Slowly but surely, the homes that we live in are getting a little smarter. You're not going to wake up tomorrow and have your kettle talking to your bed talking to your TV talking to your bathtub like some crazy Wallace and Gromit situation, but you can still make some baby steps — like get yourself a doorbell that shows you video wherever you are in the world.
There are two new video doorbells to bolster the Ring line-up — successors to the original Video Doorbell, which is the most popular smart doorbell on the market according to Ring. The $329 Video Doorbell 2 has 1080p recording over the original and better night vision through the infrared part of the spectrum, as well as a removable battery that can be replaced without having to pull the entire doorbell setup off your wall. The $399 Video Doorbell Pro is more customisable in its design, and has custom motion zone setup so you can monitor more of your property, and it can detect humansbut it's hardwired — which means a little more installation required.
The $379 Ring Floodlight Cam is a slightly different gadget — it's closer to Nest's line-up of smart home cameras like the Nest Cam Outdoor, but sets itself apart as being the only camera out there with built-in LED spotlights alongside its 140-degree camera lens. In addition it has two-way audio with a speaker and mic, motion detection over 270 degrees, and a built-in siren that can hit 110dB to scare off any prowlers, or cats, or neighbourhood kids in your yard. It's a hard-wired solution rather than a battery pack, so you'll need an electrician to install it.
Ring has partnerships in place with a few other smart device manufacturers, including WeMo and Kevo, that'll let you unlock your door or turn on the lights remotely when your Ring doorbell goes off. As with all these smart home security and safety devices, Ring has a complementary video recording cloud storage plan; it's $4 monthly or $40 yearly. If you've got three or more devices, Ring says you'll want an unlimited plan for $15 monthly or $150 yearly. And, of course, all this runs through the free Ring app for iOS, Android, OS X and Windows 10. [Ring]