Ring goes after Google with new line of home security devices and services
What you need to know
- Ring has unveiled a host of new home security devices and services meant to keep your home safe from all sort of threats.
- You can now get intelligent alerts when a package arrives or a motion is detected in your house.
- Third-party professional companies can also remotely monitor Ring outdoor cameras in your property to give the assurance of on-site security.
- Applications for Ring's drone security device are now open in the U.S. on an invite-only basis.
Ring today announced a slew of new home security solutions designed to protect your property from break-ins and other forms of threats with always-connected devices, automated event alerts, and remote monitoring by third-party professionals.
The new Ring Alarm Pro, Virtual Security Guard, and Custom Event Alerts add to Ring's growing portfolio of security solutions. Ring's drone camera that debuted last year is also now open for invite-only applications in the U.S.
Whole-home security with Ring Alarm Pro
Ring's headline new security system is the Ring Alarm Pro, which provides optional professional monitoring of your property. The device is integrated with a TrueMesh eero Wi-Fi 6 router for reliable connectivity, giving some of the best indoor security cameras a run for their money. It also sends you alerts when its sensors detect smoke, leaks, and break-ins.
However, the security solution requires a subscription to access some of its best features such as the professional security monitoring and always-on connectivity. This means that you'll need to sign up for the new Ring Protect Pro subscription service in order to continue monitoring your property even if your internet goes down.
For $20/month or $200/year per location, the subscription provides 3GB of monthly data allowance for your devices and security cameras so they stay functional even when your main internet connection is down. You can top up your cellular data with an additional 1GB for $3.
The subscription also includes cloud video storage for your Ring cameras, local video storage and processing, eero cybersecurity features, and access to the Alexa Guard Plus helpline.
On the other hand, Google's new Nest Doorbell and cameras don't require any subscription to access their custom motion zones and object/event detection features. Previously, these capabilities were available only to Nest Aware subscribers.
That said, you can pre-order the Ring Alarm Pro from today starting at $249.99. Ring also plans to introduce the Ring Edge feature soon to let you store and process videos from select devices on Ring Alarm Pro using a 64GB microSD card.
Virtual Security Guard
In addition to Ring Protect Pro, the company also announced another subscription service called the Virtual Security Guard. As the name implies, it allows third-party security professionals to monitor your home or property through your outdoor cameras.
The service is available only to customers who have a Ring Alarm with a monitoring plan and a wired Ring Video Doorbell or Security Cam. The feature works only when the Ring Alarm is set in Home or Away mode. You can then pick an outdoor camera to be monitored by a third-party company.
Monitoring agents can respond to any event in accordance with certain guidelines. They can, for example, use the camera's two-way communication system to communicate with someone who has been detected in front of your door. They can also summon emergency services and dispatch rescuers as needed.
Monitoring companies cannot access the camera feed when it is in disarmed mode for privacy reasons. They are also unable to download or save videos.
Rapid Response, a professional monitoring firm, is the first company to offer the service. Virtual Security Guard is available as an early access from today.
Computer vision-based alerts
Finally, Ring introduced new smart alerts that you can customize on Ring Doorbells and Cams, a similar capability that you can also find in the new Google Nest Doorbell. The new features include the Package Alerts and Custom Event Alerts.
You can choose to receive notifications on your Ring Video Doorbell 2 or Video Doorbell (2020) when a parcel arrives at your door using the Package Alerts feature. You can also use Custom Event Alerts to have your Ring Spotlight Cam Battery notify you when it detects that your garage door has been left open. Alerts will be delivered to you via a notification in the Ring app.
During setup, you can train the system to recognize two different states of objects and to notify you when a state change occurs. According to Ring, the feature distinguishes between different states using computer vision and machine learning.
Custom Event Alerts will be available to Ring Protect Plan customers in the coming months, while Package Alerts will be available starting today.
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Jay Bonggolto always keeps a nose for news. He has been writing about consumer tech and apps for as long as he can remember, and he has used a variety of Android phones since falling in love with Jelly Bean. Send him a direct message via Twitter or LinkedIn.