Finding the right smart home camera for your home

When you’re away from home, it’s nice to know that your place is safe. Installing a smart home camera gives you a live view from anywhere in the world. Here’s our guide to choosing the right one.

Finding the right smart home camera for your home
  • What are the best new home security devices? Take a look at our dedicated home security section for the latest sensors, alarms, cameras, and more.
  • What is a smart home camera? Any camera that lets you stream video via the Internet. Some also offer security features, environment monitoring, and motion control.
  • Are smart home cameras designed only for security? No, actually. Some can record daily life and produce a highlights package of your loved ones.

While sensors and connected devices can monitor your home, there is nothing quite like having an eye in the sky. Installing a smart home camera allows you to check up on everything you hold dear — including kids and elderly relatives.

If you are wondering which camera to buy or how they actually work, you have come to the right place. Here is our beginner’s guide.

How do you choose a smart home camera?

Unlike some other devices, the smart home camera is poorly defined. Some are designed purely for security, while others are more about checking on people or capturing memories. For this reason, you need to start by working out what you want from any camera you purchase.

Finding the right smart home camera for your home 01

Different cameras do different things

If you want tighter security, look for a camera with motion detection and infrared night vision. It’s also worth checking the recording function — some cameras will only store footage for an extended period if you pay a monthly subscription.

Finding the right smart home camera for your home 02

Some are made for family monitoring

For environment or family monitoring, get a camera with two-way audio. This means you can hear what’s going on and talk with family at home.

It’s also important to find out with which smart home systems each camera works. If you use Google Assistant, for instance, you might want to purchase a camera that offers direct support.

The best smart home cameras

Clearly, there’s a lot to consider when determining the best smart home cameras. Even with these considerations in mind, you need to find one that looks good in your space. The last thing you want is a bulky plastic device interrupting your sought-after feng shui. Here are some of the best smart home cameras currently available.

Yale All-In-One Smart Home Camera

This brand-new device uses intelligent motion sensors to notify you of intruders. It also has a built-in light, two-way audio, area masking for privacy, and Amazon Alexa integration.

Price: $149.62 USD

Samsung SmartThings Cam Full HD Monitoring Camera

Part of the wider SmartThings suite, this camera uses artificial intelligence to tell the difference between objects and people. As a result, you won’t get so many false alarms.

Price: $89.99 USD

 

Nest Cam IQ Indoor Security Camera

This connected camera from Nest does it all. It has an 8-megapixel sensor that captures HDR video, and a 12x digital zoom with close-up tracking. The device also integrates with Google Assistant, while eight LEDs provide night vision.

Price: $299 USD

Nooie Cam 360 Motion-Tracking Camera

If you just want to check on your pet or kids at home, get Nooie Cam. This affordable device rotates through 360 degrees, meaning you can watch your loved ones run across the room!

Price: $49.99 USD

Netatmo Welcome Home Security Camera

Thanks to facial recognition technology, the Netatmo Welcome can alert you whenever your kids pass by the camera. Likewise, the camera knows when an unrecognized intruder is wandering around your home.

Price: $199.99 USD

Ulo Interactive Surveillance Camera

This cute little device is a very capable camera in disguise. Ulo has motion sensors, a tiny microphone, and eyes that focus on people who interact with the owl.

Price: $223 USD

Keep watch over your home

When you’re at the office, it’s nice to see that everybody and everything is good at home.

Do you own a smart home camera? Share your experience in the comments!

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Meet Mark Myerson

Mark is best known for writing about apps, but he also loves the tactile, hardware side of technology. Being a professional photographer, he's pretty handy with a camera, and he's a self-confessed tweetaholic.

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Gfw

You left out the Wyze camera which is less expensive and probably equals or surpasses the performance of the other cameras.

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Liz
The Wyze camera is a good option, too! We've included that one in some of our other product roundups recently 👍
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  • Liz
  • Gfw