How Does Ring Alarm Compare To Other Companies
If youd rather die than ditch your Amazon Prime account and you prefer shopping online to going to a store, then Rings ordering process is perfect for you.
Just like most other DIY security systems, Ring Alarm lets you order everything online. Just pick the equipment package you want, subscribe to the monitoring plan , and press Order.
If you need help with something, Ring has a bunch of resources on its website as well as support through Twitter and email. If you really want to, you can also call in.
*Data effective 11/22/21.
Ring Alarm Technology And Equipment
Ring kept its actual security equipment pretty simple. It functions much the same way a SimpliSafe system does, with a single hub that communicates with all the various sensors, and a keypad you use to arm and disarm the system.
Rings base station can either run off your Wi-Fi network or off an Ethernet cord you plug into your internet router. The base station also has cellular back-up so your security system will stay up and running even if your power goes out.
If your internet router is somewhere out of the way, like in your basement or garage, then let the base station run off Wi-Fi and keep it out in the open. The Ring Alarms siren is in the base station, and you want it to be somewhere an intruder will hear it.
Peoples Experiences With Professional Monitoring From Ring
Rings website lists a few videos of people who have had a positive experience with Rings professional monitoring, which are worth watching:
Whilst these are polished videos used for marketing purposes, they are real people who have genuinely been helped by Rings alarm system. Their experience broadly matches other peoples, too: the fact that Rings monitoring service calls people so quickly means that real action can be taken to safeguard peoples houses.
From speaking to people and also reading peoples experiences on Twitter and Reddit, people generally seem happy with Rings professional monitoring service saying that it does work as advertised but there are a few people with some complaints:
As you can see, overall people are happy but there are a few complaints but never about the initial call from Rings professional monitoring team. Sometimes people have said that they asked for a further callback with an update and this second callback took ages, but this could also be down to the local police force taking a while to provide an update.
The summary here is that Rings professional monitoring is a good quality service, provided by a reputable company that has all the relevant licenses and permits to operate. The fact that their service costs just $20/month is reasonably good too and it works out cheaper than Rings traditional alarm system rivals.
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Can’t You Hear Me Knocking But I Installed A Smart Knocker
“Ring users place their trust in us to help protect their homes and communities, and we take that responsibility very seriously. Ring does not own or otherwise control users videos, and we intentionally designed the Neighbors Portal to ensure that users get to decide whether or not to voluntarily provide their videos to the police. Details about how we work with law enforcement and how we protect user privacy can be found in the following blog post by Jamie Siminoff, founder of Ring.”
Senators Markey, Wyden, Van Hollen, Coons, and Peters have more questions for the vid biz, enumerated in another letter sent to Bezos on Wednesday, this time focused on the national security implications.
The letter cites recently patched security flaws and a report that Ring employees in the Ukraine were granted access to customer videos without restrictions. It also expresses concern about the possibility that Ring could integrate its video platform with AWS’s facial recognition technology.
What Is Guard Response
Ring offers Guard Response, a service that will send an unarmed guard to your location to verify an alarm event and then contact emergency responders directly. The guard will not intervene in an emergency.
Guard Response is easy to use. Simply sign up using the Ring app and you will only be charged if you use it. If you have an emergency, Guard Response costs $75 for the first 20 minutes after the guard arrives on-site, and $1.25 for each minute after.
If your area requires verification and you dont sign up for Guard Response or use another verification method, local emergency responders may refuse to show up at your location, even in a real emergency.
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Ring Monitoring Plans & Prices
Similar to our top-rated security system SimpliSafe, Ring is all about keeping things simple and affordable. We appreciate the straightforward options, and we had no problems finding a plan that worked for us.
So whats it going to be? Do you have a new Ring Alarm that you want monitored by the pros? We recently spent close to 100 hours testing the Ring Alarm system powered by Rings monitoring, and although we didnt get the fastest response times, we thought it was a steal for only $10 a month.
That being said, we have bad news for you: Ring recently launched a new plan tier, the Ring Protect Pro plan, that costs $20 a month. They moved some of the features of the Ring Protect Plus plan to the Protect Pro plan, including professional monitoring. So now, if you want professional monitoring, the price youll have to pay is $20 a month. Its still affordable, but not as affordable as it was.
However, if youre just looking to get video support for a Ring Video Doorbell or a couple of Ring Cams, then Ring Protect Basic will do the trick for only $3 per month. Thats half the price of a Pumpkin Spice Latte in exchange for home protection . Heres a rundown of your options, along with the most up-to-date Ring prices.
