If you want to make your own four walls a little smarter, you will sooner or later arrive at the doorbell. Here, you no longer just get a traditional chime when someone rings the doorbell. On top of that, such models offer video transmission and an intercom system – and the whole thing can be accessed remotely via smartphone. Probably the best-known manufacturer in the field of smart doorbells is Ring. The Amazon subsidiary now offers many different models in its own doorbell series. Today we want to take a look at the battery-powered Battery Doorbell Plus. The manufacturer not only wants to score with maximum flexibility thanks to the integrated battery. On top of that, the camera of the smart doorbell offers an impressive field of view. Can it outdo the competition with that? We question that in the Ring Battery Doorbell Plus test.
Ring relies on field of view
The wide range of available smart doorbells doesn’t just present consumers with a tough buying decision. Manufacturers also have to work out how best to compete against the competition. In this regard, Ring has relied on more than just its flexible wireless design for the Battery Doorbell Plus. On top of that, the smart doorbell offers an impressive camera performance, at least according to the technical specs. In addition to a resolution of 1,536 x 1,536 pixels, it is the vertical field of view that stands out. Thanks to an impressive 150°, the user should not miss anything. Whether you want to see the face of your visitor or take a look at the package on your doormat – even directly in front of the camera, pretty much everything is in the field of view.
This ability brings with it some crucial advantages. For example, you can decide quite flexibly at what height you want to attach the smart doorbell. Competing models such as the Aqara Smart Video Doorbell G4 (test) are not as user-friendly when it comes to placement, given their limited vertical field of view. There is flexibility when it comes to connecting, by the way. Despite its name, the Battery Doorbell Plus should not only run on battery power. You can also use existing bell wires. But enough theory. Now let’s take a look at the promising smart doorbell from Ring.
Ring Battery Doorbell Plus review: package contents
When I first held the small packaging of the Battery Doorbell Plus in my hands, I was quite surprised. Ring manages to fit a lot into an extremely compact space here. I am particularly pleased that the manufacturer has almost completely dispensed with plastic here and prefers cardboard. Even small installation tools like the screws are stored in small cardboard pockets. In general, the packaging reminds me of Amazon’s own products. However, since Ring is an Amazon subsidiary, this is not really surprising.
In the package is:
- Ring Battery Video Doorbell Plus
- Rechargeable quick-change battery pack
- Matte nickel finish bezel
- Corner kit
- USB charging cable
- Fixing material
- User manual
- Safety sticker
By the way, unlike other smart doorbells like the EZVIZ DB1C (test), the Battery Doorbell Plus doesn’t automatically come with a chime. So you have to keep the “chime” in mind when ordering. However, it is fairly priced at an additional 20 euros. For the test, however, Ring has provided us with its separate chime as well as a practical solar panel, which is to supply the bell with power.
Ring Battery Doorbell Plus review: design and workmanship
- High quality of workmanship
- Classic ring design
Anyone who has ever seen a smart doorbell from the house of Ring will also be able to quickly assign the Battery Doorbell Plus to its manufacturer. Personally, I have been using the Ring Video Doorbell Wired for a few months and could accordingly quickly determine the family affiliation. However, there are a few differences. This already starts with the color scheme. While the wired Wired is completely black, Ring uses a combination of black and silver for the Battery Doorbell Plus.
Here, the camera section is kept black in the upper part and the lower part with the bell button and company logo is in the color silver. Strict aesthetes will possibly find fault with the fact that Ring has not sized both sections equally, but differently. However, since the smart doorbell is quite compact anyway with its 12.8 cm x 6.2 cm x 2.8 cm, I don’t think this is an issue.
When you hold the Battery Doorbell Plus in your hands, it immediately makes a very robust impression. This is also reflected in the technical data. The device was designed for an operating temperature between -20.5°C and 50°C. Furthermore, the manufacturer describes it as weather-resistant. However, Ring does not specify whether and which IP certification is available here. All in all, I like both the look and workmanship of the doorbell very much.
Ring Battery Doorbell Plus Test: Compatibility with existing bell systems
- Compatibility with own bell system must be tried
- DIN rail transformer (24V) can make compatibility
- separate chime “Chime” available at a small additional cost
The purchase of a smart doorbell does not always have to be accompanied by a new building. There are also more and more owners or tenants of existing buildings decide to renew their old doorbell system and install a new smart doorbell. In this case, people are of course delighted if they can use an existing chime with the smart doorbell as well.
