Technical - does Ring bind to a specific wifi BSSID?

We got a Ring video doorbell…and I’m a competent and techncial user, so yeah ,i know better than the instructions :-). I’m hoping someone from Ring can confirm my theory below, and thus why i led myself down the wrong path!

TL;DR - Ring is great, just follow the instructions even if you think you know better.

So, Ring arrived yesterday and i was doing some stuff in my garage so i did the setup procedure there. Got it on the wifi no probs, set the options etc and life is good.

After installing on the front door, at the other end of the house it complained about weak wifi - which I thought was strange, considering i have installed multiple wifi access points throughout the house (all the same SSID of course) and our phones and laptops all jump between them seamlessly. The closest one to the front door was maybe 3m (10feet) away - Ring should have perfect wifi being that close!

So, i spent a fun hour and a half checking all my wifi configs, temporarily running a spare AP from ethernet to right up next to the Ring - still weak signal!

I then read the instructions and on a hunch re-did the setup procedure and rejoined the wifi - hey presto perfect signal as expected.

My theory from a bit of online research is that the Ring binds to the specific wifi access point - it looks like a security thing. So, doing the setup in a different location to the final installation was my issue. I’m hoping someone can confirm this - from the symptoms and the fact it is all perfect now it seems like it must be the case but it would satisfy my curiosity to know :stuck_out_tongue:

Moral of the story - the install docs do clearly say to go to where the Ring will be installed before starting wifi setup - a less know-it-all user than me would probably have just done that and had no problem…mmmm humble pie is my favourite!

Hello @AJ5 ,

I’m not so sure about if it is a BSSID thing, but during the initial set up of your Ring devices, the cellular phone Ring App has you enable your phone’s location/GPS. Your Ring devices use this during the set up, to bind them to your location.

I imagine this is useful to Ring, especially if you get a subscription to their “Ring Protect Plus Plan” which is tied to your location to cover all your Ring devices there.

Hope you find this helpful. :wink:

Just make sure you take a picture of the back of the doorbell, otherwise every time you change the wifi name or anything like that, it will ask for the 5 digit code which is under the QR code on the back. If you’re like me and constantly messing with the WiFi, then make a note of the code, otherwise you’ll have to unscrew the doorbell from the wall every time you want to change your wifi settings.

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…yeah. Did that the third time i needed it :slight_smile:
It’s actually on the box as well, which of course i threw out. Tip for newbies - rip that part fo the box off and keep it!

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I have done more research and it seems that the theory of Ring bonding to a specific base station, which is one of multiple making up an extended wifi network is plausible. I have found mention of security related devices doing this so that an attacker can not subvert them by faking a wifi SSID and so on.

However, i also see many reports of people adding wifi extenders, or moving their Ring, and having no problem, so it could be that some wifi hardware extends a network by cloning the BSSID or MAC of the original device or something along those lines.

In the end, the message from my experience is: Just follow the instructions and do the setup at the location the Ring will be installed :slight_smile:

I don’t think they could just fake the SSID otherwise that would be the dumbest security flaw in history (remember WEP lol). People could just go round copying other people’s SSIDs and gaining access to their devices.