Choosing a wifi camera for home security is not as easy as it sounds. You will need to put a few factors into consideration before you finally settle for a home security camera system that meets all your needs and preferences and above all guarantees safety in your home. There are several brands on the market and each camera has its own quality and level of performance in terms of surveillance. Deciding on which wireless security camera to buy can be tricky.
Security cameras have become necessities rather than luxurious items in most homes. This is because of their effectiveness in deterring crime as well as affordability. You can easily get a wifi camera for home surveillance with high-quality images and videos for less than 50 dollars in the market. Expensive security camera models come with more details and specifications such as image quality. All in all, the entire security camera will depend on what you want to achieve. Always read the camera specifications to get a glimpse of its performance and abilities before you purchase it.
Below a few considerations you can make when buying your security camera:
It is at night that you will really need to ensure you are keeping an eye on your property. Most security cameras have this feature but you will need to check the quality of the night imaging. Different security cameras have different night vision abilities with some very similar. Almost all home security camera systems utilize IR (infrared) LED for illumination of dark areas. Most manufacturers use the IR in-home cameras as the infrared rays are cheap and integrate easily into the cameras. More expensive types have image intensifiers and thermal-enabled vision. Night vision via IR is important for protecting your premises. It enables you to view live feeds with no looping while identifying images at specific distances.
Camera resolution and video quality
Poor video qualities captured by your home security camera will not help much if you are trying to obtain evidence from it. You can barely depict anything from blurry, grainy and dark images. However other factors such as time stamps, clothes, appearance, and height may come in handy for the identification. If your neighborhood is not very secure, you will need to factor in the camera’s resolution. The most common video qualities available include High Definition (HD 1280*720), full High Definition (Full HD 1920*1080) and also Ultra HD (4K 4096*2160). Full HD and 4K means that the picture quality is better but this also means that your batteries run out very fast and also will require more internet bandwidth.
In case you experience power blackouts often, you may need to consider this when you are settling for a wifi camera for home. Other times, intruders will intentionally tamper with power lines or even cut off the supply of power in your home to evade detection. Manufacturers are now including power back up into security cameras. Security cameras come with backup batteries that can sustain a power outage for several minutes to hours. This will give the camera ample time to record any images and videos, send notification and email alerts as well as saving the data either on the cloud or a MicroSD card securely.
MicroSD cards may get lost, stolen or tampered with at home. You may want to settle for a camera that comes with cloud storage where all the video feed and images are stored effectively. There are manufacturers that offer free cloud storage while others charge a small monthly subscription fee. This means that the storage plan may either be a complete package with the camera or may be a separate storage plan. You can be sure that all the recorded information is tamper-free. You can retrieve information from the cloud using the Smart Apps by downloading it to your smartphone or computer.
Memory card storage
Choose a wifi camera for home monitoring that has a memory card slot. This will come in handy if you do not want to pay extra cloud storage subscription fee every month which might be expensive in the long run. Cloud storage services may be offered by the manufacturing company itself or other third party providers. You can save a few bucks by avoiding monthly subscription fees. Also, You can subscribe to cloud storage service at certain times of the year, say for example you are going on vacation. You may need longer recording hours and storage space or during times when you need to beef up security.
Most manufacturers of security cameras on the market have integrated this feature into their products. The feature is also customizable by simply turning off if everyone is at home. This is because once the camera senses any motion it automatically sends alerts to your email or messages. You can turn it on if nobody is at home. In case everyone has left, the security camera will capture images and footage of any objects in motion around it. This images and the videos will instantly be sent to your phone as push notifications. When you are setting up the camera, you will need to ensure the motion sensor settings are right before mounting it to the location you want.
During installation, you will notice that if you set the motion sensor sensitivity very high, there is a likelihood that the camera will keep on giving false alarms. Constant false alarms may be annoying as they do not indicate any danger. Ensure you set the sensor a bit low to reduce any false alarms. Check that the camera has this option of regulating the detector’s sensitivity.
Two-way audio for communication
This feature is not at top of the list as it may not be very necessary but in case you want to communicate with people at home on a constant basis, you may consider this. Two-way audio systems allow you to listen in on people at home, monitor activities and give commands to your pet and other people. You may also use this to scare away intruders trying to access your home. You can get to know what exactly is going on at home or around the house from wherever you may be.
An in-built microphone and speakers are the supporting pillars behind this feature. Ensure that your speakers are audible enough or you may be required to connect the camera to external audio devices.
Field of view
Choose a wifi camera for home with a wide field of view. The field of view for your camera will define how big a location you can see. It will also define how far the camera will be able to reach. Outdoor security cameras come with a wide angle lens to enable them to capture large areas with just a single look.
Mobile Smart App
Technology has changed many things and one of them is the security of your home. As long as you have an internet connection on your phone, you can view all the happenings at home from your camera’s App. After installing the App on your phone, link it with your camera to enable you to monitor the home from anywhere. The pairing process is easy and the Apps are easy to use. You can monitor, control and even customize certain features on your camera from the comfort of your smartphone. Other Apps can also be downloaded on PCs and Mac.
The Bottom-line of choosing a wifi camera for home monitoring
Choosing a wifi camera for home surveillance is not an easy task. However, you can put the above factors into consideration to ensure you get the most out of your security camera. Security cameras are not limited to the above features only. Other models come with customizable schedules, pan/tilt/zoom features as well as facial recognition. You may opt for these features for your security camera but at an extra cost.
Read more: Best Affordable Security Camera for Home
I have over 15 years of knowledge in the technology field. Studied IT systems administration and now installing security cameras and smart home devices into user’s homes and offices.