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Smart Doorbell Guide

This popular home security device can let you view your doorstep from anywhere, giving you ultimate peace of mind. With so many options for smart doorbells in the market, choosing the right one can seem a bit daunting. Smartstart can help you choose the right product and even install it for you.

Ring Doorbell

Benefits of Smart Doorbells

Enhanced Security

Remotely see who's at your door, deter potential intruders and keep an eye on deliveries from anywhere in the world

Peace of Mind

Get notifications of any activity on your doorstep and even record the footage to view back later


Answer the door from your phone, even when you're not at home

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Features to Consider

  • Video Quality: Higher resolutions (1080p or higher) offer clearer images. Some doorbells go up to 2k, giving even better image quality and allowing you to digitally zoom in while still retaining the detail of your video.

  • Field of View: Wider angles capture more of your outside area, meaning you can make sure you don't miss a thing. Typically, you can expect between 110-160 degrees. 

  • Motion Detection: Customisable motion zones and person detection help to reduce false alarms, which is especially useful on busy streets. Expect most doorbells to use infrared sensors for motion, while premium options use radar for more accurate detection. If combined, these two sensors can reduce false notifications by up to 95%. If you opted for a battery powered doorbell, minimising notifications will also improve battery life.

  • Artificial Intelligence: With AI working its way into almost everything at the moment, doorbells are no different. AI can be used for facial recognition, object detection and package alerts. It can also zoom and focus the camera to get a better picture of what's going on. Expect AI to feature more heavily in Smart Home products over the next few years. 

  • Night Vision: Clear night vision ensures visibility even during the shorter winter days, with some models even offering colour night vision to give you the best picture. 

  • Two-Way Talk: Speak to visitors directly through the doorbell, deter possible intruders, or even let the postman know to leave your package on the doorstep. All smart doorbells include a version of this, but more premium models offer noise cancelling and better quality audio.

  • Power Source: Battery-power offers flexibility, while wiring provides continuous power to your smart door bell. Consider if your existing doorbell wiring is compatible. Typically, you need between 8-24v 10VAC, but up to 16-24V 30VAC for wired only models. Note that higher voltage requirements also mean you typically need to bypass your existing chime, meaning you need an alternative chime which may not be included with the doorbell.

  • Door Chime: Additional wireless door chimes can be purchased separately and are an easy way to notify the household when somebody is at your door. These can come as units which plug into a standard AC plug socket, but may be battery powered too. Alternatively, it's possible to wire your smart doorbell directly to your existing chime. 

  • Smart Home Compatibility: Choose a doorbell that integrates with your existing smart home system (e.g., Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa, Apple Home). This is worth considering if you already have existing smart home technology or plan to purchase more in the future.

  • Local Storage: Some doorbells offer local, built in storage, SD cards or a base station for added privacy. On certain models, you can even access this storage remotely via an app. Please note that this may require a subscription, but not all doorbells require it to access this feature.

  • Subscription: Most smart doorbells allow you to use a subscription service to provide cloud storage for video recordings and additional features such as AI motion detection and facial recognition. Not all doorbells require a subscription and some will allow additional features even without one. 

  • Connectivity: Typical doorbells connect to Wi-Fi using the 2.4GHz band, but premium models can use both 2.4GHz and 5GHz, offering better connectivity. This can be useful for faster connection speeds, but only if your doorbell is relatively close to a wireless transceiver. 

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Smart Doorbell Brands


Arguably the largest supplier of smart doorbells, Ring provide a wide range of products, including smart doorbells, cameras and home security systems. Everything is easy to integrate and there are a wealth of options to provide a high quality service. While their products can be used without a subscription, they lack much of this functionality without it. 


Eufy are a huge player in the smart home market, offering smart doorbells, cameras, vacuums, mops and security systems. They also offer the biggest non-subscription options in the market and are definitely worth considering if you want high quality video without the ongoing monthly cost.


A big player in smart home, but few options when it comes to doorbells. What they do have, provides feature rich, high quality video and audio at a fraction of the price of its big competitors. With Apple Homekit compatibility (not common for smart doorbells), subscription free options and free cloud storage, definitely an option worth considering. 


