02 Mar Nest Cam: The Next Level in Home Security
By Roberto Baldwin. July 30 2015. For www.engadget.com
Keeping an eye on your family, pets, neighbors and maybe a thief or two is the pitch for the Nest Cam. The device shoots higher-quality images and features a better stand.
The Nest Cam delivers crisp 1080p images to both the Nest app and the Nest website, making it easy to keep track of what’s happening back at home. The updated hardware now has a magnetic base and highly adjustable swivel joint allowing it to shoot from nearly any angle. Although, you’ll need a monthly subscription to see video from the past 10 or 30 days.
A great way to keep tabs on your abode while you're away.
Out of the box, the Nest Cam immediately feels solid. In particular, the pivot joint is adjustable. Because of that and the base, which is now magnetic, you can mount it pretty much anywhere. If that setup doesn’t work for you, you can remove the base and attach the camera to a standard tripod mount for additional placement options.
Just plug the camera into a power source, take a photo of the QR code with the iOS or Android app and plug in your wireless password.
You get better clarity and less pixelation. The big win for 1080p is that saved videos will look nicer when you play them back.
In night mode, it’s bright and crisp, a burglar in your home in the dead of night within 20 feet of the device will be easily recognizable on the camera. Still, the Nest Cam offers solid night vision for when you need to keep an eye on your home in the evening and a crispy daytime image of your pets lounging around the house while you’re at work.
The Nest Cam also features a motion-detection system that breaks out video with movement and alerts you via the app that something has moved within the frame. When Nest first unveiled it, the company boasted of new algorithms that would minimize false alerts. For the most part, the updated software does a good job of not hassling you when nothing is actually happening. While pointed indoors, it alerted me of people and cats moving about, but ignored curtains and other items rippling in the wind. Nest says the camera will also ignore moving vehicles.
Fortunately, you get granular control over motion detection thanks to what Nest is calling “activity zones.” Just select a zone and the app will alert you when there is movement in that zone. Perfect for areas where you just need to know that someone is approaching and not already sitting on a couch moving their arms about.
The iOS and Android apps offer quick access to live video feeds as well as any other Nest products in the home. Having access to those same feeds via a browser means that you can keep an eye on your feeds anywhere.
The apps are polished in terms of how they present video clips. Notified moments are broken out as individual clips, so it’s easier to pinpoint a specific period.
To access those video clips from the past, You will need to subscribe to Nest Aware for 10 ($100 a year) or 30 ($300 a year) days of video history. Additional cameras added to an account are half the monthly cost of the initial camera. If you were to buy three Nest Cams and wanted access to 30 days of video for all of them, the total monthly bill would be $50 a month.
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