Review: Nuki Smart Lock 2.0 – A smart door lock, that seems an obvious choice if you want a smart home. It offers a lot of options that you do not have with a normal lock, but is all that handy? We test the Nuki Smart Lock 2.0.
Nuki Smart Lock 2.0
Although the Nuki adapter still looks the same, the internal key adapter has now been adapted so that it not only fits on Euro profile cylinders and Swiss round profile cylinders, but also works on knob cylinders and oval cylinders. The chance that the Nuki will fit on your door is therefore very high.
Internally, the Nuki 2.0 now works with Bluetooth 5.0, which ensures a more stable connection and longer range. In addition, you can now assign up to 200 access rights. Finally, you can now integrate the smart lock with Apple HomeKit, so that you can control it with Siri and the Apple Home App.
But the most important changes are the addition of a door sensor and a keypad. With the door sensor you can see at a glance whether your door is open. The keypad is a new way to open the door. You enter a six-digit code and you’re done. In addition, the ‘Fob’ still exists, a compact key ring with which you open or close the door with one push, so an electronic key. The ‘Fob’ has been renewed and is now a bit slimmer.
The Nuki Smart Lock 2.0 combo with bridge currently has a suggested retail price of 299 euros. If you buy the lock without a bridge, you pay 229 euros. The Fob and Keypad must be purchased separately for 39 euros and 79 euros respectively.
Before you consider a purchase, it is best to go through the installation check . This way you know for sure whether the Nuki fits on your door. The key adapter has not changed externally compared to the first version. Anyone who has a knob cylinder on the inside can order a free adapter. The Nuki remains a sturdy black box with a silver cylinder and white LED rings. The editing is also unchanged. It comes with two mounting plates.
Our Nuki was also attached with the self-adhesive tape, which seems very sturdy. The entrance hall can get very hot (during our test there was a heat wave for a week), and the confirmation was not affected. Of course we cannot guarantee whether this will still be the case after a few years. Maybe Nuki should also provide a guideline for mechanical connections for people who wish to do so.
Can you still open the lock with the key on the outside once the Nuki has been mounted? That depends on your cylinder. You will be informed of this during the installation check, and we will again make that consideration during our own installation. After all, our lock does not work if there is a key on the inside! Keep that in mind. If you only rely on your smartphone and come home with an empty battery, you will be in front of a closed door, even if you have hidden a backup key.
The Nuki bridge
Strictly speaking, a bridge is not necessary, you only operate the Nuki via Bluetooth. But the bridge does bring a lot of useful functions. Especially the possibility to open or distance is a real added value. Moreover, you can also manage the lock and view the logs remotely. You can find a full list below.
Installation of the Bridge is simple: plug it into a power outlet and configure using the app. The bridge must be no further than five meters from the lock. In our case, that was only possible if we plugged the bridge into the socket in an adjacent room. Configuration then went wrong about four times because the bridge could not find the lock. Persistence wins, however, on a fifth attempt it succeeded. After that, the bridge never caused any problems, so if it doesn’t work during the installation, don’t panic.
Use: the smartphone app
The smartphone app is essential during installation, but not during use if, for example, you choose fobs or a keypad (see below). The Nuki app remains the place where you do all further configuration, unless you also have a bridge. In that case you can also configure via the web.
Our main complaint has to do with rights management. That should be clearer and more extensive. Now management functions, registration and management of users are protected behind a pin code. So there are only two types of users: people with and people without a pin code. There are several problems with that. For example, you cannot grant specific rights: for example, someone who can only create users but cannot adjust smart lock settings.
Once you have used the pin code on another smartphone, and you have ticked the ‘save pin code’ checkbox, that person will retain access. You cannot just revoke those rights. You can of course delete the user and create a new one, or change the pin code, but you should actually be able to check and uncheck these things in the user management.
When someone adds a user or changes settings, you will not be notified. Someone who doesn’t have the PIN should see a much simpler app. Now he can click on management functions, but then he is confronted with the request for a pin code. Sooner or later that will lead to confusion.
Door sensor: open or closed?
A new addition to the Nuki lock is the door sensor. It is a tiny metal plate, with adhesive tape, that you should stick nicely next to the Nuki Adapter on the door jamb, not on the door itself (of course). Then you go through a short calibration procedure, and you’re done. You can also choose to include the door sensor activity in the logs.
The door sensor was surprisingly accurate, even when the door is barely open (as in the photo below), he registers that.
The app now knows whether the door is open or closed and can warn you about this. When you leave the house and the door is still open, you will receive a notification (of course only when you are a good 200 m from home). We also expected there would be an option to notify you if the door has been open for some time, but unfortunately. It is therefore not a tool for pure forgetfulness, it is perfectly possible to be at home for hours, with the front door open, without being warned about it.
A few times we got the message that the door sensor was blocked, while apparently nothing was wrong. In the app you go through the procedure to solve that, and a minute later everything works properly again.
