Frontpoint vs ADT (What You Need To Know – 2022)

How we reviewed: hands-on tests, hours studying Frontpoint and ADT sites, and reading 100+ customer reviews.

Frontpoint

Frontpoint Wireless/Cellular Home Security System - Standard Package
primary 4 3

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Starts at Price not available

  • 100% Wireless Equipment
  • 100% Cellular Monitoring
  • Interactive Features
  • Instant Alerts

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ADT

ADT 6 Piece Wireless Home Security System - DIY Installation - Optional...
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Starts at $199.99

  • ADT 6 Piece
  • DIY Installation
  • Professional Monitoring
  • Works with Alexa

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Last update on 2022-05-21 / Affiliate links / Ratings / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Written By: John Fox | Security expert / Locksmith 30 Years Experience

05.18.2022

Working in the industry for over 15 years, I have had a lot of ADT installs and Frontpoint installs, so I can accurately compare these two. Overall, ADT is definitely the more popular brand for security, but Frontpoint is no slouch and can have some benefits over an ADT install.

Deciding between Frontpoint vs ADT can prove quite difficult if you don’t quite know what you’re looking for. ADT is one of the oldest and biggest players in the home security market, whereas Frontpoint is a fast-growing niche product challenging the market giants. I had an ADT home security system for years before I switched to Frontpoint a year ago.

In this article, I compare the two products head-to-head and help you decide which one is the best for you.

I first give a brief intro to both products and then walk you through the main features of both products and interpret what their features mean to you.

Frontpoint WirelessCellular Home Security System

Frontpoint

Frontpoint is a DIY home security system that can be installed in an hour without having to use any tools.

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Frontpoint offers some of the most impressive security features and services without binding you to a long-term agreement. If you’re like me and you like to take security into your own hands instead of leaving everything to the security company, this user-friendly system is perfect for you.

ADT 6 Piece Wireless Home Security System

ADT

ADT is one of the most trusted security companies in the US. Their security systems are professionally installed, and their experts ensure your security system is set up the right way.

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ADT has a large number of security devices its collection you can choose from depending on the specifics of your house. You also have different services to choose from depending on your requirements. ADT is a good, hassle-free solution for those who are serious about security but aren’t particularly enthusiastic about rolling their sleeves up and doing their own work.

Compare Frontpoint vs ADT Top Features

Features

Frontpoint

ADT

Motion Sensor

1

1

Window Decals

5

3

Professional Monitoring

  • Yes
  • Yes

Works with Alexa

  • No
  • Yes

Info current as of 10/08/21. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

Frontpoint vs ADT: Features Face-to-Face

Installation

ADT is a professionally installed system, and once you decide on what products and services you need, they send their representatives who do the entire setup. The installation itself might not take a lot of time, but you might have to save at least a few hours from your schedule for this process.

Frontpoint, on the other hand, is a DIY system. Most components are wireless, and you just have to place them and set them up using the app. I emphasized the word “most” there because the camera is not wireless and needs a power connection. For me, this is a good thing in the long run since wireless cameras that run on a battery don’t give 24/7 surveillance.

At the end of the day, it didn’t take me more than an hour to complete the installation process from start to finish.

Winner: Frontpoint

Frontpoint is a DIY system and doesn’t take more than an hour to install by yourself. ADT is professionally installed and will cost you more time.

If you want to install it yourself, you may want to check this learning guide on how to install security cameras.

Contract

ADT requires you to sign a 3-year contract right off the bat. However, you do have the option to return the system within the first 6 months if you wish. The thing I don’t like about this contract is that if you leave your hours, you have to leave your security system behind and even have to pay the company unless you sign another 3-year contract with ADT for your new home.

Frontpoint, on the other hand, doesn’t require you to sign any contracts, and you only have to pay month to month. They’re also very supportive with shifting (they sent me free double-sided adhesive when I shifted a while ago).

Winner: Frontpoint

Unlike ADT, Frontpoint doesn’t require you to sign any contracts, and you can cancel the service any time you like.

Pricing

ADT doesn’t advertise their prices; they have no fixed price. What you end up paying monthly depends on what products you want, what services you need, and your negotiation skills. Their prices are not fixed even for a given set of devices and services, and you can negotiate with their representative for lower prices. (1)

Frontpoint has up-front and to-the-point prices. Frontpoint has a fixed price for the system, fixed prices for any additional components, and fixed prices for their subscription services. They have three subscription services with different prices and different degrees of offered services. The three plans are the Protect plan, the Interactive plan, and the Ultimate plan. I chose the ultimate plan because it offers live streaming, video history, night vision, and the ability to control smart locks and lights, but even this plan costs me less than what I was paying ADT. Bad negotiation skills? I don’t know.

