Since its inception in 2014, Amazon’s Alexa has quickly become the backbone of today’s smart home. With the ability to connect to a wide variety of smart home devices, Alexa is a true powerhouse of a voice-controlled and interactive personal assistant.
Is Nest Hello compatible with Alexa? Yes, Nest Hello is compatible with Alexa, but not across all of Alexa’s many integrations. In order for Nest Hello and Alexa to work together, the compatible Amazon Alexa device must be capable of displaying video, such as Echo Show, Echo Spot, Fire TVs, and some later generation fire sticks. Through these devices, Alexa can then stream the Nest Hello’s live video.
So what exactly is Nest Hello and how does it work with Alexa? First, let’s examine what the capabilities of the Nest Hello video doorbell are.
Not Just A Video Doorbell But A Smart Video Door Bell
Nest Hello’s tag line is, “The doorbell you’ve been waiting for”. Not all video doorbells should be considered equal. Some of the leading video doorbells on the market have definite limitations. Nest Hello brings the following:
- 24/7 Streaming and continuous video recording
- 4:3 High definition video so you can see people from head to toe
- HDR video with sharp detail in both dark and bright areas
- Person, motion, and sound monitoring to detect visitors
- Facial recognition with customizable alerts
- Prerecorded and quick audio responses
- 160-degree diagonal view
- Configure up to 4 different zones for monitoring
Stunning HD Video
While other video and doorbell cameras stream choppy or grainy video, Nest Hello delivers stunning high-quality high definition video.
Viewing the live streaming video is as simple as opening up the Nest app. The Nest app is where all Nest smart home devices are managed.
Nest Hello’s night vision video is equally as impressive. Even detail at great distances, though in black and white, is as crisp is daytime streaming.
One of the smart capabilities of Nest Hello is its ability to determine what type of activity has occurred near your home and notify you of only the ones you want. Alerts include:
- Unfamiliar Face
- Familiar Face
- Zone Alerts
From within the Nest app, users select which activities trigger alerts to their smartphone. A simple check or uncheck within Filters set the configuration. Alerts show up as banners on your phone stating which activity has been detected.
Sound and Motion
The Nest Hello is one sensitive doorbell! When using sound alerts, it may alert to neighbors’ garage doors opening or vehicles driving past your home. Those who live close to neighbors or on a busy road may wish to turn this alert type off.
Nest Hello is quite sensitive to motion as well. Moderate winds causing movement in your landscape may result in false alerts, as will heavy rains.
If any improvement could be made in this area, it would be to enable the user to adjust the sensitivity levels.
Another smart feature of the Nest Hello video doorbell is its ability to recognize familiar faces. Nest Hello captures photos of all faces it views. These photos are then used to add familiar faces to the apps list.
By going to the Nest app and clicking on the live video feed, there is a People icon in the bottom banner of the screen. When selected, the app will display the photos of all the different individuals it has captured who have not already been categorized.
Give familiar faces names and your Nest Hello becomes remarkably good at recognizing that person each time it views them. When chosen to receive alerts for Familiar Faces, the app will not only notify you when a Familiar Face has been seen but whose face it believes it is, making avoiding a troublesome neighbor incredibly easy.
The faces of those who do not frequently visit your home – such as sales and delivery people may be excluded from the Familiar Faces inventory.
In order for Alexa and Nest Hello to work together, the Alexa Skill for Nest must first be enabled.
Prerecorded Audio Responses
Nest Hello will detect motion and send alerts to your phone whether the doorbell has been rung or not. The one feature that cannot be used until a ring is the prerecorded audio responses. While two-way conversation through the Nest Hello is possible, there may be times when a quick automatic response may be preferred.
