Learn More About Vivint

Between these two security systems, our favorite is Vivint.

Overall Score: 9.0/10

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Vivint and SmartThings are home security systems that offer the best in home automation and other technologically advanced features. In other areas, each system has features that make it unique and sets apart from the other. Both systems work well, but have distinct advantages and disadvantages when it comes to specific areas of function and affordability.

Overview: SmartThings vs Vivint

Both Vivint and SmartThings use state of the art devices to help homeowners achieve their personal home security goals. The main similarity between the two is the commitment to a fully automated home, while the biggest difference seems to be in price. SmartThings is owned and supported by Samsung.

  1. Both systems offer full automation
  2. Vivint requires a long-term contract
  3. SmartThings is more affordable and can be used with devices from other systems
  4. Both companies offer state of the art equipment
  5. Vivint must be professionally installed

Similarities: Vivint vs SmartThings

Vivint and SmartThings offer full, home automation through the use of cameras, video, alarms, and the use of mobile apps that allow you to remain connected with every “smart” appliance in your home. All of the appliances and devices can be easily managed through the use of a mobile app that is downloaded to your smartphone or tablet.

  • Vivint now offers customers the option of purchasing their home security equipment
  • Both companies offer full home automation
  • Mobile apps allow you to monitor your entire system, including appliances and other devices while you're on the go
  • Both offer indoor/outdoor cameras including video
  • Both companies send alerts when the sensors and alarms are triggered
  • Both companies offer environmental alerts as long as SmartThings is connected to a device that offers that feature
  • Both systems are completely wireless and offer connectivity over Wi-Fi

Differences: Vivint vs SmartThings

While both companies offer similar features, there are several areas where they are distinctly different. The level of technology available in both systems is excellent, the way the systems can be used is vastly different.

  • SmartThings does not require a lengthy contract
  • Vivint must be professionally installed, although other devices can be added as you go
  • In order to qualify to purchase your Vivint system, your credit score must be 600 or higher
  • SmartThings offers advanced technology at an affordable price with no contract
  • SmartThings works interchangeably with wireless devices from other brands

Features

Both systems offer an easy to use mobile app that can be used from almost anywhere. Vivint offers cellular, Wi-Fi and landline connectivity so there is a minimum risk of the system going down if there is a power outage or your Wi-Fi is lost. The advanced technology employed by the system makes it one of the most efficient and effective ones on the market.

SmartThings can only be accessed with the app, It doesn't have the capability to connect to a PC or Mac system. Both systems also offerWi-Fi connectivity and backup options, but SmartThings doesn't require cell service to record or store data. While Vivint offers a comprehensive list of devices to be used with its home security system, SmartThings offers several but is capable of connecting with other devices from different manufacturers.

Contracts 

Vivint requires a lengthy contract and also offers FlexPay options to homeowners who want to purchase their own equipment. To qualify for FlexPay and ownership of your equipment, your credit score must be 600 or above. If you don't qualify to purchase your equipment, it will be leased to you. The contract ensures that you are covered in case a device breaks or malfunctions.

With SmartThings, the hub is purchased outright and a month to month, 24/7 monitoring subscription through Scout can be used to provide constant updates and connectivity. There is no contract requirement and homeowners can choose to do all of the monitoring on their own.

Pricing

Vivint offers equipment ownership if you have a score of 600 or higher and choose to finance your system through their convenient FlexPay options. The basic plan can be purchased for $39.99 a month, while the Smart Protect and Control plan is available for $49.99. These prices are in addition to the equipment financing charges.

SmartThings, on the other hand, does not require a contract. The devices are purchased outright and the 24/7 monitoring service through Scout is optional. The contract with Scout costs approximately $20 per month and is optional.

Equipment 

Vivint offers a comprehensive line of home security products. SmartThings, on the other hand, will connect with devices from several different systems, including both Nest, Scout, and Echo. Both companies offer the benefits of advanced technology compared to many other systems on the market.

The SmartThings dashboard is battery operated and does not require a connection to the cloud to store data or video. The mobile app that is used to maneuver through the SmartThings systems includes the Smart Home Monitor which allows you to interact with each device that is connected to your home security system. It uses “swipe” technology to turn devices on and off, as well as to activate and deactivate alarms.

Installation 

Vivint requires that their system is installed professionally. The only items that can be added to the system on a do-it-yourself basis are those that are purchased separately. Both systems are compatible with and can use Nest thermostats and Amazon Echo voice-operated technology. SmartThings is entirely do-it-yourself and requires no hardwiring or extensive installation procedures.

Emergency Connections

While Vivint offers emergency connections through their personal, 24/7 monitoring system. In order for SmartThings to provide immediate emergency connections, the system must have operable Wi-Fi and the use of a device that allows for that function such as Amazon Echo technology.

SmartThings has the capability to work with devices from other systems can effectively perform many different tasks as long as they are offered by the device in question.

Summary: SmartThings vs Vivint

If you are interested in a top of the line home security system and aren't worried about the price, Vivint is the way to go. The system is the elite of the two and offers much more in terms of 24/7 offsite monitoring and surveillance.

SmartThings, on the other hand, allows the homeowner to be in complete control of their system, as well as the DIY installation. SmartThings doesn't require a contract and is one of the most affordable systems on the market for the level of protection you receive.

Read our full review of Vivint