How Do Keyless Entry Systems Work?

As their name suggests, keyless entry systems are access systems that grant access to a limited or restricted area, but don’t require a physical key to unlock. They come in many shapes and sizes, but as a general rule you can choose from three types of keyless entry systems for business. These include:

Keyless Locks With A Combined Keypad

While this system is an added layer of security that is easy to implement, keyless locks with a keypad or pinpad do not have remote management capabilities. This requires the office occupants and IT administrators to be physically present to input the key code to gain access or resolve any issues, which limits the functionality of the lock compared to other more technologically advanced lock systems.

Locks With Key Fob Control (Or Proximity Keyless Entry Systems)

Locks with key fob and smart card control are the easiest to onboard with employees and visitors, involving just a simple tap of the fob or card to the lock to gain access. While these proximity keyless entry systems are slightly more flexible for administrators and users, fobs and smart cards are still only operational from a close distance and don't have any remote management capabilities. This system is commonly seen among businesses of all sizes because it is fairly easy for administrators to assign and deactivate access and react quickly when an access fob is lost or stolen.

Smart Locks (Or Remote Keyless Entry Systems)

Smart locks take advantage of wireless protocols such as Bluetooth, WiFi or Z-Wave for access control and remote lock management. For their part, smart locks use a keyed lock, a key card access control system, or a combination of access controls to lock and unlock your property. Their distinguishing feature is remote control capabilities where the lock pairs with a key fob or a smartphone, making it the optimal solution for administrators who need the ability to manage access remotely. Smart locks that integrate with mobile-friendly or cloud-based software are the most flexible solution for businesses that want to maximize security, but also react quickly and painlessly to any physical breaches. Advanced smart locks are also the easiest to pair with security cameras and smart alarms, creating the safest environment for employees.

Types of Keyless Access Systems

All keyless remote access control systems have one thing in common, namely the lack of traditional keys and lock cylinders in the doors. Instead, you lock and unlock a keyless access control system either using a key card, a key fob, or a mobile device, be it a smartphone, a tablet, or another mobile gadget. This is where the name “keyless” is derived from — not the most imaginative name ever conceived, we know!

To give an example, with a keyless fob access system for business, you can distribute fobs to all employees, and these will leverage Bluetooth technology to unlock your locks from a short distance. However, such a system is operational at relatively close distances given the relative limitations of RFID and NFC technology. It will still be able to detect your presence within its operational range and lock or unlock doors automatically. These sorts of locks are becoming more and more prevalent in all sorts of businesses.

Keyless Access Methods by Kisi
Kisi offers different keyless access methods, including mobile and remote dashboard unlocks.

On the other hand, Wi-Fi and IP systems like those used by wireless locks for businesses, or smart access control, have unrestricted range given that your network is powerful enough. Hence, armed with uninterrupted Internet connection you have access to your door locks anytime and from anywhere. Of course, the lock should be connected to your home or office Wi-Fi network to work.

A mobile access control system enables business IT admins and homeowners alike to check the system status remotely, manage all setting on the go, get alerts on specific events, as well as to open and close doors from any location using only their smartphone.


What Your Keyless Access System Is Made Of

A complete keyless access system is not limited to just the door lock. Modern systems have integrations with all sorts of helpful tools that you can add on to the base system.

Major components of any access control system, wireless or not, include door readers, system state controllers, sensors, and detectors such as smoke, fire, and motion sensors. A smart mobile access control system will also feature equipment such as routers, modems, and/or wireless devices that enable remote connection to your system.

An automated keyless entry system can be fully integrated with your home automation system, which in turn means you will have various connectors and additional sensors used to lock or unlock doors and windows from anywhere in your home.

You can also program an integrated home automation keyless entry system to perform various additional tasks like switching lamps on and off, starting and stopping air conditioning, turning on a TV set in evenings when you are not at home providing additional security measures against burglary, etc. Thus, your keyless access system will comprise appliances that are usually not considered components of an access control system.

Are Smart Locks always Bluetooth Entry Systems?

Not always. At Kisi, we mainly use two types of technology for unlocking and locking doors. Bluetooth is the technology that we use for iOS devices, while NFC is what we use for Android devices. Bluetooth also plays a role for Android devices as we use Bluetooth fencing to define the area where the door can be unlocked. 

For more information about Bluetooth Keyless Entry Systems, read our dedicated article.

Why Mobile Access Control Is Best

A key card access control system or a fob access system is passive one by nature. It will remain inactive until it is prompted to read the credentials of someone attempting to gain access. However, these types of keyless access systems can be combined with a sort of alarm that is triggered by an active sensor that would be constantly monitoring the room, like a motion detector.

Keyless Entry - Powered by Mobile Technology
Smart locks market will grow to $1,175 million by 2023, a report by Allied Market Research says.

In contrast, a mobile access control system provides functionality to check, manage, and operate door and windows locks remotely and on the go. You could point out that a flaw is that you need a constant Internet connection to do so. Well, there are mobile systems that use other means of communication, and, with your main control panel placed indoors and secured by a power backup system, you get uninterrupted connection and system alerts.

From Small Businesses to Enterprises — Smart Access Control

Thousands of companies rely on Kisi's keyless access control system to enhance their security and streamline operations. A modern access control system may be an obvious choice for larger organizations, but even companies below 50 employees may benefit from such a solution, especially when multiple people need access to the facility (such as guests, consultants, cleaning services, remote employees and so on). As you grow your business, Kisi scales with you, without the limitations of smart locks or the need to issue keycards and fobs. To learn more about our product, you can take a look at this overview or get a quote estimate.