Amazon’s Doorbell Camera Ring Is Working With Police And Controlling What They Say
Ring shapes communications of police agencies it works with. Critics fear its building up a for-profit private surveillance network
Ring, Amazons camera-connected smart doorbell company, has cameras watching hundreds of thousands of doorsteps across the US. Its also keeping an eye on what local police say online.
Records obtained through an information request show how Ring uses corporate partnerships to shape the communications of police departments it collaborates with, directing the departments press releases, social media posts and comments on public posts.
Ring, which was acquired by Amazon in 2018, sells smart doorbells that allow users to monitor their doorstep remotely and operates Neighbors by Ring, an accompanying app that lets users view footage uploaded by other Ring owners.
In recent months, Ring has partnered with hundreds of US law enforcement agencies, offering departments access to its platform in exchange for outreach to residents. Ring says the program gives police more resources to solve crimes, while critics fear the company is quietly building up a for-profit private surveillance network. Rings power over police departments communications with the citizens they serve is just the latest question about the companys operations.
Police should not have dual loyalty to a private company and the public their loyalty should be to the public, he said. Any sort of blurring of that line causes us to question that loyalty.
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Same Fear Slicker Package
While the Ring Alarm system runs parallel to the companys doorbell camera business, it also arguably completes a virtuous cycle that starts with people surveilling their property. Thanks to Rings Neighbors app, people who own Ring doorbell cameras can share their footage and ask others in their community for advice. Ring, in turn, has used the app as marketing fodder, and hiring editors to create neighborhood crime alerts. See enough of these alerts, and you might start thinking that an alarm system is essential.
Weve always tried to use real examples of what weve done without trying to hype the crime up to do that, Siminoff says.
But just because the crimes are real doesnt mean that people are getting an accurate sense of the danger level in their communities. The problem with an app like Neighbors is that it inherently focuses on crime and other negative events, rather than providing a more balanced view of whats happening around them. This could further convince people that crime is more prevalent than it actually is, in the same way that crime-heavy local news reporting makes people feel disproportionately threatened.
Doing The Right Things
Partway through my conversation with Siminoff, he said something that stuck out to me. We were discussing competition with other alarm systems, and he began talking about how Ring is ultimately guided by what its customers want.
If we make our neighbors lives better in their homes, make their neighborhood safer, they will reward us with their money, he says. People dont buy a Ring product, they reward us by taking that product into their home because they know that what theyre doing is going to make their lives better.
Because Ring isnt getting blowback from customers, it can easily overlook the downsides of what its doing. This is the same pattern weve seen with other tech companies such as Facebook and YouTube, whose ever-increasing revenues and engagement seemingly blinded them to their products negative implications. In the case of the Ring Alarm, the push to provide peace of mind could paradoxically be creating more anxiety about crime and injury, all in service of turning what could be a niche business into a mass-market product, worthy of a tech giant like Amazon.
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Ingredients For A Database
A video request email from police in Illinois asked for seven hours of footage, and did not note anywhere that officers could share the footage with other agencies.
When police request footage from Ring users, it’s often for crimes that happen within minutes. These are incidents like burglaries, car thefts and package stealing.
Despite that small window of actual evidence, many requests from police cast a wide net, sometimes asking for clips from over 12 hours.
These wide-ranging requests go directly against Ring’s policy guide, which tells police they should “narrow the scope of the video request.”
Ring owners are allowed to edit and choose which clips from that portion they want, but in some cases of video requests, the phrasing asked for the entire time range.
In two requests from the Bensenville police in July, it wrote to Ring users: “By choosing to share your Ring videos, the Bensenville Police Department will receive all of your video recordings in the requested time frame, along with your email address and physical address.”It wasn’t until August that the language changed to tell people “police will only receive select video recordings from the requested time frame.”
“People may think that they are sharing certain footage for a very particular purpose like a criminal investigation, but these cameras obviously capture lots of details about their own patterns of life,” Wessler said. “As they arrive and leave their house, as they do things in their yard.”
Ring Confirms It Works With More Than 400 Police Departments
- By Ryan Whitwam on August 29, 2019 at 7:30 am
Ring has come under fire in recent months for the way it partners with law enforcement and helps them obtain camera footage from customers without a warrant. Ring frames this as an initiative to keep neighborhoods safe, but privacy advocates worry about the development of a corporate-controlled surveillance state. The scale of Rings police partnership has only now become clear. Its not a handful of police departments or even a few dozen Ring works with more than 400 departments around the US.
You can buy and use Ring cameras anyplace without interacting with law enforcement, but Ring is working hard to get people under the jurisdiction of partnered police departments to use its Neighbors app. Thats what connects your cameras to other nearby Ring cameras, allowing you to share video with neighbors.
