The Best Way to Deter Home Invaders? Kevin.

An anti-burglary device inspired by ‘Home Alone’

January 31, 2018 9:00 am

When it comes to protecting yourself against home invasions, there is one name that rises above them all:

Kevin. As in McAllister. As in the kid who twice bamboozled the Wet/Sticky Bandits. The ne plus ultra of booby traps and daring escapes.

And now you can have our very own Kevin, a small, speaker-like hub that simulates sound, shadows and light while you’re away from home.

Made by Swiss startup Mitipi, the device is, indeed, named after the boy-hero protagonist from Home Alone. But don’t think of this as a violent and/or hilarious burglar repellent. It’s actually a “virtual roommate.”

An Internet of Things (IoT) device, Kevin configures different light and audio scenarios based on your location, living arrangement (single, have pets, etc.), type of room and owned appliances. So a would-be invader might get the impression you’re in the midst of a workout, watching TV or eating a family meal if they try to break in. It’s a more nuanced and believable take than, say, leaving the living room light on a timer.

You can interact with Kevin via an app or manually with buttons on top of the device. It switches on when you leave, and it can operate offline if needed (it’ll still need power, and you’ll want it connected to WiFi for updates and phone control).

Some early bird packages are already sold out, but you can preorder Kevin for around $234 for delivery in December.

One interesting Kickstarter reward: If you spend a bit over $10K, you can actually become the “voice” of every Kevin device — they’ll fly you to Switzerland and spend a day with you in a recording studio.

Nota bene: For home security devices you can pick up now, read our guide.

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