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Google’s Nest launches video doorbell, new security system

Nest program manager Aubrey Thelen demonstrates the Hello

Nest program manager Aubrey Thelen demonstrates the Hello video doorbell, with components of the Nest security system in the foreground. Credit: TNS / Ethan Baron

Google’s Nest is expanding its offerings of internet-connected gadgets for the home with a new video doorbell, outdoor security camera and home security system.

The Hello video doorbell was Nest customers’ “number one most-requested product,” says Michele Turner, Nest’s general manager of security products. “This is the first video doorbell that can do both person-detection and facial recognition.”

The doorbell’s camera — which has night vision — can stream video to the user’s device and identify people known to the user. With its microphone and speaker, the device allows for “crystal clear” conversation between the user and a person at the door, Turner said.

Its app also features “quick responses” that can be selected on a mobile device by tapping. For example, the device can tell a delivery person, “Just leave the package at the door.”

A potential porch pirate coming to steal delivered packages also can be told to buzz off, Nest said. A facial-recognition function requires subscription to the company’s Nest Aware service for $10 to $30 a month.

No price has been released yet for the video doorbell, which is expected to be available between January and March of next year.

Also new from Nest: a home security system, $499, featuring a base unit plus sensors that monitor doors and windows. It’s controlled via a fob or a passcode. If an intruder is detected, a loud siren sounds, and users can contact police through the app.

Meanwhile, a new weather-resistant camera, $349, can zoom in and track potential intruders up to 50 feet away, with a speaker that can be used via a smartphone. Additional services are available by subscription, such as continuous video recording on the camera, which allows users to screen stored video.

The camera and security system can be pre-ordered and are to start shipping in November.

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