Link Interactive vs Protection 1

Protection 1 and Link Interactive take different approaches to the home security market. Link Interactive, owned by Costco, stresses Do-It-Yourself (DIY) while Protection 1 uses local installers and sales representatives. Both companies use quality sensors and detectors.  Link sells exclusively through Costco. Protection 1 can be bought online or through local Protection 1 providers.

Link Interactive vs Protection 1

To compare Link Interactive vs Protection 1 we use a wide-range of corresponding data points, including contracts, customer satisfaction ratings in multiple areas, costs and service. Our evaluation concluded that Link Interactive offers the best overall product. However, in some circumstances Protection 1 may be more suitable.

Similarities

  • Cellular transmission
  • Smartphone apps are available free of charge
  • 100% wireless
  • Both companies require three-year contracts
  • Both companies support Z-Wave technology

Differences

  • Protection 1 uses Honeywell sensors and Link Interactive 2Gig/GE
  • Link Interactive is DIY and Protection 1 requires professional installation
  • Link Interactive has a 30-day refund policy
  • Protection 1 has no refund policy
  • Protection 1 offers Geo-fencing
  • Protection 1 has landline-only connectivity for its least expensive package

Comparison Overview Chart of Basic Packages

 Link InteractiveProtection 1
PackageBasic Fire and SecuritySecure
Monthly Monitoring Fee$24.99$34.99
Equipment Cost$134.00*none
Activation and/or Installation Fee*none$99.00
Contract Length3 years3 years
Equipment Manufacturer2Gig (GE compatible)Honeywell
CellularYesNo
Number of Door/Window Sensor33
Motion Sensor Included11
Smoke, Heat, and Freeze SensorYesNo
Two-Way Voice ConsoleYesNo
BBB RatingA+A+

*Must be a Costco member to get a 5% discount on the equipment

Comparison Overview Chart of Top Packages Offered

 Link InteractiveProtection 1
PackageSmart CompleteVideo
Monthly Monitoring Fee$42.99$54.99
Equipment Cost$630.00*none
Activation and/or Installation Fee*none$99.00
Contract Length3 years3 years
CellularYesYes
Smartphone and Remote Access ManagementYesYes
Z-Wave ControlYesYes
Video AvailabilityYesYes
Number of Door/Window Sensor54
Motion Sensor Included21
Glass Break SensorNoYes
Camera11
Smoke, Heat, and Freeze SensorYesNo
Z-Wave ThermostatYesNo
Z-Wave Light/Appliance Module20
Geo-FenceNoYes
Touchscreen ConsoleYesYes
iTune App Rating3.5 stars2.5 stars
Android App Rating4 stars3.5 stars
Blackberry App Rating5 stars4 stars

*Must be a Costco member to get a 5% discount on the equipment

Comparison Overview
The sensors provided by Link Interactive and Protection 1 are considered by most analysts the best available in the marketplace today. The 2Gig units that Link Interactive uses are compatible with GE sensors also. Some of the components that Link provides come directly from GE.

You must purchase Link systems through a Costco outlet or at the Link Interactive website. If you are a member of Costco, you receive a 5% component discount.

Protection 1 essentially leases you the packaging equipment so there are no upfront costs for components. Link sells the equipment to you directly so if you cancel your monitoring contract you keep the equipment.

Both companies offer control panels that are Z-Wave compatible and each sells smart home appliance devices such as locks, light controls, and smart thermostats. The high-end package offered by Link includes two Z-Wave control modules.

Protection 1 and Link International offer the industry-standard, three-year monitoring contracts with all their packages.

Winner and Loser Categories

Company Reputation

Winner: Tie

Both companies have excellent service and sales reputations. Through Costco and online, Link International provides excellent DIY support through their chat, video and phone lines.

The sales and service personnel used by Protection 1 are well-trained and receive high consumer marks for the overall service and products.

Pricing

Winner: Link Interactive

Link Interactive charges less for monthly monitoring for all their packages than Protection 1 charges. Even though Protection 1 provides you a minimum amount of equipment with each package, the individual component prices are about the same for each company.

Protection 1 also charges activation fees.

Contract

Winner: Tie

The three-year monitoring contracts contain essentially the same terms and conditions, including the same penalty costs for early contract termination.

Packages and Contents

Winner: Tie

Protection 1 and Link provide and sell the same type of equipment. There are slight variations in numbers and types of equipment provided with each tier package but the differences are slight.

Ease of Installation

Winner: Tie

Protection 1 gets excellent reviews regarding the installation teams they use.

Link Interactive has simple, DIY components with pre-formatted sensors and detectors. This means that, from a homeowner’s perspective, they are simple “plug and play” systems. The installation videos, chat forums and instructions receive very positive feedback from customers.

Equipment Quality and Technology

Winner: Tie

The pricing and quality of 2Gig, GE and Honeywell products are the same.

Warranty

Winner: Link Interactive

Protection 1 does not offer any warranty. Link Interactive has a 30-day, money back guarantee.

Service

Winner: Tie

The Link Interactive online, video and telephonic service assistance receive high marks from users.

The service technicians used by Protection 1 are well trained and competent according to most user rating forums.

Comparison Summary

Both companies tie in virtually every comparison category. Link has a slight edge in warranty provision. However, the lower monthly monitoring cost for Link Interactive makes is what really makes it the better buy and our overall winner.  Read more about Link Interactive in our full Link Interactive review.

However, some people may not want to purchase the equipment directly. If the equipment offered in the Protection 1 packages suit your home’s needs, and you are not a DIY-type person, then Protection 1 may be a better choice.  Learn more in our Protection 1 review.

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