The Best Smart Security Cameras to Keep Your Home Safe
Having a smart home security camera can give you peace of mind. But not all home security cameras are created equal. Some cameras record video in ultra-high-definition, others are wireless, while a few are only designed to be used indoors. Here is our list of the best smart home security cameras, including the best budget models, the best outdoor models, and more.
Wyze Cam V3: Best Budget Smart Security Camera
At just $20, the Wyze Cam V3 is one of the most affordable smart cameras, but it comes with tons of great features for its price. The V3 is an upgraded version of the highly-rated V2, and it has better features for the same price.
This smart camera has a new Starlight Sensor that records color night vision in full HD 1080p video. With its IP65 water-resistance rating and telescoping mount, you can mount this indoor/outdoor smart camera anywhere. It allows you to set activity zones, so you can block the motion detector from sending you alerts in certain areas.
Like the previous model, the V3 has a built-in microphone and speaker, so you can talk to visitors and hear them too. It also works with Alexa, the Google Assistant, and IFFT smart home setups. There’s even a built-in siren, which you can activate from the app to scare off unwanted visitors.
You can record up to three days of continuous video locally to a 32GB microSD card, or save 14 days of clips to the cloud for free. However, this smart camera only records 12 seconds of motion every five minutes without a subscription. In order to record unlimited motion clips, you will need a Cam Plus subscription for $1.25 a month per camera. The subscription also lets you filter your notifications for people, pets, vehicles, and packages.
eufy Security 2K: Best Smart Camera for Apple Users
If your smart home is built around Apple HomeKit, you probably know there aren’t too many compatible devices that you can choose from. One of the best smart home security cameras that works with Apple HomeKit is the eufy Security 2K Indoor Cam.
This smart camera is featured on Apple’s list of HomeKit compatible devices, but it also works with Alexa and the Google Assistant. It has tons of smart features, like person and pet detection, even without a subscription. You can even use this smart camera’s sound detection to get alerts when your baby wakes up crying.
As the name indicates, the eufy Security Cam records video in 2K resolution, which means clips will look much sharper than most HD cameras. It also has two-way audio, motion activity zones, and a “pet command” feature that will play recorded messages for your pets and when they are detected in certain areas.
While it does not offer free cloud storage after a 30-day free trial, you can record video clips to a 128GB microSD card or continuously record to a NAS. You can also pay for subscriptions to Eufy Cloud Service to get 30 days of storage for $3 a month or use an Apple HomeKit Secure Video plan.
Blink Outdoor: Best Budget Wireless Smart Camera
For less than $100, the Blink Outdoor Security Camera is one of the best totally wireless security cameras on the market. Not only is it easy to install, it uses two regular AA batteries that are rated to last up to two years before they need to be replaced.
The Blink Outdoor Security Camera has two-way audio, infrared night vision, and an IP65 water-resistance rating, which means it won’t get damaged in any weather conditions. It also works with Alexa, so you can use voice commands to view your camera’s live feed on any Alexa-enabled device.
With its cone-shaped mount, this smart camera can be installed anywhere and you can point the lens in any direction. It also has customizable activity zones, which means you won’t get notifications on your phone every time a car drives down your street. When the camera detects motion, you can save up to 256GB of the HD-quality video clips to a USB drive with the included Sync Module 2.
However, without a subscription, you will only get motion alerts that connect you to Blink’s live view in the app. Plus, the local storage only backs up your clips once a day. So, it might be best to sign up for one of Blink’s Cloud Storage plans, if you want to review any clips from the past 60 days.
Ring Floodlight Camera: Best Outdoor Security Camera
The Ring Floodlight comes with two bright lights that output 1,800 lumens, which is a little more than two standard 60-watt light bulbs. If that’s not enough to scare off unwanted visitors, this smart camera also comes with a siren you can activate any time through the app. Plus, you can connect it to your Alexa devices and get announcements whenever motion is detected.
However, unlike other smart cameras, the Ring Floodlight needs to be hardwired to a weatherproof electrical box. So, you might need to have this smart camera installed by a professional. It also doesn’t come with any free cloud storage or local storage options, which means you will only be able to view a live feed of the camera when you receive motion alerts.
With a Ring Protect Plan, you can save recorded video clips to the cloud and review them for up to 60 days. The plan costs $3 a month, and it lets you share your videos and personalize your notifications. Without the plan, you still get two-way audio, HD live view, color night vision, activity zones, and real-time alerts.
Since Ring is owned by Amazon, this is one of the only smart cameras that works with Amazon Key. You can use the service to get your packages delivered inside your home or your garage to prevent anything from being stolen or ruined in the rain.
If you want to know more about what Amazon Key is and how it works, check out our previous article here.
Arlo Pro 3: Best Smart Security Camera System
If you’re looking for a full home security system, and you don’t mind spending a little more, the Arlo Pro 3 is your best option. This smart security system comes with one, two, three, or four cameras and a smart hub base station. You also have the option to add more cameras to the system later.
The cameras in the Arlo Pro 3 kit come with removable batteries that you only have to charge every two to six months, depending on how you use them. They also come with a magnetic mount that makes them easy to install anywhere and point in any direction. The Arlo Pro 3 system works with the Google Assistant, Apple HomeKit, and Alexa-enabled devices.
These smart cameras record 2K video with HDR and color night vision which means you can zoom in and see details at any time of day. Plus, the cameras have built-in floodlights and sirens to ward off unwanted visitors. Unlike other smart cameras, the Arlo Pro 3 has full-duplex two-way audio, which means you can still hear someone while you are talking over each other.
The Arlo base station provides long-range WiFi connectivity to your smart cameras, so you can install them up to 300 feet away. It also has a USB port that allows you to record footage locally with a hard drive, so you can review your recordings at any time. You also get seven days of cloud storage for free or up to 30 days with an Arlo Smart Subscription plan.
If you don’t want to spend money on a subscription, you might want to opt for the cheaper Arlo Pro 2, which offers seven days of free cloud storage. However, the older model does not come with the same features and only records video in HD. You can also get the Arlo Ultra 2 if you want to record video in 4K, but that model is more expensive.
If you want to install a smart camera, check out our guide on how to test your WiFi signal. It will help you find out if your internet signal is strong enough to install a smart camera in your desired location.
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