I’ve been a Ring user for a couple of years now and I’ve been monitoring this thread and other similar threads all that time in hope with great interest . I too was suckered in by the flashy hardware whilst not being aware of the ridiculous shortcomings of their software. I was in disbelief when I realised the equipment I’d just purchased for a considerable sum that cost in some cases 4 times as much as the next viable alternative, didn’t include such basic features as RTSP and many other features that come as standard in cameras retailed at a fraction of the cost. Local storage for example.
Given the vast resources of Ring/Amazon, generated in part by the massively inflated cost of the Ring hardware I can only conclude that their resistance to implement RTSP is due solely to the fact they want to keep their users shackled once they have fallen for the initial hardware trap to their costly subscription service.
I could possibly swallow their subscription fee and lack of RTSP if their system/architecture functioned adequately, but as I, and it seems many others have found it simply doesn’t.
Opening up a stream to a camera using the RTSP protocol on your network is almost instant, while trying to view a Ring camera can take 10-15 seconds (on a good day), most times much longer if at all. Often when you have been alerted to a motion whatever triggered it has long gone by the time you can actually view the stream. And if you’re unwilling to cough up for their subscription you’ll never know what triggered it. Even if you do pay their hefty monthly fee, I found due to the shortcomings of their architecture relying on the internet by the time they had connected to the stream and started recording the motion had long since passed too. Leading to videos that were for the most part just a black screen for the majority of the start, missing the motion.
Also the fact that all your Ring devices are basically boat anchors without an internet connection beggars belief. As many have suggested here that scenario is exactly when you would want a fully functioning security system.
The doorbell suffers from the same shortcomings as their cameras due to their nonsensical architecture. Given the typical Ring lag by the time a person has rang the doorbell, the alert has been sent and you finally manage to open a stream to the doorbell camera, 30-45 seconds has passed. Meaning in most instances the person who rang the doorbell has long since gone. Parcel delivery drivers in particular are on a tight deadline and don’t generally hang around longer than 30 seconds due to their workload. I’ve found they no longer ring the doorbell. I suspect from experience they know they will be hanging around for almost a minute waiting for someone to answer a Ring doorbell and even then there’s no guarantee.
But my biggest issue with Ring is the lack of RTSP or another similar protocol meaning you are unable to record around the clock to a DVR on your own network, regardless of whether you have an internet connection or not. Functionality you would find on the majority of other (much cheaper) CCTV equipment on the market. This shortcoming was brought home recently when an elderly neighbour suffered a home invasion and was threatened at knife point. As I do not have a Ring subscription and I have no motion zone set in that area anyway due to a road being in shot the Ring ‘CCTV’ cameras where completely ineffectual, and I was unable to offer the police any footage that could help apprehend the burglars. Despite the fact one of my Ring cameras was pointed directly down the lane and would have seen their faces for 15 seconds as they walked directly up to my neighbours property. Had I had a budget system installed I would have had the footage stored securely locally on my property and would have been able to provide it. As it is. Nothing.
I explained all this to the police officer who knocked on the door asking for footage. His response to my explanation of all my Ring devices shortcomings “Well what good are they then?”. That was a lightbulb moment. I’m now in the process of replacing all my Ring hardware with something that will support RTSP and can record securely without the need of an internet connection or a subscription.
Thankfully given the massively inflated cost of Ring hardware, the fact there are still many people out their yet to be suckered by Ring’s flashy hardware and advertising campaign and comparable hardware with more functionality being available for a fraction of the price I will likely be able to do this for free once I have sold all my Ring equipment on eBay.
As others have suggested I too now actively go out of my way to deter people from buying Ring products, which is almost always met by a “wow I’m glad you told me before I bought it!” once I’ve explained all Rings problems.
If anyone from Ring ever reads this, (which I suspect is unlikely given the years this thread has been active and their lack of engagement). Taking your customers for granted and relying on this strategy of suckering people in with flashy adverts and hardware will only be successful for so long. People are starting to wake up and make others aware of your tactics and failings. Every one customer trapped will generally be warning several if not more away from your products/services. This model is unsustainable. I wonder if you will wake up to this fact before it is too late?