Amazon introduces portal for full range of home security services
28 April 2018
Amazon, having made a slew of acquisitions in the area of smart home services, is now offering a home security services product that brings them together under one roof.
The portal – which is not yet widely available and so far seems confined to some US markets - which has just become available in the US, offers an array of smart security packages that include items like entryway sensors, sirens, and a video doorbell, all installed by Amazon employees and offered with no monthly contract, TechCrunch reported.
The quietly launched portal offering includes all the equipment you would need and in-person visits from Amazon consultants to advise and install the kit. The packages are being sold in five price tiers, at a flat fee — no monthly service contracts, a significant disruption of how many home security services are sold today.
There are five different tiers to choose from. The least expensive, $240 for Outdoor Base, gives you an Echo Dot plus indoor and outdoor lighting designed “to make it look like you’re home”. The most expensive tier, $840 for Smartest, includes an alarm siren, motion sensors, safety sensors, a camera, and Echo Dot, the lighting and a video doorbell — potentially rolling in previous security launches from the company like Amazon Key and Cloud Cam.
All include two visits from Amazon employees to consult you and help with the installation.
The cheapest $240 Outdoor Base is designed to create the illusion that you’re home, coming with various motion-detecting lights, smart indoor lighting, and a wireless waterproof speaker. On the other end of the spectrum, the Echo Dot comes with items like a smart flood and leak sensor, a Wink hub, entryway sensors, and a Ring doorbell. All the packages include an Amazon Echo Dot and two visits from an Amazon smart home expert —none to identify what your needs are, and a second to install and configure all the devices.
According to The Verge, Amazon’s foray into providing home security packages isn’t a complete surprise. Amazon introduced its own version of Best Buy’s Geek Squad last year to offer free Alexa consultations and installations for smart home products like Ecobee thermostats and Arlo security cameras. Last December, Amazon acquired battery-powered connected camera and doorbell startup Blink, and just a few months ago, agreed to also acquire smart home company Ring for more than $1 billion.
These security packages offered by Amazon naturally include products from its portfolio (like Ring and Echo) and open up the possibility of signing up even more people to services like Amazon Key, which allows couriers to unlock your front door to place packages inside your home.
Based upon reviews, it appears Amazon has been offering these services for a few months, but it’s unclear which markets it’s actually available in, or if there are plans for a nationwide US rollout.
Last July it emerged that Amazon was quietly working on its own answer to Best Buy’s Geek Squad — offering repairs and installations of home WiFi, smart home devices, Alexa installations, and other hardware-related services.
Amazon never appeared to confirm it at the time, but that service now officially seems to be called “Smart Home Services” and it has expanded to Washington, Oregon, California, Arizona, Texas, Nevada, North Carolina, Georgia, Illinois, New Jersey, Washington D.C. and Florida, according to TechCrunch.
The security offering described here — which was initially flagged to TechCrunch by a reader — falls under that general banner, and it is being promoted at the top of the Smart Home Services homepage. Judging by the user reviews of the consultants, it appears to have been around since at least December.