wireless intercom

 

Key takeaways

  • A wireless intercom is an electronic communication and building entry solution that doesn’t require wiring between every device within the system.
  • ButterflyMX is the best wireless intercom system on the market because it boosts security, simplifies installation, and enhances the resident experience.
  • A wireless intercom works by sending signals between devices across invisible radio frequencies called spectrum.
  • Benefits of wireless intercoms include easy installation, no in-unit hardware needed, reduced costs, increased property value, and boosted tenant acquisition.
  • Choose an intercom with video, a mobile app, visitor access solutions, and delivery access solutions.

 

When buying an intercom system for your building, you have two options: a traditional wired intercom or a wireless intercom.

Wireless intercom systems for buildings are a property access and visitor management solution that functions with wireless technologies. They’re a step up from traditional wired intercoms, offering simpler installation and usually less ongoing maintenance.

Below, we give you a list of the top wireless intercom systems. Then, we explore how you can benefit from a wireless intercom and how to choose one.

Read this post to learn:

 

best apartment video intercom systems

 

4 best wireless intercom systems

Finding the best wireless intercom is a lot of work, so we put together this list of the best intercoms with wireless installation for you.

Four wireless intercoms for your building include:

  1. ButterflyMX wireless video intercom
  2. Aiphone WL-11 wireless video intercom
  3. DoorBird D1101V IP video door station
  4. OPTEX iVision + Connect

 

1. ButterflyMX wireless video intercom

ButterflyMX is the best wireless intercom system on the market because it boosts security, simplifies installation, and enhances the resident experience.

The ButterflyMX wireless video intercom has been installed in more than 10,000 buildings and is used in more than 1,000,000 apartments.

Choose the ButterflyMX wireless intercom to enjoy:

  • Video calling. Visitors can easily video call a resident to request access. And residents can visually confirm who’s requesting access before letting them in. This boosts security and resident satisfaction.
  • Convenient mobile app. The ButterflyMX mobile app empowers residents to remotely unlock the door or gate, create virtual keys and delivery passes, review building entry logs, and more. So, they never have to worry about leaving a key under the mat for a visitor again.
  • Cloud-based software. Property staff can manage the intercom system remotely from any smartphone or computer thanks to ButterflyMX’s cloud-based software and web-based dashboard. As a result, staff aren’t tied to the front desk and are free to move around the property, spending more time on things that need a human touch.
  • Integrations. The ButterflyMX video intercom integrates with other access control solutions — from card readers to smart locks — to enable a seamless, unified access experience. ButterflyMX also integrates with other technology you probably already use, such as property management software. No more balancing of several apps is required; staff and tenants can do everything through one interface — vastly improving staff and tenant satisfaction and retention.

 

2. Aiphone WL-11 wireless video intercom

If you’re looking for an intercom for small-scale educational, commercial, and healthcare properties, Aiphone is a good choice.

Aiphone’s top features include:

  • Convenient visitor logs. Aiphone’s WL-11 wireless stores up to 100 visitor images.
  • Easy to install. The Aiphone WL-11 is wireless, making it easy to install.
  • Clear video. The WL-11 wireless intercom takes three visitor imagers per call and offers high-quality clarity.

 

Read the full Aiphone video intercom review »

 

3. DoorBird D1101V IP video door station

DoorBird’s wireless intercom offers a number of features, such as low-light vision and motion detection.

More DoorBird features include:

  • Integration with smart home systems. DoorBird’s wireless intercom systems are compatible with popular smart home platforms. As a result, this enables integration with other connected devices and home automation technology.
  • Multiple user support. DoorBird allows different members of a household to access and control the intercom system.
  • Remote firmware updates. The DoorBird wireless video intercom supports over-the-air firmware updates. As a result, this ensures that the system remains updated with the latest features and security enhancements.

 

Read the full DoorBird intercom review »

 

4. OPTEX iVision + Connect

OPTEX offers enhanced WiFi connectivity, which makes it a reliable wireless intercom system for businesses.

The OPTEX wireless video intercom has unique offerings like:

  • Interactive mobile app. The OPTEX Vision App empowers you to manage and monitor entry activity from an online dashboard.
  • Video storage. The iVision+ Connect stores visitor videos from easily accessible cloud services.
  • Great for office environments. Ideal for commercial offices and retail spaces, the OPTEX iVision+ Connect has the ability to accommodate several entrances and exits.

 

Watch how ButterflyMX works:

 

How does a wireless intercom system work?

A wireless intercom works by sending signals between devices across invisible radio frequencies called spectrums. These spectrums carry the signals that enable wireless devices to ‘talk’ to each other and function.

So, when a visitor presses a button on the intercom to initiate a call with a tenant, the system sends signals from the base station to that tenant’s substation using wireless technology. If the substation is an in-unit device, the tenant must be in their unit to answer the call and press a button to unlock the door or gate. If the substation is a cell phone, the tenant can answer the call on their phone and communicate like any other phone call.

These intercom systems may operate with:

  • WiFi. Although WiFi is relatively easy to set up, it can be spotty and could be easily interrupted by factors like electrical interference.
  • Cellular connection (such as 4/5G). An intercom that requires a cellular connection generally also requires a commercial-grade cellular plan at an added cost.
  • Ethernet connection. An ethernet connection means the intercom has a direct, wired internet connection. This is the best and most reliable option.

Pro tip: For best results, choose a wireless intercom system with a direct internet connection to maximize reliability.

