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Is Ring headed for a big CES? A new FCC filing suggests it is

Evidence is mounting that Ring will use CES 2020 as a launchpad for a significant revamp of its signature doorbells. A new Federal Communications Commission filingthe second one we’ve spotted in the last month — reveals that the company is about to release a second-generation version of the Ring Chime Pro.

The Ring Chime Pro is an optional accessory for the Ring system, which allows the company’s devices to connect directly to it versus the router. This enables users to place devices further away from the router, and provide a better connection through obstructions such as brick and cement walls.

Image from FCC filing shows the backside of second-generation Ring Chime Pro. Image used with permission by copyright holder

From the filings, the device looks dramatically different. It doesn’t have the antennae of the previous generation, and while thinner, it is significantly wider. It also supports the 5GHz Wi-Fi band; the previous generation was 2.4GHz only, which has become popular among smart home devices for connectivity with home networks.

The Ring Doorbell 3 — for which Ring submitted FCC filings for late last month — also operates on the 5GHz band. The moves suggest that Ring may be looking for ways to improve video quality, which requires bandwidth that 2.4GHz networks would struggle to provide.

Each channel of 5GHz spectrum has 20MHz of bandwidth — the entire 2.4GHz band is 80MHz wide. In theory, video streaming is much more dependable in the 5GHz bands. The biggest negative to 5GHz is range, which makes a device like the new Ring Chime Pro more critical.

Amazon — Ring’s new parent company — announced the Ring Stick Up Cam Elite at its September event. That also operates on 5GHz, and these new filings make much more sense as a group rather than separately. Their timing also provides some clues as to a potential release date. The Ring Video Doorbell 2 launched in June 2017 — FCC filings for the device first appeared two months earlier.

Using the same time frames for the FCC filings we’ve seen so far, it would place a possible release for the devices during the holidays. Since Ring obviously wouldn’t announce a new product midway through the holiday shopping season that could potentially harm sales of its current lines, a CES unveiling makes a great deal of sense.

Attempts to obtain comment from Ring regarding the filings and its potential plans were unanswered as of press time. We’ll continue to attempt to reach out, but we have strong reasons to believe the rash of FCC filings over the past several months indicates Ring’s ready to give its smart home lines a significant refresh in the new year.

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Ed Oswald
For fifteen years, Ed has written about the latest and greatest in gadgets and technology trends. At Digital Trends, he's…
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