If you’re considering a home security system, you may have come across Vivint. In this Vivint security review, we’ll take a close look at what this company has to offer in terms of security systems and services. We’ll also provide an overview of Vivint’s customer satisfaction ratings and pricing.
Vivint Smart Security Overview
Vivint Smart Home Security is ranked 2 in our ranking of the Best Home Security Systems for 2022. It’s a fully-featured, professionally installed wireless security system. This system doesn’t allow for DIY installation. Instead, a professional will visit your home to design and install the system. An experienced security advisor will call your home to discuss your requirements and create a customized system.
- Wireless Smart Security System
- Smart Home Automation
- Smart Hub 7-inch Touchscreen
- Award-Winning Mobile App
- Indoor and Outdoor Cameras
- Professional Installation
- It can be customized to fit your home
- 100% Cellular Monitoring
- Lifetime warranty
- Packages of expensive equipment
- Contracts may be required
- Installation Fees May Apply
- Short 3-Day Cancellation Window
Vivint Security Review
Pricing and Vivint Plans
There are three Vivint home security packages that you can choose from: the Premium Package, the Starter Package and the Premium Plus Package. You will need to call Vivint for a quote as each package has different features.
Starter Package: The package costs about $599 and includes Vivint Smart Hub and one motion sensor and one leak sensor. It also includes two door and window sensors and $100 for additional sensors. Additional devices are available at a cost of $50-$399 Starter Packages include 24/7 monitoring and an application for your smartphone.
Premium Package: This package includes everything in the Starter Pack and video security as well as a theft deterrent. Vivint’s “complete home protection” package is this.
Premium Plus Package: This package includes everything in the Premium Package, voice control, video clips, smart home automation and protection for your car. This package is Vivint’s “Security + Automation”.
Vivint claims it offers packages to suit all budgets. However, the website doesn’t list exact pricing. Vivint’s website claims that one of their Smart Home Pros can help you with pricing, but packages start at $1 per day.
Some packages come with zero percent financing from Vivint. The company also mentions that the price of a security system usually includes installation and monitoring fees.
Vivint’s systems can also be professionally installed, so this is included in the price for each package.
You can create your own package if none of the Vivint packages suit you. To create your own package, Vivint will need to be contacted. Vivint claims that every package includes 24/7 monitoring, Vivint security sensors, and a Vivint smart hub. You can then choose from security cameras, door locks and other products such as Vivint Smart Thermostat or Vivint Car Guardian.
Vivint’s monitoring service starts at $19.99/month, plus the equipment costs. This price is the only one that they have listed on their website.
Read more: ADT vs Vivint
Components of the Vivint Basic Security Systems
Vivint sent us the Basic security system, which included a Vivint smart hub, security sensors and a Kwikset smart lock. It also had an indoor camera, smoke and CO monitors, and a video doorbell. We later added the Vivint Outdoor Cam Pro to our system. This is also detailed below. Check out our Vivint pricing assessment to see how much we paid for our Vivint security system.
Vivint Smart Hub
Vivint’s Sky Control Panel, also known as Smart Hub, was used to control Vivint’s entire security system. It was used to manage all connected devices. We could also view live streaming footage and communicate through two-way audio, which is quite rare on a security touchpad.
The Smart Hub also allows us to arm or disarm our security system and connect with monitoring teams. We can even see cloud storage. The control panel can be mounted to the wall, but it can also stand alone, sort of like a digital frame.
The Smart Hub’s battery backup was a nice feature that allowed it to power the device up to 24 hours in the event of power failures. We don’t want the Smart Hub to go down due to a blackout. Vivint’s battery backup means that even if there was no power, Vivint would still monitor our home and provide professional monitoring.
We’ve been able to identify the most critical sensors for home security: motion sensors and window sensors. All of these sensors were provided by Vivint. Vivint’s sensors are wirelessly connected with our Smart Hub. The Smart Hub, being the brain of the system, alerted Vivint’s monitoring centers and our smartphones when our sensors were tripped.
Ping Indoor Camera
If you don’t know what we mean, we have a lot of experience with security cameras. So naturally, we were excited to test the Vivint Ping Indoor Camera. It impressed video-wise with its clear 1080p HD display and wide 155-degree field-of-view.
We could see clearly at night thanks to the infrared LED sensors. Additionally, we could speak to our guests via two-way audio.
Although we didn’t experience any break-ins during testing, the Ping camera was used as an intercom. We could communicate with our family members in the other room by pressing a button.
