door peephole camera

Ring, makers of the very popular video doorbell, announced months ago at the 2019 CES that they were going to release a WiFi enabled video peephole camera. The Ring peephole camera is perfect for renters or apartments or even for those who don’t want the hassle of hard-wiring of a video doorbell.

This is not the first peephole camera, there have been others, Brinno makes a very good one. This is just the first one made by the leaders in video doorbells, Ring.

Renters that want the convenience and security of a video doorbell usually can’t use one. This is because landlords don’t want renters to make unauthorized modifications which is usually written in their rental contracts.

This would also be a perfect option for those who own a condo. Sometimes the HOA won’t allow a video doorbell to be installed because it can be seen in the hallway.

But the way this Ring peephole camera is installed doesn’t require any modifications at all to the door.

Installation

While the Ring Door View Cam is a new product with WiFi capabilities it is just as easy to install as a traditional peephole. And a traditional peephole is easy to remove, the inside unscrews from the outside unit.

As you can tell from the video, the installation is not a complicated process. It even comes with it’s own tool to tighten the collar to the camera to hold it in place.

The Ring peephole camera is perfect for renters

peephole camera front door

If you’re a renter, and you haven’t been able to install a video doorbell before now, well now you can.

Many apartments and some rental properties won’t let you make any permanent modifications to the residence without prior written approval. Which could take weeks and months to get approved or, in some cases, not get approved at all.

The way this Ring peephole camera is installed makes it perfect for people who rent a house or an apartment. As long as the door has an existing peephole you can use this peephole camera.

The Ring Door View Cam doesn’t need any hard wiring or additional modifications to the door for it to be installed.

Some homeowners don’t want the hassle that comes with hard-wiring a video doorbell. They might find this as a better option.

Features of the Ring peephole camera

The features and capabilities of the Ring Door View Cam are the same ones that can be found on their video doorbells. And like their newer video doorbells the camera on the Ring Door View Cam is 1080p HD with night vision.

Those with glass storm doors will need to turn off the night vision setting with this peephole camera. Not just Ring but this applies to any peephole camera with night vision. The glass on the storm or security door will reflect the LEDs of the night vision and it will not work correctly. Most likely leaving you with a recording of a dark image.

peephole camera

You will get the mot benefit of Ring Door View Cam if it is connected to your WiFi so you can see who is at your door on the Ring app and it doesn’t matter where you are.

You can see who is at your door through the app on your phone or tablet and communicate with them through the camera’s 2 way audio.

The outside camera is made to withstand temperatures from -5F to 120F. And as with all Ring products, if it is stolen they replace it for free. They just require a copy of the police report.

Maybe a visitor can’t tell that this is also a doorbell and decides to knock instead. This peephole camera has an impact or a knock sensor that will activate the notification to you and the recording.

Privacy zones

A feature not seen in other peephole cameras is privacy zone settings. Ring targeted the renter and apartment market with this peephole camera. They anticipated that residents will be in close proximity to each other.

The camera can be set to black out any part of the recording set as a privacy zone so as to protect your neighbor’s privacy.

Motion detection

Some other peephole cameras rely on the visitor to press the doorbell button to begin recording. Ring’s peephole camera has motion detection and begins recording once motion is sensed.

You can set motion detection zones on the camera which will only activate the camera recording when that area gets triggered. The sensitivity of the motion detection can also be adjusted so that trees blowing in the wind won’t get recorded. This is especially helpful in apartments because they are usually high traffic areas.

Ring peephole camera battery usage

The Ring peephole camera has a rechargeable battery. The battery has to be removed to be recharged. It uses a micro USB cable and will take anywhere between 5 and 10 hours to charge. For convenience additional batteries can be purchased. This will allow you to charge one while the other is in the camera. This way you won’t have any downtime.

The battery on the peephole camera will last for a few months with normal usage. When the battery gets low you will get a notification on your phone and an email will also be sent to the owner. There is sufficient warning to avoid a completely depleted battery.

Access to videos

For the first 30 days you have access to Ring Protect giving you access to the previous 30 days of video recording. After that you will need a subscription that is $3 a month. If you choose not to get a subscription, you will need to view the live video when you get the notification. Otherwise you can’t view videos you missed.

One major negative

I like to be safe and secure in my home as I’m sure you do too. I like the idea of not being at or near the door to actually see who is there. You never know who is there and what they want. So it’s great that I can see who is there on the app but what if I have a babysitter over or my child or anyone else who doesn’t have access to the Ring app?

That’s why I like the doorbell cameras that have a 3-5″ LCD screen on the inside, it lets you see who is at the door without being right at the door where you become vulnerable to forceful intrusions.

