VIDEO DOORBELLS don’t just alert us that there’s someone at the door.
They also create an added layer of security, letting us know exactly who’s out front, and in the vicinity, as well as informing us of any deliveries we have may have missed when we were out.
Smart doorbells work by streaming live video to your phone and tablet, plus they allow you to communicate with visitors to your home – even when you’re not home.
You know exactly who’s at the door before answering, and video doorbells show you if any suspicious characters are loitering around.
Video doorbells also feature live-view footage which lets you know exactly when – and where – that package was dropped outside your home, or if it wasn’t.
Some video doorbells are compatible with smart lock systems, so you can also remotely unlock the door for your visitors using the app – pretty nifty, huh?
The main downside? The cost.
While you can get a wireless doorbell for a tenner online, video doorbells start at £50+, with the popular Amazon Ring available from £89. Many are over £100.
1. Ring Video Doorbell
- (AD) Ring Video doorbell, £89 on Amazon – buy here
The most affordable version of Amazon’s popular Ring video doorbell launches this month, and it’s got a lot of great features, starting with the sub-£100 price tag.
The 1080p HD doorbell allows you to see, chat with and hear your front door visitors via your phone, tablet or PC, with updated and improved night vision and advanced motion detection.
It’s a wall-mounted design that’s easy to install, and connects to Wi-Fi via the Ring app, which instantly notifies you when your doorbell is pressed or motion is detected.
The new and improved Ring works with a rechargeable battery, or it can be connected to your doorbell wires.
It’s also Alexa-compatible and syncs with your other smart devices.
2. Kamep Wireless 1080P HD WiFi Smart Doorbell
- (AD) Kamep Wireless 1080P HD WiFi Smart Doorbell, £68.50 on Amazon – buy here
A video doorbell that does the job and is roughly half the price of many of its competitors? Tell us more.
Kamep’s value design relies on rechargeable batteries – no wiring required – and can support multiple devices.
It offers free Cloud storage, which is overwritten after a week (unless you have a micro SD).
The video doorbell has an impressive 166° wide viewing angle, and messages as soon as motion is detected.
It also offers two-way audio if you need to speak to your guest remotely.
Very easy to install, It connects via WiFi, and features two-way audio.
3. EZVIZ 3MP Smart Video Doorbell
- (AD) EZVIZ 3MP Smart Video Doorbell, £134.99 on Amazon – buy here
Whether you’ve got young kids in the house and want to avoid a doorbell ringing at all hours or you prefer the seamlessness of a doorbell that alerts you via your device only, the EZVIZ smart doorbell has a lot to recommend itself.
Firstly, it’s got a 180-degree vertical viewing angle and 105-degree horizontal view, which gives homeowners great visibility on visitors.
Secondly, PIR technology helps to reduce false triggers, as well as offering clear night vision and recording.
It even allows you to chat with your visitors remotely.
Third, it works with your smart devices, from Alexa to Google assistant.
Another fun bonus? It comes with a few different coloured covers, so you can switch up the doorbell’s style as required.
4. Ring Video Doorbell 3 Plus
- (AD) Ring Video Doorbell 3 Plus, £159.00 on Amazon – buy here
Looking for a smart security update for your front door? The Ring 3 has all the Ring features you’ve come to depend on – and then some.
You don’t need to drill any holes – it works with a battery, although it can be wired in, too – and the best new feature is the four seconds of black and white video which shows you what happened before the motion detector kicked in (known as pre-roll). In addition, reviewers are pleasantly surprised with the improved motion detection and connectivity.
One of the most loved video doorbells on Amazon, the Ring Video Doorbell 3 Plus is well worth the upgrade if you’re looking for one beyond the basic Ring.
5. Kamep 1080P HD WiFi Doorbell Camera
- (AD) Kamep 1080P HD WiFi Doorbell Camera, £84.99 on Amazon – buy here
This video doorbell has reviewers ‘very impressed’ with its features, which include two-way audio, 16ft visibility in the dark, a built-in 32G micro SD card, smart motion sensor and easy installation – reviewers say you can get it up and running in under half an hour.
