Even though mailboxes have been around for at least a century, they haven’t changed all that much. They’re still physical boxes, they hold mail, and they don’t do much else. In a world where everything is digital and integrated with the Internet of Things, that simply isn’t enough when such important information is routinely mailed everyday.
GATE smartens up the humble mailbox by adding a Wi-Fi or zWave connected home unit and solar-powered mailbox sensor to the mix. With this done, a sensor-equipped mailbox can send an alert to the home unit whenever it is opened, notifying home owners with a blinking light at a range of 500ft. SMS, email, and Twitter notifications can also be sent out as well so that no matter where someone is, they can stay informed through their iOS or Android device. If mail theft is a big problem in the neighborhood, multiple GATEs can connect to share information about the occurrences. Each GATE goes for $249, with an expected ship date of December 2015. Its campaign is looking for $10,000, and ends June 20th, 2015.
GATE sits opposite the bare-bones Postifier, an Arduino-based mailbox solution that sports a low price but a lack of functionality. As such, there is no contest: GATE pushes the bar up on what a connected mailbox should be, truly bringing it into the 21st century — for a premium.