Ring Alarm vs. the All New SimpliSafe: Which is Right for You?

In the old days, having a security system meant that you would have to get a professional team inside your house to install everything. All devices and sensors are wired, which means your security provider would have to drill holes into the ceiling or have unsightly wires running all over the room. SimpliSafe, as well as a host of other do-it-yourself security system providers, took care of that nightmare.

All New SimpliSafe

Using wireless devices, SimpliSafe allows you to just buy the sensors that you need and place them where you need them. To make it even easier, SimpliSafe offers several kits that allow you to get all the sensors that you would require without having to think about it. And because SimpliSafe is modular, you can just add more sensors if you need them.

Another advantage of working with SimpliSafe is that they have sensors and devices for every threat you want to cover. They have a range of entry sensors to prevent break-ins, they also offer environmental sensors that would tell you if the basement is leaking or if there is smoke somewhere around the house.

SimpliSafe recently came out with an upgraded system, the All New SimpliSafe, which is smaller than the original but does things a whole lot better. It has twice the range of the original SimpliSafe device, its siren is 50% louder, and it also comes with new devices and safeguards that you would love.

SimpliSafe packages

SimpliSafe has five packages that offer you an easy way to adequately protect your home without having to spend much. If you have a small house, you can buy the Essentials package that includes three entry sensors and a motion sensor. If you have a big home, you might want to buy the Knox, which includes six entry sensors, two motion sensors, a smoke detector, and a siren. If you want to be protected from environmental threats, get the Haven. All SimpliSafe packages come with the base station and the keypad.

If you want to build your own system, you can buy the Foundation, which has the base station, keypad and one entry sensor. You can just add the devices and the sensors that you need. Or you can just custom-build your own security system from scratch. A side-by-side comparison of SimpliSafe packages shows you what to buy and what you get with each.

  Haven  Knox  Hearth  Essentials  Foundation 
Price  $489.86  (Check out the latest price here!)
$449.87  (Check out the latest price here!)
$374.91
$259.95
$229.96
Base station  1  1  1  1  1 
Keypad  1  1  1  1  1 
Key fob  1  1  1  0  0 
Entry sensors  4  6  3  3  1 
Motion sensors  2  2  1  1  0 
105 dB siren  1  1  1  0  0 
Panic button  1  0  0  0  0 
Freeze sensors  1  0  0  0  0 
Water sesnsors  1  0  0  0  0 
Smoke detector  1  1  1  0  0 

Customizing your system

SimpliSafe also allows you to buy only the devices and sensors that you need. It is all a matter of choosing from a menu of devices and knowing what you can protect with each.

Burglaries and general home monitoring

Sensor/device  Price 
Entry sensor  $14.99  (Check out the latest price here!)
Motion sensor $29.99 (Check out the latest price here!)
SimpliCam security camera  $99.00 (Check out the latest price here!)
Glassbreak sensor  $34.99
Panic button $19.99 (Check out the latest price here!)

Environmental hazards

Sensor  Price 
Smoke detector $29.99  (Check out the latest price here!)
Carbon monoxide detector $49.99  (Check out the latest price here!)
Temperature sensor $29.99  (Check out the latest price here!)
Water sensor $19.99   (Check out the latest price here!)

Professional monitoring

SimpliSafe works without having to pay for a monthly professional monitoring service.

But if you want to be extra safe, you can pay $14.99 per month for the standard monitoring, which will give you round-the-clock monitoring of security system and cellular backup. Or you can opt for the Interactive monitoring for $24.99, which would give you standard monitoring features plus SMS and e-mail alerts, secret alerts, and the ability to arm or disarm your security system from anywhere.

What you would like about SimpliSafe

SimpliSafe takes its name seriously, allowing you to be… simply safe. The devices and sensors work together right out of the box, and all you need to do is to put them where you want them and the system would be up and running. Just add the professional monitoring you want and you are good to go. Everything you want to monitor are provided by SimpliSafe, and it continues to work even when the keypad is smashed. Plus, there are no wires to cut so burglars wouldn’t be able to disable your alarm system with a pair of scissors. You also do not have to worry about long-term contracts for the monitoring, as well as not having to think about termination costs or lock-in periods. You can also take SimpliSafe with you when you move.

