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Smart Home

August adds voice unlocking and doorbell announcements

August is making it easier to manage the front door with the latest updates to the August Smart Lock and August Doorbell Cam Pro.

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August adds visitor announcements to the Doorbell Cam Pro

Tyler Lizenby/CNET

August's Doorbell Cam Pro and August Smart Lock are getting updates to integrate more with smart speakers and the IFTTT platform. Starting Monday, users will be able to use voice unlocking with Google Assistant and hear announcements for the Doorbell Cam Pro.

Voice unlocking with Google Assistant

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The August Smart Lock now works with Google Assistant for voice unlocking. 

Tyler Lizenby/CNET

Voice locking and checking the status of your August Smart Lock are already available, and now August is adding voice unlocking via Google Assistant. Say a command like, "Hey, Google, unlock the front door," and Google Assistant will ask you for the security code you chose during the setup process. Voice unlocking already works with Alexa and August smart locks.

Doorbell announcements with Alexa and Google 

With August's latest update, you can choose to hear an announcement from your voice assistant when someone rings your August Doorbell Cam Pro or when the doorbell detects motion. Here's how it works with each platform:  

Amazon Alexa

With Amazon Alexa and the Doorbell Cam Pro, Alexa will announce when someone rings your doorbell by saying, "Someone is at the front door." You can also create your own routines to customize what Alexa says or add an automation like a smart light trigger. The same is true with motion detection. You can create routines when motion is detected. 

To activate these features, use the Alexa app and the August skill to activate announcements and routines. As of now, you can view your August Doorbell Cam Pro's live stream on video-enabled Alexa devices like the Echo Show and Echo Spot. August says in the coming weeks, you'll also be able to speak to someone through those devices. 

Google Assistant

Google Assistant can also announce when someone rings your Doorbell Cam Pro. In your Google Assistant settings, simply link your August account to Google to activate visitor announcements. If you've already linked your August and Google accounts, you'll need to unlink and relink the accounts. 

IFTTT

August is also adding the Doorbell Cam Pro to its list of IFTTT-compatible products. Using the "If This Then That" platform, you can create automation for when someone rings your doorbell or when the doorbell detects motion. Set smart lights to come on when motion is detected or play a song when someone rings the doorbell. 

Here's how to get these new functions working on your smart home devices, from August's blog:  

Google Assistant unlocking and visitor announcements

  • Launch the Google Assistant app > go to Settings > Home control > press the Add New button (bottom right of screen) and select August.
  • Enter your August account information.
  • To unlock your door, set a PIN code on the next screen.
  • To enable visitor announcements when someone rings your doorbell, select Yes when prompted to link your doorbell cam to the Google Assistant.

Note: If you wish to activate these features and have already linked your account, you must unlink the August account first and then re-link it.

Amazon Alexa visitor announcements

  • In the Alexa app, enable the August Smart Home Skill in the Alexa app (if you haven't already done so)
  • Select your August Doorbell Cam device
  • In the Announcements section, turn on the Doorbell Press setting

August's line of smart locks won our Editors' Choice Award for its brains and reliability and the Doorbell Cam Pro is a great choice as well. Read our recommendations for the best smart doorbells and our smart lock buying guide to find the perfect fit for your home.