Cameras that will keep an eye at home whether you are in or out
Smart home cameras are affordable, easy to plug in, intelligent and come with robust specs
New Delhi: Home security is becoming a priority for many households. Be it keeping an eye on the home while you travel, getting alerts about potential intruders or simply ensuring that your family is safe while you are in office all day, home security cameras are no longer complex to set up and use. The simple plug-and-play nature of most of these modern solutions has done away with a lot of wiring and drilling of walls. You don’t need a professional to come around to your house to install these cameras. Moreover, they are affordable, too.
D-Link, a company known for networking products including wireless routers, makes a camera called DCS-P6000LH Mini HD (₹2,995). It has a compact circular design, connects to your home Wi-Fi and has a 120-degree viewing angle. It streams videos at 720p resolution and does well with night-time recordings, too. Through the mydlink app (free for Android and iOS), you can access live feeds as well as past recordings (depending on the subscription plan; one-day recordings are available for free while subscriptions start at ₹189 per month). This camera also works with the Amazon Alexa virtual assistant—relevant if you have an Amazon Echo speaker, though the near-instant notifications when motion is detected near the camera is perhaps its biggest strength.
According to research firm Market Research Future, the home security camera market globally will be worth $1,306.3 million by 2023, and the Asia-Pacific markets will drive the quickest growth. One reason for this spike in popularity is the affordability aspect.
The YI Home Camera (₹2,190; Amazon.in) is another affordable option. It records at 720p resolution, sends motion detection alerts and can be used for two-way communication. Unlike the D-Link solution, where you have to pay cloud storage subscription fees, the YI Home uses a microSD card for localized recordings. The drawback is that anyone can access the physical memory card, and that is where the cloud recordings (which only you have access to) provide security.
While these stand-alone basic cameras are great to plug in and quickly set up, you may want something more capable that can record higher resolution video and cover a larger space better. The Logitech Circle 2 ($179 onwards on Amazon.in; around ₹12,000) brings to the table 1080p HD recording, 180-degree viewing angles and night vision, apart from its futuristic looks. Much like D-Link’s cloud storage options, Logitech lets you access footage from the past 24 hours for free, but for older video footage, you need to sign up for one of the premium storage plans. The Circle 2 lets you sign up for daily activity briefs as detected in your home, and the premium subscription enables motion zones feature.
Logitech Circle 2’s wired variant works with Apple HomeKit, Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant, while the wireless variant drops support for the HomeKit.
US start-up Lighthouse artificial intelligence’s camera, Lighthouse ($299; light.house), however, stands apart. Its intelligent systems can differentiate between the motion of human beings, pets and that of a robotic cleaner, for instance. It will recognize people by face and can be asked to pull out footage for a particular time or event. Just as you would speak with the virtual assistant in your phone or a smart speaker, you can talk to the camera—“What was my pet doing in the afternoon yesterday?” to get a summary. This will set you back by $10 per month.
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