Ring Alarm

Ring has been at the forefront of the video doorbell business since it started offering the Ring Video Doorbell. One of the biggest advantages of its video doorbells has been security. Ever since introducing its video doorbell products, Ring have dabbled into other security devices such as floodlights and outdoor cameras. Now, you have Ring Alarm, which faces SimpliSafe and other DIY home security systems head on.

With Ring Alarm, you start off with the Home Security Kit, which sells for $199. The kit has the base station, keypad, contact sensor, motion detector, and range extender. Ring plans to offer two sensors that would protect you from flooding and freezing, as well as a smoke alarm and carbon dioxide listener that would send you a notification when your carbon monoxide and smoke alarms go off.

The Home Security Kit has one of each device. If you need more, you can buy these sensors at these prices:

Sensor  Price 
Contact Sensor $20  (Check out the latest price here!)
Motion detector $30  (Check out the latest price here!)
Keypad  $50
Range extender  $25
Flood and freeze sensor  $35
Smoke and carbon monoxide listener  $35

Works well with others. Ring Alarm works rather well with other Ring products. You can monitor your Ring Alarm, Ring Video Doorbells, and Ring camera using just one mobile app. You can even synchronize these devices to work together. For instance, if your Ring Alarm senses that a window has been opened, it will send you an alert on your mobile phone. But you can also have it set so that the Ring Floodlight Cam comes on, flooding the area near the open window with light to scare off would-be burglars while also helping you see the area at night.

Ring Alarm will also have integrations with other manufacturers. For instance, you can use a First Alert Z-Wave smoke and carbon monoxide alarm or a Dome Siren with your Ring Alarm.

But what makes Ring products stand out is that it allows you to join a sort of digital neighborhood watch, where you can get alerts from neighbors about possible threats and inform them as well about threats happening at your home. Ring offers the Neighbors app, which will keep you updated about alerts posted by your neighbors about suspicious activity around the area. This will help you get in touch with your neighbors as well. For instance, if somebody alerted the neighborhood about a suspicious looking man, and you hear somebody’s ringing your doorbell, you can see from your smartphone what the Ring Video Doorbell is seeing, send a snapshot of the person outside your door to see if that was the person they were alerting everybody about.

Ring Protect

Ring offers video recording plans that allow you to record, store, and share videos. The Protect Basic will cost you $30 per year per camera. But if you want to have more protection, you can get the Protect Plus, which costs $100 per year for an unlimited number of cameras. On top of being able to record, store and share your videos, you also get round-the-clock professional monitoring.

Ring Alarm vs. All New SimpliSafe: Which is the better buy?

If you already have Ring’s video doorbells and cameras, then it would make sense that you buy Ring Alarm as it works well with other Ring products and a limited number of connected devices. SimpliSafe’s biggest weak point is that it does not integrate well with other connected devices. In fact, after all these years, SimpliSafe only offers integration with Nest Thermostat, and even that is limited. The integration allows you to set your Nest Learning Thermostat to home or away mode when you arm or disarm your SimpliSafe system.

However, if you do not care about these integrations, then SimpliSafe offers you the widest protection from both theft and environmental threats. Ring does not offer temperature sensors and glass break sensors. It also does not offer a smoke and carbon monoxide detector but a listener instead. Meaning, you need to have a working smoke and carbon monoxide detector for the listener to do its job.

When it comes to cameras, the SimpliCam sells for $99 and works just like any ordinary security camera. At that price, you can buy the first generation Ring Video Doorbell and make your front door extra safe. Meanwhile, Ring also offers motion and sound triggered security cameras and floodlight camera for a little bit more.

It should be noted that the Ring Alarm is not the product that Ring wants to offer when it comes to home security. The company is currently embroiled in a legal battle with ADT because of its Ring Secure offering. Not much is known about Ring Secure, except that it goes against, and according to Ring supporters, beats out ADT. The Ring Secure was supposed to be out late in 2017.

Nevertheless, Ring Alarm is a worthy competition for SimpliSafe. It should be noted that these two are somewhat different from each other. SimpliSafe is more like your traditional home security system that’s upgraded and made even simpler, while Ring Alarm works best with videos, considering that it comes from the company that changed the world with its video doorbells. Both systems allow you to “sense” if there are threats, but with Ring Alarm, you can use it with Ring cameras to also help you “see” what’s happening.