It used to be that investing in a high-quality security system required a landline phone. But then again, it used to be that we all had landline phones. No more! These days, many companies offer total home security simply by bouncing signals off the nearest cell towers. Others route emergency calls through Wi-Fi connections. Below, we try to make sense of it all by detailing the five best security systems available for purchase, absolutely no landlines required!
Cellular and internet
The More You Know: No commercial security system connects directly to 911. Instead, monitoring personnel act as a go-between. They are notified of any potential problems in your home first. They then quickly and carefully assess the situation before notifying the authorities to respond.
We’ve tested the very best no landline security systems and come up with a list of our favorites. We’ve made sure to include a variety of companies offering a wide range of options. Some of these systems, for instance, come with 24-hour professional monitoring. Others offer complete self-monitoring for no monthly fee. We looked at systems that only charged for monitoring, providing equipment for free, and systems that allow you to buy all your equipment a la carte. We examined DIY systems and those that provide professional installation. And of course, we made sure to include some companies with a month-by-month contract option.
In making our final decisions, we considered elements like service, reputation, smart home capabilities, DIY options, and, of course, affordability. As a result, we believe that our final list, which includes Ring Alarm, ADT, Frontpoint, Cove, and Link Interactive, offers a full range of choices in no landline security.
Best No Landline Security Systems
ADT - Best Professionally Installed No Landline Security System
Here’s the bottom line: we always know we can trust ADT with our security needs. After all, they’ve been at this for nearly 150 years. Do we have to jump through a few more hoops like haggling over the price and agreeing to a long-term contract with ADT? Yes. But in the end, we like to think of those hoops as extra layers of security, proof that this is a company that takes what they do seriously.
The first thing we discovered with ADT is that they don’t offer a DIY option. Rather, we had to schedule an installation that ran us a total of $99.00 and can cost as much as $199.00. And yeah, we had to let a couple of strangers into our house. On the other hand, we now have the peace of mind of knowing that we didn’t simply stick a few sensors onto some windows ourselves before heading back to watch the game. We also discovered ADT that doesn’t provide a firm pricing structure, so we had the chance to brush up on our haggling skills. Learn more about ADT’s pricing.
21st Century Technology
ADT may have a long and storied history, but they don’t rest on that reputation. ADT is without question a 21st-century security service. We found their mobile app, ADT Pulse, to be one of the most user-friendly on the market, and they are constantly investing in upgrades to keep pace with today’s smart homes. In fact, only this year they announced a new partnership with Google to develop a security system with machine-learning capabilities.1 That’s why hoops or no hoops, we have to recommend ADT as a top choice among professionally installed, no landline security systems.
A Look at ADT’s Components
All ADT packages come with standard:
Wireless Keychain Remote
Three Door/ Window Sensors
Infrared Motion Detectors
To get no landline service we had to go with at least the mid-level Total Protection package. In the end, though, we went with the Premium Protection package, which included video monitoring. If someone’s going to break into our place, we want to see the expression on their faces when they’re caught.
Tip: Landline-based security systems, as the name implies, operate using a phone line in the house. No landline systems, in contrast, rely on a form of wireless technology to communicate with monitoring centers and cannot be physically cut.
Cove makes shopping for no landline security systems simple and affordable. The company offers exactly two plans: the Basic plan for $14.99 a month and the Basic Plus plan for $24.99 a month. We found very few no landline systems who charged less. Their equipment was equally affordable. We got a touch panel for just $92.00 and sensors for only $7.50 apiece. We were pleased as well that they offered a month-to-month contract, a bonus that usually means higher monthly rates, but not in this case.
Smart Home Integration
Cove can’t make full use of all Alexa commands the way some systems can, but we were able to arm our system in away mode and to check its status. In addition, we watched live footage on our Echo Show devices, though we could only do this manually. Cove’s compatibility with Google Assistant is much better. As with Alexa, we could arm the system in away mode and check its status, but we were also able to get a complete event history and to operate devices connected to our Google Nest Hub.
Professional Monitoring at a Reasonable Price
Here’s the thing: smart homes are amazing and all, but what we want most out of a security system is, well, security. We didn’t notice any real difference in service between Cove’s professional monitoring and the bigger companies. Cove’s Live Assist is available 24 hours a day, and as long as we have the security of knowing someone’s there on the other end of the line whenever we need them, Cove is plenty “smart” enough for us. To see its costs, read our page on Cove’s subscriptions.
