ADT vs. Cove

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Written by Jessica Render
ADT and Cove

What is the difference between ADT and Cove?

ADT and Cove both offer great home security systems. The main difference between the two is that ADT is more traditional in its approach — the company offers professional installation and requires contracts. Cove, on the other hand, specializes in flexible DIY solutions without contracts. The right one for you depends on your budget and what you’re hoping to get out of a home security system.

Installation and cost

adt logocove logo
Installation typeProfessionalDIY
Installation fee$99 to $199 (may be included in package price)None
Upfront cost$599 to $1,049 upfront OR $9.98 to $17.48 monthly for 60 monthsVaries by selected equipment
Trial period6-month money-back guarantee60-day money-back guarantee
Contract terms36 months (60 months if financing equipment)No term contracts
adt logoProfessional$99 to $199 (may be included in package price)$599 to $1,049 upfront OR $9.98 to $17.48 monthly for 60 months6-month money-back guarantee36 months (60 months if financing equipment)
cove logoDIYNoneVaries by selected equipment60-day money-back guaranteeNo term contracts

Monitoring plans and pricing

adt logocove logo
Monitoring price range$28.99 to $57.99$15.00 to $24.99/month
Monitoring optionsProfessionalProfessional
Self-monitoringNot offeredNot offered
Upgraded self-monitoringNot offeredNot offered
24/7 professional monitoringStarting at $45.99Starting at $15/month
Upgraded professional monitoring$57.99/monthStarting at $25/month
adt logo$28.99 to $57.99ProfessionalNot offeredNot offeredStarting at $45.99$57.99/month
cove logo$15.00 to $24.99/monthProfessionalNot offeredNot offeredStarting at $15/monthStarting at $25/month

Security equipment

adt logocove logo
Wired or wireless?BothWireless
Camera optionsIndoor and outdoor camerasIndoor and outdoor cameras
Video doorbell
Control panel
Motion sensor
Entry sensor
Glass break sensor
Keychain remote
Panic buttonMedical panic button
Yard sign
adt logoBothIndoor and outdoor cameras
cove logoWirelessIndoor and outdoor camerasMedical panic button

Smart-home features

adt logocove logo
Smart locks
Smart lights
Smart thermostat
Garage door control
Temperature sensorHeat detector within smoke detector
Water sensor
Smoke detector
CO2 detector
adt logo
cove logoHeat detector within smoke detector


adt logocove logo
Mobile appMyADT Mobile App for account management; ADT control for system management
Mobile app monitoringYes, via ADT Control app
iOS rating4.8 for MyADT and 4.8 ADT Control2.3
Android rating4.4 for MyADT; 4.8 for ADT Control2.5
Notification/alert optionsApp, text and emailPhone, email, text and push
Home automation capabilities
Voice integration
Amazon Alexa
Google Home
Other integrationsSmartThings
adt logoMyADT Mobile App for account management; ADT control for system managementYes, via ADT Control app4.8 for MyADT and 4.8 ADT Control4.4 for MyADT; 4.8 for ADT ControlApp, text and emailSmartThings
cove logo2.32.5Phone, email, text and push

Reputation on ConsumerAffairs

adt logocove logo
Overall star rating4.153.26
Verified customer reviewsADT reviewsCove reviews
adt logo4.15ADT reviews
cove logo3.26Cove reviews

All information accurate as of publishing date.

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    ADT is a well-known name in the security industry — the company has more than 145 years of experience and serves more than 6 million customers. With ADT, renters and homeowners have the option to buy security packages outright or finance their system over 60 months. Some equipment can be purchased a la carte, but most customers choose packages with monitoring. The company also offers apps and smart-home integrations.

    ADT packages

    • Secure Package: The Secure Package is ADT’s base-level security solution. This package starts at $599 and comes with a control panel, three door/window alarms and a motion detector. Customers also have the option to finance their package starting at $9.98 per month for 60 months.
    • Smart Package: With the Smart Package, customers get all of the equipment from the Secure Package plus smart-home equipment, including a smart door lock and a smart plug. This package starts at $919, or $15.32 monthly for 60 months.
    • Complete Package: The Complete Package includes everything from the first two packages plus a video doorbell camera and an indoor camera. This package starts at $1,049. Financing is available starting at $17.48 per month for 60 months.

    What ADT customers say

    ADT seems to be liked by most customers, with verified buyers giving the security company above a 4-star rating on our site as of the time of publishing. Common themes in positive reviews include customer service, knowledgeable and courteous installation service and good system features. Some customers take issue with the cancellation process and mention some spotty equipment issues. Overall, the system is considered easy to use, and customer service is described as polite and respectful.

    The rep gave me different price packages depending on what I needed or what I was looking for. We discussed it, then I chose the best option that would fit me best. I like the fact that they are monitoring that and if someone breaks into my home while I'm at work or home asleep, I have a panic button I can keep on my bed. I feel very secure having ADT in my home.”

    Renee of Debary, FL


    Cove is known for its build-it-yourself security systems, and the company offers an easy-to-use quiz to help customers decide what they might want for their specific situation. This gives customers the ability to find a solution that fits their budget and their needs without having to do a lot of research or heavy lifting on their own.

    The price for the base unit is $249, with additional equipment available at an extra cost. The product line and smart-home features are somewhat limited — live monitoring and live video footage is only available with a monitoring plan. But for customers who just want a straightforward approach to home security, Cove can be a good option.

    Cove packages

    • Cove Basic: Cove Basic monitoring is 50 cents per day, or about $183 per year. This monitoring plan includes 24/7 live alarm monitoring through a direct line to professional monitors, environmental monitoring and an hourly automated system check. It also includes additional features like instant group texts if there’s a threat and direct communication through the alarm panel in your home. The plan also includes a one-year warranty on all equipment.
    • Cove Plus: Cove Plus is about $305 per year, or 83 cents per day. The Cove Plus plan includes everything from the basic plan, including 24/7 live monitoring, environmental monitoring, hourly automated checks and instant texting. It also includes the ability to control your system through your smartphone or with voice integrations. The plan bumps up the warranty to a lifetime warranty on all equipment.

    What Cove customers say

    Cove has received mixed feedback in reviews. Many comment on an easy installation process, affordable pricing and good support team, while others have expressed frustration with equipment troubleshooting, false alarms and the cancellation process. While not across the board, there is a fair amount of positive feedback indicating that the customer service team goes the extra mile for customers.

    First off the Cove team workers are 1st class, friendly staff. You couldn't [ask] for a better group or organization of people. I [recommend] Cove for 1st time home security clients because they treat you like you are worth it. They walk you through step by step to get you set up and feel secure.”

    James of Ashland, KY

    Bottom line: ADT or Cove?

    Both ADT and Cove offer a good solution to home security, but there are a few key differences. ADT is more expensive, but it’s hard to beat as a full-service provider that offers a wide variety of products and service benefits. Cove offers a more flexible approach to home security and uses a quiz to find the right solution. Plus, its monitoring rates are hard to beat. That being said, it may be frustrating for some individuals that they can’t get live monitoring without paying for professional monitoring too.

    • ADT is best for someone who wants to finance their system and monitoring through monthly payments.
    • Cove is best for people who want add-on capabilities but aren’t concerned about smart-home integration.
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