The Keypad: a numerical code for everyone
You always have the smartphone at hand, but an empty battery means that you can suddenly no longer enter the house. Moreover, we do not find the smartphone app the most convenient solution. The keypad (79 euros) is an excellent addition to the Nuki range.
The compact keypad can be attached to a wall with two screws or hung with the adhesive tape next to or near the door. Then you configure the pad via the app and connect it to the Nuki Smart Lock.
You can now create six-digit codes via the Nuki app. You can also give them a name, so you can see in the log who opened the door perfectly. You can also limit them in time. Please note, time-limited codes do not disappear after use. You can change them later for reuse at a different time, but we recommend removing them for security reasons.
The keypad really seemed like one of the best solutions. You can create a remote code if someone unexpectedly arrives at the door and you want to let in. It does not require a smartphone and is therefore very easy to use.
Fob: a smart keychain
An alternative is to use the Fob (39 euros), which can also be configured in the app. This way you can give different functions to one, two or three presses. ‘No Action’ is also an option. Fobs can give you a name, so if everyone in the family wants a fob, you can still see it coming in and out. You can also limit a fob in time, for example when you want to give one to the cleaning lady.
In short, just like the keypad, the fob is very handy. In any case, the keypad seems cheaper for several users, as you can easily add codes. For the cost of two fobs you have a keypad. But not everyone likes to remember codes, and of course you can also combine all these options.
A Smart Lock is useful, that cannot be denied, but it is also safe. In any case, Nuki does a lot to make his lock as safe as possible. For example, it recently received a good report from the German AV test institute .
Lots of keys …
Nuki offers a lot of options to unlock, handy, but also potentially dangerous. Just like leaving too many keys to the front door lying around, all those options to open the door are a risk if you don’t manage them carefully. That is not a problem for Nuki, but you may not be as used to managing electronic access as carefully as your regular keys. Moreover, Nuki makes many things possible, also in terms of Smart Home integration. Each of those integrations is a potential attack vector for a hacker. Anyone who experiments in each of those things might quickly make a mistake. So keep that in mind, activate only what you need. Manage temporary accesses correctly, try to limit the number of types of access. For example, the keypad is a very handy solution,
Nuki is a very nice solution, but you have to think carefully about which functions you want exactly. We usually enter through the garage. The ‘Auto-unlock’ function is then more of a danger than a help. After all, the door is opened when it is not necessary. We think it would be safer to turn off auto-unlock anyway. Thanks to Smart Notifications you can set that you receive a notification when you get close to the lock, and whether you want to open it now. Almost hands-free, but safer. And you can also get a notification if you move away from the lock and the door is unlocked. Another problem with Smart Unlock is that every smartphone user can activate it themselves. Unlike other management actions, this action is not protected by a pin code.
Nuki works on batteries. The app will warn you when the batteries need to be replaced, but you cannot check it before then. Of course, batteries are indispensable, and to some extent unavoidable, a power wire to your lock does not seem ideal to us either. The Nuki does make some noise, personally we found that absolutely no problem, but depending on where you install it and how regularly people come in and out, it is something you should take into account.
Bluetooth pairing via the button on the smart lock should be disabled by default after installation. Now that function remains on by default, which means that other smartphones can be paired with the push of that button. Not very safe, so turn it off.
You may also want to disable the button functions immediately if the doorknob is too close to a letterbox opening or cat flap. One push of a button and the door is open. You can still manually operate the lock from the inside by turning the silver ring. That is also safer.
Nuki Smart Lock 2.0 – Conclusion
One of the advantages of the Nuki Smart Lock 2.0 is that it fits over your existing lock in almost all cases, although in many cases this is with self-adhesive tape. It turned out to be very firm during our time, even after prolonged heat. Nevertheless, we would like to see an (optional) solution for mechanical fastening. However, the smart lock works great. That you occasionally have to wait for a Bluetooth connection is a small downside. This mainly occurs when you use the smartphone, not when you use the Fob or Keypad. Our main complaint is that the app is quite complex, not for normal use, but when it comes to managing your lock. Since good management is essential for a safe environment, this really needs to be improved. At the same time, we also want more extensive and clearer management.
The Nuki turned out to be an excellent solution during our tests. Certainly combined with the Keypad and Fob. Those two completely eliminate some of the tricky hassle of getting your smartphone out. The Nuki 2.0 now also has a door sensor, so you now not only know that the door is locked, but also whether it is open or not. If you add a Bridge, the Nuki becomes completely smart. You can provide remote access, manage the lock remotely, consult the logs, in short, everything you expect from a smart lock. With the options for integration into all kinds of Smart Home environments you can go one step further. Do that step by step, so that you understand what is happening. After all, it remains your front door.
- Excellent solution, especially with Keypad and Fob
- Smart actions and notifications (Lock ‘n Go, Auto-Unlock …)
- Now also know if the door is open
- Can also be operated remotely with a bridge
- Smarthome integration
- How robust is the self-adhesive tape?
- Sometimes wait for Bluetooth connection
- App is quite complex for management
- Rights management can be more extensive and clearer