Kangaroo’s $20 Doorbell Camera lets you keep an eye on your doorstep

Known for its wallet-friendly smart sensors and alarms, Kangaroo is jumping into a new home security category: doorbells: The company’s upcoming Doorbell Camera might be the least expensive smart doorbell we’ve ever laid eyes on. That said, Kangaroo had to cut some key features to achieve the Doorbell Camera’s $20 price tag—starting with video recording.

Slated to ship later this month, the Doorbell Camera captures a GIF-like photo stitch your doorstep, which it sends to your phone via push notification when a visitor presses the button, or if the doorbell detects motion.  

While the clips of stitched-together images should be clear enough to let you identify faces and get a general idea of what’s happening on your doorstep, you shouldn’t expect the pristine 1080p images you’ll see from pricier video doorbells.

The Doorbell Camera supports night vision thanks to a pair of infrared LEDs, but the doorbell’s relatively limited 60-degree field of view is considerably narrower than competing (and again, pricier) models that offer FOVs in the 180-degree range. 

kangaroo photo with phone Kangaroo

Instead of a full-motion video, the Kangaroo Doorbell Camera will send a GIF-like slideshow to your phone when a visitor presses the doorbell button or when the doorbell detects motion.

For now, there’s no people detection, which means the doorbell’s motion sensor could be triggered by cars, pets, and other random motion events. I’m told, however, that people detection will be coming sometime “this summer,” along with support for customizable motion-detection zones. Other missing features include two-way audio and the ability to view a live stream of your doorstep.

The Doorbell Camera is slated to come bundled with the new Kangaroo Chime, although the chime won’t ship until a few weeks after the Doorbell Camera makes its debut. A Kangaroo rep said that those who order the Doorbell Camera early will get the Kangaroo Chime for free once it’s available.

You can also pair the Doorbell Camera with the $70 Kangaroo Siren + Keypad, with the siren designed to sound when a visitor presses the doorbell button. Kangaroo says it’ll offer a new $79 Security Kit bundle that includes the Doorbell Camera, the Siren + Keypad, a pair of motion and entry sensors, and a yard sign.

The weather-resistant Doorbell Camera features both screw and peel-and-stick mounting, and it’s powered by a trio of AAA batteries that should last up to 18 months.

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