Amazon Alexa can now alert you to people and packages heading to your door
Being able to use an Amazon Echo with your Ring doorbell is nothing new. But this latest feature added to Alexa takes it a little further. Currently, if you have a Ring camera of any kind and an Amazon Echo Show, you can get alerts and view the video feed on the display. Those cameras obviously have motion detection, and now, you’ll be able to use that in conjunction with the best smart speakers that feature Alexa. And not just from Ring, either.
The new feature announced by Amazon will allow Alexa to notify you specifically if it detects people and packages. Motion detection on Ring, for example, can be triggered by anything from cars to cats. This newest integration will use AI smarts to isolate it to human beings and cardboard boxes. Pretty neat.
The feature will work with cameras and doorbells from Amazon-owned Ring, as well as Abode and Google Nest. It’s nice to see a little cross-platform cooperation once in a while. Devices to be added at a later date for people detection include the Google Nest Cam Outdoor, Nest Cam Indoor, Nest Cam Floodlight, Nest Doorbell (battery), Abode IOTA, and Abode Outdoor Camera. But initially, you’ll be able to fire it up right away if you use Ring.
Package detection is a little more limited, with support for Ring joined by Abode, but not Google Nest. And even on the Ring front, it’s only on the Ring Video Doorbell Pro 2 and Ring Video Doorbell 2020 initially.
It’s all thanks to a new API from Amazon which means there’s no good reason the feature can’t extend beyond even these three brands. It’s also worth highlighting that should your particular camera have a subscription attached you’ll have to pay. Google doesn’t currently charge for person detection, but Ring and Abode do. You’ll also be able to hook the new feature into your Alexa routines. All you have to do is enable camera events in the Alexa app and ensure the relevant detection feature is enabled on your camera.
via The Verge