Rob Gabriele

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Between these two security systems, our favorite is SimpliSafe.

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SecureScore™: 9.2/10

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When on the hunt for a home security system, the choice is sometimes tough, especially if the companies offer similar things. But that’s not entirely the case with SimpliSafe and CPI Security. Although both offer superior quality equipment, they each are quite different when it comes to customer policies and their demographic.

SimpliSafe Base Station Closeup

SimpliSafe Base Station Closeup

Shopping for a home security system is no easy feat. Especially in today’s day and age when the options are seemingly endless. Oftentimes you’re forced to claw through hours (upon hours) of research to unearth those distinguishable characteristics that set each system apart. And, honestly, you and most home security shoppers out there probably don’t have the time (nor the patience) for such endeavors.

Well, that’s where we come in! We live for such undertakings and want to help you out the best way we know how. Recently, we took a deep dive into two popular home security offerings — SimpliSafe and CPI Security — and compared them side by side to see if one prevails over the other. Both offer an array of features that are hard to beat. But are either of these industry contenders the right match for you? Does CPI Security have what it takes to beat our top-rated DIY home security system SimpliSafe? Let’s find out!

Pro Tip: Read our in-depth SimpliSafe review to see why it’s a perennial favorite home security system of ours.

SimpliSafe and CPI Security Home Security Systems Similarities

Both SimpliSafe and CPI Security offer state-of-the-art, reliable home security systems packed with high quality equipment designed to offer optimal protection for you and your loved ones. Each company also has a variety of package options at varying price points, ensuring there is something for both big spenders and the budget-minded alike. Additionally, both offer an assortment of attention-grabbing features that could easily make or break a home security setup.

SimpliSafe vs. CPI: Our Favorite Features

During our recent review of CPI Security, we were taken aback at how closely their features aligned with SimpliSafe. Each employs the obvious — indoor cameras for example — along with some unexpected perks like motion sensors, smart locks, and video doorbells.

SimpliSafe SimpliCam Indoor

SimpliSafe SimpliCam Indoor

Both brands have 24/7 professional monitoring services, and you’ll also get a pretty quick response time from both (around the 30-second mark).

Additionally, each company provides environmental monitoring, which can prove essential for overall home maintenance and upkeep, as well as (more importantly) the health and wellness of everyone living in your home.

Multiple Package Options

Simplisafe and CPI Security align in more ways than in features alone. Both companies offer a variety of home security package options to their clientele for optimum convenience, giving you the ability to customize your setup to your heart’s content.

However, since each company offers top-of-the-line equipment, both home security providers can be pricey depending on which you choose (though CPI is certainly more expensive compared to SimpliSafe). Take heart: If your credit isn’t in the dumps, CPI Security provides financing options, and SimpliSafe offers deals and discounts throughout the year.

SimpliSafe Wireless Keypad Update

SimpliSafe Wireless Keypad Update

Some features you can count on with a basic SimpliSafe package include:

  • Motion sensor
  • Entry sensors
  • Indoor video surveillance
  • Base station
  • Keypad

While CPI Security offers features like:

  • Entry sensors
  • Control panel
  • Indoor/outdoor equipment
  • Motion sensor
CPI Security - InTouch™ HD Outdoor Camera

CPI Security – InTouch™ HD Outdoor Camera

Differences Between SimpliSafe and CPI Security

Right about now is where SimpliSafe and CPI Security go their separate ways and become two distinct entities in the home security marketplace, which will ultimately help your decision on who makes the cut.

Reputable companies generally tend to align on the safety factors and what's essential for home protection. Where they tend to differ is in their policies, demographics, and sometimes technology. And this rings true for our two industry contenders here.

While testing SimpliSafe, for example, we found that there was no escaping DIY installation (although you could always bribe a friend). Personally, we love getting our hands “dirty” so this wasn’t a dealbreaker for us. We were up and running within 20 minutes and found the overall experience more enjoyable than other top DIY home security systems we’ve previously tested.
If you’re on the fence regarding self-installation, or simply prefer that others do the heavy lifting, CPI might be the better option. Their professional installers take the responsibility off your shoulders and will even walk you through the system once setup is complete. Talk about a win!

Did You Know? You can install SimpliSafe equipment quickly with no tools in less than 30 minutes. In contrast, CPI provides professional installation to give you an added sense of security.[/tips]

Location, Location, Location

Another key difference between the two revolves around location. SimpliSafe provides home security to customers across the entire United States. Their systems are user-friendly, provide 24/7 professional monitoring, and are available at several different price points.

