Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 vs. Nest Hello: Which should you buy?

Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 Button Press
Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 Button Press (Image credit: Nick Sutrich / Android Central)

Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2

Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 Render

Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 brings a new kind of 3D motion detection to the table, with pinpoint accuracy complete with an overhead map of your property. If you can't (or don't want to) come to the door, Alexa can even answer a doorbell press for you, giving instructions or taking a message.

Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2

3D Vision and more

3D motion detection
Birds-eye view
Head-to-toe video
Alexa Greetings and quick replies
Great integration with Alexa
Poor Google services integration
Requires a subscription for most features
No battery backup

Nest Hello Video Doorbell

Nest Hello official render

If you're already invested in the Google Home platform, Nest Hello is one of the very best video doorbells you can buy. Nest Hello will regularly impress you with its advanced people recognition and intelligent notifications.

Nest Hello Video Doorbell

Sheer brilliance

Facial recognition
Head-to-toe video
Great integration with Google and Nest products
Poor Alexa integration
Requires a subscription for most features
Subscription is twice the price
No battery backup

Nest Hello and Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 are a sort of mirror image of one another. Each company — Google Nest and Ring — belongs to the parent companies that run the virtual assistants that likely power your smart home. As such, Nest Hello works best with Google Assitant and Google Home, while Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 works best with Amazon Alexa. Both have some scant compatibilities with the other company's assistant, but the integration is basic at best.

Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 vs. Nest Hello: A tale of two assistants

Nest Hello vs. Ring Pro

Source: Android Central (Image credit: Source: Android Central)

Without taking anything else into account, we can confidently state this: if you use Google Home or Google Assistant, you should pick Nest Hello. Likewise, if you're primarily an Amazon Alexa user, you should definitely choose Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2. Both of these products are the best video doorbells offered by each company and, if you're looking for the best in each ecosystem, you've found your answer.

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Header Cell - Column 0 Nest Hello Video DoorbellRing Video Doorbell Pro 2
Price (MSRP)$230$250
Power SourceHardwired into powerHardwired into power
Video resolution1200p1536p
Field of view160 degrees (diagonal)150 degrees (horizontal and vertical)
Aspect Ratio4:31:1
Dimensions4.6 in. x 1.7 in x 1 in4.49 in x 1.9 in x 0.87 in
Live viewYesYes
Always recordingYesNo (4-second pre-roll footage)
Connectivity2.4GHz and 5GHz Wi-Fi2.4GHz and 5GHz Wi-Fi
Motion detectionAdjustable motion zonesAdjustable motion zones, Birds-Eye View, 3D Radar
People detectionYesYes
Facial recognitionYesNo
Privacy ZonesNoYes
Smart Assistant IntegrationGoogle HomeAmazon Alexa

Looking at the specs, it's clear that these are both powerhouse products. Top-tier tech powers each, but Ring's latest video doorbell takes the edge in technological prowess. That's a good thing, too, since Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 launched April 2021 while Nest Hello has been available since March 2018. Despite this three-year gap, Nest Hello still holds its own thanks to regular software updates and feature additions from Google Nest.

Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 vs. Nest Hello: A path or a person?

Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 Birds Eye View

Source: Ring (Image credit: Source: Ring)

Both video doorbells feature advanced motion detection, but each performs this task in a very different way. Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 debuted Ring's brand-new 3D Motion detection, which is powered by radar and can pinpoint motion at an exact distance away from the camera. This helps not only to receive more accurate motion detection notifications, but makes it easy to tell the doorbell exactly how far away you want it to detect motion.

On top of this, 3D Motion detection is precise enough for Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 to create a motion path using an overhead satellite view of your home — a "simple" static image provided by MapBox — and overlay that path on top of the map so you know the exact path someone took on your property. This can be particularly helpful if you've got lots of shrubbery blocking the view or sidewalk foot traffic that regularly sets off false alerts.

Nest Hello people detection in Nest app

Source: Android Central (Image credit: Source: Android Central)

Nest Hello Video Doorbell, on the other hand, relies on the power of Google AI to not only attempt to understand what its camera sees, but to identify exactly who is at your front door. Using the same technology that's available on Google Photos, Nest Hello uses a private database of people you identify and can then reference that database any time someone shows up on camera. You'll get notifications saying exactly who is at your door if they are recognized and, if they're a stranger, you'll be specifically alerted to that fact.

