Kwikset’s Obsidian Is Keyway-less, Touchpad-based Electronic Deadbolt Lock

Electronic security company Kwikset reveals its keyless deadbolt lock with a modern, sleek design.

Obsidian: a hard, dark, glasslike volcanic rock formed by the rapid solidification of lava without crystallization. It’s a fitting name for an electronic lock designed that shines like glass and has the promise of being “hard as a rock” impenetrable.

Attendees at the annual CEDIA trade show had a chance to check out the uniquely designed lock from Kwikset. Based on its looks, you may not even realize that it’s intended to secure the front door. Omitted from its design is the keyway that most other smart locks include in case users need to use a traditional key to unlock and lock the door.

The removal of the keyway results in a touchpad-based electronic lock that’s sleek, modern and precludes the threat of lock picking and lock bumping. Moreover, the Obsidian’s SecureScreen technology can help mask smudge attacks, in which passcodes can be potentially jeopardized by detection frequently used numbers from the oily residue on the touchscreen surface.

“We teased this lock, which didn’t have a name at the time, at ISC West,” says Nick English, Kwikset North American sales manager, residential access solutions. “Since then we’ve been refining its design; functionality-wise, it’s the same as the Kwikset SmartCode 916, but a look that lends itself to contemporary design homes.”

For homeowners who might feel uncomfortable not having the option of using a traditional key as a backup, the Obsidian was designed to continue to work even if its four AA batteries are dead. Backup power can be supplied via a 9V battery by touching it to terminals that are concealed.

Besides sporting a new design, the Obsidian, as well as most of Kwikset’s other locks shown at CEDIA, features the new Z-Wave 500 Series chip, which comes with a number of enhancements including extended wireless range and wireless security features.

Other smart locks highlighted at CEDIA by Kwikset include Convert, a technology that can turn a mechanical lock into a smart lock, and Contemporary Versions of the company’s SmartCode 914 and 916 Deadbolts.

The Obsidian will be available January 2017. The Convert will be available December 2016. The contemporary versions of SmartCode 914 and SmartCode 916 will be available February 2017.

Author Lisa Montgomery has been a member of Security Sales & Integration’s sister publication Electronic House family for nearly 20 years. With a knack for explaining complex high-tech topics in terms that average consumers can understand, her style of writing resonates with people who are interested in addition electronic systems to their homes, but are unsure of the steps involved and the solutions available.

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