Best Doorbell Cameras: Nest Hello vs Ring vs SimpliSafe vs SkyBell vs August vs Wyze vs Kangaroo & More

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Want to know who’s on your front porch when you’re out of the house or snatching your packages (porch pirates!)? Whether you live in a high-traffic neighborhood or a remote location, it’s important to keep your home safe from intruders.

We review the top doorbell cameras on the market with pros, cons, pricing and user feedback.

Article Overview

Why Get A Doorbell Camera?

The most common point of entry for residential burglars is a home’s front door. An estimated 34% of home break-ins occur in the most visible part of your home.1

A doorbell security camera is an excellent starting point to keeping an eye on your home while you’re out. It adds another layer of protection against home intruders.

Best Doorbell Cameras

Most of the first generation doorbell cameras are already behind the times technologically. We’ve reviewed the best doorbell cameras on the market and ranked them based on several factors, including technology, reliability, features and more.

Ring Video Doorbell Review

Ring Video Doorbell#1

View on Amazon

Ring leads the WiFi doorbell camera industry in sales and customer satisfaction. They currently offer 6 models, the Video Doorbell (2nd Generation), Video Doorbell 3, 3 Plus, Pro, Elite and Peephole Cam. All models are among the best on the market. With each, you get good video quality, advanced motion detection and the ability to monitor via your smartphone or desktop.

With Ring, you’ll get the confidence of having quality and reliability that many other doorbell cameras don’t deliver. We also appreciate that their doorbell integrates with other security systems including their own.

Personal Experience

Kimberly A., Safe Smart Living, has a Ring Video Doorbell 2. Here is her experience.

Overall, I’m happy with its performance. A few times, we have experienced notification delays, and sometimes the app takes a while to load footage. But asides from that, it performs great.

The video and audio quality are both fantastic. I like viewing activity history to see what I missed while I was away. I wish there were an option to disable the doorbell, because there are times where we are playing in the front yard, and our phones continue to notify us of motion at the front door.

Pros

Cons

  • Customizable motion sensor
  • Infrared night vision
  • Apps for iPhone, Android and desktop
  • Two-way audio with noise cancellation
  • Record and save video (added fee for cloud storage)
  • Can integrate with ADT, Wink, Lockstate, Kevo, Kisi and Wemo home security systems and hubs
  • Pro model has a small and sleek design
  • Peephole model has knock detection
  • Lifetime purchase protection (they’ll replace doorbell camera if it gets stolen)
  • Interchangeable faceplates for 2, 3, 3 Plus, Pro and Elite
  • Pricey, especially Elite
  • No on-demand video (must be activated by motion or doorbell call)
  • Standard model is larger than similar products

Pricing & Tech Specs

  • 1-year warranty on parts
  • Lifetime purchase protection replacement (in case of doorbell theft)
  • WiFi connection: 2.4GHz or 5GHz (depending on model)
  • Operating temperature: -5°F to 120°F
 Video DoorbellVideo Doorbell 2 Video Doorbell 3Video Doorbell 3 PlusVideo Doorbell ProVideo Doorbell ElitePeephole Cam
Price Check Amazon for availability Check Amazon for availability Check Amazon for availability $179.99 Check Amazon for availability $349.99 $79.99
InstallationExisting Wiring or Rechargeable BatteryExisting Wiring or Rechargeable BatteryExisting Wiring or Rechargeable BatteryExisting Wiring or Rechargeable BatteryRequires Existing Doorbell WiringRequires ProfessionalReplaces Peephole
Video720p1080p1080p1080p1080p1080p1080p
Field of View180°160°160°160°160°160°155°
Advanced Motion Detection with Adjustable Motion ZonesCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkAdjustable Motion Zones
OtherPre-Roll 4 Seconds Before Motion EventHuman DetectionHuman DetectionKnock Detection
Dimensions4.98″H x 2.43″W x 0.87″D5.05"H x 2.5"W x 1.08"D5.1"H x 2.4"W x 1.1"D5.1"H x 2.4"W x 1.1"D4.5"H x 1.85"W x 0.80"D4.8"H x 2.75"W x 2.17"DIndoors: 2.26”H x 4.40”W x 1.16”D
Outdoors: 1.85”H x 3.83”W x 0.78”D
WiFi Connectivity2.4GHz2.4GHz2.4GHz & 5GHz2.4GHz & 5GHz2.4GHz & 5GHz2.4GHz & 5GHz2.4GHz