It's highly likely that person identification is a more useful feature for many people, but it might also ring the privacy alarm in people's minds. There's no doubt of the creepy factor that comes into a camera specifying someone's identity on its own and, if this makes you uncomfortable, you can either turn the feature off or opt out of picking Nest Hello all together.

As far as camera tech is concerned, Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 sports a higher-resolution camera that also has a taller aspect ratio. That's particularly important for a video doorbell since the primary focus isn't on your front porch or the sweeping vista in front of your home, but the person standing right in front of the door. While Nest Hello's 4:3 aspect ratio has been a preferable one over most other video doorbells — which often opt for wide 16:9 video — Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 delivers a perfect 1:1 square that can see more of anyone in front of it.

Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2: There when you can't answer the door

Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 Top Angle

Source: Nick Sutrich / Android Central (Image credit: Source: Nick Sutrich / Android Central)

While Ring often highlights 3D Motion detection as a main selling point for Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2, there's no doubting the importance of Alexa Greetings and the quick responses feature. Like the Arlo Video Doorbell, Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 users can select from a list of pre-canned responses that Alexa will read to any visitors on your doorstep. These are particularly handy if you're in a place where you can't answer the door, or just don't want to talk through the doorbell using two-way communication.

If you really don't want (or can't) answer the door, you can even have Alexa do all the work for you thanks to Alexa Greetings. This cut-down version of Alexa will welcome visitors at your front door and, in true Alexa fashion, can be spoken to and interacted with. Alexa can leave instructions for delivery drivers or even take a message, politely noting that you can't answer the door at the moment. Having your doorbell answer itself feels more than just futuristic; it makes Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 feel like a truly smart home device.

Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 vs. Nest Hello: The price of being the best

Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 Front

Source: Nick Sutrich / Android Central (Image credit: Source: Nick Sutrich / Android Central)

Both Nest Hello and Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 will normally cost you well over $200 as an up-front investment, but you'll also need a monthly subscription in order to take advantage of most other features. Neither video doorbell has local storage, so without a plan, you'll only be able to view the live feed. Similarly, features like Alexa Greetings and Google's people detection are also locked behind that subscription paywall.

While Nest Hello is a little less expensive up-front, Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 will save you a bit of money in the long-run. A Ring Protect Plan costs $3 per month for one camera and gives you access to the past 60 days worth of recordings. If you've got more than one Ring camera in your home, the $10 Ring Protect Plan will cover them all with the same functionality and enable those extra features like rich notifications and Alexa Greetings.

A Nest Aware subscription costs $6 per month and only stores 30 days worth of recordings. However, that $6 covers all Nest cameras you might have in your home. Upgrading to the $12 per month plan will increase recording storage to 60 days and enable 10 days worth of 24/7 recording, giving your wired Nest cameras an automatic upgrade. A Nest Aware subscription also unlocks features like people detection and customizable activity zones.

Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 vs. Nest Hello: A few things to ponder

Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 3d Motion Detection

Source: Nick Sutrich / Android Central (Image credit: Source: Nick Sutrich / Android Central)

Lastly, you'll find that both of these video doorbells look quite different, physically. Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 is a little bit larger than Nest Hello but offers the ability to switch out the faceplate with several other color options. Nest Hello, by comparison, only comes in one color. In general, I find Nest Hello's subdued look a little more attractive, but Ring's faceplates make the device shine and will likely better match your home's external look.

Adding everything up, it's pretty clear that many of the features Ring offers in its latest flagship video doorbell make it superior to Nest Hello, but you won't be able to enjoy those features to their fullest if you're not planning on using Amazon Alexa in your home. If you're wiring either of these to an existing doorbell chime, this won't be quite as big of a deal to use since both doorbells work well enough on their own with tailor-made apps.

Homes without an existing chime, however, will especially want to consider matching up the product with their smart home ecosystem of choice. Both Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 and Nest Hello offer the ability to use smart speakers and smart displays to notify you when someone rings the doorbell, giving you the ability to answer the doorbell from virtually anywhere in your home.

Nicholas Sutrich
Senior Content Producer — Smartphones & VR
Nick started with DOS and NES and uses those fond memories of floppy disks and cartridges to fuel his opinions on modern tech. Whether it's VR, smart home gadgets, or something else that beeps and boops, he's been writing about it since 2011. Reach him on Twitter or Instagram @Gwanatu