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SimpliSafe vs. Automatic Data Transfer: Which is Best for You?

The veteran home security expert is challenged by a rising star. Simplisafe started offering affordable home security solutions for people who couldn’t install cameras permanently in 2006. ADT was established in 1874 and connected homes via telegraph to a central office. Both companies have valuable, overlapping territory in the home security industry. But which one is right?

SimpliSafe at a Glance

SimpliSafe is a portable wireless home security system that is easy to set up and take down. With their low-cost professional monitoring plans starting at $14.99/month, SimpliSafe has carved a niche for itself in the industry. Customers can choose from five different packages and combine additional features to make a customised system.

SimpliSafe systems come with a keypad and an entry sensor. You can personalise any package with additional components such as security cameras and environmental sensors. The systems are compatible with Google Home Assistant and Amazon Echo. All of the products use clutter-free Wi Fi connectivity.

SimpliSafe was included on our list of Best Home Security Companies 20022 for their simple-to-use and affordable systems. SimpliSafe offers no-contract monitoring plans that can be cancelled at any time and a 60 day money-back guarantee for all their products. Pricing

SimpliSafe offers five home security packages, ranging from $171.47 up to HTML3. Each package includes a base unit and keypad, an entry sensor, motion sensor, and a motion sensor. The premium kit includes additional entry and movement sensors, key pad, entry sensor, motion sensor, and environmental sensors. You can choose from a variety of components that are individually priced to complement one of the systems or to create a customised system that meets your specific needs.

Professional Monitoring

SimpliSafe offers professional monitoring at two levels, starting at $14.99/month for Standard Plan. This level includes 24/7 monitoring of all system sensors and visual alarm verification. Priority police dispatch is also available.

The Interactive Plan is $24.99/month and offers the same high-level monitoring services with additional communication. This plan includes mobile app access, smart-home integrations, text, email, and secret alerts. This plan is for you if you are looking for voice activation or mobile video access.


This system was designed for DIYers with a tight budget. The wireless components can be installed without the use of tools and have easy-to-use peel and stick adhesive pads that can be used to mount components on walls. They do offer professional setup for $79.

Home Automation/Smart Home Features

SimpliSafe can be easily integrated with your Apple Watch, Google Home, and Amazon Alexa. Smart Lock can be used to lock and unlock the door at set times, alert you if anyone opens or closes it, and dispatch police in the case of a break-in.

Additional Benefits

SimpliSafe’s security camera SimpliCam is designed for simplicity and clarity. The SimpliCam is intelligent enough to distinguish between humans and pets, and you can record by pressing a button. It records audio and video within a 120-degree field of view. It notifies you when there is an intrusion and sends encrypted video to your mobile phone. Also, it stores the recorded video for up to 30 days. Privacy shutters are great for recording what you don’t want.

Fine Print

SimpliSafe can be integrated to Alexa, Google or Siri for voice control. However, there are no other smart home integrations. Smart lock control is the most notable smart application.

Security cameras are a universal device. It’s a great camera but it needs to be retrofitted with an outdoor “raincoat”. The SimpliCam is not an outdoor-ready camera. The SimpliCam is limited by AC power and WiFi.

Live support options for equipment or service issues are very limited. SimpliSafe doesn’t offer live chat. However, they do provide phone support during business hours. This can cause long wait times.

The Interactive Monitoring Plant is the best option to reap the professional monitoring benefits of SimpliSafe. The difference in cost between Interactive and Standard is only 10. This means that the monthly fee is likely to be worth it for most consumers.


Why we picked it:

Short explanation of The Forbes Home Improvement editorial team looked at third-party data from 17 companies to determine the best outdoor security cameras ranking. Each product’s star rating was determined by evaluating various metrics including:

ADT has been the leader in home security for more than 140 years. ADT is able to help you, whether you need a wireless system that allows for self-monitoring or a complete service with 24/7 support. Their business was built on custom systems, high-quality equipment and professional installation.

ADT systems can be customized with high-quality electronics at affordable prices. The ADT system includes motion sensors, touch screen security panels, and 720p HD cameras with night vision and 2-way audio. There are also a variety of safety and environmental monitors such as smoke detectors and water leak detectors.

A wide range of connectivity features are available, including Google Assistant and Amazon Echo compatibility. There is also smart home compatibility for ten digital security products. ADT was voted the Best Professional Monitoring in our 2021 Best Home Security Companies List.


ADT will work with you to design your system and have it professionally installed. Basic package installation costs $99 and packages start at $27.99/month. Premium packages with additional features are more expensive.

The average installation cost is $150. The actual monthly monitoring and equipment costs vary depending on which package you choose. All systems require a 36-month contract with a 6-month guarantee.

Professional Monitoring

All ADT packages include professional monitoring 24 hours a day for intrusions and fire detection, flood detection, carbon monoxide detection, and flood detection. Each package includes a touch screen control panel, voice control compatibility with Amazon Alexa or Google Home Assistant, and voice control compatibility. Premium packages include access to mobile apps, smart home automation, and video security with saved video clips.


ADT systems can only be installed by professionals. All ADT systems come with a digital control panel, entry contacts, motion detectors, wireless keychain remotes, yard signs, window decals, and professional monitoring 24/7. Customers often add sensors, cameras or additional peripheral equipment. After setting up the system and testing it, the tech will walk you through its operation and show you how to use the mobile app.

Home Automation/Smart Home Features

ADT’s smart home offerings also include garage controllers, smart plugs, smoke detectors, smart switches, and smart plugs. You can remotely control the system using the mobile app and receive notifications when there is anything wrong.

ADT systems can also be integrated with other smart home devices. ADT systems that use Alexa are eligible for discounts and they offer free activation of the Echo Dot, ADT Command, Alexa Guard and Alexa Guard. They will work with you to make all your SmartThings hubs compatible with Google Home.

Additional Benefits

ADT equipment can be leased instead of purchased, which means that the initial cost is very low. Monthly charges include monitoring and equipment costs. The equipment is yours at the end of the 36 month contract.

ADT provides both landline and mobile connectivity. This provides a reliable connection to the monitoring centre in the event of downed lines and/or an interrupted cell signal.

ADT provides 24/7 customer support in the event of equipment or system problems. They can be reached via phone or live chat.

Fine Print

ADT consistently scores low on customer service. Low scores can be attributed to cancellations or service changes such as when a client moves mid-contract. Before signing, make sure you have read and understood the entire agreement. ADT might not be the best solution if your living arrangements are susceptible to change.

SimpliSafe and ADT: Key differences

SimpliSafe can be carried around, while ADT can be used permanently. SimpliSafe equipment can be purchased upfront and connected wirelessly. This is great for people who live in temporary situations. ADTs are professionally installed with many wired components. A three-year contract is required.

SimpliSafe is ideal for DIYers. ADT provides services for those who don’t have the time or desire. SimpliSafe’s pay-as you-go system is ideal for people who want complete control. ADT offers professional support and a wide range of devices.

SimpliSafe systems start with self monitoring and end in 24/7 monitoring. ADT starts with 24/7 monitoring and then continues with robust smart home integrations.

SimpliSafe offers a high-end package that includes their entire line of high-functioning devices as well as professional monitoring and mobile app connectivity. ADT’s system is superior to the rest, offering professional installation and monitoring as well as significantly greater capabilities in the smart home arena.

Short explanation of The Forbes Home Improvement editorial team looked at third-party data from 17 companies to determine the best outdoor security cameras ranking. Each product’s star rating was determined by evaluating various metrics including:


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