If you’re at work, how do you know when someone is at your door ringing the doorbell? This would have been a children’s riddle not too long ago. Today, it has a simple answer: by using smart doorbells.

What are Smart Doorbells, Exactly?

Well, if you’re thinking what I think you might be thinking, then I think you might need to think again. No, it’s not a doorbell that asks smart questions (“answer the doorbell” would take on a whole new meaning if that were the case), it’s merely a doorbell that comes with video, WiFi and sometimes audio hardware that’s typically connected to your smartphone via an app.

What can smart doorbells do? They can show you who’s at the door even when you’re not around. Think of them as a doorbell and a virtual peep hole rolled into one.

What smart doorbells are out there?

There are already several such products out on the market. Some can be hardwired to your power supply, replacing your old “dumb” doorbell, some are battery-operated, some even take a photo of the visitor, some have two-way audio capability like an intercom, most have motion sensors so they’re not always on, some record and store video on the cloud, and so on.

Some of the top brands are Ring, SkyBell, Vivint, August, Zmodo, VTech, Chui, etc. Most of them are relatively easy to install but some may require expert installation, and they all have apps that connect them to any iOS or Android smartphone. That means you can be anywhere, not even at home, and still access the device to see who’s at the front door.

Is it useful? That depends.

If you have kids, you can see if your babysitter is receiving any “unwanted” visitors in your absence. Or if you want to remotely monitor your home when you’re away for a few days, you can do that. It’s also useful for when you’re at home and don’t want to open the door for someone you’re not too keen on welcoming inside your home. It’s great for keeping door-to-door sales executives at bay, too.

On a side note, if you think door-to-door sales is dead, then think again. Indeed.com this year reported that even though the average salary for a door-to-door sales person is only $148 per day, executives at top companies like ADT Security Services, Door to Dish org, Verengo Solar and Adam Hale & Associates make more than $100,000 a year, on average.

Is it worth investing in a smart doorbell?

You can’t put a price on home security. Your insurance company might disagree, but the value of a safe home can only be vouched for by the people living in it. From that perspective, investing in home security products like security systems, motion detectors, CCTV cameras and so on could be expensive, but still offer enough value to justify the costs involved.

As for smart doorbells, they start from about $150 for models with limited features and go up from there. There may also be additional costs involved, such as for cloud storage, expert installation and so on.

Is it worth it? That’s for you to say. But there’s no doubt that there’s demand in the market for such products. That’s why there are so many companies making them.

 

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