Modern home security cameras are affordable, easy to install, and can be accessed via your phone or computer 24/7. They make it easy to monitor who’s coming and going from your home and to record suspicious activity in case of a break-in. Some systems even have the ability to contact local law enforcement straight from the app.
Ring, makers of the popular connected doorbell, has expanded into other home security products, including this indoor/outdoor camera. The new Ring Stick Up camera can be installed on any flat surface and provides 1080p HD video to any mobile device. You can access a real-time view or check out clips of motion-activated recordings. What makes this camera unique is that it can be plugged in and powered by one Ethernet cord (sold separately). This feature is great if you have a weak Wi-Fi signal and it requires the use of only one cord. Other features include custom motion zones, two-way talk, and an add-on subscription to share and save video clips.
The next-generation Nest cameras are available as separate indoor or outdoor versions. Nest records 24/7 video at a 130-degree wide angle—great for keeping an eye on an area that has a lot of activity. Talk and listen are standard on all Nest cameras, as well as 4x optical zoom and night vision with eight infrared LEDs. You’ll need to subscribe to Nest Aware to unlock all of the features, with plans starting at $5 per month.
The Circle 2 is an indoor/outdoor camera that is fully weatherproof and available in a wired or wireless version. The wireless version provides up to 3 months of continuous runtime. Resolution is 1080p with a 180-degree field of view. Logitech has added an extra layer of security, as every camera is digitally signed and comes with 24 hours of free AES 256 Bit Dual Layer Encryption storage in your own secure, private cloud. Logitech says the Circle works with Amazon Alexa, Apple HomeKit, and Google Assistant.
The Arlo camera comes as a system that includes a home base station that can emit a 100-plus-decibel siren when motion or sound is detected. This camera is wireless and includes seven days of recordings for free, which is a great deal considering that most of the competition requires a paid subscription. You can also save recordings locally to your own USB drive.
The Blink XT is a great value and offers a no-fee cloud storage and two-year battery life, so no need to recharge every few months. Resolution is only 720p and audio is only one-way, so you can hear what is going on, but you can’t respond to deliveries or an intruder.
The Amazon Cloud Cam seems to offer the best of everything at a great price: 24/7 recording in 1080p, two-way talk, night vision, works with Alexa, and a basic cloud storage plan that saves seven days and covers up to five cameras for $6.99 per month.
The Canary is the most full-featured indoor security camera on this list. You can see and hear what is happening 24/7 and in case of emergency you can contact local authorities straight from the Canary app. The 1080p resolution and 147-degree wide-angle lens provide a great view of a room or living space.
The Defender is a robust surveillance system that provides wide-angle 1080p coverage 24/7. The two cameras included in this kit are IP66 rated for dust and heavy rain and made from lightweight polycarbonate resin to protect from vandals who might try to take down your cameras.
The Swann HD security camera captures 1080p video with up to 65-foot range of night vision. A 100-foot cable means this camera can be placed in a variety of locations far from power, and any excess cable remains wrapped in the stand for added stability. Its IP66 weatherproof rating means it can withstand temperatures from minus 4 to 122 degrees.