Warranties Longer than One Year Require Extra Purchase
Large Contact Sensors
History of Hackings
From Doorbells to Full Security
Ring became famous for their doorbells, as you can see in our list of the best video doorbells. But, since becoming part of the Amazon family of products, they have expanded into complete security systems, including no landline systems. As part of their integration into Amazon, Ring now offers full compatibility with Alexa and a wide range of smart devices and appliances. In short, while Ring Alarm is relatively new to the game, they have established themselves as the front-runners in the industry.
In terms of equipment, Ring Alarm packages start at $199.99, which we’d call a mid-range price for no landline systems. For that price you get:
One Contact Sensor
One Motion Detector
They also offer a 10-piece package with two motion detectors and five door and window sensors for $259.00 and a 14-piece package with even more sensors for 329.00.
Ring Cameras Use Motion Detection
Ring’s video cameras are all high definition, so our images were crystal clear. However, the cameras are all motion-activated, which means we didn’t have to worry about them being a constant drain on our Wi-Fi signal. That’s a good thing since we can get pretty fussy when we’re trying to watch The Crown and our signal is constantly buffering.
What really makes Ring unique, however, is the option for self-monitoring. Ring does offer a professional monitoring service that begins at the astonishingly low price of $10.00 and requires absolutely no long-term contracts outside of month-to-month. They also offer a discounted option of $100.00 when you sign up for a full year. However, we decided to try out the self-monitoring option and were pleasantly surprised. For no cost beyond the equipment itself, we received alerts any time our sensors and cameras detected any motion, and with Ring’s video technology, we always knew exactly what was happening. Luckily, we didn’t catch any cat burglars getting away with the family jewels, but we were able to give the family dog a stern warning about digging through the trash. And really, that was worth the price. Some disasters are easier to respond to than others.
Live Streaming, Night Vision, Alerts and More Only in More Expensive Plan
Steep Upfront Costs
Some Wiring Required
Limited Equipment Warranty
Need a Month-to-Month Contract?
We know how it is: sometimes you just don’t want to deal with a long-term contract. It can feel like an anchor weighing you down. When we went looking for a no landline security system that didn’t require a commitment, Frontpoint quickly rose to the top of the heap. Of course, as we expected, a month-to-month contract meant we had to pay a higher price for monthly monitoring and that we had to pay upfront for all of our equipment. Frontpoint’s pricing structure for month-to-month begins at $44.20. The extra costs we paid were made up to some extent by the fact that installation was DIY and thus free. And Frontpoint does offer longer-term contracts at discounted rates.
FYI: There are two types of no landline security systems: cellular and Wi-Fi. Cellular systems ping the nearest cell tower to communicate with a monitoring center. In contrast, Wi-Fi systems communicate with a monitoring center through your home’s Wi-Fi signal.
100 Percent Cellular
Beyond its no contract policy, though, Frontpoint also benefits from being one of the few 100 percent cellular security systems on the market. This means no landlines, of course, but many no landline services use Wi-Fi rather than, or in addition to, cellular. Wi-Fi systems, though sometimes cheaper than cellular, are subject to fluctuations in power and signal. We’re not especially comfortable with the idea that our safety can be put in jeopardy by a passing thunderstorm. Frontpoint’s 100 percent cellular policy means their network is far less likely to go down than their competitors.
Smart Home Compatibility
We should also note, Frontpoint has begun offering some compatibility with smart devices. We were able, for instance, to use Alexa voice commands to turn the Frontpoint system on. Additionally, we were able to use Google Assistant to perform actions through Alarm.com such as arming the system.
A Number of Available Components
One of the selling-points for Frontpoint is that even their most basic package includes a number of advanced components like:
Touchpad control panel
Remote control keyfob
Three entry sensors
Detectors for fire, smoke, water leaks, and carbon monoxide
Last but not least on our list for the best rural security system is Scout, which crowdfunded its way out of obscurity back in It’s a solid security system no matter how you look at it, but we especially like how well it integrates with Google Assistant as well as Alexa and IoT systems like Nest. However, its catalog leaves a little to be desired in some places, as does Scout’s pricing.
