Smart camera maker Blink has launched a budget connected doorbell, which lets users answer their door, speak to callers and monitor any activity back at their pad.
Blink launched its own camera in 2016, and impressed us with a completely wireless system of battery powered cameras, which connected to a central hub. And that's the premise behind the new Blink Video Doorbell.
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The Blink bell connects to the same hub as the cameras, which means that existing Blink users can pick up the chime for $99 – substantially under-cutting the likes of Ring and Nest, which charge $199 and $229 for their own bells respectively.
If you don’t own the Blink module already then you’ll have to fork out $129, which is still an extremely reasonable price. However, you will have to fork out again for the chime, which feels like a must-have, if you want to hear your doorbell inside your home. The pricing for that's not going to be released until CES.
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Features include the ability to live view, motion detection, two-way audio, HD quality video (although the specifics are unspecified). It runs off AA batteries, which will allegedly last two years on a single charge – which again compares very favorably to rivals. It’s a complete set of features, and with free cloud storage, it keeps hidden costs to a minimum.
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Truly wireless smart doorbells are still in their infancy and that’s allowed Ring to really dominate in this space. The likes of SkyBell and VueBell still require a wired connection from an existing doorbell, and Nest’s system doesn’t launch until 2018.
At such a great price Blink has the potential to really carve a niche, while the alternatives are still pricing regular folks out of the smart home.