The camera does not have local storage. Instead, the camera required us to pay $5 per month for 14 days of cloud storage. All clips were 30 seconds long. The Vivint Smart drive, which costs above $249.99, is an alternative for continuous recording for 30 consecutive days. We chose to stick with the clips as this was quite expensive.
The Ping camera has one other drawback. It detects motion but cannot distinguish people from moving objects. This was especially true when we sat a poodle with a friend. Ping still met our requirements as a security camera.
The app is well-designed and offers excellent video quality. It also integrates well with Vivint’s overall system. We recommend our top picks for pet cameras if you are a pet owner.
Vivint Outdoor Camera Pro
We can’t overstate that Vivint’s outdoor camera is one of our most impressive. Let’s start with the video. It has the clear, 1080p HD display we loved in the indoor camera. But it also has 4K sensors which means it has twice as many pixels as 1080p HD.
HDR was also included, which reduces light distortion. The camera’s video is clear and sharp thanks to its 140-degree field and ability to zoom in 3x optically and 10x digitally. Outdoor cameras have the same storage options and night vision as indoor cameras. We opted for the Vivint Smart Drive’s two-week storage allowance rather than spending $249.99.
If you are a business owner and need to use Vivint to protect your business, the Smart Drive is a good option. It allows you to store shorter clips of video clips for $5 per month. The Smart Drive allows continuous video recording. But we digress.
Artificial intelligence is the most impressive feature of Vivint Outdoor Cam Pro. Unlike the indoor camera, the outdoor camera can distinguish between people and moving objects. This means that we are only notified when it detects a person. This significantly reduced the number of false alarms we received, which is good as we now have places and things to do!
The camera also sent us thumbnail images of the loiterers if they were on our lawn too long. Although it was pretty loud, especially when we received our mail, this was an excellent tool for outdoor security. The siren can be heard at up to 85 decibels. This is about the same volume as a snowblower. So the entire neighborhood could participate. Some of our neighbors even claimed that they could hear the siren from their homes!
The Vivint Outdoor Camera Pro has one downside. It’s a plugged-in camera. Although this didn’t mean we had to worry about the battery dying, it did make it more challenging to place the camera near an outlet. But, the problem was solved once we had the right extension cord. We are happy overall with the Vivint Outdoor Camera Pro. It costs around $399.99.
For example, the Nest Cam Battery that we tested cost $179. This is more than half of the Vivint Outdoor Camera Pro. The Vivint Outdoor Camera Pro has person detection and intelligent features that deter loiters. Nest Cam Outdoor requires a Nest Aware subscription at $6 per month to use facial recognition. However, person detection is also available. The Nest Cam Battery can run entirely on battery power, so it is better than Vivint Outdoor Camera Pro.
Vivint Doorbell Camera
A doorbell camera allows you to “answer” your doors remotely, appearing like you are home. The waterproof Vivint Doorbell Camera can be used in temperatures between 14 and 104 degrees Fahrenheit. It retailed at $249.99 at the time of testing. Vivint discontinued selling the Vivint Doorbell Camera and replaced it later with the similar-priced Doorbell Camera Pro.
The Vivint Doorbell camera was more expensive than the industry average of $190. This was especially true when we noticed that the video display was only 1080p HD and not 720p HD. The Vivint Doorbell Camera is even more expensive when it costs about $169 for a Ring Video Doorbell 2 and offers 1080p HD video. It had person detection, something that the Ring Video Doorbell 2 does not have.
Only the Ring Video Doorbell Pro and Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 have this feature, and all of them cost $249.99 and higher. The Vivint Doorbell camera’s artificial intelligence is comparable to the rest.
Person detection is a vital doorbell camera feature. This is especially true since our front door faces the street. Person detection didn’t alert us of every passing car or squirrel. We were only notified when actual people were at our doors.
While the video quality was not as sharp as we would have liked, the 180-degree field allowed us to see the entire front yard. This was something we really appreciated. It also had clear night vision infrared and similar storage options to Vivint’s other cameras.
We reviewed the Vivint doorbell camera and decided to hardwire it to our existing doorbell system. It can also run on batteries for up to three to five years for those who wish to go wireless.
The Vivint Doorbell Camera Pro has many of the same issues as the original. It has clear 1080p HD video with HDR, which reduces interference from the sun. It is wireless and can detect packages and people. We think it is a better value than the original, as it retails at $249.99.
Kwikset Smart Lock
A smart lock means we no longer worry about keys being lost or locked out. Vivint provided a Kwikset smart lock that we could control remotely via the app or open using a numerical code. This was great for the time we lost our keys. To allow people to come in during our absence, we gave them 30 codes. These codes were used by family members, friends, and even the house sitter.
