Wemo Smart Video Doorbell review: The new HomeKit doorbell of choice



  • Reply 41 of 43
    dewmedewme Posts: 5,356member
    dewme said:
    The worst buzzkill limitations for me with either video doorbells or security cameras is the reliance on batteries followed by reliance on WiFi. If at all possible I avoid these, but I understand that not everyone can run PoE to every camera. I have one WiFi camera in my garage but it’s so close to an AP that I’ve had zero connectivity issues with it. Still, I wish it were PoE instead. 
    I'll take the bait @dewme and share my experience with the battery powered 2C Pro from Eufy 😊. It's very convenient from a no worries with cables point of view. I have one on just battery where a solar panel is awkward and the camera gets loads of traffic (Front). It's going to be a pain one way or another and isn't going to last anywhere near 180 days between charges. But 700 detected activations in 17 days is high. 

    The other is located in a great spot for a (morning sun) solar panel and gets less activity — so its battery is charging even in winter. It's on a tree away from the house, looking at the house. Fab for no wires. Something went haywire around the 7th and flattened the battery in a day (Front). I think one member of the household left his phone awake watching the HomeKit Video feed continuously!

    Yes Eufy needs a hub, but that sits in the garage on house WiFi and repeats its own 'bespoke' wifi to both units. Setup was painful, but it's all been ok for nearly 4 weeks now.

    Interesting. Wonder what caused the battery depletion? To be clear, I recognize that there are situations that have no alternatives other than batteries and wifi, which is why established brands in this market offer battery powered versions, power from doorbell ringer transformer, PoE, and solar battery charging. I'd imagine there are mini wind turbine chargers available as well. Any unpowered outbuilding, property gates, boat docks, dog houses, paddocks, stalls, etc., are all obvious use cases for battery powered devices and auxiliary charging systems. But all of these have limitations, just like wired systems have limitations if you can't easily run wires for signal and power.

    If I can avoid concerns about batteries and wifi, I most definitely will. If I can't, I make the best of it. Since I have PoE available in most of my camera locations I'm not going to buy a camera that does not support PoE for those locations. End of story. My most trouble free cameras have been PoE ones, but even those aren't perfect. If your PoE switch or a PoE injector goes bad, or if power goes out, you're screwed. Having a big UPS on your network helps for as long as it holds out, but in the case of security systems with cellular backup, they're probably not going to support remote camera access in backup mode. But at your security devices and link to monitoring services will remain intact for as long as the backup battery holds out.

    It's nice to see HomeKit starting to get support for more devices like doorbell cameras. Unfortunately it's been a slow crawl to catch up to other systems and while it's possible to address most use cases with HomeKit devices, the number of choices is still very thin. HomeKit isn't a garage hobby project like Apple TV was at its inception, but it still seems like it's not close enough to Apple's core to garner the support it needs to pick up the pace through Apple's direct support and attention. I don't think Tim Cook or even a SVP reporting to Tim wakes up each day wondering how HomeKit is doing against the competition that day.
  • Reply 42 of 43
    Yup, you can't beat a wire! 
  • Reply 43 of 43
    macguimacgui Posts: 2,357member
    Total Fail. Need a battery version. 
    Sorry, but so many people these days do not have wires for their doorbells. No new houses in the UK have wires installed. 
    I don't think that word "total" means what you think it means. So many people still have wired doorbells.

    This is a pretty interesting unit. What I'd like to see is a version to replace an optical door viewer with no additional drilling. This would be great for apartment dwellers or those of us who just prefer that location. There are a lot of electronic doorbell viewers (that replace the optical door viewer) but they're all crap. And a battery operated version would be an advantage but I could easily deal with a wired version.

    Watching the video I didn't see the storage options for the Wemo video. If it streamed and stored a Mac running 24/7 or an iPhone that would be great. I'll go back and read the article. But since it doesn't replace an already installed door viewer this is on the back burner for me.

    A small nit about TORX screws... A Torx screw is a less common screw than slotted or Philips screws but not all that less common. There are Torx security screws than need a special driver and not a regular Torx driver. If there's one that fits the Wemo I'd swept that out in a NY minute.
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