Bottom line: Minut is versatile but doesn’t replace a security system
The Minut Smart Home Alarm takes a privacy-first approach to home security and doesn’t use cameras in its devices. It’s refreshing to know your security system won’t spy on you accidentally or intentionally.
And it has a subtle but attractive design that detects noises, motion, alarm sirens, temperature, and humidity for a cheaper alternative to a traditional security system.
Still, it’s not a complete replacement for a home security system because it doesn’t record video or use professional monitoring. This device is an especially useful tool for Airbnb hosts and landlords to monitor inside rental properties without using an expensive security system or an intrusive security camera.
Info current as of 06/04/2020. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.
If you use Minut in a single house, we recommend skipping the paid subscription unless you want an unlimited sensor history. None of Minut’s other features requires a paid subscription, so it’s a better value to pass on the additional data. The monthly fee is mostly useful for property managers and short-term rental hosts who monitor multiple locations.
What’s in the box
USB-C cable for charging
Magnetic plate, screw, and anchor for mounting
Minut's limited smart home compatibility
You can use Minut with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant* to arm and disarm the security alarm (Apple HomeKit support is coming). Still, it doesn't integrate with other smart home devices in a useful way. At the very least, we'd like options to ask for the latest sensor readings or battery charge levels.
How we reviewed
To prepare for this evaluation, we dug through online reviews, app store reviews, and technical specifications. After we learned more about this product, we distilled our conclusions about which features stand out. We also examined whether it can provide effective security in place of a traditional security system.
This type of all-in-one smart alarm is relatively new to the market, so there aren’t many devices that directly compare with it. Instead, we rely on our knowledge of security systems to help inform our conclusions. You can learn more about our research and ranking practices by reading our full methodology.
The Minut Smart Home Alarm combines a wealth of sensors into a small device that mounts on a wall or ceiling like a smoke detector. The mobile app is easy to use with clear information from each sensor and the ability to arm a security alarm. Essentially, this creates a mini security system you can use to detect intruders and environmental hazards.
One of the most impressive things about Minut is what it does to improve security in a home. Specifically, we like the motion detection and glass break sensor because they can spot when someone enters the house. The alarm also triggers a loud siren to let intruders know they’re not welcome.
An alarm for empty houses
Minut is most effective when the house is empty during a vacation or while you're at work.
Another security feature we like is the ability to detect other alarms going off. With this feature, you get a notification whenever a smoke and carbon monoxide detector triggers so you can call the fire department.
This smart home alarm doesn’t have a camera to tell you what kind of siren is going off, so you may need to check with neighbors before calling 911.
Luckily, the Minut app has a neighborhood watch function to alert family members and friends when you’re unavailable. This helpful feature makes it easier to monitor your home, especially since Minut doesn’t have a professional monitoring service to check in when an alarm triggers. You don’t need a subscription to add family and friends.
Minut can detect if someone removes the device from the mounting plate.
The Minut Smart Home Alarm has four environmental sensors: temperature, humidity, sound level, and pressure. By detecting temperature and humidity, Minut can track if your heater or air conditioner fails, leading to damage inside your home.
Minut also uses temperature and humidity measurements to tell you how likely a room is to develop mold problems. This clever bit of software engineering helps you know what to look for when maintaining your home so you can prevent dangerous mold growth.
Minut's pressure sensor
There's no practical use for a pressure sensor for most people, but you can use the readings to learn about current weather conditions outside your home. In general, high pressure (over 1,022 hPa) means clear skies, while low pressure (under 1,009 hPa) means bad weather.1
Minut’s noise sensor works for security, but its best feature is detecting high sound levels over time like you would experience at a loud party. With this feature, you can check that the kids aren’t throwing a rager while you’re away for the weekend.
But you’re more likely to use it to enforce no-party rules in an Airbnb. You can customize quiet hours and sound thresholds in the Minut app to receive notifications when guests get too loud. This way, your guests won’t annoy the neighbors or party without permission.
Installing Minut is an easy three-step process: charge the battery, set up the device using the Minut app, and install the magnetic mounting plate. Because the mount is magnetic, you don’t have to take out screws or adhesive each time you recharge the battery.
The company says its battery lasts up to six months on a single charge and takes a few hours to recharge. Because battery life estimates tend to be generous, expect to charge the unit two to four times a year.
The mounting plate attaches to the ceiling or wall using a single screw or an adhesive pad. We prefer the screw method because it’s easier to remove than the adhesive. This is especially important if you mount the Minut Point on a ceiling, which isn’t as easy to access. The less time you spend on a ladder, step stool, or chair, the less likely you’ll take a tumble.
The motion sensor works best when you mount the Minut Point to a ceiling about 8 feet above the floor. You might need additional Minut Points for larger homes or other rooms you want to monitor.
The motion sensor can trigger a built-in nightlight to help you find your way in the dark.
While you can use Minut in a single-family home, we think this device is ideal for watching over Airbnb rentals and multi-unit dwellings like apartment complexes. Because it doesn’t record audio or video, it allows the property owner to monitor possible problems across multiple units without affecting guests’ privacy.
Minut is useful if you want a device like a home security system without the benefits of professional monitoring or security cameras. It fills a unique gap in the market, but ultimately its quest to respect privacy makes it less of a security device than most folks probably want.
*Google, Google Assistant, Google Home, and other related marks are trademarks of Google LLC.
Written by John Carlsen
John is a technology journalist with over seven years of experience researching, testing, and reviewing the latest tech. Before joining SafeWise in 2020, John was an editor for Top Ten Reviews specializing in home security and the smart home. Learn more