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Article updated on February 28, 2023 at 12:20 PM PST

Wyze Video Doorbell Review: Affordable, but Spotty Performance Holds It Back

The price of this video doorbell is impressive, but you may want to spend a little more for a device with better performance and reliability.

Our Experts

Written by 
David Anders
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Megan Wollerton Former Senior Writer/Editor
David Anders Senior Writer
David Anders is a senior writer for CNET covering broadband providers, smart home devices and security products. Prior to joining CNET, David built his industry expertise writing for the broadband marketplace Allconnect. In his 5 plus years covering broadband, David's work has been referenced by a variety of sources including ArcGIS, DIRECTV and more. David is from and currently resides in the Charlotte area with his wife, son and two cats.
Expertise Broadband providers | Home internet | Security Cameras
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Wyze Video Doorbell

Pros

  • Low cost
  • Includes a wireless doorbell chime
  • Compact design

Cons

  • Not compatible with wired digital or mechanical doorbell chimes
  • Phantom alerts
  • Person alert errors


Disclaimer: We aren't recommending that consumers purchase Wyze products at this time. Over the past several years, Wyze has suffered from repeated data leaks and security breaches, including a 2019 user data leak, exposed databases in 2022, and exposed video files that same year. More recently, Wyze has seen both 2023 and 2024 security flaws that let at least 13,000 people see through other Wyze security cams owned by unrelated users.

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Wyze's forum report on the latest breach includes an update from February 19, 2024: "Our engineering team has added a new layer of verification between users and event videos to prevent this from happening again. We've also removed the client library and will not be using caching until we can find a new client library and stress test it for extreme scenarios like we saw on Friday."

This response is a start, but Wyze has repeatedly struggled to reliably update its approach to security and meaningfully communicate with its users. While we have seen security companies bounce back from security problems in the past, we haven't seen this kind of improvement from Wyze yet. So we are not endorsing their products or any services where you need to create a Wyze account with your personal info. 

We'll keep you updated on Wyze's security and privacy if our recommendations change. If you're looking for security brands that have made notable security improvements or have good privacy track records, we can recommend products from Ring, Google's Nest, Blink, and Arlo.

At $44 to $50 depending on where you get it, the Wyze Video Doorbell reigns as the lowest-priced smart doorbell camera of any major brand. Wyze is known for its affordable products, many of which overdeliver on specs and features considering the low cost. With the Wyze Video Doorbell, however, it's more a case of "you get what you pay for." 

We got our hands on the Wyze Video Doorbell when it first came out over two years ago. Though initially impressed with the video doorbell's low price point ($30 at the time), we found the device to be one to pass on after a thorough round of testing. Glitchy performance and a somewhat complicated installation process make it easier to overlook the price and check out other options, like the much higher rated Wyze Video Doorbell Pro

If you're still tempted by the low pricing, you can read our full review, originally published Dec. 2, 2020, below.


wyze-video-doorbell
Wyze

The Wyze Video Doorbell comes at an incredible price for an app-enabled live-streaming buzzer: $44. Nothing from major brands like Amazon's Ring or Google's Nest comes close to that level of affordability. That said, I experienced issues with the camera's performance on this video doorbell -- something I haven't encountered with other Wyze cams (more details on that in the section below). 

The Wyze Video Doorbell has a counterintuitive installation process that involves hardwiring the doorbell (there's no battery option), while disabling the wired chime on the other end of the system (there's no Wyze chime power kit). Instead of your wired chime, you have to use the included wireless Wyze Chime. It works well, but a wireless chime is typically reserved for battery-powered doorbells that don't connect to an indoor wired chime or used in the basements or second floors of larger homes where you can't hear your wired doorbell chime.

Wyze Video Doorbell in someone's palm

It's tiny.

Megan Wollerton/CNET

Wyze Video Doorbell

As you can see in the image to the right, the Wyze Video Doorbell is much smaller than your standard video doorbell. If you've installed a wired doorbell before, setting it up is straightforward at this stage. As always, consult a professional installer if you have any questions about your specific doorbell or electrical wiring. But, generally, the doorbell installation is similar to any other hardwired buzzer, so take a look at my Ring Video Doorbell Pro installation article and video to learn the basics. 

The chime is a different story. Most hardwired doorbells come with a chime power kit to help manage the power going to your doorbell. Instead, Wyze includes a plug-in wireless Chime accessory. That's easy to configure in the Wyze app, but first you have to disable your wired doorbell chime. It isn't hard to disable the chime and Wyze walks you through the steps in the app and provides the necessary jumper wire and the wire caps. 

Still, I wish Wyze included a power kit so that a traditional wired doorbell chime could work with the Video Doorbell, but the wireless Wyze Chime works well and offers 19 different chime sounds to choose from. 

wyzevideodoorbell2.png

The Wyze Video Doorbell sent "phantom" person alerts every five minutes several mornings in a row.

Screenshot by CNET

The doorbell's performance was glitchy throughout my testing, including many "phantom" alerts when the sun or a shadow hit the camera. The app regularly sent me an alert saying there was "someone at the door" and labeled the activity as a "person alert." 

You can record and store videos in the cloud, but there is no SD card slot for local storage. Like other Wyze cameras, you get 14 days of cloud storage with a Cam Plus or Cam Plus Lite subscription.

I did like the way the live feed shows more of your front stoop than some competitors (thanks to the 3:4 aspect ratio), so you can spot packages more easily. The longer aspect ratio is something I love about our current favorite smart doorbell, the $150 Arlo Video Doorbell, as well. 

Wyze also says its doorbell is compatible with the Wyze Lock, so in theory you can see who's at the door and then unlock the door from the app, although we haven't tested this functionality (yet). 

The verdict

At $44, the Wyze Video Doorbell is priced well. Unfortunately, its performance issues get in the way of its overall appeal. I would wait on this one to see if the reliability of its alerts improve over time. 

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