Hands on: Ring Door View Cam first look: Now on sale Review

A simple way to upgrade your peephole

First Impressions

The easiest smart doorbell to install could find itself the doorbell of choice for people with existing peepholes.

Key Specifications

  • Review Price: £179
  • 1080 sensor
  • Amazon Alexa compatible
  • iOS and Android app control
  • Ring button and impact sensor

Update: Ring Door View Cam is now available

Announced back in January at the CES show in Las Vegas, the Ring Door View Cam is now available in the UK for £179 – that’s the same price as the similarly-specced Ring Video Doorbell 2. Designed to fit into an existing peephole, the Ring Door View Cam is designed to be the easiest doorbell to install and doesn’t require any screws.

This simple installation means that the camera can be installed in practically any door and the benefit of the drill-free installation means that you can even install the camera if you rent, or you live in an apartment block and want a secure video doorbell. As well the simple installation the camera has been designed with a sensor that detects when someone knocks.

We’ve been told that review samples should come out shortly, so we’ll update this article with a full review once we can. In the meantime, we managed to see the product in the flesh at CES, so you can read our first impression below.

Ring Door View Cam – Design and features

Fitting the cameras is easy. The old peephole has to be removed, and the new camera slots into the existing hole. Onto the back of the camera, inside your home, is the battery pack, which both provides power and locks the camera into place. The Ring Door View camera uses the same type of rechargeable battery as the Ring Video Doorbell 2; it’s charged via micro USB.

Using this system has a couple of advantages. First, the outside part of the doorbell is thinner and smaller than on the chunky Ring Video Doorbell 2. Secondly, the battery pack remains safe inside your home.

With the doorbell in place, the old peephole continues to work, so you can continue to look through your door in the old fashioned way.

At it’s most basic, the Ring Door View Cam operates like other products in the line-up: when someone presses the button on the front, you’re notified on your smartphone. Annoyingly, the call has to be answered in landscape mode; it would be nice if Ring could handle portrait mode.

Since CES, Amazon has rolled out an update for the Echo Show and other video Echo devices that lets you answer your door from your smart display. This is a similar trick to the Nest Hello and Google Nest Hub combination.

Motion detection lets the camera record in 1080p anyone that comes up to your door. With Smart Alerts (coming to all cameras in 2019), you get additional control over recordings, although you’ll need a Ring Protect Plan for some features. Smart Alerts let you set motion detection zones and motion sensitivity; motion verification, which filters out false alerts; motion stop, which stops recording when there’s nothing important happening; and person detection.

The new camera has a couple of tricks of its own. First, it has an impact sensor, so will tell you when someone has knocked at the door, rather than using the button, which is handy for those couriers that softly knock and then run away.

For privacy, it’s possible to block out parts of the image that you don’t want to record. Ring told me that the blocking is done on the camera, so nothing is sent to the cloud that you don’t want to record.

First impressions

Doing something different to the other smart doorbells out there, the Ring Door View Cam seems to be the easiest-to-install model yet. It retains the great features and image quality that made the Ring Video Doorbell 2 stand out, plus adds some neat tricks itself. I’ll bring you a full review when samples are available next year.

A ’hands on review’ is our first impression of a product only - it is not a full test and verdict. Our writer must have spent some time with the product to describe an early sense of what it’s like to use. We call these ‘hands on reviews’ to make them visible in search. However these are always unscored and don’t give recommendations. Read more about our reviews policy.

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