Welock Smart Lock Touch41 review: The smart door lock with a fingerprint sensor
Welock's Smart Lock Touch41 is a door lock with a fingerprint sensor, RFID recognition and Bluetooth support. The manufacturer offers a variety of other locks, including some with number pads. The Smart Lock Touch41 can also be had with an external WLAN box which enables it to be unlocked via WiFi from far away.
Our test model is the Smart Lock Touch41 (not Mini) without a WLAN box. It has an MRSP of about US$200. This price includes the locking cylinder, as it is connected to the electronic part. Our test sample features a standard European cylinder with a length of 55 millimetres.
Scope of delivery
The Smart Lock Touch41 comes in a compact box. Aside from the mounted lock unit, this includes an illustrated instruction manual in five languages and a box with accessories. Inside this, you can find three RFID cards with bands that enable you to connect them to a keyring. The cards first have to make contact with the lock before they can be used.
Furthermore, the lock comes delivered with a cross-slot key and an Allen key. The cross-slot key is usually required for the screw that fixes the locking cylinder into the door. The Allen key is used on grub screws on the lock — for example, to insert the batteries or to adjust the length.
The lock also comes with a SIM pin. While the smart lock doesn't have a SIM card, the tool is required in order to reset the device. Three AAA batteries, which are needed to use it, are not included with the lock. A small function button and a fingerprint reader can also be found on the device.
With normal locking cylinders, the length of the cylinder is adapted to the front door. The respective length is measured from the center of the door and the cylinder is selected or manufactured accordingly. However, the Smart Lock Touch41 is only available in one length. In order to make the lock as versatile as possible, the manufacturer allows you to adjust certain areas of the two rotary handles. These can be moved within a square, and the appropriate setting is secured using a grub screw.
The knob on the inside can be completely removed for installation. The unit on the outside can be moved, but cannot be removed (burglary protection). This allows the lock to be adjusted on doors with thicknesses between 50 and 100 mm. In our test, this worked on two out of three doors. However, the problem with the third door was not the thickness but instead, a built-in security escutcheon in front of the cylinder. This is designed to prevent the cylinder from being drilled out and pulled out. However, the Smart Lock cannot be installed due to this reduced opening.
In order for the lock to work, you have to insert batteries. To do so, you have to remove a cover held in place by a screw and subsequently, you fold out two flaps. After installation, one is also secured using a screw. Unfortunately, anyone with an Allen key can still access the batteries and can remove them. To mitigate this, Welock has installed a Micro-USB port into the device. If you connect a power bank to it, then the lock can be supplied with power so you can unlock it. This is also the manufacturer's solution for if the batteries run dry and can't be replaced quickly enough. Apparently, the lock can get 10 to 12 months' use out of one set of batteries.
The lock is protected against water and dust (IP65 certification). Even so, the manufacturer recommends installing it into a door which lies beneath a canopy.
Welock offers a smartphone app for Android and iOS which can be used for this lock. However, the lock can also be set up directly on the device using the buttons and display. After installing the app, a user account must be created with Welock. Devices can then be added to the app. This is done by scanning the QR code on the lock. To increase security, a lock ID must then be entered - this is printed on the locking cylinder and is therefore not visible when the lock is installed.
The lock itself requires at least one administrator. This administrator is created at the start of the setup process and their fingerprint is stored. It makes sense to store several fingerprints at the same time so as not to lose access to the lock, as the administrator's fingerprint is always required to create up to 97 additional users.
To access the setup menu, you have to press the function key for five seconds. An administrator must then place their finger on the button. The function key can be used to navigate through the menu. It is possible to add new users, who simply have to place their finger on the reader and move it twice when prompted. It is also possible to connect RFID locking cards — such as the three cards supplied. This worked quickly and easily in our test. The language on the display can be switched between English, German and Mandarin.
It is also possible to delete users, administrators and RFID cards via the lock. Additionally, Bluetooth remote controls can be created, and it is also possible to deactivate the Bluetooth function. Operation with just one button is not particularly convenient, but it worked reliably in our test.
Several devices can be paired with the Welock app, with individual settings possible for each device. Additional app users can be assigned to the lock via the software. It is also possible to assign RFID cards via the app. Unlike doing so on the lock itself, these can also be set for a limited time using the software. The RFID card is then only authorized to open the door for a certain period of time.
The app can also be used to delete cards and fingerprints. It is not possible to add fingerprints. In addition, the smartphone itself can be used as a key if it is paired via Bluetooth. If nothing else works, the lock can also be connected to the smartphone via USB cable and unlocked — without a Bluetooth connection. This provides additional security, but requires a USB-C to micro USB cable or a corresponding adapter.
A WiFi box can also be set up via the Welock app to enable a WLAN connection to the lock. In addition, the lock can then be paired with Amazon Alexa. Google Assistant support is supposedly in the works.
The app also offers the option of displaying a locking log. This allows you to see which user opened the door when and with which locking method. To view all the data, however, the lock must be synched with your smartphone via Bluetooth. The software also displays the lock's current battery status.
The Welock Smart Lock Touch41 left quite a good impression on us in everyday use. Fingerprints are recognized very reliably. Only when fingers are wet does it take more than one attempt to open the lock. Because fingerprint scanning works so quickly and reliably, RFID cards and smartphone unlocking are rarely needed. Since the smartphone first has to establish a connection to the lock, it takes a few seconds before the door can be opened.
Although the lock has to be woken up by pressing a button before your finger can be placed on it, it is quite literally child's play to operate. A five-year-old in our test household could easily operate the lock and open the door. In this case, the Smart Lock Touch41 is very practical because there isn't a key for the children to lose.
One annoying feature is that the lock itself is slightly crooked. This is only noticeable when viewed from the side. The distance between the inner knob and the door is not always the same. The lock also has quite a bit of wiggle room within the door in general, although it is firmly screwed in place. The system works smoothly, but you don't feel like it is the most high-quality device.
The lock never malfunctioned or failed during our test. All family members got along well with the Welock. We cannot say anything about how secure the door lock is.
+ simple installation
+ lots of ways to unlock
+ reliable functions and easy to use
+ WLAN function can be added
– Our test sample didn't sit flush inside our door
– It takes a few moments for it to connect to your smartphone
Verdict on the smart door lock from Welock
The Welock Smart Lock Touch41 impressed us. It is simple and quick to install. The smart lock makes everyday life a little easier, as it is impossible to lock yourself out using it. A positive to note is how many different ways you can unlock it. Moreover, this gives you more security in case one method doesn't work.
In some cases, the lock's time-restricted access function and unlock log might be useful. The devices features can be expanded using the WiFi box — which lets you open the lock from from afar. Especially in connection with a smart doorbell, this could come in really handy.
The Welock Smart Lock Touch41 masters a large range of functions and worked flawlessly in our test.
In any case, the door on which the lock is to be installed should be checked beforehand. In addition to the strength of the door, the installation of the cylinder should also be checked. The door should also be protected by a canopy so that the lock doesn't fail in the long term due to moisture penetration. Unfortunately, our overall impression of the device's quality was somewhat tarnished.
Price and availability
The Welock Smart Lock Touch41 retails for around US$200. While this model can't currently be found on Amazon, you can find the versions which feature a number pad.
The present review sample was given to the author by the manufacturer free of charge for the purposes of review. There was no third-party influence on this review, nor did the manufacturer receive a copy of this review before publication. There was no obligation to publish this review.