After opening the app’s notification in response to a doorbell ring, you can choose to speak or send one of three responses. Unfortunately, there is no ability to record your own set of messages. The prerecorded responses are:
- You can leave it
- We’ll be right there
- No one can come to the door
Setting up Alert Zones
With wide 160-degree viewing angle can spot a lot going on. Users may not want to receive a notification each and every time a squirrel goes up and down the tree. That’s where zones come in. Letting Nest Hello know where you want it to focus its attention will reduce the number of irrelevant alerts blowing up your phone.
Nest Hello is capable of monitoring up to 4 zones. To set zones:
- Click on Gear icon
- Select Activity Zones
- Drag dots to outline specific area to monitor
How Nest Hello And Alexa Work Together
Now that we know a bit more about Nest Hello’s capabilities, how do you get them to work together? For Nest Hello to work with Alexa, you will need to enable the correct Alexa skill.
What Are Alexa Skills?
Alexa skills are what give Alexa the ability to connect to smart home devices.
Users use voice control to tell Alexa what they want their connected smart home devices to do.
Alexa Skills are not usually developed by Amazon. Instead, third-party developers, who wish to utilize Alexa’s capabilities, write the code for the skill specific to their device and make it available within the Alexa app.
The Alexa Skill that enables Nest Hello and Alexa to work together is the Nest Camera Skill.
What Does The Nest Camera Skill Do
When the Nest Video Skill is enabled and connected to a Nest account, users may view the live stream from Nest Hello. Live streaming is easily launched by using a voice command such as, “Alexa, show me the front door”.
In this case, the Nest Hello camera has been named “Front Door”. If the Nest Hello has been given a different name, like “Doorbell”, you could say:
- Alexa, show me the Doorbell
- Alexa, show the Doorbell
- Alexa, show feed from the Doorbell
- Alexa, show Doorbell feed
What Else Does The Nest Camera Skill Do
At the moment, the skill is simply for live streaming video from the camera. Audio may also be heard, but it is only one-way. The skill does not yet have the ability to interact with visitors in a two-way conversation.
Which Alexa Devices Work With Nest Hello
Unfortunately, because the current Alexa Skill for Nest Camera only allows for live streaming, only Alexa devices with video capability are compatible with Nest Hello. The list of current devices is:
- Echo Show
- Echo Spot
- All generations of Fire TV
- Second generations of Fire TV Stick
- Fire TV Edition smart TVs
- Generation 7 and above Fire Tablets
How To Enable The Nest Video Skill
Once the Nest Hello video doorbell has been installed, connected to wifi, and added to a Nest home account, the process may be started to enable the Nest Camera Skill.
From the Alexa app, search for the Nest Camera Skill by selecting the three-line hamburger in the upper left corner of the Home page. From the drop-down list, select Skills and Games.
From here, the easiest way to find a specific skill is to use the magnifying glass icon in the upper right corner. In the search bar, type in Nest Camera, and select it from the results list.
Click on Enable and proceed with the prompts to enter the Nest Home account user ID and password. Alexa should request to discover new devices. If for some reason Alexa does not, or was unable to discover the Nest Hello, it may be done using a second method.
Again, from the main menu hamburger icon drop-down, select to the top option, Add Device. When asked what type of device you are setting up, choose Camera, then Nest, and finally the Discover Devices.
Once the Nest Camera skill has been enabled and the Nest Hello connected to Alexa as a device, set up is complete. You will be able to live stream the doorbell’s video feed from any compatible Alexa device.
Can you use Amazon Alexa as a doorbell? No, Amazon does not currently allow for third-party notifications on Alexa devices.
Can I use Nest Hello without a subscription? Yes, but without a subscription, video and audio are limited to live streaming. Nest Hello does take photos of activity for you to review, but only stores the photos for 3 hours.
How much is a Nest Hello subscription? Nest Hello uses Nest Aware for video recording storage. Nest Aware users may choose between 5, 10, and 30-day video history services. Both monthly and annual plans may be purchased.
Do other Nest Cameras work with Alexa? Yes. The Nest Camera Skill will enable users to view the live stream from any camera in their Nest account.