CPI Security, on the other hand, offers their home security setups to only certain parts of the southeastern U.S. Their restricted availability greatly limits the number of people who can benefit from their services.

FYI: SimpliSafe serves the entire U.S. with its user-friendly security systems and 24/7 professional monitoring. Meanwhile, only the southeastern part of the country can benefit from CPI Security.

SimpliSafe Is Commitment-Free, but CPI Security Is Not

SimpliSafe also doesn't require their customers to sign a contract or follow specific terms, except that returns must be made within 60 days from purchase if you want to get your full money back.

On the flip side, CPI is a rather unique setup. You’re required to either buy the equipment up front and then go on a month-to-month home security monitoring plan; or you can finance the equipment (pending credit approval) with no interest and go on a month-to-month service contract after paying for equipment.

FYI: SimpliSafe offers multiple package options with equipment paid up front, while CPI allows customizable packages with the option of financing the equipment.

Equipment Costs: Higher the Quality, Higher the Price

SimpliSafe is known for designing and making their own state-of-the-art home security monitoring equipment to ensure the best quality for customers. Because of this high standard, you’ll have to pay the full price up front, which can range from a budget-friendly $230 and go beyond to a lofty $540, depending on your selection. A 24/7 basic professional home security monitoring package will cost around $14.99, while their advanced interactive plan begins at $24.99.

Like SimpliSafe, CPI Security offers variety when it comes to its home security packages. However, unlike its competitor, CPI requires that you purchase the equipment up front either with cash or via financing. This is where things can get a little pricey…

CPI Security packages start around $500 and can jump to around $1,000 if you decide to go premium. Compared to SimpliSafe, CPI can cost a pretty penny. But, if you’re on a budget (and also have a sizable credit score), there are options to be had.

One of these options is to finance a CPI home security plan through the SmartPay program; however, a minimum payment of $499 is required along with credit approval. The terms of the plan vary depending on your package choices and preferred monitoring agreement. Once you own the equipment, you will select a month-to-month service plan for your system.

SimpliSafe is by far superior to CPI Security when it comes to pricing and fees.

Did You Know? When it comes to DIY installation, SimpliSafe is the best system on the market for fast and easy setup. Check out our full SimpliSafe installation guide to learn more.

CPI Security - InTouch™ HD Indoor Camera

CPI Security – InTouch™ HD Indoor Camera

Emergency Connectivity With SimpliSafe vs. CPI Security

The ultimate endgame of having home security is to protect you and your loved ones from harm. So, without further ado, let’s talk about a final key difference uncovered between both front-runners: emergency connectivity.

Now, both companies offer an ironclad response in the event of an emergency. But they differ in terms of operation and connectivity.

SimpliSafe offers professional monitoring through C.O.P.S., a monitoring company that serves a variety of customers across the U.S.. With 100 percent wireless capabilities and the use of a cellular platform as backup, C.O.P.S. ensures that when the system sends out an alarm, you get a notification and the local authorities are called into action.

CPI Security, on the other hand, offers home security professional monitoring with both wireless or hardwired capabilities. When an alarm comes in, you get an instant notification as the authorities and EMS teams are dispatched immediately.

Did You Know? SimpliSafe is 100 percent wireless with cellular backup for their professional monitoring services. CPI Security is wireless and hardwired but doesn’t offer cellular backup unfortunately.

CPI Security - Mobile App

CPI Security – Mobile App

SimpliSafe or CPI Security? Our Final Verdict

The differences between SimpliSafe and CPI Security home security monitoring services might seem sparse, but even just a couple of key differences could prove to be game changers depending on your circumstances.

First, if you don’t live within CPI’s service region then your decision (at least between these two) is a no-brainer; you’d go with SimpliSafe. But if you’re local to the southeastern part of the country, you might want to consider CPI Security.

Each company offers reliable, high-standard home security systems that are serious about protecting you from harm. Neither will force you into a plan you can't afford or push for equipment you don't want, and budget-friendly options are available. CPI Security may have the upper hand when it comes to equipment options, but SimpliSafe is known for having high-quality devices.

SimpliSafe is also cheaper, easier to use, and all-around more versatile. So in the end, SimpliSafe gets our vote when compared to CPI Security.

Our Pick
Our pick is SimpliSafe
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SecureScore™: 9.2 / 10 This rating is derived from our editorial team's research, hands-on product testing, and customer surveys.
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