Winner: Frontpoint

Frontpoint has fixed determined prices and costs less than ADT in general.

Professional Monitoring

Professional monitoring is an extra service offered by home security services. Your home system is monitored 24/7 by professionals who respond to any triggers from your home when you’re away and contact authorities when they suspect forced entry. Since this is a service, you have to pay monthly.

Both ADT and Frontpoint have professional monitoring. The only major difference here is that of pricing, but we already discussed that. This is a draw between the two.

Winner: Draw

Both ADT and Frontpoint have professional monitoring.

Customer Support

ADT offers 24/7 call support, live chat through their website, and even FaceTime with an expert if you need help with something. Yet, Frontpoint has a much higher customer support rating on most platforms than ADT. This round easily goes to Frontpoint.

Winner: Frontpoint

Frontpoint has a much higher customer support rating on most platforms, indicating better customer support.

Mobile Applications

The dedicated mobile applications for both of these systems are pretty intuitive. Both apps are easy to figure out. The apps also have high ratings on the Google Play Store and Apple App Store. There are some old reviews mentioning bugs in these apps, but those bugs probably have been taken care of as I never came across one. This is a draw between the two.

Winner: Draw

Both Frontpoint and ADT have intuitive mobile applications.



Frontpoint vs ADT: Standout Features

Frontpoint has a Smaller Market Share

No, I don’t mean that as a con for Frontpoint. Here’s what I mean.

“The general rule is, the more popular a security system you have, the more likely it is for a burglar to know its weaknesses.”

I’m quite concerned about the vulnerabilities that security systems have, and there are several. For example, the door and window sensors use a magnetic field to know when a door opens. One of the two components has a magnet, while the other has a magnetic field sensor. (2)

When your door opens, the magnetic field from the magnet disappears, and the sensor knows that the door has been opened. But, it is entirely possible for someone to bypass the sensor from outside using a strong enough magnet.

I was able to do this using a few inexpensive neodymium magnets I bought from Amazon. The method requires you to already know where behind the door you have the sensor placed, but it’s entirely possible.

Another vulnerability is that door sensors use radio frequency to transmit a signal to the hub, which then rings the alarm. But, these signals can easily be jammed using a cheap RF jamming device. These devices overwhelm the frequency range of the door sensors and motion sensors and keep their signals from being heard by the central hub.

But, to do this, the burglar has to know what frequency range the system works in. ADT is so common that anyone who buys an RF jammer for this intent probably looks up the RF range of ADT systems.

The general rule is, the more popular a security system you have, the more likely it is for a burglar to know its weaknesses. One way around this is to use a different yard sign than for the system you have. But it’s always better to combine this with a less common security system such as Frontpoint.

Monitoring Centers

Frontpoint is a smaller company than ADT. This allows ADT to afford a large number of monitoring centers that others can’t match. If you choose to have professional monitoring, ADT’s large number of centers is definitely a plus.

Smoke and CO2 Detectors

The Frontpoint hub, the camera, and the motion sensor all have smoke and CO2 detectors inside them. When these sensors detect smoke or a large concentration of CO2, they can ring the alarm. If you wish to place a camera and/or a motion detector and every room, Frontpoint can also act as a fire alarm system.

Experience

ADT is by far the oldest major player in the market. The company has been offering private security for more than 140 years. In comparison, Frontpoint only started in 2007. ADT knows security like no other company in the market. They use statistics from their experience to design products aimed to prevent the most common crimes.



Frontpoint vs ADT
: Pros and Cons

Frontpoint Pros

  • Exceptional customer service
  • 30-day free monthly trial with no long-term contracts
  • Portable and offers wireless equipment
  • Easy DIY installation

Frontpoint Cons

Costly fees for monitoring


ADT Pros

  • Offers multiple monitoring centers
  • Response time is fast
  • A strong reputation

ADT Cons

  • Offers three-year-long contracts
  • Monthly monitoring is costly
  • An upgrade is required for CO2 and Smoke monitoring



Wrapping Up

From an unbiased general perspective, both ADT and Frontpoint have their respective place in the market. Personally, I like Frontpoint more since it’s more user-friendly and gives the user more control over the system. On the other hand, ADT has proven itself as a pretty good system over the years. If you value experience, ADT is the right option for you.

Below are some other learning guides and product reviews we’ve written that you might want to check later on.

References

(1) negotiation skills – https://online.hbs.edu/blog/post/negotiation-skills
(2) magnetic field – https://www.britannica.com/science/magnetic-field