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Smart Video Doorbell: The Perfect Companion to Our Smart Lock

Smart Home 13.05.2019 | Marcus Schwarten

A smart door lock such as the Nuki Smart Lock is great on its own. It allows you to easily control access to your own home. With the appropriate settings, you can also open the front door remotely to let in family members, friends, the postman, or tradespeople. p>

But there’s still the question: how can you know who’s on your doorstep asking to be let in if you’re not there? That’s where a smart video doorbell comes in handy, as the perfect companion to our Smart Lock. With it, you can do more than just see on your smartphone and other devices who rang the bell… You can also actually talk to the people standing in front of your door.

A smart doorbell together with an electronic door lock – here’s how it works

A connected video doorbell not only features the usual bell button, it also has an integrated camera. If someone rings at your front door, you receive a notification on your smart phone or tablet. You can then view the camera image on your display to see your front door.

Not only can you check who’s at the door, you can also talk to them, and they can speak back to you. A smart doorbell therefore replaces the standard intercom. You can, for example, let friends who are at your door know that you’re at the shops and let them in using the Nuki Smart Lock. Or give the postman access to leave a package in the hallway, instead of outside the front door.

Depending on compatibility, you can also communicate using the Amazon Echo loudspeaker or via a Google Home device – ideally with a display, of course, to also see a video image of your front door.

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Better security for your home

Another convenient feature of the video doorbell is that it works as a kind of security camera, with a motion detector and an alarm function when someone approaches the front door. Recorded videos can often be stored and viewed again later. However, depending on the services you want, some providers require you to sign up for additional fee-based cloud services or subscriptions. Another great benefit of the door camera: you already know who’s at your front door before you open it. You can decide whether to open the door or not.

It doesn’t usually take a lot of work to install. Models with cables need to be connected to the existing doorbell wiring. Please pay attention to the power supply requirements. Models with an integrated battery are even easier to install. They just need to be mounted next to the front door and then connected to your home Wi-Fi network. You can use either your existing doorbell, or purchase a new one from the manufacturer – depending on the provider and model.

Smart video doorbells: These models are currently available

The selection of smart video doorbells is currently still relatively modest. Ring, a subsidiary of Amazon, currently offers the most extensive range. Ring actually has four different models available, ranging from the simple “Video Doorbell” to the rather expensive “Video Doorbell Elite” model. They sport different looks and come with different power supplies (battery or cable) as well as video resolutions (720p or 1080p).

The Google subsidiary Nest also offers a video doorbell for Smart Homes, the “Nest Hello”. It requires fixed cabling and records video in HD UXGA (1,600 x 1,200 pixels). This model even features a user recognition function.

Besides these two well-known providers, there are a few less-widespread manufacturers. And several new competitors are getting in on the action too. Among others, the well-known manufacturer of security cameras, Arlo, has announced its own video doorbell model. Arlo already offers an audio bell without video capability.

Marcus Schwarten
I'm a real “Smart-Homer” and love trying out our new technologies, devices, and gadgets. If I like what I see, I give them a spot in my Smart Home. Because only the smartest is “smart” enough for me … :-)