Samsung and ADT are merging the worlds of home security and automation

Daniel Howley
Technology Editor
Samsung and ADT are teaming up to sell a DIY smart home security system.

Samsung (SSNLF) and ADT (ADT) are teaming up to try to make your smart home more secure. The move, which the companies announced Monday, provides Samsung with a means to pull consumers interested in home security into the home automation market, while handing ADT new customers who might have otherwise never thought about home security services.

But this isn’t your average ADT service plan, where a technician comes to your home and installs a slew of security devices, while locking you into a 3-year contract.

The key feature this matchup offers is the ability to pay for ADT monitoring on a month-to-month basis. It also means you’re going to have to set up your monitoring hardware yourself, though that shouldn’t prove too difficult for the majority of consumers.

The cost of security

To use the service, you’ll have to purchase Samsung’s and ADT’s SmartThings starter kit. The box, which costs $549, includes a 7-inch touchscreen panel that functions as a hub for your system, as well as two window and door sensors and a motion detector. You can also purchase the Home Safety expansion pack, which comes with a smoke alarm, CO2 alarm and water leak detector for $199.

As far as fees go, the starter pack will cost you $24.99 a month. Toss in the Home Safety kit and the price jumps to $34.99. You can also opt for just the Life Safety Expansion Kit for $14.99 per month.

ADT’s normal service provides you with a similar setup to the SmartThings kit, but adds on a third window and door monitor, a keychain remote and those sweet ADT lawn signs. That, however, costs you $99 for the initial set as long as you agree to a three-year contract. Monthly payments range from $36.99 per month to $52.99 per month depending on the package you choose.

ADT kit includes a touch screen panel, two window and door sensors and a motion detector.

If you opt for the $36.99 package you’ll end up paying about $1,430 over three years including the $99 installation fee. Go with the Samsung option and you’ll pay about $1,448. The Samsung ADT combo, however, lets you cancel your service at any time and even skip months if you want to lower the cost.

What makes the SmartThings kit tempting is the fact that it enables home automation via the Samsung SmartThings app on your smartphone. That means you’ll be able to control your Amazon (AMZN) Echo, Google (GOOG, GOOGL) Home, smart lights and smart locks from the SmartThings ADT app.

Signing up for ADT’s service also means you’ll get 24/7 monitoring via ADT’s call centers. So if a smoke or CO2 alarm goes off, ADT will call the fire department for you. You’ll also be alerted if your window and door locks are opened when you’re away at work or in bed at night.

The system’s hub connects to your home’s Wi-Fi, but includes a battery backup and an LTE connection if your home loses power.

The team-up allows Samsung to extend its smart home offerings to consumers who are interested in security, but don’t want to deal with monthly fees. For ADT the move will lure customers who are entering into the smart home market and want to ensure their home is secure without having to do so themselves.

The one thing this service doesn’t solve is just how much smart home systems can cost in general. If you’re going to outfit your entire house with various smart devices you can easily drop a lot of cash. Samsung and ADT’s offering allows you to jump into the space, as long as you’re okay with the pricey up-front cost.

More from Dan:

Email Daniel at; follow him on Twitter at @DanielHowley.