Nest Cam Outdoor vs. Ring vs. Canary Flex vs. Arlo Pro 2

Nest Cam Outdoor vs. Ring vs. Canary Flex vs. Arlo Pro 2

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2016 was the year of the outdoor camera, with everyone from Nest to Canary to Ring to Oco announcing outdoor versions of their popular security cameras. Since then, things have continued to improve and evolve.

I’ve been using the indoor Nest Cam to film through my window for quite some time. It’s a makeshift outdoor camera setup supplemented by my Ring Video Doorbell. With updates like person detection, I couldn’t be more pleased by the camera’s software and features. So it should come as no surprise that when Nest Cam Outdoor launched, I jumped at the opportunity to buy it. Since then, my search for an outdoor solution has continued to Canary Flex, Arlo Pro, Arlo Pro 2, and Blink XT.

(Disclosure: I received Ring for free in November of 2015. I purchased Canary Flex, Nest Cam Indoor, Nest Cam Outdoor, Blink XT, and Ring Spotlight Cam on my own. Arlo Pro and Pro 2 were provided to me for testing courtesy of Netgear. Obviously, this does not impact my opinion, but I thought you should know.)

  Arlo Pro Arlo Pro 2 Ring Spotlight Cam Ring Doorbell V2 Ring Stickup Cam Nest Cam Outdoor Canary Flex
arlo pro arlo pro Spotlight Cam ring stickup cam nest outdoor Canary Flex
Price $249.99
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$479.99
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$199.00
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$199.00
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$199.00
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$199.00
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$199.00
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Resolution 720p 1080p 1080p 1080p 720p 1080p Capable of 1080p, Streams in 720p
Night Vision
Field of View 130° 130° 140° 160° 80° 130° 116°
Zoom
Two-Way Talk Members Only
Livestream
Power Battery, Solar Panel, or Hardwire (Requires Outdoor Power Adapter If Used Outdoors) Battery, Solar Panel, or Hardwire (Requires Outdoor Power Adapter If Used Outdoors) There are Battery, Solar, and Wired Versions of the Camera Hardwire or Battery Rechargeable Battery or Solar Panel Power Outlet Battery, Power Outlet, or 4G (Extra Fee)
Notifications Email, Push, IFTTT Email, Push, IFTTT Push Notification Doorbell Chime, Push Notification, Optional Ring Chime, IFTTT Push Notification Email, Push, IFTTT Push Notification
Device Theft Optional Wall Mount Optional Wall Mount Screwed in using proprietary screws, Ring will replace stolen devices. Screwed in using proprietary screws, optionally hardwired, Ring will replace stolen devices. Depends on the Mount – Quick Mount easier to steal, Security Mount is a more permanent solution. Easier to steal. The power adapter twists off and the Nest Cam can be removed from the magnetic base by pulling. Secure Mount (Sold Separately)
Arlo Pro Arlo Pro 2 Ring Spotlight Ring Doorbell Ring Stickup Cam Nest Cam Outdoor Canary Flex
Free Storage 7 Days Free Cloud, Pro Base Station Supports USB 7 Days Free Cloud, Pro Base Station Supports USB 3 Hours of Snapshots 24 Hours of Video Previews
Cloud Storage Starting at $9.99/month or $99/annually Starting at $9.99/month or $99/annually Starting at $3/month or $30/year Starting at $3/month or $30/year Starting at $3/month or $30/year Starting at $10/month or $100/year Starting at $9.99/month or $99/year
Multi-Camera Discount Price Includes Shared Storage for 10 Cameras (Free Plan Supports 5.) Price Includes Shared Storage for 10 Cameras (Free Plan Supports 5.) $10/month or $100/year for Unlimited Ring Cameras $10/month or $100/year for Unlimited Ring Cameras $10/month or $100/year for Unlimited Ring Cameras Each Additional Camera Costs $5/month or $50/year 2-3 Cameras $14.99/month or $149/year, $4.99/month or $49/year for Additional Cameras
