Amazon Acquires Smart Doorbell Maker Ring
Further entrenching itself in consumers’ homes, Amazon has purchased smart doorbell maker Ring for $1 billion.
SEATTLE — Details are currently scarce, but GeekWire is reporting that Amazon has bought smart doorbell maker Ring for more than $1 billion.
GeekWire expects Amazon to pursue product and feature integrations where appropriate but maintain the Ring brand and largely allow the company to continue operating as it has in the past. Ring has raised $209 million so far and was last valued at $760 million, according to MSNBC.
It would appear Amazon is intent on beefing up its smart home offerings after acquiring Blink, a provider of connected WiFi home security cameras this past December.
It would be fair to say Amazon may plan to integrate Ring products into its Amazon Key program, which allows for a delivery-person to enter a customer’s house to drop off their package.
“Ring is committed to our mission to reduce crime in neighborhoods by providing effective yet affordable home security tools to our neighbors that make a positive impact on our homes, our communities, and the world,” a Ring spokesperson said in a statement. “We’ll be able to achieve even more by partnering with an inventive, customer-centric company like Amazon. We look forward to being a part of the Amazon team as we work toward our vision for safer neighborhoods.”
Ring is best known for its video doorbell but has also has an arsenal of smart products including its wired-, battery- and solar-powered Spotlight cams and a DIY home security system.
Unfortunately it was far from smooth sailing when it came to launching the DIY offering as the company was hit with a lawsuit by ADT over technology used in the system.
Ring was hit with another lawsuit this past January after its competitor SkyBell Technologies alleged Ring stole intellectual property – specifically three SkyBell patents – and competes on hype rather than technological prowess.
Imperial Capital Vice President Saliq Khan offered SSI his take:
I am not surprised to hear about this. Amazon has a camera solution (cloud cam) which has not received positive reviews because it lacks the image clarity and analytics of the likes of Netgear’s Arlo. So, buying Ring gets them a few things: 1) video doorbell 2) IP related to the camera solutions by Ring, announced to be rolled out in Spring of this year and 3) flood lights, not as exciting part.
With this transaction, Amazon can also leverage the professional monitoring option which Ring publicly noted it would provide via 3rd party, upon release of the Ring camera this spring.
Technology companies are recognizing the increasing importance of capturing the consumer’s attention, and owning the residential ecosystem is a powerful way to do that. What remains to be seen is if, when, and how Amazon will lace these solutions together and provide an integrated, interactive and intelligent platform.
SSI will update this story as soon as an official announcement is made by Amazon. Stay tuned…
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