French accessory maker Netatmo has announced an Apple HomeKit compatible Smart Door Lock that uses physical NFC Smart Keys.
The Netatmo Smart Door Lock comes with three pre-paired keys that are inserted into the lock and rotated to unlock deadbolt the mechanism in the usual way, but they can also be re-coded to work with different locks as well as deactivated if lost using the Netatmo Security app.
Notably from a security perspective, the lock and keys use Bluetooth and NFC exclusively, so the system isn't connected to the internet, and access authorizations and identification data for each key are stored locally:
The Door Lock works via Bluetooth so is not connected to the internet. It uses Near Field Communication (NFC) to interact with the Smart Keys, which are tamper-proof and impossible to duplicate. If the Keys are lost or stolen, access to the house is still secure: the users deactivate them in real time with one click on their smartphone, without having to change the whole Door Lock.
In the same fashion, additional NFC keys can be added to work with the lock, and a single key can be configured to unlock multiple Netatmo Smart Door Locks in the same home.
Each door lock uses four AAA batteries and offers a two-year battery life. If the user ignores the multiple low-power warnings in the app and the batteries do run out, there's also a micro-USB port on the lock to provide temporary power.
For those wondering about the HomeKit element to all this, lock users can create customized scenes to connect their Smart Door Lock to other smart devices in their home. For example, when they open the front door, they might decide that all the lights in the house should be switched on.
The Smart Door Lock and Keys launches in Europe at the end of 2020. Netatmo says no subscription is required, but it has yet to confirm a price for the kit, and we're still waiting to confirm if there are any concrete plans for a U.S. release. Watch this space.