 

What is the range of a wireless intercom system?

A wireless intercom may have a range of a few thousand feet, depending on the type of wireless technology it operates with. For example, a WiFi intercom may only work when the user is within a certain distance of the intercom device or using the same WiFi network.

However, some wireless intercom systems have no range limit, meaning a resident can answer a call from the intercom system no matter where they are. Cloud-based intercoms that pair with a mobile app usually empower residents to talk to visitors and unlock the door or gate from anywhere in the world (so long as they have an internet connection).

 

Can I use my cell phone as an intercom?

Yes, you can use your cell phone with an intercom if the intercom system pairs with a mobile app. Through the mobile app, you can talk to your visitors and remotely unlock the door or gate for them with the tap of a button.

Alternatively, some intercom systems don’t have a mobile app but can place phone calls on a cell phone. That way, you can answer a call from the intercom and talk to your visitor through your cell phone. Then, you can remotely unlock the door or gate by pressing ‘9’ on your cell phone.

 

Types of wireless intercom systems

For each type of building, there is an intercom system that suits it best. Below is a list of the types of intercoms you can buy for your building.

 

Wireless intercom for apartments

Wireless intercom systems are most commonly installed at apartment buildings and other multifamily properties because they offer simple visitor management.

Residents in an apartment or gated community need an entry system like an intercom to grant access to their friends, family, service providers, delivery carriers, and any other visitors they may welcome. Without an intercom system, residents must walk all the way to the front entrance to let in their guests.

 

Wireless intercom system for business

Intercoms without wiring aren’t just for residential properties — they’re also great for commercial buildings, offices, and businesses.

A wireless intercom system for offices and businesses allows customers, vendors, delivery carriers, and other visitors to request building access from a tenant, employee, or front desk staff. As a result, the building or business owner can keep doors and gates locked for security without hindering access for authorized people.

A wire-free intercom is a great entry system for:

  • Office buildings
  • Service-oriented storefronts, like salons and athletic trainers
  • Retail shops
  • Coworking spaces

 

Wireless home intercom system

A wireless intercom system for homes is designed specifically for single-family rather than multi-tenant properties.

There are two types of intercoms for homes: communication intercoms and doorbell intercoms.

A communication intercom enables family members within a home to communicate with each other. These intercoms are essentially a system of wireless walkie-talkies and are fairly outdated now that most people have smartphones.

In contrast, a wireless intercom doorbell is an access control solution that allows visitors to alert residents that they’ve arrived. Many doorbell systems have cameras so residents can see who’s there. Occasionally a wireless doorbell for a home will provide a way for residents to remotely unlock the door or gate for their visitors, but most don’t.

 

What are the benefits of a wireless intercom?

Now that you know what a no-wiring intercom is and how it works, you might wonder whether you should purchase one for your building.

Benefits of a wireless intercom system include:

 

Easy installation

Perhaps the greatest benefit of a wireless intercom is its easy installation. Because these intercom systems don’t require you to run wiring between every device, you’ll enjoy a far simpler installation process.

Instead of spending hours tearing down walls and ripping up floors to lay wiring, your intercom installer will only need to mount and program the hardware. This is one reason why no-wiring intercoms are a great solution to retrofit and replace old intercom systems.

 

No in-unit hardware needed

Some wire-free intercoms operate with tenants’ cell phones instead of in-unit hardware. As a result, you’ll save money on hardware and maintenance expenses.

Additionally, tenants have a better experience using the intercom system when they can answer calls from their phones and grant access even when they’re not at home.

Keep in mind that some wireless intercom systems do require in-unit hardware. So for best results, purchase one that pairs with a mobile app.

 

Cut costs

We’ve mentioned that intercoms without wiring offer simple installation and potentially the option to ditch in-unit hardware.

Installing an intercom without wiring is simpler and faster than installing a wired intercom, which means you’ll save money on the installation process. And if you choose a system that doesn’t require in-unit hardware, you’ll save money on the upfront hardware costs, installation, and maintenance.

So, ultimately, installing a wired intercom system could cost several thousand dollars more than a wireless one over the system’s lifespan.

 

Increased property value

An intercom system is a valuable amenity at apartments and offices that can effectively increase the property’s value. Simple and convenient access is a highly desirable feature of any building — one that tenants will pay more for.

 

Boost tenant acquisition & retention rates

To acquire and retain tenants, you have to deliver an exceptional tenant experience. And ensuring secure yet convenient building access with a wireless intercom is a perfect way to heighten that tenant experience.

 

How to choose a wireless intercom

Whether you need an intercom to retrofit an existing building or install it in a new development, you’ll want to choose the best wireless intercom possible.

Here’s what to look for when buying a wireless intercommunication system:

  • Video. The best wireless intercoms have a camera to enable video calling. This feature boosts security because tenants can see who’s requesting access before letting them in.
  • Mobile app. Always opt for a wireless intercom with a mobile app so that you can ditch in-unit hardware and make access management as convenient as possible for residents. They’ll enjoy being able to grant visitors access even when they’re not at home.
  • Visitor access solutions. Choose an intercom that provides easy ways for visitors to gain access, such as video calling and virtual keys.
  • Delivery access solutions. Make sure the intercom also has an easy delivery carrier access solution so that residents never miss a delivery.

 

Try ButterflyMX, the best video intercom

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Author

Johanna Gruber

Based in Los Angeles, I enjoy learning and writing about the real estate industry, and exploring how proptech can help people live and work better.