Ring doesn’t make it all that easy in this regard. One thing is certain: you can only use an existing chime if you use the bell with existing bell wires. In battery mode, you have to rely on the Chime or ringing via an Echo speaker, smartphone or other devices. Unfortunately, the Amazon subsidiary doesn’t release a list of compatible ringing systems.
Therefore, you just need to try whether your existing chime works or not. If there is incompatibility, you can easily work around it as the owner or with the owner’s consent. With the help of a DIN-rail transformer, which provides 24V voltage, you provide the appropriate power supply.
Ring Battery Doorbell Plus Test: Installation and Commissioning
- Operation with battery or power supply possible
- Quick and easy installation
- Security screw provides anti-theft protection
As an average installation time Ring indicates 5 minutes. Who sputters, this can certainly manage. This is at least the case if you use the smart doorbell in battery mode. After all, you don’t have to do any wiring, but can take the doorbell out of the box and install it on the wall. Nevertheless, you should also shift down a gear when using the battery mode and take a few minutes more.
After all, the doorbell should eventually hang in the perfect position. While you charge the battery, you can already browse a little in the manual. Once again, the Amazon subsidiary shines with a comprehensible installation guide. Once you have found the right spot, you only have to use the included dowels and screws to attach the doorbell to the house wall. If you want to use the smart doorbell with an angled orientation, simply use the included shim.
This simply goes between the wall and the doorbell. Now everything is screwed together and the bell hangs bombproof. The installation, including the wiring, takes a little more time. If you have already connected a lamp, you will have no problems with this. If, on the other hand, you are an absolute novice in this field, it is best to get help from an electrician or friend with craftsmanship.
Ring Battery Doorbell Plus review: fine-tuning in the Ring app
- App scores with overview
- Many setting options
- Full range of functions only with paid subscription
Before we get into the setup via Ring app, I would like to briefly say a few words about the technology. Of course, the Ring connects to the Internet via your wireless home network. Here, it relies only on a radio connection with 2.4 GHz. It is a pity that the Amazon subsidiary has left out 5.0 GHz here. In view of the pleasingly sharp resolution of 1,536 x 1,536 pixels, you can look forward to a high picture quality – provided you have the right Internet connection, at least. That’s why manufacturer Ring recommends an Internet line that offers at least a 2.5 MB/s upload.
Once you have installed the doorbell and secured it from theft using the appropriate security screw, things get serious. You can put away the bright orange screwdriver and replace it with your smartphone. Here you now download the Ring app, if you haven’t already done so. You might be a bit confused about what data the app wants to know from you. In addition to your email, you also have to enter your cell phone number and address. I haven’t seen this in such an extensive form with other manufacturers.
Once you have successfully registered, the doorbell is transferred to your home network. For this, you just have to follow the clearly illustrated instructions of the smartphone application. Once this is done, it’s time for fine-tuning. Here, too, the app takes you by the hand. For example, even non-professionals can optimally understand what they are adjusting in the camera settings. I particularly like the range settings. For the sake of the privacy of your fellow human beings, you can, for example, hide the public space when monitoring the camera.
Ring Battery Doorbell Plus review: great camera quality
- High resolution (1,536 x 1,536 pixels) and HDR provide image quality
- Impressive field of view (150° horizontal and 150° vertical)
On paper, the Battery Doorbell Plus brings pretty much everything you’d expect from a good smart doorbell. But how does it perform in everyday use? What I liked right away very much are the blazingly fast responses of the doorbell. There are really only milliseconds between pressing the doorbell button and the sound of the Chime, Echo speaker or smartphone. Motion tracking also fluttered to me in no time via the Ring app.
At the beginning, these even accumulated so much that I immediately adjusted the radius of the camera down. The camera is also convincing all along the line. The high resolution of 1,536 x 1,536 pixels and the HDR support pay off here. Thus, details can be recognized wonderfully. Of course, you have to reckon with some motion blur in the videos. However, the 25 frames per second were completely sufficient for me personally. After all, you should be able to monitor your entrance area with this and not shoot feature films.
The night vision mode is also impressive thanks to powerful IR sensor. If you have outdoor lighting, you’ll even get color recordings at night – rather unusual for smart doorbells. When you talk about the camera, you can’t ignore the large vertical field of view of the Battery Doorbell Plus. After all, a proud 150° is anything but a matter of course.
