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App-controlled, video smart lock is like a personal doorman

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This time with a built-in camera

Smart lock on red door Courtesy of Gate

To smart lock or not to smart lock—it’s a legitimate question in the age of the “smart home.” There’s no shortage of choices if you decide that you do want an app-controlled entrance to your home, and now you can add another option to your list.

Gate is a new startup that’s peddling an “all-in-one” entry system that acts like a personal doorman (minus the actual doorman). Like other smart locks, you can control the $350 device remotely via a phone app, send activation codes, and use a physical key as backup. The main difference is that the chrome disk of a gadget also has two-way audio and a built-in camera that captures its surroundings though a 150-degree wide-angle lens camera.

A team of ex-Google electrical engineers designed Gate, which might be evident given its utilitarian appearance and stuffed-to-the-brim interface. And while its functionality is fairly straightforward, Gate’s founders are already thinking about how to build in biometric authentication—think fingerprints and facial recognition—in the not too distant future.

Smart lock product shot Gate