Package delivery is problematic these days — between deliveries that just don’t show up and the odd rash of delivery porch thieves that have emerged in the past few years (although smart doorbells are a real threat to those folks), making sure you get the stuff you paid for can be a problem.
For those of you operating smart homes, specifically those with Nest products, you’re about to get a new layer of protection. The company is about to launch a package detecting feature for those who are using the Nest Hello device and are connected with a Nest Aware subscription.
As of late August, the company is rolling out a package-detecting feature to enable users to receive a notification when Nest Hello detects that a package has been dropped at the front door, and another when it’s been picked up by someone in the home. So whether it’s a PlayStation 5 or a bulk delivery of shampoo, you’ll know what the hell is going on at home.
Sure, a lot of people have an apartment office, a front desk or a doorman, but the majority of Americans just have a wide-open front entrance and package theft is becoming more and more common, even as smart home technology gets more sophisticated about seeing what’s going on. At the same time, how many people have you heard of going to the pen for ripping off someone’s Amazon delivery in the space of a minute?
We’ve all faced the problem. Do I stay home and wait for the delivery like I might wait for the guy to come fix my dishwasher, or do I leave written instructions on where to deliver it? (My neighbors are cool. I went to Hawaii for a week for my anniversary and they hid all my stuff until they saw I was home and could tell me where everything was).
As it turns out, the ability to detect deliveries was one of the most requested features from Nest Hello’s users, and the company is being pretty responsive in terms of giving its smart home users peace of mind.
So, bang — today, assuming you’ve gotten the latest Nest Hello update, package alerts are a go. You’ll be notified when a box drops. An opening screen on the Nest app will let you know that package alerts are on, and you can choose to keep them on or turn them off from there.
To get the most out of the new feature, Google suggests that users make sure that packages can be seen in the Hello app’s video stream and ensure that the entrance is well-lit. There’s a complementary wedge that comes with the Hello camera to adjust its angle to make sure you have proper coverage, or it might be worth removing the junk that’s blocking the camera from peeking on your porch thieves.
Google will have a blog post and a support site to learn more about the feature shortly, so we’ll keep you posted on how best to protect your stuff using smart home technology like Nest Aware’s package notification feature.