The Plus X Award sounds like it might go for someone who consistently wins big in eating competitions, or provides clothing for those who do, but in fact, it is a nearly two-decade old judged competition with the goal of promoting high-quality design in technology, sports, and lifestyle.
This year the Best Product of the Year was awarded to the EZVIZ HP7, first released in May 2023, which brings some of the concepts seen in devices like Ring doorbells and makes them available in a way designed to fit better with larger homes or mansions, in case the look of the DIY attached Ring Doorbell 3 doesn't quite fit your neighbourhood.
The HP7 "replaces a doorman for communication and smart of protection," in the words of EZVIZ. It does this using a 7-inch color screen indoors, and integration with an electronic lock. Users can also use their phones and an app to view the video and audio and unlock the door – in some respects, this is like any other smart doorbell, but here the integration with the locking mechanism (as well as any of EZVIZ's other camera tech) is the selling point. Residents (as well as staff, butlers, etc.) can be given swipe cards to open the doors much like an office).
“We are extremely proud because the success of the HP7 confirms EZVIZ’s continued leadership in the home entry product category,” said Candice Tu, the leading product manager. “It’s an example of how we enhance the user experience of an everyday household device, by applying effective product design to integrate complex features to be easy, straightforward and pleasant to use for everyone.”
That 'leadership' is literal too – the HP7 system acts as a home hub for an EZVIZ system, and the product integration is something which won favours and initially the Excellent Product Design category in the German Design Award 2024. Many users, it seems, are happy to pay for a more integrated experience rather than have to keep switching apps on their phone to control different cameras and other smart home devices (as the reviewer of a number of these devices I do understand, though of course few reviewers have mansions!)
“The HP7 is a vital piece of the puzzle for EZVIZ to build diverse and customized front door solutions for families with different needs, filling the special market void that’s not covered by our video doorbells and smart door viewers,” said Binghong Wang, “It shows EZVIZ’s commitment to building future-oriented easy smart homes with extensive product choices and user-centric designs.”
I have to say that it is interesting that a doorbell which looks more like the kind of doorbell you'd expect to see on the kind of property it is pitched at is the design winner; from face-to-face discussions, I know a lot of people are hesitant about 'smart' doorbells; perhaps this is a solution – though it won't stop EZVIZ selling their other smart doorbells like the DB1 series.