The idea of a smart doorbell seems plain ridiculous on paper. But when we actually checked out with German company Doorbird’s new device, we got it instantly.
When someone prods your button, Doorbird sends an alert to your iOS or Android phone. Tapping that notification opens the app, which then gives you a high definition image of whoever’s stood on your doorstep.
This basically has the effect of turning your phone into a long-distance intercom – you can chat with the postie and even let them into your home or office if you’re away.
Our demo guy told us that might be handy if a delivery guy wants to drop off a package, but we were a little concerned about granting a total stranger unsupervised access to our home. You’d want to pair this up with something like Netatmo’s Welcome or Manything for continued supervision.
Doorbird says that you can hook up to another webcam so you can see what they get up to directly through the Doorbird app. No word yet on whether Doorbird is getting into bed with Apple HomeKit or Samsung SmartHome, which could make webcam integration easier.
With extra features such as an IR motion detector and full visitor history, the Doorbird is a nifty little device that could be great for families, especially if you don’t have a spare set of keys for visiting relatives.
If anything, it’s a little on the big and bulky side, lacking the metallic finesse promised by Schlage’s Siri-compliant smart locks and Kwikset’s Bluetooth-powered Kevo. Hopefully future versions of the Doorbird will feature some sexier looks to complement its great functionality.