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Blue by ADT launches a suite of HomeKit-ready cameras

Blue by ADT launches a suite of HomeKit-ready cameras


Including a video doorbell, indoor camera, and outdoor camera

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LifeShield has changed its name to “Blue by ADT,” but the bigger news out of CES 2020 is that it has launched three new DIY smart home security products, and they’re available today. All of them are cameras, and the collection consists of a video doorbell (pictured above), an indoor camera, and an outdoor camera.

As for what they all have in common: they each cost $199.99, can recognize faces, and each also supports two-way talking and custom motion zones for alerts. Arguably their biggest selling point is HomeKit compatibility, as Apple’s smart home protocol has been in need of an upswing in support like this. That said, it might be a little deflating to learn that HomeKit — along with Google Assistant support — won’t be available until Q2 2020. At launch, these cameras will only work with Alexa and IFTTT.

One of the coolest features provided by all three cameras is how they present notifications on your phone. Instead of having to click through a notification to see the video feed, Blue by ADT’s new cameras insert a video clip directly into the alert so you can see if it’s worth your time to investigate further.

The doorbell’s button turns red when recording through HomeKit, as is required by Apple.
The doorbell’s button turns red when recording through HomeKit, as is required by Apple.

Blue by ADT’s new doorbell works via wired connection only, so only those with preexisting wiring for a doorbell will be able to use this. In this way, it’s competing against Ring’s Video Doorbell Pro, not the wireless-capable Video Doorbell 2. It has a 180-degree field of view (slightly wider than that of Ring or Nest’s latest video doorbells), records in 1080p resolution, is weather-resistant, and has night vision support.

The indoor camera’s microSD slot is easily accessible on its side.
The indoor camera’s microSD slot is easily accessible on its side.

The indoor and outdoor cameras look almost identical, though they have their share of differences internally. You’ll find microSD support on each (up to 128GB) in case you’d rather record on your own terms instead of paying ADT for cloud storage. They also both record in 1080p resolution. Here’s where they differ: the indoor camera can listen for fire and carbon monoxide alarms and alert you via a notification if it hears them, and it features dual microphones to keep a closer ear on things that are happening in your home. It’s a wired camera, but in the case of a power outage, its built-in battery can last up to 70 minutes.

The outdoor camera is Blue by ADT’s only wireless camera at the moment. The company hasn’t shared how long it expects its built-in battery to last per charge. This model has IP65 weather resistance, a 130-degree field of view, and it records in 1080p resolution.

ADT plans to offer professional monitoring for each of these products later this year for $19.99 per month, but at launch, you’ll be the one doing the monitoring. Each camera supports 24 hours’ worth of video storage for free. If that’s not enough coverage for you, Blue by ADT charges $2.99 per camera (or $12.99 for unlimited cameras) to extend it to 60 days.

Blue by ADT had one more product to show off: its Chime + Extender. It plugs into a wall outlet and serves as a signal extender for your other Blue by ADT smart home tech. Other than that, the company says this product has a Bonjour server built in, and when HomeKit support goes live, it claims that it will allow for low-latency alerts when someone’s at the door, for instance.

This is only the beginning for the company’s DIY smart home plans. Blue by ADT claims that in Q2 2020, it will launch a base station, keypad, motion sensors, and window sensors to supplement the cameras. All of these products, as well as its previous LifeShield products, are said to work harmoniously with each other. Blue by ADT says you can expect pricing details for the other smart home products to be made available closer to release.

Photography by Cameron Faulkner / The Verge