Types of smart home cameras.
  • Category:
    Home Energy Savings
  • Published:
    October 14, 2022

Types of Smart Home Cameras: Which Ones Do You Need?

Smart home cameras are important for home security. Linked to a smart home hub like Constellation Connect and controlled by your voice, mobile app, or web interface, they also offer you convenience.

What is a smart home camera?

A smart home camera is an electronic instrument that lets you see and record what is happening in and around your home. Some models transmit and record two-way audio so you can talk to people near the camera, as well. Smart cameras connect to your smart home hub via Wi-Fi so that you can control them from anywhere. You can also capture, download and store the imagery they collect. They are a valuable part of your home automation system.

How do smart home cameras work?

Smart cameras work at your command and also by motion detectors. You can use an app on your phone that tells the camera to start collecting imagery and send it to your smartphone or cloud storage.

Alternatively, a motion detector can turn the device on if it senses the presence of a person, animal, or vehicle moving within its range. The camera will send you an alarm when its motion detector is triggered. Some models allow you to transmit audio and video files to law enforcement.

Most common smart camera features

Now that you can answer the question, what is a smart home camera, and know generally how smart home cameras work, here are some common–and not so common–features. You can buy relatively low-cost, stripped down models or get all the bells and whistles at a higher price.

  • Cloud storage
  • Built-in storage
  • Video capture
  • Motion detection
  • Two-way audio
  • Geofencing
  • Face-tagging family and friends
  • Solar charging and battery back-up

What are the best types of smart cameras for your home?

What are the best types of smart cameras for your home?

Beyond choosing from an array of features, you also have options that vary by application. Some types of smart home cameras are designed for outdoor use. Others are meant for use inside. In low-light situations, night vision and thermal cameras give you a good view of your property. Hard-wired cameras are still available, but you will also find wireless models that are easier to install. You can turn an older security camera into something of a smart device by connecting it to a smart plug.

To guide you through the best choice for various applications, here are common smart camera types and uses.

Indoor smart home cameras

1. Smart baby monitors and nanny cams

When it comes to the welfare of your child, a smart baby monitor and nanny cam provide peace of mind that is priceless. You can buy hidden models integrated into a book or a toy for surveillance. A visible smart camera can monitor a wide view range to capture the activities of your child. The higher the resolution of the image, the higher the price.

Also consider the viewing angle and how wide a shot you can capture. You will want to weigh the trade-off. Having audio is a plus and you will likely want a record option. Motion sensors turn the device on when someone is in the room and off when nothing is happening, saving energy.

2. Smart pet cameras

Similar to baby monitors, smart pet cameras provide a sense of assurance for your fur babies. If you are dealing with pet behavior problems, a pet camera can catch the behavior as it happens, which can help with correcting the issue. The same trade-offs are involved as with nanny cams and baby monitors. Rechargeable wireless models with motion detectors will be the most energy efficient.

3. Smart garage cameras

Smart garage cameras, especially when paired with a smart garage opener, can increase security in one of the most vulnerable entry points to your home. Thieves can target your tools, sports equipment, vehicle, and the often-unlocked door between the garage and your home.

Position a camera in the driveway to monitor activity outside and put one inside the garage, too. If you worry you might have forgotten to close the garage door, a quick look at your smart garage camera will let you know.

4. Smart home security cameras

Smart home security cameras play an important role in home security automation, along with smart lighting. A home security camera inside lets you check on your family and pets. When you are away, you can see what is happening inside your home. Adding a smart home camera in strategic locations can help the police in the case of a break-in and will be useful for making insurance claims.

Outdoor smart home cameras

1. Smart video doorbells

Knowing who is outside your home, especially when you are not at home, enhances your personal safety and the security of your home. You can also monitor package drop-offs and delivery personnel. A smart doorbell camera that gives you the ability to talk to people outside without opening the door is safer and more convenient.

2. Smart door locks with video capture

Control who has access to your home, have a record of coming and going, and never worry about key copies that are out of your possession. Pairing smart door locks with video capture cameras gives you a visual record to go with the other data.

3. Smart floodlight camera

Lighting your home exterior gives criminals fewer places to hide. A well-lit home gives smart cameras clearer views and images. Linking them with your smart home hub allows you to automate when they turn on and off, saving energy. Bright lights can repel animals and protect your home from wildlife.

Tips for choosing a smart camera

With so many choices, applications and features, choosing among the models and types of smart home cameras can be daunting. Many of the benefits of a smart home are enabled and enhanced by adding smart home cameras. They are definitely smart home devices worth getting. Here are things to consider when deciding among the options.

  1. Pick the right type of smart camera for your purpose. Different applications require specific features and form factors, such as video doorbells, floodlights with cameras, or cameras hidden in teddy bears for monitoring the nanny.
  2. Power and connectivity are important considerations. Wireless cameras are easy to install, but are more open to security breaches if not properly configured. Battery or solar-powered cameras have a better chance of working when power goes out than wired models.
  3. Think about how images will be stored. Remote storage on a server allows you to record more video than those that store images only on memory cards. Cloud storage saves your images and video remotely where they may be more secure. External storage can, however, be expensive.
  4. Your privacy can be an issue. Improperly integrated cameras can be a cyber security vulnerability. Without the proper safeguards, outsiders can gain access to your equipment, images, and entire smart home system.

How many smart cameras do you really need?

How many smart cameras does your home really need? More isn’t necessarily better. Too many smart cameras can tax your system and your wallet without actually increasing security. Consider:

  • Your budget. Get what you can afford. You can add more cameras later.
  • Areas that need to be covered. Figure out where your home is most vulnerable and prioritize those areas for camera installation.
  • The size of your home. The bigger your home, the more space you may need to keep an eye on. If you have multiple entrances and windows that may be used to break in, consider adding cameras at these locations.
  • Your bandwidth limit. Each camera connected to your smart system can take up bandwidth. Adding more bandwidth may be expensive.
  • Specific concerns. Adding pet monitors and nanny cams may not be needed by everyone. If you suffer from doorstep theft, you may want to beef up coverage in this area.

Set up your smart home monitoring with Constellation Connect

When you set up your smart home with Constellation, you are getting a system with components designed to work well together. The smart home cameras are easily integrated and installed, whether using external or internal options. Used in conjunction with other smart home elements, like smart lighting and smart locks, they significantly enhance the safety of your home.

Get Pricing on Electricity or Natural Gas Plans in Your Area

Whatever your energy needs are, we've got a plan for you

Comments ( 0 )

Your email address will not be published.

  • |

Get Pricing on Energy Plans in Your Area