What We Liked
100 Percent Cellular Network
Convenient Takeover Service
Extensive use of Z-Wave Technology
Build-Your-Own System Option
What We Didn’t Like
Long-Term Contracts With Financing
Limited Customer Service Hours
High Cancellation Fees
Handy Takeover Service
Link Interactive is another no landline security system that operates through a 100 percent cellular network, ensuring your safety can’t be compromised by power outages. In addition, Link offers a unique “takeover” service. In short, when we got all frustrated over how our previous security company overcharged us for an extra sensor, we were able to switch to Link for no additional cost, and Link simply used our existing equipment. We didn’t have to go through the hassle of repurchasing a whole new hub and sensors. Pretty handy!
This service is only one of several unique features Link offers. They are particularly strong, for example, when it comes to wireless technology. Link works with Z-wave technology—special low energy wireless radio waves that connect smart home devices to one another. That’s a fancy way of saying that our security system was able to talk to our toaster and let us know if our bagels were on fire.
Link’s other unique feature is that, unlike most no landline security systems, they don’t offer standard equipment packages. Instead, we were encouraged to build our own system, choosing a la cart from a variety of components. That meant we only had to to get the equipment we needed, no more, no less. Link was even nice enough to throw our hub in for free.
Once we purchased the equipment, Link’s professional monitoring packages started at $30.99, and we learned we didn’t have to sign a long-term contract if we were willing to pay for all our equipment upfront. Otherwise, though, Link allowed us to finance the equipment through contracts that vary in length between one and three years.
In selecting our best no landline security systems, we considered a number of factors, including smart home compatibility, wireless protocols, available components, installation, and overall value. Security systems, of course, don’t have to earn perfect scores in every category to be considered worth buying. These categories simply served as a framework for thinking through which were the best systems on the market.
Smart Home Compatibility
Does it really matter whether our no landline security system can talk to other parts of our house? Certainly security systems have been around for a long time, much longer than Alexa or Google Assistant, and they’ve been protecting our homes just fine all that time. Still, we can’t deny that the ability to turn on our lights or lock our doors with just a voice command does make us feel just a little more in control of our safety. Smart home integration isn’t a necessity, particularly if you haven’t yet done much to upgrade in the smart direction, but it can certainly be an important consideration for those already invested in smart home technology.
One of the advantages to a no landline security system is that the landline that connects us to a monitoring station can never be cut. If our Wi-Fi shuts down because the power to our house was cut, though, we are in essentially the same situation. Some systems solve this problem with backup power options. In general, though, cellular security systems are less likely to be down when you need them. While we don’t see this as the sole determining factor, it definitely weighs heavily in the decision-making process.
No two no landline security systems are exactly alike. In fact, as this list demonstrates we found enormous differences between some systems. Some companies focus, for example, on protecting the central spaces of your home. Others are more concerned with protecting entrances. A whole list of other possibilities include glass break sensors, carbon monoxide monitors, doorbell cameras, and remote control key fobs. It’s important to carefully consider all the possibilities before choosing the right company.
Some systems come with full installation. Others are strictly DIY. And DIY can vary from one company to another, from simple wiring to peel-and-stick equipment. One reason we included such a variety of different systems in our best list is that we understand that no single approach will suit everyone. DIY usually means there’s no cost to installation, and in many cases companies tell us there’s no need for tools or wiring. On the other hand, for a set fee, other companies offer professional installation, so there’s no question every component works properly.
This is yet another tricky category because it really depends on how “value” is defined. We found some landline security systems that require no upfront costs and no equipment fees but charge heavily for monthly monitoring. Other services had low equipment fees and low monthly monitoring but offered only basic services: no video, no app, and no smart home integration. At least one of the services we included offered self-monitoring, with no monthly fees whatsoever. Again, we carefully considered the different needs of most consumers and then tried to offer a range of choices.
No Landline Security System FAQs
Here are our answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about no landline security systems.
The best no landline home security system with no monthly fee is Ring Alarm. While Ring Alarm offers the option of professional monitoring for a monthly fee of $10.00 or an annual rate of $100.00, it also offers the option to self-monitor with no monthly fees.
The best no landline home security system is the Ring Alarm. Equipment is affordable and it offers a professional monitoring for an affordable price. Or, you can simply buy the equipment and set up self-monitoring though the Ring app for free.
The most affordable home security system depends on what equipment you buy and what kind of monitoring service you sign up for. However, Ring Alarm consistently offers the lowest priced equipment and the lowest monthly monitoring fees.