The latest home-security package to hit the shops in Japan is an unusual collection of gadgets from Panasonic that includes a colour security camera that connects wirelessly to a fax machine.

The ¥108,000 (£452) VL-SW155K bundle features an entrance camera to be mounted outside the front door, a monitor with a 5-inch screen, a cordless handset and a colour-screened fax machine.

Peace of mind

Give the simplistic nature of the system it seems a little like overkill, but there are sure to be people out there who would like the added comfort of knowing that when the doorbell rings they can see who's outside on the regular monitor, the cordless phone and the fax machine's screen.

Should a permanent record of who came knocking be required, the monitor has memory for up to 100 still shots and 25 seconds of audio. Alternatively, a grainy monochrome thermal print of visitors can be cranked out manually from the fax machine each time.