Ring's New Always Home Cam Is Actually an Indoor Spy Drone

Illustration for article titled Rings New Always Home Cam Is Actually an Indoor Spy Drone
Photo: Amazon/Ring

Among an avalanche of new Echo and Ring devices announced by Amazon today, there’s one that stuck out as a clear step towards our dystopian future: the Ring Always Home Cam.

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While its name might suggest that the Always Home Cam is simply just an updated home security cam, it’s way more than that. Ring describes the $250 Always Home Cam as an “autonomous indoor camera that will automatically fly to predetermined areas of the home, giving you multiple viewpoints with just one camera,” but you can’t fool me, I know a drone when I see one.

Based on Amazon’s press images, the Always Home Drone features a set of rotors on top enclosed in a plastic shroud, along with a camera built into a rectangular shaft that hangs below. When not in use, the shaft docks into the Always Home Cam’s cradle, presumably to recharge and offload any backup video recordings.

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When it comes to privacy, Ring says the Always Home Cam “only records when in flight; when it’s not in use it sits in a doc and the camera is physically blocked. And, it’s loud enough so you hear when it’s in motion.” In other words, anyone who doesn’t want to be recorded will be able to hear this thing coming by listening for the signature buzz emitted by so many drones. So much for spying on the kids, but you’ll definitely be able to freak out pets.

While other details are scarce for now, I actually have to applaud Amazon/Ring for trying to slip something as wild as an indoor security drone in under the radar. Drones aren’t just for the outdoors anymore.

Senior reporter at Gizmodo, formerly Tom's Guide and Laptop Mag. Was an archery instructor and a penguin trainer before that.

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DISCUSSION

monkeycrackers3
monkeycrackers

Privacy issues aside, this can be useful for those of us who have elderly family members, to help keep an eye on them. Would have been more useful if they didn’t cover the camera when docked though. It means if you want a camera to do monitoring as well in case the family member falls or something you’ll need to fly the drone out to check, or have a secondary camera.