Again, not many options for doorbells, but what they do offer has 2k video, high quality audio and lots of features. To access all of the features however, a subscription is required. 

Google Nest

Few options again when it comes to doorbells, but great integration into a Google based smart home. They can be used without a subscription, but to access the cloud storage and additional intelligence features, a subscription is required. 

TP-Link Tapo

Another big smart home company, but not many doorbell options. They offer high quality at very affordable prices, with subscription free options that still give you lots of features.


The above manufacturers are name brand, trusted companies with lots of experience in the smart home market. There are however alternatives you can find on Amazon, or by searching the web for smart doorbells. The reality is there are too many to list here, but with proper research, you may find a great product that does exactly what you want. Blink (Amazon owned and a more affordable version of Ring) is a great option if you have limited budget. You will also find companies like AOSU and EZVIZ that are popular and affordable, where they may not provide premium materials or a slick app experience, they can be good value. 

If you start to go down the route of looking at really budget options, you may find doorbells that are difficult to set up, don't have any support if things go wrong and their long term reliability could be questionable. This isn't guaranteed, but typically, you get what you pay for when it comes to smart doorbells. 

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Other Considerations


If you opt for a battery only doorbell, this will be the simplest installation, where you can mount it pretty much wherever you like by attaching it to a flat surface. You will need to charge the battery occasionally and make sure it it within range of your wireless router, but that's about it. 

If you want something that is wired only, this is where it starts to get more complicated. A battery only version runs off the battery, but without this, you need to provide suitable power and unfortunately, it isn't common to have that much power running to a typical doorbell. To accommodate the additional features of a smart doorbell, you normally need 16-24V and between 10-30VAC, but a standard doorbell transformer will only provide 6-10V with a maximum of 10VAC. This is why manufacturers recommend having a professional install the doorbell, as you will generally require a transformer upgrade and your door chime will need to be bypassed as the voltage it too high for most chimes. 

The last option is a battery operated doorbell that has the option to be wired as well, which can be simpler than wired only. The wired versions are normally smaller as they don't have to contain a large battery though. With this option, the doorbell itself runs off the battery, so you only need 8-24V and typically 10VAC which covers most chime transformers (your chime can be upgraded if it doesn't meet these requirements). No need to bypass your chime either, so you can press the button on your smart doorbell and your existing chime will ring. Some of these specifications are buried deep within the technical specs for each doorbell, so it's worth spending some time double checking before you start.


With prices generally ranging from £50-£250, there are lots of options to look out for. Premium models normally offer better quality video, sound, materials and connectivity (not always the case however). With regards to features, it's not as straightforward, as some expensive models may lack some of the basic requirements you are looking for, which a more affordable version will have.

It's good to have a clear budget which should hopefully give you a good starting point. If you're after specific features, definitely search around as even the budget models may surprise you. 

Finally, ongoing subscriptions will play into the overall cost, so it's worth checking before you commit to one specific manufacturer. It may be that you pay a bit more up front, but avoid any subscription costs in the long run. There are more and more subscription free offerings though, so it's definitely worth doing your research. 


Smart doorbells collect video data, so be sure to choose a model with strong security measures. Check the privacy policy of the doorbell manufacturer and consider features like customisable motion detection zones, especially if you're on a street with neighbors close by.

This is a competitive market however, with manufacturers all fighting for your business, so privacy and security are of utmost importance. Expect this to become even more prominent over the next few years as cameras become standard practice for homeowners.

How can Smartstart help

We're experts in all things smart home, so if you have any questions about anything above, we're happy to discuss and advise which doorbell will be right for you. 

If you need help with the installation and set up, we can help with that too. We can wire most doorbells to trigger an existing chime if you have one and stay continuously charged. We'll also set it up and integrate it into any existing smart home systems you already have. If you're looking to delve into the world of smart home, but don't know where to start, why not book a free home survey with one of our experts to discover the potential of your home.


We can set up a smart home that automates your everyday tasks, while remaining simple and easy to use. We can also save you up to £450 per year on your energy bills by turning your house into a smart home.


If you have any questions, or you would like to speak to us, get in touch today and we would be happy to chat.


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