Over in Vegas at CES 2018 there were a LOT of smart video doorbells - approximately 1.3% of which were not obvious Ring rip-offs.
One definitely included in that minority was the Ezviz Lookout system, which combines a smart doorbell with a video viewer. Now, we know what you're thinking - a smart doorbell usually just makes your smartphone or tablet a video viewer and, you're right, it does.
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So, while the Ezviz Lookout has added back in an element that isn't entirely needed, we were still enamoured with it when we saw it attached to a mock front-door over at the big tech expo.
The doorbell / camera element of it has a tube on the back that a wire passes through to connect to the video viewer's bracket. The tube goes through your existing peephole, you see, meaning no screwing or mounting.
The idea is that you've always got a view of what's going on, on the other side of the door - just like a peephole but, you know, more high-tech. If you've seen the new series of Black Mirror and, in particular the USS Callister episode then it's a similar setup to what the main character had in that.
The doorbell itself isn't smart - apart from its 720p camera with 165 degree field of view - it's the 4.3-inch video viewer that packs the Wi-Fi connectivity to relay the video to a smartphone using an app.
The camera will detect motion though, and fire up the viewer and if you see something iffy going on - whether you're home or away - you can use the two-way talk function to have a word with whoever is bothering you. Videos can be recorded on an SD card and there's no need for a mains connection - everything is powered by a rechargeable lithium battery.
The Ezviz rep at the show explained how the companion app could build a gallery of trusted people, using its facial recognition tech. However, there's no smart lock part to the system yet - so we couldn't really understand the point of that, other than perhaps for customised alerts.
The Ezviz Lookout Smart Viewer will cost $229.99 when it goes on sale - which we're told will be by the end of March.
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