Emerging Tech

DoorBot Wi-Fi doorbell camera lets you see visitors on your smartphone

doorbot video feed

Seeking at least a quarter of a million dollars in project funding on Christie Street, a company called Edison Junior has developed a wireless doorbell called DoorBot that transmits an audio and video feed over Wi-Fi when someone rings the doorbell. The homeowner will be able to see who’s standing at the front door and communicate over audio to find out what they want. However, there’s no video display on the DoorBot. The person standing at the front door can’t see where the homeowner is located.

doorbot in actionConceptually, it can provide the illusion that the home’s resident is currently in the house even if they are at work or on vacation. For instance, if a delivery driver is dropping off a package, the resident could use DoorBot to let the driver know that the package can be safely left on the doorstep. It could also help people avoid someone standing at the front door by simply looking at the video feed and choosing not to communicate. 

Using just four AA batteries, the device will be powered for approximately a year before needing a replacement set of batteries. In regards to battery life, Edison Junior’s CEO Jamie Siminoff said “If the user gets a lot of rings, about 5-10 per day, the DoorBot’s batteries may last about 9-12 months. DoorBot will alert the user when the batteries are getting low so that you know to change them,” in an interview with Mashable.

Edison Junior provides a mounting bracket to install the DoorBot or the device can be attached to the left or right of the front door using four screws. When mounting the DoorBot at the typical location of a standard doorbell, the user can adjust the angle of the camera in order to better view the visitor.  The camera also uses infrared technology in order to see visitors at the door at night. When a visitor presses the button on the DoorBot, a LED ring lights up around the button to indicate activity. In addition, the DoorBot is housed in a brushed aluminium plate and has been specifically designed to be weather resistant in most climates. 

doorbot modelIn order to get started, the user downloads a free mobile application for iOS or Android smartphones and tablets. After quickly syncing through the app and the home’s wireless network, the DoorBot is ready to feed audio and video to the mobile device.

In addition, the development team has included Lockitron compatibility within the DoorBot application. The Lockitron allows a homeowner to lock or unlock the deadbolt on the front door using a smartphone application. Ideally, the homeowner will be able to see the visitor and unlock the front door without having to walk to the front of the house. It would also be ideal for verifying visiting friends of family when away from the home.

According to the pricing on Christie Street, the DoorBot costs $169 and will be delivered by July 2013. In addition, a version with a Lockitron can be purchased for $319 with the same delivery date. At this point, Edison Junior has raised about 16 percent of the total required funding, but six weeks still remain on the campaign. In order to generate even more buzz about the DoorBot, representatives with Edison Junior plan on showing off the wireless device at CES 2013 during early January. 

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