Ring Video Doorbell Pro

The Ring Battery Doorbell Pro is a reliable video doorbell, but it’s not particularly innovative. While Ring has introduced some new features like Birds-Eye monitoring, there isn’t much to set it apart from its competitors or predecessors.  

That’s not to say it’s a bad video doorbell; it offers very fast notifications, meaning when someone is at your door, the video can be viewed almost immediately, and the removable battery system is much better than what the competition offers.  

But to get any use out of the Ring Pro, you need to subscribe to Ring Protect. This will unlock the features you’ll likely use most. Without a subscription, the doorbell is a bit useless. And when competitors – namely Google – offer advanced features like 3-hour cloud storage, personalised notifications and the ability to set up activity zones, all for free, the Ring Battery Doorbell Pro is a difficult sell. 

Pros

  • Fast notifications
  • Convenient battery system
  • Bird’s Eye features
  • User-friendly app

Cons

  • Lack of innovation
  • Subscription requirement
  • Average design
  • Limited free features

Price 

The Ring Battery Doorbell Pro costs $359. That’s in line with the competition. The Google Nest Doorbell costs $339 and the Arlo Video Doorbell 2K costs $259. 

Design/Installation 

Setting up the Pro is simple. The app is easy to follow, and the camera will verbally tell you what to do through its speaker. One slight frustration I had was halfway through it asked me to charge the device. This took 12 hours. I also had to restart the setup process once it was done. But other than that, it’s easy. 

Physically installing the doorbell was a bit more problematic. I’m by no means a qualified tradesman but I have installed a few video doorbells in my time. The biggest issue was the screws that came in the box were tiny and poorly made. It’s easy to strip the heads off them, which means making them unable to be screwed in or out. I ended up having to use my own screws. Not ideal.  

Of the video doorbells I’ve used, the Ring Pro is the ugliest. It’s a big silver rectangular block that looks out of place next to my door. Compare that to the sleek, white designs of the Arlo and Google products, and it’s obvious which ones win the beauty contest. 

The best part of the design is the removable battery system. The battery sits inside the doorbell and can be easily removed when you need to charge it. It means you can leave the entire doorbell screwed to the wall and never have to remove it. The Google Nest and Arlo doorbells aren’t physically screwed in; they clip into a plate which is attached to the wall. Not only does this mean it’s easy for someone to grab and take them off, but it also means you must remove the whole device to charge them. With the Ring Pro, you simply remove the faceplate, pop the battery out and charge it. It’s a much better design. 

Ring Video Doorbell Pro

Features 

All the features you’d expect from a video doorbell are here, but unfortunately, many of them are locked behind a Ring Protect subscription (more on that below). You’ll get notified when someone is at your door or when motion is detected, and this will be sent to your phone so you can view it. You can save the footage to the cloud and talk to the person via 2-way microphones. The mics work well; I could hear the person at the door clearly, and Ring has included noise-cancelling audio, so you don’t hear a bunch of background noise from either end. 

The camera is a 1536p camera, which is okay. It doesn’t provide the clearest picture, but it does the job. This was fine for me, but if you need a clearer picture, there are higher-resolution options on the market, like Arlo’s 2K Video Doorbell.

The camera supports a 150° vertical and horizontal field of view (FOV), which allows you to see the person at the door from head to toe. It’s fine. It also supports colour night vision, which, so long as there’s a little bit of light, can show videos in colour, even in the dark. 

The standout new features are Bird’s Eye View and Bird’s Eye Zones. If you have multiple Ring cameras and they pick up movement from the same person, you can see where that person went in a bird’s-eye view. On the app, it shows you a track of their movements. It’s a genuinely helpful feature, but it requires putting your address into the system, which gave me a bird’s-eye view of my home (like a satellite picture on Google Maps.) If you’re online security conscious, this could be an issue. 

Bird’s-Eye Zones allow you to set zones you want the camera to monitor using a bird’s-eye view. It’s easy to do and works well.  

Subscription 

Frustratingly, to get the most out of the Ring Pro you need to subscribe to a Ring Protect Plan. This is reasonably priced, costing $5/month for a Basic plan, which covers a single camera, or $15/month for a Plus plan, which covers unlimited devices and allows for enhanced notifications. In comparison, Google’s subscription costs $12/month for any amount of cameras, and Arlo’s costs $14.99/month for one camera.  

A Ring Protect subscription includes video history storage for up to 180 days, person and package alerts, and rich notifications. Users can download up to 50 videos at once, and there are also camera home and away modes.

These are great features, and they’re the ones you’ll probably use most. Without a subscription, you’ll only get notified when there’s movement at your door, and you’ll be able to answer the doorbell. Videos won’t get saved to the cloud, and the notifications aren’t personalised, i.e. it won’t say if there’s a package or a car; it will only say there’s movement. Pretty useless. That means if someone has robbed your house, and you don’t have a subscription, you won’t have anything to give to the police.  

This is my main problem with the Ring Doorbell Pro. You’re forced into a subscription to use it in any meaningful way. This is made worse when considering Google’s Nest Doorbell offers so much more for free. With the Google doorbell, you get unique notifications like a package at the door, animal seen, and vehicle seen; you get 3 hours of event history, meaning you have 3 hours to look at the footage and save it, and you can set up motion and activity zones, all without requiring a subscription. 

Ring Video Doorbell Pro

App/Battery 

The Ring app is the best I’ve used when it comes to home security cameras. It’s quick, intuitive and easy.  

The best thing about it is how quickly you can open the notifications. My biggest gripe with the Arlo and Google doorbells I’ve used was how long it took for videos to open.

I didn’t have this problem with the Ring Pro. When I got a notification, I could open it instantly and see who was at my door. It’s much better. 

While I haven’t had the device long enough to test this, Ring claims the Pro will last between 6 to 12 months off a single charge depending on how many notifications/alerts it picks up. This is in line with the competition.

Verdict  

The Ring Battery Doorbell Pro offers basic functionality expected from a video doorbell. While it looks a bit ugly when compared to rivals like Google Nest and Arlo, its convenient removable battery system is a standout. 

The dependence on a Ring Protect subscription for necessary features is a weakness, especially when considering the more generous free offerings from competitors like Google. However, despite this, the user-friendly Ring app provides a smooth experience, offering very quick access to video notifications and alerts. 

Overall, the Ring Battery Doorbell Pro is a decent option for those seeking a reliable video doorbell with standard features. If you’re already in the Ring ecosystem, it’s a worthwhile purchase. However, its subscription dependency and average design are significant drawbacks. 

REVIEW OVERVIEW
Price
Design
Features
Innovation
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Yes, Patch is my (real) name and reviewing tech is my game. Get in touch at patch.bowen@thebit.nz
ring-battery-doorbell-pro-review The Ring Battery Doorbell Pro is a reliable video doorbell, but it's not particularly innovative. While Ring has introduced some new features like Birds-Eye monitoring, there isn't much to set it apart from its competitors or predecessors.   That's not to say it's a bad video...