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Nest vs. Protect America

Learn how Nest and Protect America compare as home security providers offering different plans and equipment.
Updated Sep 29, 2020

Wondering about your options for professional, affordable home security? Nest and Protect America are two high-quality home security providers with entirely different approaches. This comparison will help you make your choice.

Compare Nest vs. Protect America

Nest and Protect America are top-tier competitors with different strengths and weaknesses to compare. Nest provides high-tech smart home-compatible equipment for DIY monitoring (or professional monitoring with Brinks). Protect America operates like a traditional home monitoring company but is compatible with certain smart home lights, thermostats and appliances. While you can buy Nest equipment for a contract-free experience, Protect America includes equipment leasing when you enter into a three-year contract for professional monitoring. Here’s a look at their different features and offers:

  • Price

    Winner: Protect America

    With Protect America, you get up to $1,400 worth of equipment for free upfront with your contract. Your monthly monitoring rate determines the equipment you receive, so if you’re paying more for video surveillance, you’ll receive video security cameras. Still, the maximum amount you’ll pay with Protect America is $54.99 per month. Nest, on the other hand, requires buying its equipment, which starts at $399, and professional monitoring starts at $19/mo. Even though Nest has cheaper monitoring, Protect America gives you more for your money upfront, so they’re the winner for this category.

  • Equipment

    Winner: Nest

    Security equipment from both Nest and Protect America systems are easy to install on your own. Protect America offers technical assistance to walk you through the set-up with help over the phone. On the other hand, Google’s Nest Pro network can pair you with a local technician for professional installation. The cost varies depending on the equipment. Because Nest offers in-person assistance and DIY installation they win this round. Nest offers self-monitoring for free, and optional professional monitoring for $19/mo. with a three-year contract with Brinks. If you’d like month-to-month monitoring you’ll pay $29/mo. As a traditional alarm company, Protect America has over 25 years of experience in professional monitoring and emergency response. Their monitoring services are required for their services and can range from $19.99/mo. - $54.99/mo. Because Nest is cheaper and offers more monitoring options, they take the cake in this category.

  • Professional Monitoring

    Winner: Nest

    Nest offers self-monitoring for free, and optional professional monitoring for $19/mo. with a three-year contract with Brinks. If you’d like month-to-month monitoring you’ll pay $29/mo. As a traditional alarm company, Protect America has over 25 years of experience in professional monitoring and emergency response. Their monitoring services are required for their services and can range from $19.99/mo. - $54.99/mo. Because Nest is cheaper and offers more monitoring options, they take the cake in this category.

  • Video Recording

    Tie: Nest & Protect America

    The HD video security cameras Nest and Protect America offer both have night vision and two-way talk, and allow you to view your live video feed or access archived footage using the Nest or Protect America app. The Nest Cam includes a motion sensor to trigger the camera to record when movement is detected — a feature that minimizes false alarms. nest offers month-to-month subscription plans for continuous video recording (CVR), video storage and intelligent alerts when motion is detected. Protect America also offers live HD video recording and video playback. Both providers offer great video recording plans and cameras to make video monitoring easy, so this category is a tie.

  • Home Automation

    Winner: Nest

    Protect America doesn’t make smart home devices, but its security system is compatible with Z-Wave lights and appliances such as smart locks, as well as the Alarm.com smart thermostat. As a Google company, Nest is at the cutting-edge of smart home technology. It makes the Nest Hello smart video doorbell with facial recognition, a key-free smart lock and the Nest Learning Thermostat, which picks up on patterns in your temperature preferences and helps you optimize energy savings. Nest’s smart security equipment makes them a clear winner in this round.

  • Installation

    Winner: Nest

    Security equipment from both Nest and Protect America systems are easy to install on your own. Protect America offers technical assistance to walk you through the set-up with help over the phone. On the other hand, Google’s Nest Pro network can pair you with a local technician for professional installation. The cost varies depending on the equipment. Because Nest offers in-person assistance and DIY installation they win this round. 

Overall Winner: Nest

If you want to get started with professional home monitoring for cheap, Protect America is your best bet, as long as you’re ready for a three-year contract. However, with all the smart home and home automation options Nest provides, you get the most control over your home, making it ideal for someone self-monitoring their home or vacation home.

Protect America


Monthly monitoring starting price
$19.00/mo.$19.99/mo.*
Minimum contract length
No contract36 months
Extended No-Risk Return
15 days15-day return policy for a full refund
Installation
DIY & Professional DIY
Guarantees
NonePrice Match Guarantee
Warranty
2 years on most productsFree Lifetime Equipment Warranty
BBB Rating
A-A
Safety Score
8.87.2
*Price shown is monthly price for landline monitoring service.

Frequently Asked Questions About Nest and Protect America


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Safety Team

The Safety Team is a group of experts that handle provider research, product reviews and recalls to make your home safety and security search as easy as 1-2-3.

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