New security, doorbell and alarm products continue growing the Nest
Today, Nest introduced more products in one press event than ever in its history, firmly planting its flag into the security portion of the connected home. Revealing the new Nest Cam IQ outdoor security camera, Nest Hello video doorbell, and Nest Secure alarm system, Nest erased ideas that the company "wasn't working on anything new".
The new Nest Cam IQ outdoor camera adds smarts an already-capable Nest Cam Outdoor, taking cues from the recent indoor Nest Cam IQ. With a new 4K HDR sensor, auto-zoom for close-up tracking, 12x digital zoom and enhance, daytime HDR for more lifelike, easier-to-interpret imagery, person and face detection from up to 50 feet away, and even a new multi-color light ring (that's supposed to scare off would-be burglars)...this new camera seems insanely equipped. Of course, it has well-appointed IR LEDs for excellent night vision, two-way audio, live viewing and recording via Nest Aware, and works with the Nest family of products and their connected services. The newly designed camera mount routes the power cord through the wall and locks the camera to the wall to prevent theft and tampering. The Nest Cam IQ outdoor is available in a white and silver finish and can be pre-ordered via the Nest website for $349, it's scheduled to start shipping in November.
The next two new products from Nest enter new territory, a doorbell camera called Nest Hello and the Nest Secure alarm system. One could say that the doorbell was a product that was expected from Nest, and it pulls in Nest's experience in security cameras. But the Nest Secure alarm system is definitely new territory.
The Nest Hello doorbell camera won't ship until early 2018, so put your credit cards away until probably shortly after CES in January. The Nest Hello is a sleek and slim-profile video doorbell with a prominent camera, doorbell button, LED status indicator and two-way audio, in a white and black enclosure. Based on the video teaser, one unique feature that the Nest Hello appears to have is "quick responses". Evidently derived from live voice recognition, the Nest app will present some predefined responses that are applicable to the situation, which, when selected, can be automatically voiced by Hello itself without additional from the user. Otherwise, Nest says that we can expect the Hello to have motion alerts, person detection and echo and noise cancellation for excellent audio quality. Pricing information was not announced.
Nest Secure is a brand-new type of alarm system from Nest. Consisting of the Nest Guard alarm panel "puck", Nest Detect motion and door/window sensor-night lights and Nest Tags, the system is designed for simplicity and ease-of-use. The Nest Guard has LED light ring, and a keypad for entering in a more traditional pin code to arm or disarm the system, but the NFC Nest Tags can also be simply tapped against the Guard to arm and disarm it. (Nest is also evidently working with Yale on a smart lock that will also have a way to disarm the system upon a successful unlock of that lock.) The Nest Detect sensors combine motion sensing at an underwhelming 54-degree field of view at 15 feet range, door and window open/close detection and have integrated night lights when they sense motion in the dark. The Detect sensors have a button on the bottom for a "Quiet Open" when you need to open a door or window when the system is armed and you don't want to set off the 85 dB siren.
There's no mention as of yet on battery life of the Nest Detect sensors, which you'll probably need quite a few of to cover your home, especially with their narrow motion detection range. From the information we've been able to glean, the system communicates through Thread and Weave, so there's most likely no way to integrate third-party sensors into the system, at least probably not for a while. Additional Nest Detects will be available for $59 each and Nest Tags for $25 each. Ouch...$25 for a simple NFC tag? Really Nest?!
Nest is partnering with MONI to offer 24x7 system monitoring for those who desire it, otherwise alerts will go to your smartphone via the Nest app (where you can also arm and disarm the system). There will also be a cellular backup option available at $5/month, and battery-backup is already built into the Nest Guard. Nest Secure can also be pre-ordered now on the Nest website and will ship in November. At an entry price of $499 for the Nest Guard, two Nest Tags and two Nest Detects, it's a very expensive system.
All new Nest products announced are launching first in the U.S., with additional expansion to locations such as Canada and Europe in 2018.
And, one more thing. (Or not.) There was zero mention of any potential HomeKit compatibility for any new or previous Nest products. It's unlikely that we'll ever see Nest products become HomeKit compatible, due to the competition between Android and iOS (as Nest is owned by Google's parent company). With Apple's relaxation of the hardware requirements of HomeKit, there's technically no reason it couldn't happen, but we're not going to hold our breath over here.