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Kevo lock up for pre-order tomorrow, starts shipping in September

Brian Heater

Amongst the seemingly endless stream of companies looking to replace your house keys, Kwikset and UniKey's Kevo system certainly seems one of the more promising options. When we had a chance to fiddle around with the device back in May, the companies didn't have much to say in terms of release schedule. Turns out you're going to have to wait until September to toss those keys in the trash -- though you can get on the list for a unit of your own tomorrow, when Kevo goes up for pre-order at $219 a pop. More info after the break.

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Recognizing that smartphones have become digital extensions of the body, with 79 percent of people ages 18 - 44 having their smartphones on them for 22 hours a day1, Kwikset®, a leading brand of the Hardware & Home Improvement (HHI) division of Spectrum Brands Holdings (NYSE:SPB), has partnered with UniKey Technologies™, Inc. (UniKey) to transform the smartphone into a key. Available for pre-order on July 30, Kevo™ is the first deadbolt intelligent enough to communicate with a smartphone and unlock with a simple touch. This technology is so convenient that the user doesn't even need to remove the smartphone from their pocket or purse when unlocking their door.

"Kevo is a game-changing door lock that uses modern technology and the convenience of touch to evolve the traditional key, something that has never been done before," said Greg Gluchowski, president, HHI.

How Kevo Works
The one-of-a-kind Bluetooth®-enabled deadbolt allows for an entirely new interface for keys, using the latest Bluetooth Low Energy™ 4.0 technology. The Kevo mobile app turns a smartphone into an electronic key (eKey) and allows the deadbolt to recognize and respond quickly to the touch of a finger, all while communicating seamlessly with the Kevo app in the background of the smartphone. For further functionality description and product benefits, please find the Kevo Fact Sheet here.

"UniKey's innovative touch-to-open system creates a platform for how we will interact with locks in the future," said Phil Dumas, president, UniKey. "By uniquely combining existing mobile and Bluetooth technologies, we're bringing your front door into the digital age without compromising the look or security of the lock."

With Kwikset's long-time leadership in residential door lock security and UniKey's expertise in secured authentication technology, Kevo is engineered for both maximum security and technology performance. Kevo includes UniKey's patent-pending intelligent positioning technology that detects whether an authorized user is inside or outside of the home before granting access to prevent unauthorized entry. Kevo also uses multiple levels of encryption to increase digital security, and is tested to some of the most stringent lock picking and physical security standards. The lock contains Kwikset's patented SmartKey® re-key technology, which provides superior security and re-key convenience unlike any other smart lock on the market.

Kevo is compatible with smartphones that support Bluetooth Smart Ready/Bluetooth 4.0 and have the Kevo mobile app installed. The app is currently available for iPhone® 4S and 5, as well as the fifth generation iPod® touch, third generation or higher iPad® and iPad mini. The app will become available for additional devices, pending software upgrades to support Bluetooth Smart Ready/Bluetooth 4.0. Development of the App for Android and Blackberry is currently underway.

"The launch is representative of our commitment to taking Spectrum Brands' hardware offerings to the next level of smart home technologies," said David Lumley, chief executive officer, Spectrum Brands Holdings. "We are pushing the envelope by investing in leading innovations that respond to consumer demands."

Customers can pre-order their Kevo deadbolt beginning July 30 for the suggested price of $219, with products to begin shipping in September. The Kevo smart lock package includes one deadbolt, one fob, two mechanical keys and two smartphone eKeys available for download. The deadbolt comes in three finishes including Satin Nickel, Venetian Bronze and Polished Brass. Kevo is simple to install and operates on four included AA batteries, which should last for a year, depending on usage.

To learn more about the Kevo technology, visit Interviews with Kwikset and UniKey executives are available upon request.

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