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If Your Smart Home Doesn't Have a Smart Doorbell, Can it Really Be That Smart?

By NexChange
Capital Markets, Lifestyle

Amazon has been bulking up its smart-home offerings over the past year, pushing out the Cloud Cam – which is a fairly basic home security camera – and its Amazon Key, which allows couriers to open your house, as long as you have a smart lock and the Amazon Cloud Cam, naturally.

But even though you may have a smart key, a smart lock and a Cloud Cam, is your smart home really that smart if you don’t also have a smart doorbell? Amazon has got you covered on that as well, officially rolling out Ring – the smart doorbell with its own security camera.

Ring isn’t actually a new product, but the smart home company is now officially owned by Amazon, which acquired it for $1 billion back in February, as the Verge reported. (The company was rejected on an episode of Shark Tank, which might have been a blessing in disguise.)

Now the Verge reports that as it did after it acquired Whole Foods, Amazon is dropping the price of Ring – or at least its first-gen model. The price of the standard video doorbell will now be cut from $180 to $100.

In addition to its acquisition of Ring, Amazon also bought the smart home company Blink in December, as it continues to ramp up its market share of the space, as the Verge reports.

These acquisitions make Amazon increasingly well-positioned to capitalize on the growing smart home market. And since Amazon doesn’t care all that much about up-front prices — it likes to sell cheaper products and make more money later through additional sales or services — it can make these products even more appealing by selling them for less than basically anyone else. Nest’s smart doorbell is $229; August’s is $199.

That said, there’s still a hidden cost to all these products, and Amazon isn’t making that any cheaper: the subscription. While you can use Ring’s doorbell without a subscription, you’ll have to pay a monthly fee if you want to view any saved videos. Otherwise, you’re just confined to the live feed.

Ring will maintain its operations under its own brand, according to Amazon.

Photo: Ring

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