Joe was thinking of getting a NEST thermostat, but he doesn't want to pay a fee. Rich says the only fee you pay is for buying the device. NEST uses WiFi to connect to the internet, where you can control it using your mobile device. But you don't have to pay a subscription fee to use it. Can you control it using your computer? Rich says you should. But the NEST doesn't have to be programmed since it uses machine learning to learn how you want it to operate. Also check with your energy company. NEST also offers a $50 rebate.
Caller doesn't care for the RING doorbell and he wants an alternative. Leo says the NEST HELLO is a good alternative. It's made by Google. But he may end up with the same problems of having it not stay on very long. He won't know until he tries it. Others include Skybell. Check out TheWireCutter.com for reviews.
Google is out on the Eastern Seaboard and the West Coast. NEST, Gmail and YouTube users are reporting that their devices are knocked out as well. Leo wonders what life would be like if Google didn't come back for a month or more.
NEST has officially become Google NEST, and will solely become a Google Product. Leo says that while Google has owned NEST for a while now, it had kept it largely autonomous, including the data it collected. No longer. No Google owns all the data it collects and will use it. Even worse, Leo says that Google is already phasing out support for other IoT devices and will solely be supported by Google Assistant. Leo says it's annoying when a company encourages you to deep dive into a product's ecosystem and then changes it so that it can't be used with other products.
Sundip was going to get a RING doorbell but then heard about their privacy issues. Leo says that Amazon bought RING and has addressed the issues. So RING is pretty good right now. But Google NEST also makes a doorbell, so if you'd prefer an alternative, the NEST is a good option.
George needs security cameras for his house. Leo says that the Wyze Cam is a good one, but a doorbell cam will stop package thieves dead in their tracks. There are two kinds: the Nest or Ring camera. They connect to the same power source as his doorbell, and he can get connected with his mobile device. The he can interact with the person on camera. It'll also record to the cloud. But he would need Internet.
Brian wants a good doorbell camera. Leo says that Nest Hello has facial recognition, but Ring has a cool feature called Neighborhood Watch, so he could share videos with neighbors. The Nest Hello Video Doorbell is the really cool, though. But remember, they're all going to be charging for storing video in the cloud.
(Disclaimer: Ring is a sponsor)
Chris is looking to get security cameras. Should he go with Nest or Ring? Should he have a service? Rich says he has a combination of the two, but it depends on if he wants a managed solution. Rich says that there really isn't a need to have a managed solution. It's expensive from month to month. Chris can piece together his own solution and do just as good.
Jorge wants to get a wireless doorbell. Suggestions? Leo says that he uses Ring, and they are also a sponsor. There's also Skybell. But these smart internet enabled doorbells represent a security risk because they're connected to the internet (called Internet of Things) and often they aren't updated. So if someone can break into his network, they may be able to break into his house or system. With that warning, Leo says that Ring does a great job.
Paul is looking for a good alarm system for his home. Leo says that the easiest way is to go to an alarm company like Bay Alarm. He'll need a phone line for it, and they charge a monthly fee for monitoring. Leo says that all of them are about the same, though. He can do it himself with SimpliSafe. He'd install his own sensors and cameras, and it monitors for a more affordable rate.