A door without an existing peephole?

The Ring company will tell you that you can’t use this on a door that doesn’t have an existing peephole but that’s not true. I suppose that is because they want you to get a video doorbell. While that might actually be a better option, you can install the Ring Door View Cam. I don’t see any reason a hole can’t be drilled into the door to allow this to be installed. Of course that only applies to people who own their own place, renters would still need permission to drill a hole in the door.

My recommendation on the Ring peephole camera?

When you’re home you can use it like a traditional peephole, it does have an optical viewer, but that is not something I would recommend. Why would you? You’re exposing yourself to a safety hazard by letting someone know you’re at the door. And you’ve got a peephole camera that you can use to see who is there while you can be anywhere, or even if you don’t want to get up from the couch.

I would definitely recommend it for renters who feel they haven’t been able to enter the video doorbell arena. And with how easy the installation is, it seems like the longest part of getting this Ring peephole camera up and running will be getting it connected to the WiFi.

Ring Door View Cam

9.3

Operation

9.5/10

Installation

10.0/10

Aesthetics

9.0/10

Features

9.5/10

Warranty/Customer Service

8.5/10

Pros

  • Adjustable Motion and Knock Detection
  • 2-way audio
  • Integration with Alexa products
  • Remote Access at any time
  • Can set privacy zones

Cons

  • Subscription needed to access videos after 30 days
  • Viewing angle can't see packages placed right in front of the door
  • Need to purchase a Ring door chime to get a traditional doorbell sound

7 Comments

Adegboye · June 30, 2019 at 3:04 pm

Doorbell Camera is a very good door camera, have been using it for 2 months now it really great and work perfectly for me, I agreed with this review 100% because the product is exactly as described, highly recommended for everyone as it comes with different features that really great. 

Sue · June 30, 2019 at 2:50 pm

Wow, this Ring Door View Cam is really a great idea. We are home owners who do not have an existing peephole, and while I was reading your article and watching the video, I was wondering, ‘why can’t we just drill a peephole size hole in the door?’ Then of course at the near end of the post, you answered my question. I checked out the price and it’s really quite reasonable for what it does and they have a monthly payment plan too!

I think this is something my husband would love to install. The video makes it look quite easy. I guess we could figure out what size hole to drill after we order and receive the Ring Door View Cam? Thanks for the spreading the word about this extremely useful product. We can’t be too careful in this day and age, even when we’re Home Sweet Home.

Sue

    Bill Kiser · July 2, 2019 at 12:15 am

    The peephole is 1/2″ diameter. So you should use a slightly bigger drill bit, like 9/16″ and if that doesn’t work use 5/8″. Don’t start off too big or there’ll be a gap and you’ll need to use sealant. 

Henry · June 30, 2019 at 2:23 pm

Hi! This is exactly what I have been looking for. This device will be a game changer for me and my family. Thank you very much for writing this review.

I really love the features of remote access at any time and 2-way audio. And I like that the installation is not a complicated process.

Dave Sweney · June 29, 2019 at 12:33 am

The people at Ring have come up with another winner I think and it has even a wider range of users that can tap into the power of being able to see who is at your door even if they are renting an apartment. I know that this is much better than a simple peephole and many renters will want to have this (I would).

The con of only those having access to the app to see who is on the other side is a downside, but I am wondering if that could not be solved by providing temporary access to the app for a babysitter or perhaps if you are using the apartment as an Airbnb property this would work too.

This might be a modification that is coming if it is not built into the app now. I would be willing to bet that for the $3  a month they would be able to recoup any expenses to develop that feature and capability rather quickly. That might even earn you a reward if you suggested such an innovative modification to the company?  

Thanks for providing this review and it is good to see that there are companies out there that are further building out the opportunities that the technology we have access to today offers. I am sure there are more to come, but this Ring Door View Camera is most certainly going to be a hit! 

JJ · June 23, 2019 at 10:25 am

This is a most useful and essential tool to have these days and the best thing about it is that you can see what is going on wherever YOU are. I watched the video and agree that is easy to set up and not cumbersome at all. I used to see the ads about Ring and wondered how it could fit my front door. Know I know. Thank you

MissusB · June 23, 2019 at 3:09 am

We recently purchased a house suitable for our small family. We can finally move by the end of 1st quarter next year. By that time we still need to make a lot of installations, floor and tiles , etc. Since we are tight on a budget, I think placing the Ring Door View Cam is a good option while waiting to have our gate built, which will probably probably take a year. I was surprised to find out that this product is also compatible with Alexa which is really awesome knowing that it’s becoming a household necessity. It’s one of the reasons why I opt to choose the product. Well, thank you for this product review. It sure is worth reading.

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