The runaway success of video doorbells like the Ring Pro and Nest Hello have paved the way for an avalanche of similar products. In fact, more than a dozen smart doorbells debuted at CES 2019, and a recent leak of a patent filed by LG hints to at least one more.
In the patent, the device shown is classified as a “doorbell device.” While no specific features are listed, the mechanism does mention a “viewing angle-adjusting bracket rotatably coupled to the bracket.” This might mean the viewing angle can be adjusted by turning the doorbell, which would make it easy to achieve an exact line of sight. Unfortunately, if the bracket is attached to the doorbell itself, you can only adjust the viewing angle from the exterior.
The last line of the patent abstract states “a viewing angle of the camera can be arbitrarily changed by a user so that a visitor’s identifiability can be improved.” If that’s the case, then maybe the viewing angle can be changed in real-time via the app.
Keep in mind that this is all speculation, however. The patent was filed on September 8, 2016, which suggests this device has been in development for at least two and a half years. So it’s possible that LG may soon be ready to unveil the smart doorbell to the world. It certainly wouldn’t be the company’s first foray into smart home technology.
LG already owns the SmartThinQ line of appliances that include refrigerators, vacuum cleaners, washers and dryers, and more. The next logical step is for the company to move to smaller smart home technology. Consumers who are ready to try out smart home technology but don’t want their first purchase to be a $700 smart vacuum may find this kind of offering appealing. An affordable, sub-$300 smart doorbell would give LG more of an entry-level foothold into the smart home market.
Whatever the reason, it seems clear that another contender will soon join the smart doorbell battle royale. With so many options on the market, companies will be forced to improve existing tech and offer great deals to entice customers. It just proves the old adage: competition is good for the consumer.