With this, you can not only recognize the faces of people standing directly in front of your door. Conversely, you can also perfectly recognize if there is a package on your doorstep. It’s easy to see that this is an Amazon subsidiary. After all, the online shipping giant even offers the option of authorizing the parcel deposit in interaction with the Ring doorbell. Ingenious!
Ring Battery Doorbell Plus Test: Closed Ecosystem
In practice, we of course also tested the intercom system. This pays off at the latest when it rings once at the door and you are not at home. For example, I was able to use the Ring app to kindly ask a parcel carrier to simply leave the package on the doorstep. Of course, you do not get a real ear candy from the speaker. Nevertheless, both the speaker and the microphone do a solid job. The settings provided by the Ring app are also really good. You should definitely make use of them if you want a privacy-compliant application. For example, you can define restricted zones that should not even be recorded by the camera. In this case, the camera simply makes the selected area unrecognizable.
The smart home features of the Ring Battery Doorbell Plus are quite impressive. At least if you also use the manufacturer’s own ecosystem. An Echo Show screen from Amazon is ideal, for example. You can use the Ring skill via Alexa to see who just rang the doorbell, for example. Unfortunately, the smart doorbell does not get along very well with other smart home systems. A bit more openness would be desirable here. Ring could at least agree to support other voice assistants like Google Assistant and Siri. By the way, those who want to enjoy the full scope of the Battery Doorbell Plus should take out a Ring Protect subscription.
You can test this free of charge for 30 days from the purchase of the smart doorbell. In the basic model, which covers one device, you pay 3.99 euros monthly or 39.99 euros a year. If you want to use several of the manufacturer’s products to their full extent, you can opt for the premium model. This costs 10.00 euros a month or 100.00 euros a year. The most important advantage of an active subscription is certainly the video memory. However, this must be questioned in terms of data protection. After all, Ring does not store the data in Europe, but on servers in the USA. Anyone who is bothered by this should give Ring Protect a wide berth. Should you prefer a video storage with a high data protection standard, the Gigaset Smart Doorbell One X (test) might be the right model for you.
Ring Battery Doorbell Plus review: cost
Amazon offers the Ring Battery Doorbell Plus at an MSRP of 179.99 euros. However, the smart doorbell regularly comes with promotional prices. Currently, for example, it costs just 139,99 Euro. That is definitely a fair price in view of the technical features. Amazon also prices accessories like the Chime quite fairly thanks to practical bundles. But you always have to keep in mind what features you expect from a smart doorbell. If you not only want a video memory, but also other features like person recognition and extended notifications, you cannot avoid a subscription to Ring-Protect.
So without a subscription, you’ll only get a live image output when you open the app. I think it’s a bit of a shame that Ring doesn’t at least offer person detection without a subscription. Other manufacturers are fairer to their customers here. After all, they usually only link monthly costs to the storage of video recordings. So if you don’t feel like subscribing, you have to ask yourself whether a cheaper smart doorbell is not a good idea. You can find them not only at the competition, but also at Ring itself.
The Ring Battery Doorbell Plus doesn’t reinvent the wheel on the smart doorbell market either. Nevertheless, it can be worked out quite quickly why this model thoroughly deserves the epithet “Plus”. With its square field of view of 150° horizontally and vertically, it offers the perfect overview of your entrance area. On top of that, there are sharp video recordings that are well worth watching. Apart from that, you get exactly the same features that the other Ring models have to offer. I particularly like the interaction with the in-house app. Everything runs very fast and buttery smooth. It only takes milliseconds until pressing the ring button results in a chime. The other notifications, such as person and motion detections, are also forwarded as fast as lightning. Especially in combination with an Echo Show, this is a lot of fun!
But where there is light, there is also shadow. For example, Ring is very closed off to other smart home ecosystems. It also doesn’t seem to be in the company’s best interest that you use the chime of an existing doorbell system. After all, there is no compatibility list available. Here, you are forced to try things out. Someone wants to sell the company’s own chime for a profit? I also have to complain about the bell’s standard range of functions. If you don’t take out at least a basic subscription, you simply can’t use many of the options that the Doorbell Plus hardware offers. If you do not want to spend at least 4 Euros per month for an additional subscription anyway, you should rather go for a cheaper model from the competition or from Ring itself. It remains to be said that the Ring Battery Doorbell Plus is a really good smart doorbell for all those who like to move in the Amazon cosmos anyway.