In a recent product launch event, Amazon launched a series of exciting products raging from home utility to home security including updated Echo and Echo Dot smart speakers, an updated Echo Show 10 (it swivels!), a ton of new Alexa commands and a new mailbox sensor ,but the product that created most buzz over the internet was the ‘Ring’ security drone. The Always Home Cam is a flying drone that helps us to reduce the hassles of installing security cameras throughout our houses and provides an innovative solution of a drone flying to any corner of the house and deliver high quality live feed of what’s happening around it.
For those who don’t know what ‘Ring’ is, Ring Inc. is a home security and smart home company owned by Amazon. Ring manufactures home security products that incorporate outdoor motion-detecting cameras, including Ring Video Doorbell. It hosts an app, Neighbors, for online social sharing of captured footage among users.
Jamie Siminoff, Ring’s founder and “chief inventor,” says the idea behind the Always Home Cam is to provide multiple viewpoints throughout the home without requiring the use of multiple cameras. In an interview ahead of the announcement, he said the company has spent the past two years on focused development of the device, and that it is an “obvious product that is very hard to build.” Thanks to advancements in drone technology, the company is able to make a product like this and have it work as desired.
The Always Home Cam is priced at 250 USD and it is a steal deal giving it’s utilities and functionality. The drone is connected to the ‘Ring’ home security system and whenever something fishy is detected by the system , the drone can autonomously fly there and check the scenario.If you’re wondering how will the drone fly past the obstacles in the house or how will it navigate through the house, Amazon officials have clarified that the drone is equipped with cutting edge computer vision and obstacle avoidance features which will ensure it’s smooth translation throughout the house. it uses a sensor array—which includes time-of-flight and LIDAR modules—to guide it around the space. It is also noteworthy that in order to make the drone familiarize with it’s surroundings, the drone has to be flown 2-3 times as a training session to allow it learn it’s way across the house, You teach the drone specific spots to stop and monitor along the way.Despite the home security function, the Always Home camera has various functionalities like you can check whether you turned off the gas , whether you turned off the taps, you could monitor toddler’s activities and many more such common household needs. According to Ring, the camera is designed for people who want to get a holistic view of their house when they’re not home without having to set up a group of always-on cameras that constantly monitor different spaces. In that sense, the drone actually offers slightly more privacy than permanent cameras. Also,the drone has no microphone, it was earlier interpreted as a privacy issue but later, the company clarified that because the rotors of the drone make so much noise, it was impossible to render clear sound and hence, the idea of keeping a microphone was dropped
Taking a look at the physical features of the product, the Always Home camera consists of a drone with a camera mounted at the bottom, the drone has a charging station in which it stays until it’s called upon either manually or when it senses a threat. Talking about the drone camera module, the drone is black in colour and has the camera attached below it, the best feature about the drone is that it’s propeller’s are carefully encased such that while flying, it doesn’t accidently injure any pet or any person due to collision which bypasses all the safety concern, the small drone takes about an hour to charge and can fly for about five minutes before having to dock again which might not sound great but drones are known to be power hungry and it’s a common battery performance in the field of drones let alone a drone which transmits high quality video while flying. Coming to the charging base, the base is a sleek silver coloured dock a matt finish and curved edges. The main attraction of the Always home camera is it’s innovation at protecting people’s privacy. While the brand ‘Ring’ was accused of sharing the video of people’s doorbell’s video feed to the feed, privacy concerns have arised a lot after this incident. Meanwhile, when people are getting skeptical about installation of cameras all over their house let alone a flying drone camera, ‘Ring’ has worked very innovatively and introduced the design in which the camera, which is mounted at the bottom of the drone, stays inside the charging dock when not in use and stays hidden until it explicitly needs to record and send the footage. This feature might bring back people’s trust in the brand.
Given the Always Home Camera is a very new concept in the market and it will go for sales in 2021, the pros and cons are yet to be decided, yet we can surely say that Ring has come up with a very innovative idea and it might change the way home –security systems work. Yet, it has to adhere to strict conservation of user’s privacy and maintaining high efficiency at the same time. While many people welcomed the idea of having a drone in the house and patrolling it, some people might not like the idea of having a thing hovering around their home with a camera. Hence, the initial response of the consumers might be divided in the product.Also, it will be interesting to see how the consumers respond knowing that Ring products have had privacy issues in the past. Will the Ring Drone be able to remove the stains off Ring’s ethics or not, that answer still lies unanswered till the Always Home Drone reaches to the common people.