Even though Kwikset manufactured the lock, we still had fun creating automated actions and connecting it with other home automation devices. This meant that the doors would unlock when the smoke alarm went off. This brings us to the next point.
Vivint also provided a WiFi-connected smoke alarm to us so we would be notified if it went off even if we were not home. It had an 85-decibel siren, a 5-year battery life, and protected a 35-foot area. It worked well in our experience.
It alerted us immediately we ate our popcorn, which was too easy, and it did so without any problems. It was fascinating to see the smoke alarm test itself throughout the day to ensure it had enough power. The control panel is also appropriately connected. We felt safe from fires and smoke thanks to all the self-testing.
Vivint has a similar detector, detecting carbon monoxide, not smoke. Although we didn’t release any dangerous amounts of CO into the atmosphere (as it can cause death if inhaled enough), we were impressed that the detector could be connected to other devices.
For example, if the detector goes off, the doors will unlock automatically, the window sensors will disarm, and the furnace fan will activate, allowing ventilation and easy escape. The CO detector does much more than just beep.
Vivint also offers a water sensor to prevent leaks. We placed it near our washer, but it could be placed anywhere leaks might occur. The wireless water sensor has a three- to six-year battery life. That’s all for Vivint’s components.
Vivint and Alexa were seamless to work together. Alexa was used to control Vivint’s compatible Philips hue lights and Nest smart thermostat, as well as our Kwikset intelligent locks. We also used Alexa for arming our Vivint security system.
However, we could not disarm it using our voice. We had Alexa show us our live streaming footage on our Echo devices. This included the Echo Show 8 and Fire TV. It was amazing to see our footage displayed on the big screen.
Alexa was not the only voice assistant that we used to command. Google Assistant performed precisely the same functions as Alexa, except that we viewed our footage using our Google Nest Hubs, Google Nest Hub Max and Echo Shows.
Vivint is an excellent addition to any smart home, except if you have an Apple ecosystem. Vivint is a beautiful addition to most intelligent homes. It works with Alexa and Google Assistant, and we also created automated actions such as having the thermostat drop to 60 degrees when we arm the security system in away mode. This saved us time and money by not having to adjust our thermostat each time we went out of the house.
The Vivint App
Vivint was our home away from home. It allowed us to arm and disarm the system and talk through two-way audio and live stream footage. We also received notifications from our phones when we were not at home. We had no problems with the Vivint app, and other users agreed. It has a 4.4 rating in the Google Play Store and a 4 rating in the Apple Store. Vivint’s app was easy to use and completely bug-free.
How to Install Vivint
Vivint Smart Homes is only available for professional installation. We think this is a positive thing, especially when dealing with such advanced home security technology and smart-home integration.
We love that you can see what is happening. A personal training session to learn how to use your Vivint home security system can be a great bonus.
Pro installation has its downsides. If you work full-time, this could lead to a significant increase in your PTO. Vivint’s track record isn’t the best for quick installations.
Depending on where you live, it could take up to seven days to have your system installed. This is a long wait for those who want their property and home protected after a break-in or purchase of a new house.
Vivint used to charge $99 to $199 for installation fees. Vivint has changed their installation pricing to a flat $49 regardless of your monitoring plan or equipment. This is not a permanent change. Please verify your installation costs before you schedule your appointment.
Vivint offers in-home security consultations.
Vivint Home Security offers a complimentary security consultation as part of its top-tier offerings. An assessment by Vivint security technicians identifies security threats and provides solutions.
This consultation will ensure that you have the right equipment to protect your home. It also ensures that equipment such as motion sensors and window and door sensors are installed in the best possible location to protect your home.
This assessment is done in conjunction with professional installation. You can also add equipment that you didn’t know about or remove unnecessary items. The downside is that the opportunity to have positive customer interactions can come off as too salesy. This makes it difficult for customers to trust recommendations.
Support and customer service at Vivint
This was once a weakness of Vivint. Although Vivint’s home security business was initially slow to get off the ground, it has made great strides over the years.
Vivint stated that customer feedback is a priority for Vivint’s support, and the company strives to implement any recommendations. These efforts appear to be paying off. Vivint has been awarded many awards and received higher ratings from Vivint customers and third-party home security system review sources.
- Trustpilot Rating: 4.1 stars from 5; Excellent
- Vivint Smart Home app for Google Play: 4.4 stars from 5
- Vivint Smart Home app in Apple App Store: 4.7 out of 5
Should you buy it?
Vivint is a home security company that offers a variety of services to its customers. Its products include doorbell cameras, home security systems, and home automation products. Vivint has received mixed reviews from customers, with some praising its products and service and others expressing dissatisfaction.