Recording Plans

Recording plans are optional and allow you to review, save and share your videos at any time. Below are the plans available and their features

 Included FreeBasicPlus
PriceFree$3/month or $30/year$10/month or $100/year
Number Of Devices11All Ring Devices
Motion-Activated NotificationsCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark
Real-Time Video With Live ViewCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark
Two-Way TalkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark
Lifetime Theft ProtectionCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark
Video History For 60 DaysCheckmarkCheckmark
Video Saving & SharingCheckmarkCheckmark
Snapshot CaptureCheckmarkCheckmark
24/7 Professional Monitoring For Ring AlarmCheckmark
Extended Warranties For All DevicesCheckmark
10% Off Select Products At Ring.comCheckmark

Read Our In-Depth Comparison Of Ring Doorbell Cameras

Watch Ring In Action

CBS This Morning did an excellent piece on the Ring Video Doorbell. See how Ring works to help deter would-be intruders.

SkyBell HD WiFi Video Doorbell Review

Skybell#2

View on Amazon

The SkyBell HD (the newest model) is a feature-rich wireless doorbell camera with motion sensors, color night vision and on-demand video streaming that works with your smartphone.

SkyBell offers an impressive list of third-party integrations including IFTTT and Amazon’s Alexa. You can even sync the SkyBell with the Nest Cam and Nest Protect smoke and carbon monoxide detector.

If the circular shape doesn’t work with your current door frame, they offer a Slimline edition (this is the version Frontpoint home security offers as their outdoor camera) that is more like the Ring Slimline but comes at a slightly higher price.

Why isn’t SkyBell our top pick? Several reviewers on Amazon had complaints about the system not being reliable, particularly the motion sensor. But there are also a lot of thoroughly satisfied customers so SkyBell comes in solid second.

Pros

Cons

  • Full-color infrared night vision up to 15 ft.
  • On-demand video viewing
  • Apps for iPhone and Android
  • Two-way audio
  • Allows for multiple users
  • Free video recording
  • Syncs with Nest home security products
  • Lifetime purchase protection
  • Pricey
  • Requires hardwiring (no rechargeable battery model)
  • Can’t customize motion sensor range
  • No computer apps to monitor with laptop or desktop
  • Some customer complaints that the system isn’t reliable

Pricing & Tech Specs

  • SkyBell HD Bronze: Check Amazon for availability
  • SkyBell HD Silver: Check Amazon for availability
  • Alarm.com Compatible Bronze Edition: Check Amazon for availability
  • Alarm.com Compatible Silver Edition: $197.60
  • One-year warranty for parts
  • Lifetime protection (in case your doorbell gets stolen)
  • Must be hardwired
  • 1080p HD video with 5x zoom
  • Bandwidth: requires 1.5mbps upload speed
  • 180-degree field of view
  • WiFi connection: 2.4GHz
  • Operating temperature: -40°F to 140°F
  • Dimensions 2.8”H x 0.9”D x 2.8”W

August Doorbell Cam Review

August Doorbell Cam#3

View on Amazon

Known for their smart lock technology, August also has a product that acts as a doorbell camera. As a first generation doorbell, the August Doorbell Cam is a little outdated in terms of looks, but still has a lot going for it. Like our top picks, you can get alerts and view video via your smartphone. The August Cam also gives you on-demand video viewing and integration options with its August SmartLock (front door lock), the Nest Cam, IFTTT and Amazon Alexa.

What’s missing? You don’t get infrared night vision or lifetime protection from theft of your doorbell. They do have motion detection and video recording capabilities similar to the other cameras. We’re also keeping an eye out for their 2nd gen model, which should be a major contender for our top picks.

Pros

Cons

  • On-demand video viewing and video recording
  • Monitor from your iOS, Android or desktop
  • Two-way audio
  • Multiple user capabilities
  • Syncs with Nest, IFTTT, Amazon Alexa and more
 
  • Night vision limited (no infrared LEDs)
  • No lifetime protection against your doorbell theft
  • Square frame may not fit all doorways

Pricing & Tech Specs

  • Price: Check Amazon for availability
  • One-year warranty for parts
  • Must be hardwired
  • 960p HD video
  • WiFi connection: 2.4 or 5GHz
  • Dimensions 2.9”H x 2.9”W x 0.9”D

