Security, sans power cables.
Having a home security camera is a great way to keep an eye on your house while you're out. Sometimes, you'd like to place your camera in such a way that power cables might be cumbersome or might not reach. Battery-powered security cameras are an excellent solution but are few and far between right now, since they usually have to compromise on key features. We've rounded up our favorites to help keep your security untethered to power outlets (for a while at least).
Netgear Arlo Smart Home
If you want a versatile battery-powered security camera, then seriously consider the Netgear Arlo. In fact, it's the best around right now. It can go anywhere — even outdoors — thanks to its magnetic mounts, which allow you to easily place it on the wall, the ceiling, or in a tree outside your house.
The Arlo features an excellent wireless range, which can extend hundreds of feet from your router, all while livestreaming 720p video. Unlike Nest Cam, which requires a paid cloud storage subscription, the Arlo records and stores seven days' worth of video for you to review, for free, with paid upgrade options.
Raccoons rummaging through your trash? Boom, night vision. Shady individual approaching your home? Motion detector sends you Smart Alerts in the form of push notifications and email.
You can even connect your Arlo to IFTTT, so you can connect it with other smart devices and create recipes, like "if motion is detected in the garage, turn on the bedroom light," if you have smart lights.
Battery-wise, the Arlo takes four CR123 3-volt batteries, which can last up to six months, depending on usage and your Arlo's proximity to the included Netgear Arlo Hub.
If you're looking for a wireless security camera, period, then go with the Netgear Arlo Smart Home.
The Logi Circle is a solid Logitech product. Though its wireless battery life is abysmal when compared to our other two favorites (about 12 hours when off its charging cradle), it features two-way talk, allowing you to have Skype-like conversations via the app.
The Circle features live 1080p video and Smart Filtering, which pinpoints important motion that you can jump around to any moment in your video stream. Cloud storage is free, housing up to 24 hours of recorded video at a time for your to review.
A fantastically handy feature of the Logi app is the Smart Timelapse, which creates a 30-second video of the last 24 hours, so you can view everything that happened in a day far more quickly.
The Logi Circle also features night vision and a handy download and share option, which allows you to save any part of your 24-hour stored feed and share it via email, social media, and more.
The Circle's price is right around the Arlo's (about $200), and the two-way talk just about makes up for the lack of battery life. If you want a very family-oriented camera that operates as both a wired and battery-powered option, then check out the Logi Circle and freak out your kids when you start yelling at them through the app.
If you're not too worried about HD video quality or streaming capabilities, then the Homeboy might be a good solution for you. Its rechargeable battery can last up to three months, depending on usage, and it stores 12 hours of video at a time for you to review.
Like the Arlo, it features motion detection notifications in the form of push notifications, though you can also trigger it to send out a Tweet or a Facebook message. You can automatically arm it using its intelligent geo-fence, which is based on your phone's location. You can also create recipes for your Homeboy, using IFTTT.
One of the Homeboy's most useful features is the ability to invite other people to your network so that they also receive notifications when motion is detected. This is especially handy if you're going away for a while but not long enough to warrant a house sitter.
During 2016, Homeboy will be rolling out professional monitoring, sort of in the way that alarm companies do it now. However, without livestreaming capabilities, professional monitoring is just as good as receiving notifications yourself.
If you want a home security camera that allows for a virtual neighbourhood watch of sorts, then the Homeboy is a solid option.
What do you use?
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