Amazon’s smart doorbell company launches neighborhood security app

Ring, the “smart” doorbell maker recently acquired by Amazon, launched on Tuesday an app aimed at making it easier for people to report package thefts or other suspicious activities in their neighborhood.

Billed as “the new neighborhood watch,” Ring’s “Neighbors” app allows users who can confirm they live in a certain location to upload photos, videos and text messages on an interactive map of their neighborhood. For example, users can post an alert about a suspicious person on a nearby street or a photo of a suspected package thief.

“Neighbors” users will also receive push notifications if an alert applies to their neighborhood, as well as updates from local law enforcement.

The app’s debut marked Ring’s first new initiative since Amazon acquired the startup for a reported price of more than $1 billion. Aside from its flagship “smart” doorbells, Ring manufactures other home security devices, including cameras. The app is free to download on iOS and Android devices and does not require a Ring purchase to use, though footage taken from Ring’s video doorbells can be posted.

To use the app, consumers have to abide by Neighbors’ community guidelines, including an agreement to “treat neighbors with respect” and avoid politics, CNET reported.