

     

    Schlage Home app adding new access code setup screen.

    Tap “Save” in the upper right corner to save the code. You’ll then be prompted with the option to share the new access code with your guest through text or email.

    Custom schedules

    The Schlage Home app gives you even more control over access sharing by allowing you to set schedules so each code will only work when you want it to. For example, if you want the babysitter to be able to use her code to enter your home only on Tuesday and Thursday afternoons, you can do that. The rest of the week, the code won’t work.

     

    It’s also easy to delete codes with the app when you no longer need them – much easier than tracking down a spare key or re-keying your lock because a spare has been lost or stolen.

     

    Here's how to schedule access codes for your Schlage Encode or Schlage Sense locks:

    Schlage Home app lock status screen.

     

    Tap the “Users” icon in the bottom right of the screen. Select an access code to manage or create a new one by tapping the “+” in the upper right of the screen.

    Schlage Home app access codes screen.

    To change the access schedule, tap “Schedule.”

     

    Schlage Home app schedule access codes screen.

    Choose between “Always,” “Recurring” or “Temporary.”*

     

    * Note that if you have a Schlage Sense lock, you cannot set a "Temporary" schedule. This feature is only available with the Schlage Encode lock.

     

    Schlage Home app access code schedule types screen.

    For recurring schedules, simply tap the day of the week you want to deactivate. Active days will remain blue. You can then set a timeframe.
    Schlage Home app setting up recurring access codes screen.
    Schlage Home app setting up recurring access codes screen.

    If you need that same code to also be active during a different time on another day – say, Wednesdays from 12 to 2 p.m. as well as Saturday through Monday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. – tap “Add another schedule” and repeat the steps directly above.

     

    Schlage Home app creating recurring access code schedules screen.

    Temporary access codes (available only with the Schlage Encode lock) can be scheduled for a range of days, like for a week beginning Dec. 2, or for a specific timeframe on a single day, such as from 2 to 5 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 5.

     

    Schlage Home app setting up temporary access codes screen.

     

    Once finished, tap the “<” on the top left of the screen, then “Save” on the top right.

    Virtual keys

    If your guest has a smartphone, you can send them a virtual key through the cloud from wherever you are – even if you don’t have the lock set up for remote access Virtual keys are like electronic credentials. Your guest will receive a secure link that expires within 24 hours and leads them to the Schlage Home app where their virtual key is accepted. When they arrive at the door with their Bluetooth®-enabled smartphone, the lock will recognize their secure credentials and allow access. Thanks to the Bluetooth connection between the lock and their phone, they’ll be able to unlock the door right then and there using the Schlage Home app.

     

    *It's important to note that virtual keys will not work with Schlage Sense locks set up using the Apple HomeKit™ option. If you'd like to take advantage of virtual keys, you will need to reset your lock to factory settings and re-pair it using the Schlage system setup. See our FAQs for Schlage Sense for more information.

    Here's how to send virtual keys:
     

    Schlage Home app lock status screen.

     

    Open the app and select which lock you would like to send the invite for. Tap the “Users” icon on the bottom right of the screen.

    Schlage Home app access code virtual keys screen.

     

    Tap “Virtual Keys.” on the bottom right of the screen. You will then be able to edit existing virtual keys or add a new virtual key by tapping the “+” in the top right of the screen.

    Schlage Home app creating virtual keys screen.

     

    Enter name of invited user and indicate whether you’d like to provide Admin access or Guest access (recommended).

     

    You will then be prompted to select a method, such as email or text, to send the invite. The invitation will be available for 24 hours before it expires. When the user is near the lock with Bluetooth turned on, they will be able to use the Schlage Home app on their smartphone to lock or unlock the deadbolt.

    The great thing about each of these features is that they aren’t just convenient. They also offer you peace of mind when it comes to protecting your home, your possessions and, most importantly, your family.

     

    Questions or comments about Schlage smart locks? Ask away on Facebook or Twitter.
     

    The ultimate Black Friday smart home wish list.

    November 15, 2019 11:51 AM by emily.bailey

    Tuesday, November 19, 2019

    Black Friday smart home wish list | Schlage

    Find home security gifts and smart home gadgets that will surprise the tech guru in your life. Prep for Black Friday with these Amazon Alexa compatible gifts.

