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yupULTRALOQ U-Bolt Pro Review

Offers more advanced smart features than most models on the market
Top Pick Award
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Price:   $260 List | $199 at Amazon
Pros:  Many smart features, compatible with most smart home platforms, charging port for when the battery dies
Cons:  Requires external smart hub, initial setup can be tricky, expensive
Manufacturer:   U-Tec
By Max Mutter and Michelle Powell  ⋅  Sep 8, 2020
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71
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#2 of 8
  • Smart Features - 35% 8
  • Keyless Entry - 25% 9
  • Security - 25% 5
  • Installation - 15% 5

Our Verdict

The ULTRALOQ U-Bolt Pro offers more features than the vast majority of smart locks on the market. In particular it offers fingerprint scanning, allowing you to unlock the door even if you forget your keys and phone when leaving the house, and providing a unique level of security. Top that off with a keypad, physical key port, Bluetooth keys, and the ability to run the lock from an external power source in the event that the batteries run out, and you have a truly fully-featured lock. We did, however, run into some annoyances when installing the lock. Still, if you're looking for advanced smart features, this is the lock for you.

Compare to Similar Products

Our Analysis and Test Results

The ULTRALOQ U-Bolt Pro offers unique features, namely fingerprint scanning, for those that want every possible smart feature you can get from a lock.

Performance Comparison



Smart Features


The ULTRALOQ U-Bolt Pro was made for people who love smart features. It offers more than most models on the market.


The most unique smart feature offered by the ULTRALOQ U-Bolt Pro is its fingerprint scanner. This lets you unlock the door just by tapping your finger, and negates the issue of forgetting your key or phone when leaving the house.

The ULTRALOQ U-Bolt Pro's fingerprint scanner is one of the most unique smart features we've come across.
The ULTRALOQ U-Bolt Pro's fingerprint scanner is one of the most unique smart features we've come across.

On top of the fingerprint scanner you can unlock the lock via a key code entered into the numeric keypad, via the app on your phone, or using a physical key by accessing the hidden key port. You can also share access via any of these avenues, and that sharing can be time constrained (with the exception of the physical key, of course). For instance, you can set the lock so that your dog walker's code or fingerprint can only unlock the lock between noon and 2 on weekdays. And, of course, you can lock and unlock the lock from anywhere you have an internet connection via your phone. No matter how you grant access to other people you can access a log of who used the lock and when.

You can also turn on geofencing, which tracks your phone and automatically unlocks the door as you pull into the driveway. Or just get close to the house. This allows for easy, hands-free unlocking.

The circular keypad allows for a sleeker design  but does take a minute to get used to.
The circular keypad allows for a sleeker design, but does take a minute to get used to.

The ULTRALOQ U-Bolt Pro can link to both Alexa and Google Assistant based smart home systems as well, allowing for some basic voice control. It also works well with If This Then That (IFTTT), allowing you to create more advanced ques. For example, you can set the lock to automatically lock when a compatible security camera sees motion.

Though not really a smart feature, the ULTRALOQ U-Bolt Pro offers a micro USB charging port that allows you to operate the lock via an external power source. This comes in handy if the lock happens to run out of battery, allowing you to gain access even if you don't have the physical key with you.

Finally, this lock offers a "magic shake" that allows you to unlock the lock simply by shaking your phone in front of it. Right now you need to open the app in order to do this, which largely defeats the purpose. However, ULTRALOQ plans to eventually allow this feature to run in the background, so you could just grab your phone and shake it to get into the door without fussing with any apps.

The sleek interior face.
The sleek interior face.

Keyless Entry


We had no issues with the ULTRALOQ U-Bolt Pro's keyless entry, the lock responded almost immediately to commands from the app, key codes, magic shakes, and geofencing.


Security


The ULTRALOQ U-Bolt Pro lacks an official ANSI security rating. When we contacted customer service they told us it was modeled after Grade 2 (considered a good level for residential applications) but it is not officially certified as such. It does have auto lock settings, which automatically locks the lock after a user-determined period of inactivity. That way the lock always locks, even if you forget to do it yourself.


Installation


We found installation of the ULTRALOQ U-Bolt Pro to be relatively simple but potentially annoying. It wasn't too hard to get the lock physically installed in the door, but we ran into some problems when trying to link the lock to its separate smart hub. This smart hub connects the lock to your WiFi network, so it's pretty much useless without it. Eventually this worked, but we had to restart the app and unplug the hub multiple times before everything behaved. Once everything was set up we had no issues in day to day operation.

The battery chamber is easily accessed. There is also a microUSB port that can be used to power the lock from an external source  if those batteries happen to die.
The battery chamber is easily accessed. There is also a microUSB port that can be used to power the lock from an external source, if those batteries happen to die.

Value


The ULTRALOQ U-Bolt Pro is fairly expensive, but smart locks don't come cheap in general. If you can live without its fingerprint scanner, there are some similar locks that are a bit cheaper. However, if you really want the fingerprint scanning, it's worth the extra cost.

We found the physical installation of the lock to be relatively straightforward.
We found the physical installation of the lock to be relatively straightforward.

Conclusion


The ULTRALOQ U-Bolt Pro offers more smart features than most, making it perfect for those that want as many ways to unlock their door as possible.

Max Mutter and Michelle Powell