Comparison Table

 1st: Ring Video Doorbell 32nd: SkyBell3rd: AugustNest HelloKangarooRemoBellSimpliSafeWyzeZmodo
Price Check Amazon for availability Check Amazon for availability Check Amazon for availability $229$19.99 $129.99 Check Amazon for availability $29.99 Check Amazon for availability
Field Of View160°180°Unknown160°60°120°162°120°155°
Video Resolution1080p1080p960p4:3480p (Photos Only)720p1080p1080p720p
ZoomCheckmark5x8xCheckmark
Operating Temperature-5°F to 120°F-40°F to 140°FUnknown0°F to 122°F-4°F to 60°F0°F to 122°F14°F to 104° F-4° to 122° FUnknown
Two-Way AudioCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark
Night VisionCheckmarkCheckmarkLimited (No Infrared LEDs)CheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark
Free Video RecordingCheckmark24 HoursN/A30 Days30 Days14 Days
InstallationHardwiredHardwiredHardwiredHardwiredWirelessWirelessHardwiredHardwiredHardwired
BatteryRechargeable1 Lithium Ion Battery3 AA Batteries6 AA Batteries
Customizable Motion ZonesCheckmarkCheckmark
Dimensions5.1"H x 2.4"W x 1.1"D2.8”H x 2.8”W x 0.9”D2.9”H x 2.9”W x 0.9”D4.6″H x 1.7″W x 1″D4.57″H x 1.97″W x 0.71″D6″H x 2.8″W x 1.3″D6.65”H x 2.91”W x 4.48”D3.25″H x 1.5″W x 0.625″D5″H x 2.8″W x 1.4″D
WiFi Connection2.4 or 5GHz2.4GHz2.4 or 5GHz2.4 or 5GHz2.4GHz2.4GHz2.4GHz2.4GHz2.4GHz
Warranty1 Year1 Year1 Year2 Years1 Year1 Year3 YearsUnknown3 Years

More Doorbell Cameras Reviewed

The following doorbell cameras didn’t make our top three, but you may want to consider them as well.

Hello (by Nest) | Kangaroo | RemoBell | SimpliSafe | Wyze | Zmodo

Nest Hello Review

Nest HelloView at Best Buy

Nest, which offers the popular smart home thermostat and smoke detector, is at it again with their latest doorbell camera, Hello.

Those who are already loyal to the Nest family of products will appreciate this doorbell camera which integrates with their existing systems. Plus, it has all the bells and whistles you’ve come to expect with a doorbell camera as well as some unique features like face recognition and prerecorded messages.

However, Nest has some catching up to do in the doorbell camera category as many complain about the long lag time between when the doorbell rings and when you’re actually notified in addition to the camera not working below certain temperatures. Also, some people complain about it being unreliable if the wireless connection is weak.

Pros

Cons

  • Get special alerts for when it recognizes friends and family and quiet time mode
  • Find a local Nest Pro to help with installation and troubleshooting
  • 128-bit encryption, secure, private connections and two-step authentication
  • Slim design fits into existing door frames
  • Includes easy to install kit, tools and app with step-by-step tutorial and troubleshooting
  • Nest Aware subscription separate
  • Longer lag time between ring and notification
  • More expensive than competitors

Pricing & Tech Specs

  • Price: $229
  • 4:3 HD video with a 160-degree field of view
  • 24/7 streaming with Nest Aware subscription (recordings saved up to 30 days)
  • Operating temperature: 0°F to 122°F
  • Requires a wired doorbell, chime, and a 16-24VAC, 10VA transformer
  • Dimensions: 1.7″W x 4.6″H x 1″D

Kangaroo

Kangaroo Video DoorbellView On Website

Relatively new to the home security system market is Kangaroo. They offer highly competitive monitoring plans and low-cost equipment, including a $20 video doorbell. For the price tag, you don’t get video recordings or audio; only photo snapshots are sent to your phone (and the option to store in the cloud for an additional fee). Also, the resolution and picture are lower than most other cameras, it has a smaller view range, and capture options.

Both the doorbell and chime are completely wireless and don’t require hard-wiring (you’ll only need a WiFi connection, batteries for the doorbell (replaceable every few years), and a power outlet for the chime). Lastly, you can mount the camera peel-and-stick adhesives (no drilling required) or using screws and the mounting bracket.

