Fresh thinking: VW launches a doorbell

Published: 31 August 2016

► You can now answer your door while driving
► Alarms can be sounded when prompted
► You can even open the door remotely

Cars answering doors? That’s a pretty big hallway…

No, this isn’t a bizarre scheme to send autonomous cars out to welcome guests like some kind of wheeled robo-Jeeves, but part of VW’s plan to keep on extending the internet of things until literally everything is connected. In this case it’s the BUDD-e electric vehicle concept and the DoorBird WiFi-enabled doorbell.

I say, ding dong!

It’s true – by combining the connected car with the connected doorbell you could answer your door while you’re on the M25.

Pull the other one, etc

Yes, yes, it’s got bells on. But we’re not making this up – DoorBird is an existing product. Kitted out with a motion sensor and a camera, it not only allows you to view visitors remotely on your smartphone but actually open the door for them. VW’s innovation is to incorporate DoorBird’s output into BUDD-e’s infotainment system.

So I’ll never miss a delivery?

That’s the idea. And if your would-be visitor looks shifty you can always activate the 100dB alarm to convince them to clear off. Probably best if you don’t test this on your mum, but you’re unlikely to have a problem with cold callers for long.

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By CJ Hubbard

Former CAR magazine associate editor, road tester, organiser, extremely variable average wheel count