Video Intercom

ButterflyMX Intercom: Review, Pricing and Comparison

In this review, you’ll find an in-depth look at the ButterflyMX Smart Intercom, including key features, pricing, and reviews. With a side-by-side comparison of key intercom features, you’ll be able to evaluate your building’s needs and choose the right solution. 

For more reviews and comparisons of apartment intercom systems, visit the best video intercom systems guide.

ButterflyMX Intercom Features

Key Features for Property Managers and Building Owners

  • Ability to see door release event history for up to 365 days
  • Manage tenant and visitor permissions
  • Integration with property management software (PMS)

Key Features for Tenants

  • Remote unlock feature for tenants or guests through smartphone
  • Visitors can be sent virtual keys for managed access
  • Two-way video intercom calling

ButterflyMX Cost

7” Surface Intercom: $3650, with 2 year warranty

7” Recessed Intercom: $4150, with 2 year warranty 

11.6” Surface Intercom: $5650, with 2 year warranty

11.6” Recessed Intercom: $6150, with 2 year warranty 

ButterflyMX software is priced based on the number of units, starting at $750/yr for residential. Commercial pricing is based on the number of employees and starts at $2400/yr, based on pricing available in September 2020. 


ButterflyMX Review

Advantages

  • Has been around for approx. 10 years
  • Multiple fancy integrations, primarily only attractive to large buildings
  • Many deployments within the major markets with strong traction in Class A buildings
  • 6-digit access PIN available if keys or phone are left behind
  • Elevator controls through mobile app 
  • Alexa- or Siri-enabled voice controls

Disadvantages

  • High cost: ButterflyMX is very expensive compared to other products in the market. Most modern intercoms start at $1200, whereas ButterflyMX starts around $3500, plus requires several additional pieces like an active internet connection, a POE+ switch, UPS battery backup, and door lock power supply components (if not available).
  • Installation is done by outsourced third party installers. Unclear how local support could be provided if there are issues.
  • As an intercom system only, ButterflyMX requires a separate access control solution to be installed. This increases installation cost and overall operational overhead including training and managing multiple systems.
  • Large panels are a space constraint and increase cost of labor and install in smaller spaces. Additionally, large panels are a limitation to install in all entrances needed. Finally, the larger panel can attract vandals and require expensive replacements and repair in the event of a vandal incident.
  • The Virtual Key QR code cannot be used for embedding in delivery instructions, causing issues with effective delivery management.
  • No ability to set up multiple front desk callers.
  • Does not support temporary PIN access for guests.

ButterflyMX Intercom vs. Swiftlane Video Intercom

ButterflyMX Intercom is known for their smartphone property access initiative. Their Smart Intercom is an innovative and intuitive solution to visitor management, but should be examined with careful consideration.

A holistic approach to building security includes all access functions that cater to tenant and occupant needs. The ButterflyMX system lacks single-use PIN access, causing a gap in what should be an inclusive visitor management solution. Additionally, the system does not have built-in access control functionality, which is a feature of most high-end access solutions, particularly those with a pricing model and cost similar to ButterflyMX.

Though inclusive access control functions may not be a priority for all, security should be. The ButterflyMX system poses some security risks. The door relay can be manipulated to trigger an unauthorized unlock, and the hardware and design are inconsistent with a discrete system.

Convenience and flexibility is, of course, also a consideration — it’s one of the main reasons buildings get an intercom solution in the first place! Without consistent local support or channelling the benefit of local integrators, administrators will not always have an easy time rectifying issues. Tenants and occupants are also burdened with the inconvenience of in-app incoming calls as opposed to regular phone calls, without the ability to forward or simultaneously channel a backup caller.

Nevertheless, to navigate which system will be right for your video intercom needs, we have reviewed ButterflyMX Intercom and compared it to Swiftlane Video Intercom to give you a comprehensive look at all available access control and visitor management options.

