As someone who doesn’t really relish uninvited guests, I have always wondered what it would be like to know who is at my door without the hassle of having to get up and see. 

So I thought this week I would take a look at some of the smart doorbells that are out there on the market today. Home security is usually a big concern for homeowners, so such devices that can broadcast video to your smart device might be worth looking into. 

The first three options that popped up through a Google search for me were from ADT, Vivint and Ring. The first company is likely one many people know for their home security systems, and the other two offer a similar suite of products. 

Smart doorbells, or video doorbells, are pretty much exactly what their name suggests. A device is installed by your front door that will provide a video/audio connection to a paired smart device such as a phone. 

An article in PC Mag published March 19 cited a FBI crime statistics report that said there were an estimated 1.5 million burglaries committed within the span of a year. Of those, 70 percent of them were residential burglaries, with a majority of those crimes taking place during daylight hours. 

Knowing who is at your front door is a good way of knowing whether or not you should open it. In addition, video doorbells provide additional security against potential thefts such as packages being stolen from someone’s front porch. A funny example I can think of is a viral video I saw circulating social media in which a resident scared off some potential package thieves through their video doorbell. 

These devices typically use Wi-Fi to stream live video to a person’s phone. They can take advantage of various features like cloud video storage, motion detection, smart lock integration, sirens or other smart home devices. As an example, some of the devices listed in the PC Mag article feature interoperability with smart devices like Amazon’s Alexa. 

Various devices offer various resolutions, with most saving video to cloud storage, while only one on the list saved information locally. It also should be worth noting that both ADT and Vivint were absent from PC Mag’s list, and their products might be part of a larger security package with those companies. 

According to the same article, the MSRP for these devices range from $169 to $249, and each offer different options and user interfaces. But if home security is something you are looking to tighten up around the home, looking into these devices might be worth the time.

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