4 Video Doorbell Cameras Without Subscriptions

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If you love the idea of a video doorbell, but hate the idea of paying for a subscription, no problem! You can have a smart doorbell that acts as a security camera without paying monthly fees.

Choose from any of these video doorbells, and you won’t need a subscription to get the features you need. Replace your existing doorbell with one that records visitors, lets you answer them over your phone, and stores video locally in its own drive or on a micro SD card.

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Closeup of video doorbell mounted on wall by door

Why Choose Video Doorbells without Subscription?

1. Saving money

Subscriptions for a smart video doorbell cost anywhere from $3 to $10, depending on the company and the level of subscription. Why lock yourself into paying that if you don’t have to?

2. Security & Privacy 

A subscription means they are storing your video in the cloud or at least processing some of your data. Some video doorbell companies have been caught sharing customer video without customer consent.

Do Video Doorbells get Stolen?

Short answer? Rarely. They’re not much use on their own and you’d be filmed stealing them. Many require a tool to get them off, making it hard for someone to do quickly and without being noticed.

What to Look for

There are a few things you should consider in choosing the right doorbell for your home.

  • What features require a subscription? “None” is the best answer, but some doorbells will still do all you need without one.
  • Does some features need wifi? Not every home has it. Most doorbells will work with cell data or a phone hotspot, but you may lose features like notifications – which could defeat the whole point for you.
  • How do they store footage? You need one that stores video locally instead of on the cloud, and for that it’s usually on a microSD card or the doorbell’s own internal memory. 
  • Slight delay before notification: most if not all cameras have a lag time of a few seconds between the person arriving and your phone notifying you, or you being able to answer the doorbell over your phone. Since there was always a lag of time before you could answer a regular doorbell in person, this isn’t a problem for most people. But if you see lots of complaints about very long delays, it could be an issue.
  • Without a subscription, does it still have motion detection, night vision, facial recognition? Sometimes these helpful features require the company’s servers. The units in this list do it on their own.
  • Do you need night vision? Most have this feature, which makes it easy to see visitors after dark.
  • Two way audio lets you communicate with people who ring the doorbell. 
  • Integration with Alexa or Google Home. If you like using voice commands, you might prefer a device that works with these. 
  • Compatibility with your existing security system. If you have a security system, you’ll need to make sure the doorbell you choose will work with it.

Best Video Doorbell Without Subscription

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Last Updated:

April 15, 2024