Month-to-month contract option if equipment is purchased up front
Backup battery included with the Sky Control panel
Extensive equipment features, including Vivint Car Guard
CPI and Vivint are fierce contenders in the home security industry, both known for providing cutting-edge video surveillance equipment and smart home automation features. This comparison will give you a sense of how they stack up across several important categories. Note that CPI is limited to cities in the southeastern U.S., so if you live outside its coverage area, your choice might already be made.
Both companies start at $29.99/mo. However, Vivint charges an additional $5 per video camera you want to be monitored. Whereas Vivint requires a minimum of $650 spent on equipment to qualify you for home monitoring service, CPI just requires a purchase of $499. Both offer financing plans for qualifying customers, but you’d have to enter a long-term service contract. CPI comes out slightly ahead in this category.
These two companies are some of the best for setting up video surveillance. CPI gives you up to eight video cameras and Vivint has no limit. CPI is also known for its Intelligent Video Activity Notifications (IVAN) technology, which notifies your phone about activity picked up in or outside your home and sends a video clip. Similarly, Vivint sends you a 20-second clip to your phone, and you can view live surveillance feeds or two-way chat from your Vivint app. Because Vivint doesn’t have a limit on their cameras and a slightly longer video clip, they win this round.
Neither CPI nor Vivint gives you the option to install the equipment yourself since both want the touch of a professional to ensure the setup is effective. Thankfully, CPI comes to your home for free. On the other hand, Vivint requires professional installation and set up for a fee, starting at $49.99, depending on the amount of equipment you have. Since CPI’s professional installation is free they take the cake in this round.
CPI takes the win for professional monitoring since you can add up to four video surveillance cameras without being charged extra. Vivint, on the other hand, charges you an additional $5/mo. for each camera monitored. The downside to CPI, of course, is that its services are limited to the southeast region.
Warranty & Guarantee
Vivint wins this round because they give you a lifetime warranty for free included with all its equipment, which makes it the easy winner here. CPI offers a basic warranty of a year on equipment and 90 days on parts, with an upgrade option for an extra cost. The company also includes a No False Alarm Guarantee to reimburse any fines from false alarms caused by a system malfunction.
Tie: CPI & Vivint
Both CPI and Vivint boast an impressive range of smart home devices, including smart locks, smart camera doorbells and an app-enabled garage door controller. The two providers also offer touch screen smart hubs, where you can stream video feeds and create home automation settings, such as having the thermostat raise or lower its temperature at night.
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These two companies offer similar services and equipment. To avoid entering a long-term contract, your best bet is to pay for your equipment upfront – whether you go with CPI or Vivint. That said, getting started with CPI is the cheaper option overall. CPI also offers free installation, lower professional monitoring costs and next-level security equipment at a reasonable rate. If you don’t live in the Southeast, however, Vivint is an excellent option that will service you and provide most of the same great features.