On our most recent IoT Podcast, Christopher called in to our voicemail hotline with a question about connected doorbells. He and his wife currently have a Ring Video Doorbell but aren’t fans of the Ring Neighbors program and have decided to look for a different option. So they would prefer a doorbell that doesn’t have video but does have motion detection and still works with Amazon.
This is a bit tricky because the connected doorbell market has definitely embraced video support. We did find one audio-only model that I’ll share below. Our suggestion for the best privacy-centric solution in this case, however, is the $160 Eufy Video Doorbell, currently on sale for $130.
Stacey uses this device at her house and really likes it. Even though it does have video support, this doorbell doesn’t require you to send video to the cloud. Instead, all video footage is encrypted and stored locally, so that might be a good compromise for Christopher.
If you want more storage than the 4 GB included (roughly 30 days worth of video), you can buy a subscription plan but then your video is going to the cloud. The Eufy Video Doorbell also works with Alexa (and Google Home, if that matters) and includes motion detection, so if the locally encrypted video is acceptable, this meets all of the requirements.
So about that audio doorbell. It’s the $80 Arlo Audio Doorbell, which we found on Amazon for only $26. This product is a bit old as it launched in 2018. It may be on the way out. But it doesn’t have video and it supports two-way audio with your visitors. On the downside, this doesn’t work with Amazon Alexa so notifications will come to your phone in the Arlo mobile app. And it requires an Arlo base station which will add around $100 to the cost. Also, there’s no motion detection.
We did look into the Wyze Video Doorbell because Wyze camera products typically store data locally on a microSD card. Surprisingly, the $45 Wyze Video Doorbell does not offer local storage.
Instead, Wyze offers a limited amount of free cloud storage on AWS Cloud with the option to pay $1.99 monthly for extra video storage capacity. Motion detection is present according to the product page; however, that appears to be used to light up the doorbell for your visitor. And as of now, there’s no mention of Alexa support with this option.
To hear Christopher’s question in full, as well as our discussion on the topic, tune in to the IoT Podcast below: