Ring Video Doorbell is a great product. If you haven’t seen it yet, it’s a wireless doorbell that connects to your home Wi-Fi, allowing you to see who’s at your front door via the app on your phone. But, the company realized there is more than just doors we need to see — our cars are also very important. That’s why they’ve released the Ring Car Cam — a convenient way to protect your car when it’s in motion and when it’s parked.
When will Ring Car Cam be available?
We have been trying hard to get our hands on one of these unique cameras to test and review. Availability to date has been almost non-existent, with the camera annoucned more than two years ago for the first time, and initial promises of February 2023 shipping. Ring had later said on its website that availability would be coming in the summer of 2023, but a quick check on the site now shows it will be at least October before the Car Cam is ready for the public. Does this mean there are problems with Car Cam itself, or supply chain issues? No one’s saying. While we wait along with the rest of you, here’s what you need to know about this car camera.
What is Ring Car Cam?
At first, it’s quite confusing why Ring wouldn’t just name their newest car-mounted camera a dashcam like everyone else, but once it becomes clear that Ring is positioning the Ring Car Cam as a multi-purpose device, it makes more sense., since this is a two-in-one security system that watches over your car both in motion and when parked in your driveway.
What Makes ring Car Cam Unique?
It wouldn’t be fair to say that the Ring Car Cam is just a dashcam, or for that matter, a simple security camera, as it’s trying to do a bit of both.
It’s a camera system with a front camera that looks over the hood of the car and everything else within that 120-degree wide-angle lens; it has another high-definition interior-facing camera that records whatever is happening within the car’s cabin. It also has a microphone for audio recording and a speaker for two-way communication.
The Ring Cam for Car stands out because it records what’s happening in and around your car and driveway even when it is turned off. This means it could also look over your front door and see who’s coming and going while recording what’s happening inside your car. The Ring Car Cam installation is also the first car-mounted camera to alert your phone when it detects motion or sound within and in the car’s periphery… like if someone were breaking into it or trying to steal it.
How to connect Car Cam (using OBD-2 port)
One of the most intriguing features of this dashcam is that it must be connected to your car’s OBD-2 port, unlike other dashcams that connect to USB ports via auxiliary power outlets. This means that the Car Cam can draw power from the battery even when the car is off, enabling it to record when needed.
That means even with the car engine turned off, the camera stays in ultra-low power mode and automatically turns on when it detects motion in the driveway or if it’s triggered by the driver.
How do I know if my car is compatible?
OBD-2 ports live under your dash and are fairly common in modern cars, and relatively easy to find if you know where to look. Even so but they’re implemented differently from one car to another, so you can figure out where yours is by typing your car model and ‘OBD-2 port’ into Google. Even in cars with compatible OBD-2 ports, the mounting process can differ slightly. To ensure that the Ring Car Cam installation will function without a problem, you can verify your car’s compatibility via Ring’s website.
Motion detection is one of the most important features of the Car Cam. It allows you to capture footage even when your car is parked and unattended, which is especially useful if you typically leave your car parked in the driveway. Motion detection also works for the interior camera, meaning you can capture footage of a thief breaking into your car and stealing valuables from inside.
GPS tracking (optional)
With an optional Ring Protect Go subscription, you can keep an eye on your car even when you’re not around. The Ring Protect Go subscription provides an LTE connection to the Car Cam and lets you see your car’s GPS location at any given time, along with how fast it’s moving. This can be especially useful if your vehicle ever gets stolen or goes missing; using the GPS tracking feature, you can track down your car, report it to any authorities and hopefully get it back before anything bad happens.
Record Traffic Stops
Traffic Stop recording is another feature that can prove extremely useful. This feature, triggered by saying “Alexa, record,” starts recording on both cameras and microphones for 20 minutes when your car is pulled over. You can then review the footage, which can be helpful if you’re involved in a traffic violation or accident. There’s quite a bit of interest in keeping tabs on traffic stops, so this is a subtle, quick and easy, hands-free way to do it.
When does Ring Car Cam ship?
The Ring Car Cam was originally announced in 2020 but was only officially launched on February 15, 2023. While some early orders have already been delivered, according to both Amazon and the Ring website the next batch of orders will be fulfilled when stocks replenish in July. That’s a long time to wait. If you already got yours, we’d love to hear what you think and how it’s been working for you in comments below.