Rings contracts with police call for the direct promotion of Ring devices and services with the aim of increasing downloads of the Neighbors app. Police departments working with Ring get access to the Neighbors online community portal where they too can request footage. When investigating a crime, police can ask residents in Neighbors to share their video Ring will even help police craft effective messages to get more footage. Ring even provides police with credits toward free Ring cameras they can provide to residents.
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Adt Acted Quickly In Suzanne Smith’s Home Invasion
The elderly woman was the victim of a home invasion in Houston. The shrieking sound of the ADT Burglar Alarm shook Smith out of her sleep.
She bolted for the bathroom, closed the door, and held it as tight as she could. As she did this, she could hear someone walking toward her bedroom.
Smith spoke in a hushed voice with ADT Emergency Dispatcher Stacey Fioravanti so that the intruder couldn’t hear where she was hiding. Smith was relieved to know that police were on their way within minutes.
The good news was that the police caught and arrested the intruder. Fioravanti stayed on the line to make sure everyone was safe.
Ring Doorbells And The Police: What To Do If Surveillance Has You Worried
Ring’s partnerships with local police have some privacy advocates concerned about a potential surveillance state. Here’s what you can do if you have concerns of your own.
Megan Wollerton has covered technology for CNET since 2013. Before that, she wrote for NBC’s Dvice.com . Megan has a master’s degree from the University of Louisville and a bachelor’s degree from Connecticut College, both in international relations. She is a board member of the Louisville chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. When Megan isn’t writing, she’s planning far-flung adventures.
Ring, which sells video doorbells, outdoor cameras and other security devices, also offers a Neighbors app that it pitches as “the new neighborhood watch.” While the Neighbors app is voluntary, some people, communities and advocacy groups have expressed concerns about how Ring, which is owned by Amazon, is using data from the app as part of its partnerships with law enforcement agencies — particularly issues related to privacy.
The Neighbors app connects local residents to help them find lost pets, view crime alerts in the area, share details of thefts or whatever people might deem “suspicious activity.”
There are 661 partnerships between Ring and police departments across the US, all viewable on and updates regularly.
Ring has 661 partnerships with police departments in the United States.
From Survivor To Media Fodder
Under the pilot programs in Texas and Florida, survivors are meant to share footage of incidents directly with police. But outside of those programs, some videos of domestic violence have found their way into wider venues: the Neighbors app, the internet, and the evening news.
In June 2019, one disturbing scene unfolded in Manor, Texas, more than 100 miles east of Bexar County. In the grainy black-and-whitevideo, later shared to social media and picked up by local TV news stations, a woman approaches and knocks frantically on a homes front door. She looks over her shoulder several times. Her knocking becomes more urgent. A man approaches swiftly while she pleads, Stop! Please, no!
Get over here! the man says. Get into the car! He pulls her out of the cameras frame.
A similar video was captured in Arcadia, Calif., in September 2019. Dressed in what looks like pajamas, a woman runs into the frame of another doorbell camera. She, too, is looking over her shoulder as she knocks, but her perpetrator catches up quickly. As she screams no! and tries to resist, the man drags her by her hair onto the front lawn. The view is obstructed, but he appears to hit her repeatedly and stomp on her. Finally, he says, Get up or Ill kill you.
In Manor, Texas, for example, police charged the man in the video with third-degree felony kidnapping. But the woman in the video later told local reporters that she was looking for an attorney to try getting the charges dropped.
Who Pays For False Alarms
The City of Seattle bills the alarm company for the false alarm. To recover the cost of a false alarm fee, the alarm companies commonly pass this fee onto the subscribers. Alarm company customers that disagree with their billing should dispute this with their alarm company. Alarm companies have an option to obtain a one-time waiver from the City of Seattle, including switching to Private Guard response.
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Benefits Of Using Ring
Compared to its competitors , Ring Alarm has a mid-range price. Given that you can install it yourself without additional installation costs, its considered affordable. And you get a 30-day free trial of the Protect Plus plan with your new installation.
The Ring Alarm also integrates with many other smart home devices that use Z-Wave.. The Ring Alarm Base station has a Z-Wave radio built in. One example that is very convenient is the integration with Smart Locks. You can have your Ring system be armed or disarmed when you lock or unlock the door. Ring also integrates with Alexa and Amazon Echo devices.
If you already have a security system in place, it will be easy to upgrade. Not that you will reuse any parts, but you will have a good idea of where you need to place the new hardware.
In case of a power outage, Ring Alarm has a 24-hour backup battery.
Lastly, you can customize your system to fit your house. can expand your system regardless of your houses size. Ring is adaptable, so you can take it with you if you move.