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The company offers a decent amount of its own proprietary devices, but you’re certainly not limited to Abode specific products alone. An Abode system can communicate with a slew of Z Wave and Zigbee compatible smart lights and locks, light switches and dimmers, Nest products, IFTTT commands, and, of course, Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. Put simply: If you want the freedom to lock/unlock your door or turn on/off the lights all in one place from the Abode app, this system is definitely worth a look. Installing the Ring Alarm took less than twenty minutes and was a complete breeze. We didn’t encounter any issues with device connectivity or placement, because, frankly, Ring tells you exactly where to install everything and how to do it on the app. You’ll start by connecting your WiFi to the base station via the Ring app — from there, Ring instructs you to pull the plastic tabs off the backs of the contact sensors and motion detectors, which automatically activates the products for use.

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Because it can be difficult to find power sources for outside cameras, we like that the Ring Spotlight Cam has three power options: battery, hardwired, or solar. It also has a built in, motion activated spotlight that will stop trespassers in their tracks. Plus added features like two way audio, a 110 decibel siren, and integration with Amazon Alexa make this camera a leader in outdoor surveillance. That’s why the Ring Spotlight Cam was ranked our number one choice for outdoor security cameras. The distance from which your camera can record images in low to no light situations can have a great impact on its effectiveness if you want to capture activity after the sun sets. We’ve all dealt with photos that are too dark to make out any details. It’s frustrating when it’s a wedding photo, but it’s nerve racking when you’re trying to capture a face or license plate after a break in. Pay attention to the existing lighting in the areas where you want to install security cameras. Look for the night vision range of each camera and consider how much area you want to cover. And beware of using an indoor camera to look outside; they can’t usually capture images through a window or after dark. You cannot use cameras alone for home security.