The intercom allows for live chats, and users can benefit from free 7-day Cloud storage (or they can subscribe for longer storage options).
Overall, users are impressed with the level of functionality for the price.Kamep’s companion app is also very intuitive to use, which is always a big plus.
6. Google Nest Hello Video Doorbell
One of the most expensive video doorbells on the market, the Nest Hello requires wiring and is designed to sync with your Google Home devices.
Top features include 24/7 streaming so you can always take a peek, and fans rate the good-quality video and crystal clear picture and sound, with little background noise to distract.
If you have Nest Aware, the doorbell can also distinguish between friendly faces and strangers at the door.
7. August Doorbell Cam Pro
Arguably the best feature of this video doorbell is HindSense, an option that allows the device to capture a couple of seconds of video before the motion is detected.
This makes the doorbell is more likely to capture someone as they approach your door.
The August Doorbell Cam Pro is compatible with a wide range of smart home assistants, including Amazon Alexa, Apple Siri, and Google Assistant.
The device’s video resolution is 1280 x 960, so not the highest, but it is good enough to clearly see people approaching the door, even at night thanks to the integrated spotlight feature.
The August Doorbell Cam Pro storage fee starts at $49.99/year (£38.14) for 30 days of video.
8. Arlo Video Doorbell
Arlo is first and foremost a security cameras’ manufacturer, and the company’s expertise shows in the Arlo Video Doorbell.
Compatible with both Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant, this doorbell can receive notifications on smart speakers, and live-stream video to an Amazon Echo Show or Google Nest Hub smart display.
Featuring a 1536 x 1536 resolution and 180 degrees field of view, the Arlo has an impressive video quality, and audio is pretty great too.
This video doorbell also has several additional features, such as motion sensitivity and video storage.
For the latter, however, you’ll have to sign up for a subscription.
Do video doorbells require a subscription
Not all video doorbells require a subscription, as there are many of them that store video footage on an SD card, for example.
The way these devices work is by recording a set amount of footage (eg 30 days), then deleting the oldest footage in order to record new one.
The obvious advantage of this is that you don’t have to pay for a monthly fee.
Also, many companies include extra features within said subscriptions, such as live alerts and events.
The downside? If something happened outside of the set recorded time frame, you won’t be able to recover and review the video.
Which smart doorbell is better, Nest or Ring?
Both devices are compatible with their voice assistant counterpart. This means that Google Nest will work with Alexa and Amazon Ring will function with Google Assistant.
The two smart doorbells have many similarities in terms of features and functioning, but also a couple of key differences.
The first one is the recording format, as the Nest records video in a 4:3 format while Ring records video in a wide-screen 16:9 format, which sometimes can cause people’s heads and feet to be cut off if they come too close.
The biggest difference between the two video doorbells, however, is how they are powered.
The Nest requires traditional doorbell wiring, while the Ring can also run on a removable, rechargeable battery, making it the most versatile option.
Which video doorbells work with Alexa?
Most of the video doorbells in this list work with Alexa.
Since Amazon has nailed actually useful voice commands before anyone else, many companies are trying to make their smart devices compatible with Alexa.
If you have a video doorbell that is compatible with Alexa and an Echo device, you can ask her to answer the front door, show the live feed, start or stop the recording, and show the most recent events.
Which video doorbells work with Google Home?
Google has been improving its Assistant consistently in the past few years, so it is not surprising that many smart devices are now compatible with it.
Just like with Alexa, almost all of the video doorbells included in this list work with Google Home and Assistant.
If your device is compatible with Google Assistant, you’ll be able to ask your AI companion to perform several tasks, very much similar to Alexa’s ones.
Do smart doorbells require Wi-Fi?
Smart doorbells do not require WiFi to function. In fact, even if your smart doorbell is disconnected from an internet connection, it will still play its tune when a visitor presses the button.
However, a smart doorbell disconnected from WiFi is not very smart.
It won’t be able to stream any feed to your devices, nor it will send any alerts or event notifications.