Kangaroo’s doorbell isn’t a complete waste of money, but it’s a decent starter doorbell with no strings attached. For the price of an Andrew Jackson, it might be worthwhile for some less risky areas (like a dorm room or privacy gate). But if security is a concern, you should probably invest in something that will give you better quality, more options, and peace of mind. Learn more in our Kangaroo Review.

Pros

Cons

  • Get phone alerts for when it detects motion or when the doorbell is pressed
  • Easy to install peel and stick (or screw-in bracket)
  • Doesn’t require wiring or power source (for doorbell)
  • Night vision
  • IP54 rated for dirt, dust, oil, and splashing water
  • Smartphone app
  • Works with Alexa or Google Home
  • Does not capture video (photo snapshots only)
  • Poor picture quality (over/under exposure and low resolution)
  • Not as big of viewing area as other cameras
  • Limited capture and sensitivity settings
  • Batteries might not last long (depending on usage)
  • No audio or ability to two-way talk
  • Not 100% waterproof

Pricing & Tech Specs

  • Price: $19.99
  • 480×640 images with a 60-degree field of view
  • Porch Protection Plan: 365 days of recordings plus reimbursement up to $150 for stolen packages
  • Operating temperature: -4°F to 60°F
  • Requires three AA Batteries (included)
  • Dimensions: 4.57″H x 1.97″W x 0.71″D

RemoBell Review

RemobellView on Amazon

RemoBell has some great features, but what really holds it back is that some of the features just don’t perform as well as our top three doorbell cameras. For example, customers complain about false motion detection alarms and not being able to hear the doorbell inside the house.

Since the doorbell runs on batteries, these false alarms can wear the batteries down sooner, and some users have complained about the doorbell alerting them when cars drive by, which contributes to the false alarms. We’d like to see RemoBell come out with an updated version addressing these issues.

Pros

Cons

  • Powered by 6 AA batteries, no hard wiring needed
  • Motion sensor with body heat detection
  • Infrared night vision
  • Apps for iOS and Android
  • Two-way audio
  • 30 days of footage recorded
  • Lifetime theft guarantee
  • Pricey
  • Batteries don’t last long according to some customers, although they’re supposed to last four months
  • Customer complaints of false motion detection alarms
  • Some customers say they can’t hear the doorbell inside their home

Pricing & Tech Specs

  • Price: $129.99
  • 120-degree field of view angle
  • 720p HD video
  • WiFi connection: 2.4GHz
  • Operating temperature: 0°F to 122°F
  • Dimensions: 2.8″W x 6″H x 1.3″D

SimpliSafe Doorbell Pro

SimpliSafe Pro DoorbellView on Amazon

If you’re already a SimpliSafe home security customer (or planning to be), this is a sleek addition to the existing system. Its modern design provides a high-definition recording and wide-range view. It’s relatively easy to install and uses your existing doorbell’s wiring for power.

There’s two-way audio, smart notifications, night vision, three faceplate options to match your home and the ability to zoom. However, while you don’t need a SimpliSafe system, you must purchase their subscription service for $4.99 per month to access the recorded footage. Learn more about SimpliSafe in our in depth review.

Pros

Cons

  • Night vision
  • Works with Apple iOS and Android
  • Three faceplates to pick from (cloud, jade, obsidian)
  • 30-day library footage
  • Two-way audio
  • Zoom feature
  • Requires subscription (separate)
  • Does not integrate with Amazon Alexa or Google Home
  • Uses existing doorbell wiring, no battery-operated version, making it more technical to set up vs competition
  • More expensive than competitors

Pricing & Tech Specs

  • Price: Check Amazon for availability
  • Three-year warranty
  • 1080p HD
  • 162° field of view
  • Operating temperature: 14°-104° F
  • Dimensions: 6.65”H x 2.91”W x 4.48”D

Wyze Video Doorbell cameraWyze Video Doorbell

Currently taking pre-orders, the Wyze doorbell is the latest doorbell camera to hit the market. What sets their doorbell apart from others is the 3:4 aspect ratio recordings, so your alerts fit the size of your phone’s screen. It also more small and compact compared to other doorbells.

There’s a motion-activated LED light so visitors can see the doorbell as they approach. It also comes with a traditional chime that’s a physical box you install (and you can add more to hear from multiple rooms in the house). It’s too early to say whether or not this doorbell will live up to its small size and low price tag.

This product is not available until January 2021.

