Lately I've been looking at security cameras for homes and small businesses. Among the different options, Blink makes a very compelling proposal. Forget about wires and always-on connectivity, forget about monthly plans and limited server storage, the system works wire-free, hassle-free, and well, completely free after the hardware purchase. You just need to put in 2 AA batteries and they'll last up to 2 years, getting triggered only when motion is detected and uploading 5-10sec clips to the cloud.
The one problem with Blink though? Until today, it didn't integrate with any other smart home product. That summarizes most of the complaints on its online reviews: users say that you have to manually arm/disarm each camera separately in the app. And even if it recently added the option to schedule the cameras to arm/disarm at a set time, that isn't practical if you don't have a hard-set daily routine.
So it's really nice to see Blink finally opening up to work with other products. The first partner? Amazon Alexa. You can tell your Echo or Echo Dot or Tap to arm/disarm Blink, but you can also ask it what the current system status is, or to tell you the time and location of the last recorded event clip.
This isn't exactly smart automation, but it's definitely easier than opening the app and manually arming or disarming the system, and it lets you adapt it to your comings and goings instead of setting one schedule.
The Blink skill should be available now, or soon at least, to add in Alexa, so make sure you check it out if you have the cameras and an Echo speaker.
BLINK CHARGES INTO THE FUTURE WITH AMAZON ALEXA VOICE CONTROL INTEGRATION
New voice commands lead to seamless control of Blink video home security and monitoring systems
BOSTON, MA (OCTOBER 5, 2016) — Blink, the ultra-affordable, wire-free, home security and HD video monitoring system, today unveiled that its popular home security cameras are now fully integrated with Amazon Alexa-enabled devices including Amazon Echo, Echo Dot and Amazon Tap. All Blink users who own these devices can now control Blink’s top-of-the-line security system without lifting a finger, using voice alone to make their homes more secure. The news follows Blink’s recent announcement that it has doubled its battery life, granting users an unprecedented two-year battery life with no additional cost.
“We live in a world where convenience is king and simplicity wins,” said Peter Besen, CEO of Blink. “Blink’s seamless setup and easy-to-use interface provided a catalyst for our product’s explosive growth and the addition of voice control through the Amazon Alexa platform marks the next, bold step in Blink’s progression as an industry-leading home security and monitoring system. Whether it is a parent with a handful of kids to keep track of, or someone coming home with two arms full of groceries, it is vital that our consumers receive a hassle-free home security experience.”
Through this integration, Blink customers can now use their voice to arm, disarm and receive information about their security system, including current system status as well as time and location of the last recorded motion clip.
“Launching an Amazon Alexa skill for Blink is a very exciting step in the evolution of our product,” said Don Shulsinger, Vice President of Sales and Marketing at Blink. “Amazon has sold millions of Alexa-enabled devices and there is significant crossover among our customers.”
In addition to being newly hands-free, Blink’s wire-free video home security and monitoring systems start at $99, come with free cloud storage and deliver crystal-clear HD video through the Blink app available for iOS and Android devices. Blink units can be purchased on Amazon.com or directly through https://blinkforhome.com.
Blink is an ultra-affordable, smart HD home monitoring and alert system that allows consumers to feel safe at home no matter where they are. Launched by Immedia Semiconductor in 2015, Blink is revolutionizing the home security industry by providing a completely wire-free system that delivers instant monitoring from any location through the Blink Home Monitor app. With customizable features, a sleek design and battery life of over one year, Blink offers an easy and affordable security solution for homeowners, renters, business owners, caretakers and more. For more information, visit blinkforhome.com.