     

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    It’s time to start planning for Black Friday already?! Smart home gadgets could be the answer for that special someone who’s particularly hard to shop for. Especially if the recipient is a fan of Alexa, here are a few home security gift ideas worth getting up early for.

     

    One of the things we love about this list, other than the fact that it shows how to take advantage of Black Friday, is that you can go all-in or pick and choose only what you need. With the right Alexa-enabled devices – think smart plugs and smart locks – along with Alexa Guard, you can create a customized home security system for you or your loved one.

    Amazon Echo and Schlage Connect smart deadbolt on front door.

    What is Alexa Guard?

    This free feature has gradually rolled out to Alexa users in 2018 and is now available throughout the U.S. To summarize, Alexa Guard allows you to say, “Alexa, I’m leaving,” and she will go into Guard mode. She’ll start listening for the sound of breaking glass and smoke or carbon monoxide detectors and alert you via your smartphone if she hears something. Guard mode can also manipulate your lights to make it appear that someone is home as well as arm your Ring or ADT alarms.

     

    If your gift recipient already has the gear to enable this service, well … you just saved a bundle. We bet they’d still appreciate your help setting up the feature. If not, keep reading for the home tech gifts that will make this a reality.

    Which Echo is compatible with Alexa?

    To set up Alexa Guard and opt in to Smart Alerts, you’ll need a compatible Echo device. This includes the Echo Dot, Echo Plus and Echo Show as well as a few others. Find the complete list in Amazon’s Frequently Asked Questions.

     

    Consider the need for additional Echo devices if your loved one wants to use Guard to detect glass breaking or smoke alarms. The closer the device is to these points they want to monitor, the more effective it will be. They might appreciate an Echo Show in the living room and an Echo Dot for each bedroom, for example.

    How can I control the lights with Alexa Guard?

    When you tell Alexa you’re leaving, Guard mode will turn lights on and off to fool potential thieves thinking about breaking in. It’s not random though. Alexa uses machine learning to figure out the lighting pattern most appropriate for homes like yours, so it knows which lights to affect. You can also choose which lights to include in the Guard mode settings.

     

    To enable this feature, get your loved one smart lights or lights connected to smart plugs that are Works with Alexa-certified.

    What smart locks work with Alexa?

    While they aren’t yet a part of Alexa Guard mode, Schlage smart locks are compatible with Alexa-enabled devices. We especially love pairing the Schlage Encode™ Smart WiFi Deadbolt with these devices. Why? Because as the only Schlage smart lock with built-in WiFi, the Schlage Encode deadbolt does not require any additional hubs or adapters to connect with the internet or your Echo. Simply follow the directions in the Alexa app, then use voice commands – “Alexa, is my door locked?” and “Alexa, lock the front door” – to check the status of your lock and secure the door.

    What cameras work with Alexa?

    Security cameras and video doorbells are becoming increasingly popular ways to help protect the home. The Ring Stick Up Cam is an indoor/outdoor camera that works with Alexa. When you also have an Echo Show or Spot, you can use the Stick Up Cam to see and talk to a visitor before ever heading to the door. And because it’s one of many cameras made by Ring, you can make it a part of your overall ring of security.

    What are Alexa Hunches?

    Separate from Alexa Guard, Hunches can also help improve home security. With Hunches, Alexa can remind you if it seems you are forgetting something. She won’t randomly talk to or nag you, but if you say, “Alexa, goodnight,” she can suggest that you lock your door. And because you can use Alexa to lock your Schlage smart lock for you, you don’t even have to get out of bed if you did forget. That’s a double-win for both you and Alexa.

     

    We hope you like the sound of these smart home gifts as much as we do. You can learn more about the Schlage Encode Smart WiFi Deadbolt and find out where to buy one at Schlage.com/encode. If you aren’t sure that’s the perfect lock for your gift recipient, try our Get Help Deciding Tool. Remember that Alexa works with the Schlage Sense™ Smart Deadbolt and Schlage Connect™ Smart Deadbolt as well.

     

    And don’t be shy. Go ahead and put these gadgets on your own holiday wish list, too.

     

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