Product Reviews

Smart Doorbells to Never miss a Delivery

Working from home usually means being able to receive deliveries anytime of day or night. But if you’re in a Zoom meeting or popped out to run an errand there is nothing worse than missing the moment when a courier is at the door.

Doorbells today no longer make some noise in the home to know someone is at the door, they now connect to the internet. An internet connected doorbell means you can use a built in camera to see who is at the door using your smartphone, a smart display or even your television. These doorbells usually have microphones and a speaker which means you can even talk to the person at the door without opening the door. All of this can be done from anywhere in the world, so you can pretend to be home – even if you’re on vacation.

Nest Doorbell by Google

This sleek looking doorbell features the camera and microphone at the top and the button at the bottom. The battery powered Nest Doorbell has improved alerts to ensure you are notified about people at your door whether they push the button or not. The motion alerts won’t trigger when a tree blows in the wind and only when it detects people. The Nest Doorbell is smart enough to detect people, packages and vehicles so notifications are detailed and customisable.

With the Nest Aware subscription you can also receive notifications tailored to familiar faces. This could then notify you when your children get home from school or to recognise regular visitors. From a camera point of view the Nest Doorbell captures head to toe which ensures you’ll see if the courier has left a package on the ground.

Nest has also advanced recently to the point that if the internet is not working, the Doorbell will still capture up to three hours of content on the device so you’ll always have visitor history. Set this one up yourself in under an hour. It’s compatible with all smartphones but also works seamlessly with the Nest Hub, a smart screen for inside the home.

Check it out here

Arlo Essential Wire-Free Video Doorbell

Arlo has become a household name when it comes to DIY security cameras. Specialising in video security cameras has extended to the doorbell and Arlo has produced a great option. If you already use Arlo security cameras then this is likely the most logical option. The Arlo doorbell uses a similar viewing angle and capture zone as the Nest Doorbell, can achieve up to 6 months battery life on a single charge and also connects directly to your Wi-Fi. You’ll receive smart motion alerts but it’s more about people, packages, vehicles or animals.

Arlo allows you to set activity zones which will only provide alerts that happen in the space of the cameras vision. This is important if your doorbell is likely to face a footpath or busy area where you don’t want to be notified whenever someone simply walks by. You can also set the device to only notify you when the button is pressed but couriers are famous for ignoring the doorbell for a knock at the door.

Arlo doesn’t force you onto their Secure plans but without one the Arlo is only useful for live use. If you need video history, previews, the smart detection and activity zones you will need to join a secure plan for a monthly fee starting from $4.49 per month.

More details here

Ring Video Doorbell 4

The company now owned by Amazon was one of the first to market with smart doorbells. They’ve been famous for catching some of the best moments on peoples doorsteps and are a reliable option. If you have an Amazon smart home with Echo speakers and displays then this is the perfect addition.

The Ring Video Doorbell 4 has HD video with night vision, motion notifications and shows you 4 seconds of footage capture before the person was detected. If you’re stuck in a meeting you can fire off one of six preset messages of your own voice such as “Please leave the package at the door, I’m just in a meeting sorry”. This increases your chances of delivery being made and those attending your Zoom call won’t notice that you just handled a front door situation.

Similar to the Arlo, a Ring Protect subscription unlocks some new features such as People only mode and 60 days of video history from $4 per month. Ring also have security cameras which you can bundle together for use all in the one app.

Full details here