ButterflyMX
Swiftlane
Two-Way Video Intercom Calling
Yes
Yes
Incoming Intercom Calls
Calls are received via push notification in the ButterflyMX App
Calls are received as a regular phone call without the need to monitor app notifications
Backup Recipients
No, one tenant or occupant can receive a call at a time
Intercom calls can be routed to multiple recipients simultaneously to ensure calls will not be missed
Remote Unlock and Door Release
Yes, grant access to visitors remotely via app
Yes, grant access to visitors remotely via app
Temporary Visitor Access
Temporary access can only be issued via QR code. PIN access can be issued for tenants, but cannot be revoked after initial use
Single-use pins can be issued for secure delivery instruction. Schedule-based access is also available for contractors, maintenance staff, cleaning, etc.
Access Control
No, separate integration required for access control system functionality
Yes; built-in, cloud-based mobile access control system
Access Point Security
Door relay is built into the outdoor readers, which can be tampered with to unlock the door
Door relays are present on the secure side of the building, and cannot be tampered from the outside
Wiring and Installation Compatibility
POE+ capable switch. Ensure your building is POE+ compatible, and will not require additional purchases.
Simple, and widely pre-existing POE injector or POE switch
Versatility of Hardware
Minimum 7.54″ width harbors bigger constraints on where it can be mounted
Compact, and easily mountable 3.5″ width
Hardware Aesthetics
12.4″ – 16.3″ wall mount holds a 7″ or 11.6″ touchscreen with steel casing and large panels
The SwiftReader has a 7.75″ vandal and weather resistant design with robust metal enclosure in matte, dark gray finish
Photo Audit Trail
Up to 365 days
Unlimited
Support and Onboarding
Sold direct and installed by low voltage electricians locally, with ongoing support systems varying by region
Sold through local installers who provide ongoing support
Pricing
Starts at ~$3560
Starts at $1200
Two-Way Video Intercom Calling
ButterflyMX
Yes
Swiftlane
Yes
Incoming Intercom Calls
ButterflyMX
Calls are received via push notification in the ButterflyMX App
Swiftlane
Calls are received as a regular phone call without the need to monitor app notifications
Backup Recipients
ButterflyMX
No, one tenant or occupant can receive a call at a time
Swiftlane
Intercom calls can be routed to multiple recipients simultaneously to ensure calls will not be missed
Remote Unlock and Door Release
ButterflyMX
Yes, grant access to visitors remotely via app
Swiftlane
Yes, grant access to visitors remotely via app
Temporary Visitor Access
ButterflyMX
Temporary access can only be issued via QR code. PIN access can be issued for tenants, but cannot be revoked after initial use
Swiftlane
Single-use pins can be issued for secure delivery instruction. Schedule-based access is also available for contractors, maintenance staff, cleaning, etc.
Access Control
ButterflyMX
No, separate integration required for access control system functionality
Swiftlane
Yes; built-in, cloud-based mobile access control system
Access Point Security
ButterflyMX
Door relay is built into the outdoor readers, which can be tampered with to unlock the door
Swiftlane
Door relays are present on the secure side of the building, and cannot be tampered from the outside
Wiring and Installation Compatibility
ButterflyMX
POE+ capable switch. Ensure your building is POE+ compatible, and will not require additional purchases.
Swiftlane
Simple, and widely pre-existing POE injector or POE switch
Versatility of Hardware
ButterflyMX
Minimum 7.54″ width harbors bigger constraints on where it can be mounted
Swiftlane
Compact, and easily mountable 3.5″ width
Hardware Aesthetics
ButterflyMX
12.4″ – 16.3″ wall mount holds a 7″ or 11.6″ touchscreen with steel casing and large panels
Swiftlane
The SwiftReader has a 7.75″ vandal and weather resistant design with robust metal enclosure in matte, dark gray finish
Photo Audit Trail
ButterflyMX
Up to 365 days
Swiftlane
Unlimited
Support and Onboarding
ButterflyMX
Sold direct and installed by low voltage electricians locally, with ongoing support systems varying by region
Swiftlane
Sold through local installers who provide ongoing support
Pricing
ButterflyMX
Starts at ~$3560
Swiftlane
Starts at $1200

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