Pros

Cons

  • Reasonably priced
  • Motion detection
  • LED doorbell light for visitors
  • Night vision
  • On-demand video viewing and free cloud storage (up to 14 days)
  • Apps for iOS and Android
  • Two-way audio and 19 chimes
  • End to end encryption
  • Easy to set up
  • IP65 weather-resistant
  • Must use existing hardwiring
  • Not available yet so no reviews or much info about the product

Pricing & Tech Specs

  • Price: $29.99
  • 120° field of view
  • Operating temperature: -4°-122° F
  • 1080p Full HD video
  • 5GHz WiFi not supported
  • Dimensions: 3.25″H x 1.5″W x 0.625″D

Zmodo Greet Smart WiFi Video Doorbell Review

Zmodo GreetView on Amazon

Zmodo is another wireless doorbell camera that you use with an app on your smartphone. It has some impressive features including motion detection, on-demand video viewing, night vision and more. The Zmodo Greet automatically records 30 seconds of video when it detects motion and sends the clip to your smartphone.

Although, at time of publishing, more than a third of Amazon customer reviews rate Zmodo with only one or two stars. The most common complaints involve unreliability, poor video quality and faulty motion detection. The features are solid, but the product’s execution needs improvement.

Pros

Cons

  • Reasonably priced
  • Motion detection
  • Infrared LED night vision
  • On-demand video viewing
  • Apps for iOS and Android
  • Two-way audio (can record an outgoing voice message)
  • Allows for multiple users
  • Better parts warranty than others we reviewed
  • View live video even if doorbell isn’t rung
  • Pan/tilt video feed
  • Must use existing hard wiring
  • Largest doorbell camera we reviewed
  • Many customer complaints about unreliable software and hardware
  • Video quality needs improvement
  • Can’t record video from live streaming
  • No third party integrations
  • No lifetime protection guarantee

Pricing & Tech Specs

  • Price: Check Amazon for availability
  • Three-year warranty for parts
  • Must be hardwired to existing doorbell wiring
  • 720p HD video
  • 155-degree field of view
  • 2.4GHz WiFi connection
  • Dimensions: 5″H x 2.8″W x 1.4″D

Wired vs Wireless Doorbell Cameras

In addition to the wireless doorbell cameras, these hardwired doorbell cameras also use your smartphone to monitor your front door, but they require a wired connection which may mean drilling and pulling wire through your walls. If you’re interested, here are some brands to consider:

Don’t Stop At Your Front Door

Burglar breaking into house tracking on smart phone app (caption: What’s The Best Home Security System In 2020)Your front door isn’t the only area of your home that needs monitoring. Consider a complete home security system that you can have professionally monitored. You’ll be able to expand your security beyond cameras to door and window sensors, motion detectors, glass break sensors, and more. And burglars aren’t the only thing you should be on the lookout for. Kitchen fires are the most common form of house fires. Monitored systems come with environmental hazard detection including smoke, fire, carbon monoxide, flood, and more.

And if you’re looking to learn more about cameras, you can go far beyond your doorbell. Our experts cover outdoor, WiFi, wired and wireless, pet-friendly, hidden, app-based, and entire camera systems (CCTV). Learn more about these models, how they work, how to install them, and where to get the best deals in our comprehensive security camera guide.

Which doorbell camera are you leaning towards?

Sources: [1] Nachi

About The Author:

While attending the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s graduate school for journalism and public relations, Sally began a long career researching and writing about hard-to-understand topics, such as insurance and finance.

Her additional experience in marketing, fundraising, public relations and financial planning at various foundations and nonprofit organizations over the years has given her the practical tools to inform consumers about making the smartest business and personal financial decisions. Her work has appeared in many notable media outlets, including The Washington Post, Entrepreneur, People, Forbes, Huffington Post, and more.

Speaking of smart living — growing up in the (at-the-time) per-capita murder capital of the U.S. (Richmond, VA) taught her a thing or two about the need for personal and home safety. Sally stays on top of all the latest gadgets and services to protect her and her teenage daughters from potential predators and thieves. And she brings this knowledge to every article she writes.

We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

Disclaimer: This website contains reviews, opinions and information regarding products and services manufactured or provided by third parties. We are not responsible in any way for such products and services, and nothing contained here should be construed as a guarantee of the functionality, utility, safety or reliability of any product or services reviewed or discussed. Please follow the directions provided by the manufacturer or service provider when using any product or service reviewed or discussed on this website.

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