Teaching your Nest Battery Powered Doorbell How to Send the Notifications You Need

The great thing about a Smart doorbell is that you can be anywhere and still see who’s coming to the door. So if you’re having a lie-in when relatives call by unannounced you can choose whether to answer the door, or talk to them via the built in speaker instead. Similarly, if you’re in the garden, or otherwise engaged when a delivery comes you will know there’s someone at the door and ask them to hang on for just one minute before the go on to the next house!

The Nest Smart Doorbell also offers motion detection which is great, but if you live somewhere with a busy pavement, or you have an active family who are always coming and going then the constant alerts to people passing will get a little bit irritating. So what to do?

Nest, The Smarter Smart Doorbell

The Nest smart doorbell has more adaptability than many other Smart Doorbells on the market, including other Nest wired products. However, they are features you may not even need if you just want something which is plug-and-play.

First of all you need to put your Nest doorbell somewhere near the door where it can be clearly seen by visitors, and where it will have a clear view of people approaching your front door. Sync it with your Google Home app and you can now get notifications on your phone, tablet, or computer whenever anyone is outside your home. The device also records and stores up to three hours of footage which you can look back over when you need to verify if someone did or didn’t visit.

The doorbell has a very wide field of view, meaning that it’s hard to creep by it without being seen, and also offers facial recognition so you know whether a car, person or pet has triggered the motion detection. And this is the technology which also makes the Nest so much more adaptable than other smart doorbells on the market. If you have a neighbour’s dog which is constantly digging up your lawn, you want to know when the little pest is up to no good! Alternatively you may not care about dogs passing your home, but you do need to know when people are present, or when a delivery has been dropped off and is waiting for you.

Don’t Get Alerts For Things You Don’t Care About

You can mute alerts for particular events, or you can adapt the notifications so you know whether it’s people, parcels or pets who’ve triggered the doorbell.

So how do you teach your Nest Doorbell to tell you about the things you need to know?

First of all, in the Google home app tap on the cog logo or settings button at the top of the screen. You’ll see plenty of options for customising your preferences but for now go to ‘Events’. It will tell you all the things it is currently set to record, which is essentially all of them since this is the default setting.

To adjust the alerts you get for particular events, go past motion zones and familiar faces for now, and go on to the sliders besides People, Pets, Packages and Cars. Moving the slider will then allow you to decide what you want to do for each event with another slider. Using this method you can record everything your cat outside the house so you can watch it later, but not alert you to every time it runs past. You can turn off alerts for people if there’s a lot of foot-traffic outside, but turn on alerts if your Nest detects a rectangular object on the ground.

Use Motion Zones To Further Cut Out Things You Don’t Care About

Recording all the action that takes place outside of your house means you have a lot of footage to review if you like to watch it back, and also uses up the battery quicker. You will get alerts when the battery is getting low, but you can prolong the battery life by not recording all the activity, and by cancelling particular motion zones, areas where things happen all the time but you aren’t interested in.

Go to the ‘Motion Zones’ slider in settings and you can choose a particular area in the camera’s field of view to highlight. You can then do the same as you did before and choose what happens, again selecting people, pets, packages and cars. This means you can ignore cars or dogs passing on the street, but get alerts if a vehicle comes onto your drive, or a stray starts digging up your flowerbeds.

If you choose to take up a subscription you get increased footage archiving and facial recognition which means the doorbell learns who your most frequent visitors are.

And don’t forget, this is all going on before the person coming to see you even presses the button! Once they ring on your bell you can talk to them using the two-way mic and speaker, and see them clearly, even at night, thanks to the high-definition camera. If you use a separate Smart door lock you can unlock the door remotely so a visitor can let themselves in, or if it’s a delivery, they can put it indoors so that it’s not left on the doorstep until you get a chance to bring it in yourself.

Smart door locks are a great addition to your overall smart home security system as they offer recording and two way communication alongside alerts when people are on your property. Briant Communications offer a great range of Smart devices which they supply and fit, including Google Home’s Nest alongside many more.

Originally published at https://briantcomms.substack.com on September 13, 2021.