To say that the original Yale Real Living Assure Lock wasn’t my favorite would be a gross understatement, and even Yale seems to have conceded that product’s faults, as the company is back with an update to the smart lock, the Assure SL. The Assure SL revises both the hardware and the software of the smart lock system, overhauling the ecosystem considerably. Let’s look at both in turn.

First, from a hardware perspective, Yale has given the exterior escutcheon of the lock a major upgrade. Now billed as smaller and slimmer than other electronic locks, the exterior of the Assure SL, once installed, is indeed impressive. About the size of a deck of cards, the touchscreen looks good and is relatively unobtrusive. Without the monstrous casing that surrounded the touchscreen in the original Assure, it looks less like a lock and more like a smartphone glued to the front of your door. (Of note: The 9-volt emergency terminal on the external escutcheon of the original, which let you operate the lock if the internal batteries died, has been jettisoned.)

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Yale Real Living Assure SL Lock review: Yale’s next-gen lock makes significant strides