Kini Provides Peace of Mind with Minimalist Motion Detection

Originally published at: Kini Provides Peace of Mind with Minimalist Motion Detection - TidBITS

Do you have anything—valuables, medicines, alcohol, guns—​for which you’d like to monitor access? The Kini motion detection device notices when it moves and alerts you by text message within seconds. No apps, no subscription, no privacy issues.


perfect security costs more because of all the lasers and piranhas.



What a smart simple device. Every gun cabinet door should have one built in.

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I’d be interested. But it seems to work only in North America…

Yolink make some products that have overlapping functions to the Kini. I use a door/contact sensor on my mailbox, for example, and they also make motion sensors, as well as a bunch of other sensors, valve controllers, etc. It’s not quite the same as the Kini, of course.

I’ve not connection with the company other than having used their products.


Ah, the one caveat for me is that I had contacted my cellular provider technical support to block email-to-SMS gateway texts, since that is most of the smishing I get. That request, won’t let a service like this work. (I know a reddit that mentioned that if a local FD or school pushes that service, you won’t get those messages if disabled/blocked by the cellular provider. However, I also have Nixel for FD, PD and other local municipality concerns…)

Sorry, I should add that to the article. I imagine Mahboud would love to sell it in other countries as well, though doing business internationally with hardware and carriers opens up all sorts of other issues with certifications and the like.

Not sure if that’s true or not. Kini uses Twilio for the SMS service, and it wouldn’t make sense to me if that were triggered by email instead of a direct API call from the Kini servers at AWS.

I’d be curious to know how well it actually works in at least two of the cases mentioned: a gun safe and a filing cabinet, since these are both effectively Faraday cages and very likely to affect wifi signal strength.

I suppose there is going to be some leakage in this case since you most likely want to know when the container is being opened, not closed, but I would still think the container’s walls on the five sides that always remain closed would be a hindrance.

that explains the stated dimension ‘the size of two stacks of 10 quarters’ which means nothing to me

Is this the trigger for Apple to add the same functionality to their Airtags?

Sadly Kini is only available, at present, in the USA and Canada.

Use on bicycles was mentioned. Wouldn’t that generate on enormous amout of notifications?
Otherwise, I’d go for it.

From what I could see, While I would love to buy one or two, if you are not stateside it will not work. That is a shame for those of us that work and or travel outside the USA. Foe example, put it at the bottom of your (strange) hotel at night to alert you that you have an intruder. Great in the USA? Japan? not to sure……

I have a couple of outdoor applications for the Kini. are they waterproof?

I suspect they mean when it’s parked, not being ridden.

My original intent was to use this photo, but I ended up swapping it out for the image that listed the actual dimensions and forgot to reword that bit.

Mahboud told me that he’s tested the Kinis by putting them in a metal cocktail shaker and shaking them, and a few manage to get their signals out occasionally. But as soon as he takes the top off, they all squawk. But it is a good question since the Kini tries to check in periodically, so if it was really cut off, that might be an issue. I don’t have a gun safe (or any guns!) or a metal filing cabinet, so I can’t test those instances. However, I do have a metal box we keep important papers in (probably wouldn’t withstand a real fire, but better than a wooden filing cabinet). When I put a Kini in the box, it’s still able to get enough Wi-Fi to communicate.

As @alvarnell suggested, it’s for when the bike is parked in a garage.

Not inherently, no, because of the USB-C port and the recessed power button. However, I think it would easy to enclose them in a plastic box or something that was waterproof as long as it didn’t block Wi-Fi.

I am thinking that they intend the user to hang the device on the outside of the gun cabinet or set it on the top so that it would be triggered upon opening. Many gun boxes have locks requiring force opening, which would trigger a Kini on the outside of the safe, My brother has a small handgun safe in his bedroom which uses biometrics (handprint) to open. He would be able to protect that by simply putting a Kini on the top.

I missed from your list, something I would have used it for. When my mom was demented and prone to fall, we spent a great deal of time money, and do-it-yourself kludging wiring pressure sensors into her chair and bed as well as motion sensors in her room so that alarms would go off (and I’d get an alert on my phone) if she got up when the 24/7 caregiver wasn’t in the room (everyone falls asleep or goes to the bathroom). This would have made our lives much simpler.

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