So Ring have finally done it. The well priced Ring Protect Plus plan (at $10 per month) has been effectively doubled for Ring Alarm customers.
But is the new Ring Protect Pro (at $20 per month) worth it for existing – or new – Ring customers?
Is the new local storage feature worth paying double each month AND shelling out $250 for a new base station?
Has the Ring Protect Basic ($3/month) plan changed at all?
I discuss all these questions, and more, in this YouTube video. The video timestamps are below if you wanted to jump to a particular point.
- 0:00 Intro
- 0:57 Ring Protect Changes
- 2:28 Ring Protect Pro
- 4:00 Local storage
- 5:19 Wrapping up
Hello, I’m Tristan from Smart Home Point. So Ring recently announced a change to the Ring Protect plans. Previously there were two plans: Basic and Plus. Basic was $3 (or £2.50) per month for each Ring camera or doorbell you had, and it offers some extra notification features, along with cloud storage for any recordings that are made.
The Plus plan was then $10 (or £8) per month, it covered ALL your Ring cameras and doorbells – which is naturally good if you had more than three Ring cameras or doorbells. It also gave an extended warranty on eligible devices, and 10% off on Ring.com and Amazon.com.
Now, that hasn’t changed. If you only own Ring cameras and doorbells, the existing plans (Basic and Plus) will be fine for you. Unless you’re desperate for local storage and you have WAY too much money, that is. But hold that thought for now: I’ll discuss local storage at the end.
What HAS changed is that if you have a Ring Alarm system, you have just been shafted. Can I say shafted? Meh. For $10 a month, in North America you USED to get professional monitoring and cellular backup. Basically Ring would help to monitor your alarm system, contacting the local authorities if required, and also if your internet went down, the cellular backup would kick-in: so that any alarm notifications would still go out – even without internet.
But that’s no longer the case. Ring have now doubled the price for that. Well, that’s not strictly true. If you are an existing Ring Alarm subscriber, you get grandfathered into the new rates – meaning that the price increase won’t kick in until 2025. In some ways this is better than Wink who recently told people that unless they paid $5 per month, many of their devices would suddenly become pointless overnight.
But it’s still frustrating for Ring to do this to existing Ring Alarm subscribers. Of course, this price change only CURRENTLY applies to North America customers. Nothing has changed for us in the UK yet – plus we never had professional monitoring anyway! Us British Ring Alarm owners have to pay £8 per month for “assisted monitoring” – which is nowhere near as good as real, professional alarm monitoring. It’s a little bit pointless, to be honest.
Anywhoo, so why has Ring made these changes? What does the new Protect Pro plan offer? Well, at first glance it’s actually a pretty sweet deal. For $20 per month – or $200 a year – you get all the usual video cloud recordings from the Plus plan, plus you get professional alarm system monitoring system, Alexa Guard Plus, eero Secure and backup internet.
Basically the new Ring Alarm Base Station will contain an eero 6 mesh router, that can replace your existing home Wi-Fi system. You can then buy other eero mesh points and have a proper mesh Wi-Fi system in your house, along with of course getting protected from online threats and malware via eero secure. Of course, eero 6 is not as good as the eero 6 Pro and some other Wi-Fi mesh systems – but for people without any mesh Wi-Fi system at all, the new Base Station will be a step forward.
So that’s all pretty nice… assuming that you trust Ring to now provide all your home’s camera recordings, alarm system AND also your internet, that is. There’s one clear downside here, though: to get the eero features, you need to buy the brand new Base Station – which costs $250. So if you are an existing Ring Alarm customer, you are not only met with a DOUBLING of your subscription fees: you’re also then expected to pay $250 for the new base station. Of course, you don’t HAVE to buy the new base station, but you then miss out on the eero features and backup internet features. Features that you STILL have to pay $20 per month for!
There is one other feature that I haven’t mentioned yet. Local storage. The new Base Station contains a 64GB SD card, which is upgradable to 512GB, and it can be used to setup your Ring cameras or doorbells to record locally, instead of in the cloud.
This sounds awesome, but there’s a big flaw here. This feature only works if you pay for the Protect Pro plan. In other words, even if you have $1000 worth of Ring cameras, doorbells and their alarm system installed in your house, you can’t even get local storage – without paying $20 a month. This is bizarre. What other smart cameras (like Eufy and Wyze) do is include an SD card and local storage FOR FREE, and only charge you if you want cloud recording.
Instead Ring cameras and doorbells are essentially pointless without a subscription. You are almost forced to pay $3 (or £2.50) per month (per device) if you want a useful smart camera. Then if you want LOCAL recording, you must pay $20 per month. And own a $250 base station.
It’s a very expensive way of achieving local storage. I think that I’d personally prefer to just install Eufy or Wyze (or even a more conventional CCTV and DVR system) if local storage was important to me.
I’d suggest that unless you love Ring and are willing to trust them with all aspects of your home, the new Ring Alarm Pro and Protect Pro systems are probably worth skipping – arguably. Especially now that rival offerings from SimpliSafe (and others) are now available for a similar price.
Anywhoo, that wraps up today’s video. I hope you found it helpful. If you did, please click the thumbs up button – which will tell YouTube that more people should see this video. Please also consider subscribing to my channel, and clicking the bell icon which will notify you when I release new videos. Thank you!