BoxLock Is a Clever Smart Lock Aiming to Thwart Porch Pirates

BoxLock is a clever smart lock that will protect your precious packages from porch pirates after they’ve been delivered. When paired with a secure parcel box, BoxLock is a strong line of defense to thwart package thieves. BoxLock has a built-in barcode scanner, Wi-Fi & Bluetooth connectivity, and a 30+ day rechargeable battery. BoxLock retails for $129.

Photo courtesy of BoxLock

The way BoxLock works is that the delivery driver will scan your package using BoxLock’s built-in barcode scanner. BoxLock will only open for packages that are out for delivery that day. After the driver delivers the package, he or she will put the lock back on your parcel box and your package is safe until you retrieve it. You can easily open the BoxLock from your app once you get home.

Straight out of the box

I applaud the concept of this lock, as it’s a really ingenious way to tackle porch theft, which is a growing concern in America. A survey from 2017 found that almost 26 million Americans, or 8% of the population, say they’ve had a package stolen from their porch or doorstep during the holiday season. Over the past few years, online shopping has increased, as has media coverage of porch piracy, so I’d be interested in seeing the latest data on this issue.

Check out this overview video from BoxLock’s founder Brad Ruffkess:

BoxLock was kind enough to send me both the BoxLock itself and the Step2 Deluxe Package Delivery Box in order to test out the product. The Step2 box is a really nice looking plastic box that will look good on just about any stoop. It comes in white, mocha, gray and black. The box has vents on the rear so that the heat doesn’t build up on hot days, which is a nice touch. While I hadn’t physically attached the box to my stoop, I figured the box alone would be enough to prevent theft.

The bottom of BoxLock, showing charge port, barcode reader, and light.

BoxLock pairs with their free smartphone app to allow simple control of your lock. You can also sync your email with the BoxLock app so that whenever you get a tracking number, it’s automatically entered into your app’s database to allow that package to open the lock on the day of its delivery. While some may have privacy concerns syncing their email with BoxLock, I did not have any issues.

BoxLock with light and barcode scanner activated.

BoxLock works with packages from all major delivery companies, like USPS, UPS, FedEx, and Amazon. They recommend signing up for email alerts from all delivery companies to ensure the tracking information is properly recorded by your app. They also recommend adding delivery instructions, asking the drivers to use the BoxLock when delivering packages.

While I commend the concept behind BoxLock and the product itself is really well designed and built, I can’t recommend BoxLock based on my personal experience. No matter how many times I updated the delivery instructions for Amazon or UPS or FedEx, the drivers almost never used the BoxLock. I have many videos recorded by my Ring doorbell cam that show the drivers walking up to my stoop and tossing the package up in front of my door without paying any attention to the parcel box.

Unfortunately, a common occurrence

That’s the thing; the whole concept behind BoxLock requires the delivery drivers to actually care enough to deliver per the instructions. I’m sure there are plenty of delivery drivers who care that you get your package safely, however, I only witnessed one or two drivers who tried to figure out how to use the BoxLock. Most of the other drivers just threw the package on the stoop and went along their day. Maybe it’s because they thought trying the lock was too much of a hassle and would take too much time, or maybe it’s because they simply didn’t care enough to try.

App homescreen

Delivery tracking screen on the app.

So yes, the BoxLock is a great idea. It’s even a great product design! It’s sleek and modern while having great built-in features. The app is easy to use and the syncing of your email is a great idea to load the tracking numbers. But in the end, you are relying on the delivery drivers to use the product, which is not a guarantee.

You can purchase the BoxLock directly from the manufacturer at GetBoxLock.com.

Source: The BoxLock and Step2 Parcel Box were manufacturer supplied review samples

What I Like: Great idea; Great product design; Wireless connectivity; 30+ day battery life

What Needs Improvement: Relies on delivery drivers to use the lock which is not a guarantee

 


About the Author

Perry Brauner
I'm an architect by trade, but the overarching theme of my life has always been trying to keep up with the newest, coolest technology. Ever since I picked up an NES controller, I've been hooked on the latest and greatest gadgets, gizmos, and toys. Whether it's gaming, mobile phones, and accessories, or PCs and Apple products, I'm interested. I use many Apple products in my daily life, such as the iPhone, iPad, and my MacBook Pro. I've also built a few PCs in my day, so I'd like to say that I'm a pretty well-rounded techie.