Skybell vs Ring – Which Is The Better Video Doorbell and Why?

About six months ago I was doing some research on video doorbells because I was tired of porch pirates stealing my parcels while I was out.

The two brands that really stood out and were the most popular would have to be Skybell and Ring. Both of these brands seemed great and have fairly similar features so I know how you feel if you’re trying to decide between the two.

That’s also why I decided to write this Skybell vs Ring comparison article to help you make the right choice for YOUR needs.

Here’s a quick table of contents to help you navigate through the article and if you have any questions please feel free to ask in the comments section.

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Owning a video doorbell has a lot of cool benefits…

Just the other day I was out at my local hardware store and got a notification letting me know someone was at my door. There were 3 young kids peeking through the door and window to see if anyone was home.

They didn’t seem to know what my doorbell was capable of so I decided to ask them what they wanted. They were shocked that voice was coming from the doorbell and it was quite funny watching them giggle and in amazement. Turns out their drone crashed in my back yard and they wanted it back. I told them to come back in 20 minutes and I’ll be home, they came back and I gave them their drone.

The main reason I purchased one was to keep an eye on my parcels and packages left by the delivery man. It’s also handy for telling him where to leave the package so it’s more out of sight.

I’ve been a victim of parcel theft by these porch pirates a few times and now when I get a notification that someone is close to my door I can quickly get a visual and ask them what they want. Normally, they act all dumb and say they have the wrong address and go but the good thing is, it scares them away and I keep my parcel.

Oh and it’s also good if that annoying salesman is at the door, I can either tell him to rack off without getting out of my chair or ignore him completely because I know it’s not important.

I would have to say that the main benefit here for me is keeping my property and possessions safe and secure.

Skybell vs Ring Compared: My Experience…

I’ve actually owned a doorbell from both of these companies – one I got a refund and the other I am still using to this day.

The only real reason I got a refund was that the delayed notification after a motion was detected was terrible – sometimes it was over 10 seconds. It would also randomly go off if it was a windy day and that for me was annoying enough to request a refund.

That said, there are a lot of positive reviews for the Skybell, but I noticed a HUGE difference when I started using the Ring video doorbell Pro!

The response time is faster, the camera seems better as well in my opinion and it doesn’t pick up the wind or randomly go off. I also think the speaker when talking is a lot clearer.

One thing you need to be aware of though is the subscription fee for the cloud service. To store videos and captures in the cloud you must sign up for the subscription. With the subscription, you also get some handy analytics and more control over the device.

The device will work without the subscription but if you want the cloud storage and extra features you will need to pay a small fee and they have different plans. The basic plan is like $3 per month which is very affordable.

Skybell vs Ring – a quick rundown

This is a very short comparison sheet. To get started, both products were rated out of ten for the basics.

Customer Service commitment
Ring – 8.0 out of 10
Skybell – 8.1 out of 10

Value for money
Ring – 9.3 out of 10
Skybell – 8.0 out of 10

Hardware
Ring – 9.9 out of 10
Skybell – 8.7 out of 10

Tech and features
Ring – 9.3 out of 10
Skybell – 9.0 out of 10

Ease of operation
Ring – 9.5 out of 10
Skybell – 8.6 out of 10

Both Skybell and Ring are reputable names in the industry. And their reputations have been cultivated with care. Pound for pound they box in the same weight class and feature wise, there’s little to distinguish one from the other.

But the differences that are there, are marked. Ring is well thought-through, and they haven’t just piled on the features for the sake of creating bells and whistles. Every feature serves a purpose, and it serves that purpose well.

If you look at all the Ring features together, it creates the picture of comprehensive home security at the price you pay for a video doorbell. I’m not saying the Skybell is bad. Not at all. I’m just saying the Ring is better where it counts for me. And where it counts for me is probably where it will count for you too.

How they’re the same

Quite simply, their tech is similar. The one thing they share for sure is the quality of their images. It’s the best that’s available anywhere.

Both systems offer cloud storage and also lice streaming.

Also:

  • Quick and simple installation
  • 1080p HD recording and streaming
  • Activity alerts are triggered by sophisticated motion detection
  • Neither requires you to sign a long contract
  • With both you buy the equipment outright – in other words, you own it
  • Both offer a mobile app to control the unit, and access the features remotely
  • They both offer night vision – and both are great

How they’re different

Some of the differences between the two units are subtle, and others are significant. For instance, as a home security system, Ring is undoubtedly more comprehensive than Skybell.

By comparison, Skybell’s video doorbell viewer can play nicely with Honeywell Home Security Systems as well as Google Nest.

The main differences are:

  • Skybell has only one product – the video doorbell viewer. Ring, on the other hand, has several product options, each with unique features.
  • Skybell will give you a free video recording facility and will store your recordings for up to seven days.
  • The Ring product has a motion sensor that can be customized. Skybell doesn’t.
  • The Ring video doorbell options are infinitely more than Skybell.
  • Skybell offers a 180-degree field of view. Ring has only 160-degrees.

What the customers say

These are highlights from verified customer reviews on both products. They were taken from review across the board and from customers across North America.

#1 Ring

  • The app is easy to use
  • The ecosystem of Ring devices makes for easy integration
  • The motion alerts are accurate and fast
  • HD and HDR picture quality is brilliant during the day, and good enough in low light or at night
  • Hardware setup only takes around 20 minutes
  • The camera quality is HOT
  • Speaker quality is excellent
  • Overall, it’s a doorbell that doubles as a security camera

#2 Skybell

  • Occasionally there is some static on the bottom of the video recordings
  • There are occasional connection issues
  • Live picture view is slow to load
  • Installation is easy
  • Motion detection is sometimes dubious
  • Firmware issues and issues with updates cause lapses in the product’s operations
  • Delays in notifications and streams

The pricing of the equipment and plans

With Skybell, the price will depend on the equipment you choose. The Skybell HD and the Skybell Trim Plus both come at $199. (Amazon or eBay might shave some off for you). And there are no monthly cloud fees involved.

Ring will set you back $199. The app is free to use, and there are no hidden costs.

You will, however, require the Video Record Plan if you want to watch missed events or alerts after the fact. Ring has two plans. $30 per year (or $3 per month) per camera. Or, alternatively, $100 per year ($10 per month) for unlimited cameras.

A parting shot

Both systems will increase your porch security. But I definitely prefer the Ring over the Skybell. It’s affordable, it’s user-friendly, it works when it needs to, and it keeps the porch pirates at bay.

The Ring also works as a dual-powered unit – wired and wireless. Which is great. It’s those small options that tailor-make it for different users.

The ring is better-featured than the Skybell – by far. It offers a web app, smart video assistants, and comprehensive integration. All of these contribute to complete home security convenience.

The Ring system also partners with ADT. So that’s another addon.