You know what’s all the rage for 2019? Safety. I’m not talking about self-defense classes or
boxing workouts…I’m talking about home security systems. Long gone are the days of sticking
an ADT sign in your front lawn and hoping burglars get the hint. These days, homeowners and
renters alike are taking security into their own hands. Although the holidays are behind us, I’m
sure I’m not the only one who spent much of December being paranoid about having a package
stolen off of my doorstep. So I’ve decided it’s time to do some research and see what’s out
there in terms of the best home security cameras. Any one of these cameras below would not
only make a great gift to myself, but for older parents or even close friends.
Amazon Cloud Cam
Amazon has mastered the art of delivering my packages in record time, they’re making my
Whole Foods purchases a heck of a lot more affordable, and Alexa and I are quickly becoming
BFFs. Take all my money, Amazon, because I feel like I now need your state-of-the-art (yet
surprisingly affordable!) home security system. The Amazon Cloud Cam is all controlled by one
app on your phone, and it offers features like advanced motion detection, 2-way audio, night
vision, and it can connect to Alexa for hands-free voice control.
So what’s the catch? First things first, buyers should be aware that the only video footage you
can download is whatever has been triggered by motion detection. Full 24/7 video is not going
to be available for downloading and reviewing. Also, in order to get more than 24-hours worth
of video storage space, you’ll need to purchase one of Amazon’s “plans” which range from
$6.99 per month to $19.99 per month.
Amcrest Pro HD
The Amcrest Pro HD is designed with your front porch in mind. Its durability and surprisingly
clear 1080P Full HD resolution is built to withstand more inclement weather, and it’s wireless,
so no need to wrap cords around pillars or sneak unsightly extension cords up walls. It connects
to Amazon Echo via Wi-Fi, and can be controlled right from your phone via the Amcrest View
Pro app. If you’re looking for something that doesn’t only detect motion, Amcrest provides up
to 4 hours of continuous footage that you can review later from your PC or Mac.
iBaby Monitor M6S
Baby monitors have come a long way since the days of the one-way walkie talkie. The Arlo Baby
Monitoring system is a fully equipped 1080p HD camera that features 2-way wireless talk
capabilities so that you can soothe your baby with your own voice no matter where you are in
the house (or out of the house, for that matter), night vision, and instant “smart alerts” to your
phone showing you motion detection, sound, and even air quality. What makes this camera really unique is that it also features a multi-colored night light, a lullaby player, a temperature,
humidity & VOC air sensor and I can’t forget to mention that it comes in various animal shapes,
so it looks more like a toy than a camera.
Netgear Arlo Pro
This 1080p HD camera is built to be 100% wireless. It also operates under most weather
conditions (functioning best between 32 and 122 degrees Fahrenheit), so you can hang it near
your front door or your back porch to keep an eye on busy areas around your home. Want it to
run just a little bit faster? Simply plug it in. Like most other security cameras we’ve explored so
far, it can be controlled from your smart phone, and can connect to Amazon Alexa or your
Google Assistant for voice control. So what sets the Arlo Pro 2 apart? It offers 7 full days of free
cloud recordings (that’s 7 days’ worth of continuous video streaming!) and through the app,
you can activate a siren to warn off intruders, contact emergency responders, and zoom in on
specific “zones” that your camera detects with incredible clarity. The price is steeper for this 2-
camera bundle, but seems well worth it.
Logitech Circle 2
This camera (which, at first glance, reminded me of a sleek flying saucer), is made for indoor
and outdoor use, and comes with a swivel mount so that no matter where it sits, you can
perfectly position it to capture a 180-degree view. It features full 1080p HD video day or night,
two-way talking capabilities thanks to its built in microphone and speaker, and can be
controlled from your smartphone. Although it’s not wireless, it does offer some advanced
features (that you’ll need to pay for) including person detection, motion zones, custom time-
lapse day briefs and additional days of cloud storage beyond the 24-hours that come standard.
Nest Cam Indoor
When I think of Nest, I think of the ultra-fancy thermometer that allows me to turn on the
heater without getting up from the couch. Apparently, Nest has also created a home security
system that is simple, yet effective. All it requires is downloading an app, and you can instantly
view footage from your smartphone. The Nest will send you motion and sound alerts and
features 24/7 live video streaming. What sets Nest apart is the “bank-level security” that its
users enjoy, ensuring your footage is kept private.
Stylish, discreet, and shockingly smart…I was impressed to learn about the unique features of
the Netatmo Welcome. Not only does its slim design allow it to easily blend into your home
décor, but it also offers quick and easy setup – just plug it in! This system runs on alerts – it even has
face recognition technology so when your kids come home from school while you’re still at the
office, you’ll receive a notification straight to your phone telling you exactly who’s home. If
Netatmo doesn’t recognize the face, you’ll get that notification as well. The alarm system lets you know if a smoke alarm, doorbell, or home security system sounds in your home. As an
added bonus, you can store your videos at no additional cost.
There is a reason why you’re seeing more and more new homes with pre-installed Ring
doorbells…these babies give you the feeling of serious security without the need to install a full
camera system inside your home. If you’re more concerned with privacy, this may be the better
way to go for you. The Ring Pro is motion-activated and sends alerts to your phone when
there’s movement detected on your doorstep. You can hear and talk back to visitors with Ring’s
two-way talk capabilities while scoping them out via your Live View on-demand video and
audio. Of course, it’s compatible with Alexa. There are several iterations of the Ring, so make
sure and do some precursory research to decide which version best suits your needs.
Wyze Cam V2
Arguably the smallest, most compact camera on this list, the Wyze Cam is no less impressive or
powerful, and the price point is nothing to sneeze at. Wyze is built for flexibility – its stackable,
twistable, magnetic, adhesive, and portable. One of its more unique features is its ability to
recognize smoke and carbon monoxide alarms and send alerts straight to your phone in the
event either is detected. Its 1080p HD live stream is motion-activated and offers both live
streaming and playback video modes. Add in its 14-day cloud storage and you’ve got a pretty
nifty little camera.
YI Home Camera
Mamas, I’ve got three words for you: Baby Crying Detection. Yes, that’s right. The YI Home
Camera’s standout feature is its ability to alert you at the sound of a crying baby (I wonder if
this works for sad dogs, too?). Two-way audio makes it possible for you to not only hear your
baby (or dog) but respond back and soothe them. You can do so day or night with the 1080 HD
camera’s night vision capability. Again, the price point of the YI is “on point” shall we say. And
you get 7 days’ worth of free cloud storage.
This year, don’t let you and your family’s safety be anything less than a top priority. A small
investment in big technology can make a world of difference when it comes to feeling secure in