Vivint vs. Link Home Security Systems ComparedBy - 11/13/2017
We’ve reported on Vivint and Link in the past, and the two companies ended up with completely different scores. The irony in this is that they use similar hardware to accomplish similar goals. You may even look at Vivint and Link and wonder why we would recommend one over the other, and we do recommend one over the other. We recommend Link and the best way to tell you why is to show you.
Vivint vs. Link Chart
Below we have charted the basic features of Vivint and Link. As you can see, they offer a similar service at similar prices but with slight variations.
|Contract Length||12-36 months||42-60 months|
|24/7 UL Listed Monitoring|
|24/7 Burglary and Fire Monitoring|
|Touchscreen Panel with Two-Way Voice|
|Smart Phone App Access|
|iOS and Android App|
|Blackberry and Windows Phone App|
|Email and Text Alerts|
|Light, Lock, and Temperature Automation|
|Return Period||30 Day||3 Days|
|Extras||Crash & Smash Protection, Google Home, Amazon Alexa, Skybell||Google Home, Amazon Alexa, Nest, Philips Hue|
|Visit Their Site||Click Here||Click Here|
Link and Vivint Equipment and Automation
Obviously, Link and Vivint are both home security companies but what makes them similar is their approach to home security.
Both companies have blurred the line between security and automation. For starters, they both provide control panels that act as all-in-one controllers and management systems. The panels can talk to the central monitoring center, control your home security system, and control home automation features.
Link uses the 2Gig Go!Control Panel (pictured left) while Vivint uses the Vivint SkyControl Panel (pictured above). Both companies include the touchscreen controllers in their base package. Both systems include two-way communication between your home and the central monitoring center and both include battery backup for added security. Though they are similar, Vivint’s Sky Panel is superior to Link’s Go!Control. First of all, the LCD size is larger rendering it more useful. Second, the SkyControl panel works on its own WiFi network and includes a firewall for added protection. That said, you can upgrade your Link controller to the new Go!Control3 (GC3); more on that later.
Link and Vivint both use Z-Wave home automation. Link includes home automation in their Gold and Elite packages. They include the ability to automate lights, locks, small appliances, your garage door, and your home’s temperature. You can control these home automation features from your smartphone, personal device, or directly from the included touchscreen controller.
In addition to working with Z-Wave devices, Link works with third-party devices including Skybell Smart Video Doorbell and voice control through Google Assistant devices (Google Home, Mini, and Max) and Amazon Alexa (Echo, Dot, Show, Spot, Plus).
Vivint’s Smart Home Monitoring package for $39.99 per month includes smart home services. However, this price assumes that you will pay for your equipment upfront. If you don’t, your monthly fee will increase depending on the equipment you choose. For $9.17 per month, you can rent door window sensors and a motion sensor, but you’ll need more than that to automate your home. By our estimate, the monthly cost for monitoring and home automation equipment is closer to $60.99 per month.
Vivint also works with select third-party devices including Google Home, Amazon Echo, Nest Thermostats, and Philips Hue.
Link provides a Go!Control touchscreen panel to each new customer. If you sign a one-year contract, that’s all you’ll get. If you are willing to sign a three-year contract, they will provide a $270.00 agreement discount which you can use toward your equipment purchase.
Link doesn’t have a starter kit. Instead, you choose what you want. If you choose to upgrade your Link control panel to the GC3, the cost is $200. This fee, includes the upgraded panel, two door/window sensors and a motion detector. This is the same offer as Vivint’s starter kit, but for a lower price. If you choose to stick with the “included panel” the equipment cost drops to $97.00 (after the $270.00 agreement discount) for two door/window sensors and a motion detector.
Vivint, as we’ve already discussed, allows you to buy or lease equipment. The starter package is either $9.15 per month (leased) or $549.99 (purchased) and includes the Vivint SkyControl Panel, two door and window sensors, and a motion detector.
Here’s an idea of pricing as included and as purchased a la carte.
|Initial Equipment Cost||$97.00||$549.99 or $9.17/month for 60 Months|
|Door/Window Sensors||2 Included||2 Included|
|Motion Sensor||1 Included||1 Included|
|Additional Equipment Cost|
|Key Ring Remote||$24.00||$60.00|
|Glass Break Sensor||$69.00||$120.00|
|Stream Video Recorder 1TB||$390.00||Unknown|
Of course, both companies sell more equipment than what we’ve listed above including devices that can monitor doors, windows, garage doors, and more.
In regards to equipment pricing, Vivint’s advantage is that the cost of add-on equipment can be rolled into your lease or paid for in advance. Link’s advantage is cheaper equipment.
We recommend Link over Vivint. Although the technology offered by both is similar, Link provides more features for less money. Also, Link holds an A+ rating with the BBB compared to Vivint’s C- (improved from an F). Finally, with Link’s 30-day free trial we feel confident suggesting Link as you can test them out and make sure they are a good fit for you.
If you don’t feel comfortable installing your own equipment, Vivint is the only option as Link is self-install only.