I review a lot of products. With that comes a lot of packages. I can only imagine what my neighbors think when everyday the FEDEX, UPS, and USPS all have to come to the door to drop off packages. Here is the problem with that…some of them need signatures. Some of them I might really need to know they are there so I can run downstairs or hurry back from my trip to Voodoo Taco.
In this day and age with all the tech and gadgets out there, there has to be a way for me to handle this situation right? Yes, there is thanks to the Ring Video Doorbell. Be sure and check out the GIVEAWAY below.
The Ring Doorbell is priced at $199 for the standard edition. The doorbell uses a HD (720p) camera and connects to your wireless network to alert you of any motion (day or night) and any alerts if anyone rings the bell itself right on your smartphone, computer or tablet. My biggest fear was the installation. I am not very handy when it comes to house stuff. I was pleasantly surprised when I walked through the video tutorial on my phone step by step.
The phone application helps you install the Ring in one of two ways. You can decide to hardwire it (if you already have a doorbell). This allows for the Ring to actually ring through to the house doorbell and be powered. Or, say you do not have a doorbell and you just want the function to ring through on your devices and not use an actual doorbell in the house, you can do the wireless alarm systems option which works just a tad different. I already had a doorbell and wanted the feature that it rang in the house so I took the hardwired option. After shutting off the power to the doorbell it was as simple as unhooking two wires and re-hooking, mounting the ring, and that was it. Took me less than 20 minutes. The other nice thing that if installed correctly and somehow they are stolen Ring says they will replace the device, so that peace of mind was comforting.
The doorbell comes with a 4.9-by-2.4-inch mounting plate that attaches to any surface including wood, cement, brick, vinyl, and stucco. The folks at Ring give you a small toolkit containing everything you’ll need to mount the device, including a level, a screwdriver, a masonry drill bit, weather sealant, and mounting hardware. The doorbell is certified for outdoor use and has an operating range of -5 to +120 degrees Fahrenheit. It connects to your home Wi-Fi network and supports 802.11b/g/n wireless connectivity on the 2.4GHz band. You can use the application on iOS, Android, and Windows Store. The app works really well and is very easy to use. The cameras show live video when there is an alert, and if you want cloud recording for playback later it is only $3/month per camera.
To charge the Ring Video Doorbell if you went unwired is very simple. It uses a micro USB cable that comes included. One charge is rated to last up to one (1) year. This battery rating would of course depend on frequency you are getting alerts and how often they are in motion. They are very easy to remove and charge up if needed.
Now it was time to play with it. I started going through the app to set up the distance to the street, so that trucks and people walking did not set off my phones. Once set correctly I was in love. Anytime there is motion on the front porch even in the middle of the night…I get a notification. If someone rings the doorbell…I get a notification. To make this even more useful I just open up the notification and I have full 720p video to whatever is cause the motion or pressed the Ring. Now that I am looking at the porch I can use the two-way microphone to talk to the person and relay any info I may need. This has been really useful for package deliveries, sales calls and family guests.
My perfect example is what happened today… I am upstairs in my office writing an article with headphones on when the UPS man shows up. Normally I would not have any idea there was a package on the doorstep. He rang the bell and started to leave. I got the notification on my PC (Windows Store App), opened up the video and saw that it was UPS. If they didn’t run off like it was a race, I could have thanked him or left instructions if I was out of the house.
Ring makes a few more cameras to help give you that full house security called the Stick Up Cam. I loved the ease of use putting these up. If you are looking for something to give you the same features of the doorbell, minus the doorbell then you need to grab these as well (or you can win a few from us). These will give you the motion detection, video and audio as well. These are rated for the same levels as the doorbell and battery is made to last up to one year on a single charge. GIVEAWAY is getting close…
Cons of the Ring system:
I loved almost everything about the Ring system. It was great knowing when someone is in my yard or talking to the mailman dropping off packages but, there are a few drawbacks. With the Ring system you are at the whim of you wi-fi. Luckily I have a pretty beastly router that covers all of my house and yard all the way into the streets. Most of you would get by with the setup you have but if you have a huge house or router on one end and the stick up cam on the other side you might see some degradation in the video quality. Something to keep in mind and be sure and watch return policies in case you need more distance.
I have very few hiccups in the performance but there have been a few. There have been a few times where I am trying to answer the door being rung and either the app is thinking or one of my phones might be but I am in limbo while the guest waits. Or someone has rang the bell and it takes 30 seconds or so before it alerts me. This can be awkward to the person. Here they are outside ringing this box (that they can tell is something hi-tech) and nothing is happening. So, imagine they go to walk off and 20 seconds later you are saying hello….30 seconds to a minute of standing outside can feel like a long time.
To sum up I love the whole system. I can handle the very small issues in order to get all that I gain using them. For anyone who gets a ton of packages or has frequent guests you I am sure you would love Ring. All of the units run $199 each. You do not need the Ring Video Doorbell if you just want to do a Stick Up Cam here or there. Now on to our GIVEAWAY!!!
Thanks to our one of our favorite Sponsors Nebraska Furniture Mart and of course Ring we have two Ring Stick Up Cams to giveaway to two of you lucky geeks. Nebraska Furniture Mart is your one stop shop (in person or online) for all of your home automation like Ring and tons of other amazing tech and more. You can buy Ring here from NFM for $199 a piece. We will open this one up International for our friends across the pond. Check terms for shipping rules. You geeks know how we do our giveaways so get to it below and good luck.