Advanced Motion Detection Features Arlo Smart: Detects People, Animals, and Vehicles (Requires Paid Plan) Arlo Smart: Detects People, Animals, and Vehicles (Requires Paid Plan). Also, Activity Zones and Look Back, both features require that the camera is plugged-in indoors. Customizable Zones (Wired Version Only) Motion with Customizable Zones and Distances. Motion with Customizable Zones and Distances. Person Detection, Zones (Both Require Paid Plan) Computer Vision Using Algorithms
Monitors For Sound & Motion Sound & Motion Motion Doorbell Rings & Motion Motion People ($), Sound, and Motion Motion
Continuous Recording No. Records based on event. Yes, but the camera must be plugged-in which requires that you leave it inside. 14 days of 24/7 CVR starts at $9.99/month/camera No. Records based on event with a paid subscription. No. Records based on event with a paid subscription. No. Records based on event with a paid subscription. Yes, will record 24/7 with paid Nest Aware plan. No. Records based on event.
Minimum Required Upload Speed 1MBPS 1MBPS 2MBPS 2MBPS 2MBPS 2MBPS 1MBPS
Other “Family” Devices Arlo Wire-Free, Arlo Q, Arlo Go, Arlo Baby, Arlo Pro 2, Arlo Security Light Arlo Wire-Free, Arlo Q, Arlo Go, Arlo Baby, Arlo Pro, Arlo Security Light Stickup Cam, Solar Panel, Ring Chime, Floodlight, Ring Doorbell, Ring Protect Stickup Cam, Solar Panel, Ring Chime, Floodlight, Spotlight, Ring Protect Solar Panel, Ring Chime, Ring Doorbell, Floodlight, Spotlight, Ring Protect Nest Cam, Nest Cam IQ, Nest Secure, Hello, Dropcam, Nest Thermostat, Nest Protect Canary
Works with Alexa Devices With a Screen, IFTTT, SmartThings, Stringify Alexa Devices With a Screen, IFTTT, SmartThings, Stringify Alexa Devices With a Screen, Stringify Alexa Devices With a Screen, IFTTT, Wink, ADT Pulse, LockState, Kisi, Lockitron, WeMo, Kevo, Stringify, SmartThings Alexa Devices With a Screen, Stringify, Wink Alexa Devices With a Screen, IFTTT, Works with Nest, Stringify Wink, Google Home
Web Portal Members Only
App iOS, Android, Fire TV, and Apple TV iOS, Android, Fire TV, and Apple TV iPhones, iPad, Mac App, Android, and Windows 10 iPhones, iPad, Mac App, Android, and Windows 10 iPhones, iPad, Mac App, Android, and Windows 10 Android, iPhones, iPad, Apple Watch, Apple TV iPhone, Android, Apple TV
Family Access*
Arlo Pro Arlo Pro 2 Ring Spotlight Ring Video Doorbell Ring Stickup Cam Nest Cam Outdoor Canary Flex
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*See Limitations Outlined in the Family Sharing Section Below

Installation

power adapter

Nest Cam Outdoor

I would never have guessed (based on my experience with Nest Cam Indoor) that Nest Cam Outdoor would be a pain to install. In fact, the assumption that the process would be easy was one of the reasons I purchased it. And I supposed in some ways it does solve for at least two of the challenges that face those trying to install an outdoor camera.

1. You don’t have to run a cable into your attic space. However, you will have a visible, 25-foot eyesore if you don’t.

2. The camera is magnetic. If you have a magnetic surface outside, you may be able to use the mounting magnet (included) and nothing more. I wasn’t so lucky.

I’m sure there are people out there who will make the wire management “problem” look straightforward and effortless. But for the average consumer, hiding a 25-foot power cord anchored by a large power adapter is not going to be easy.

dad

If you’ve been following along, you know that when I face wire management issues or I have to use a power drill, I call my dad. Drilling into brick isn’t easy. Even for dads, apparently. In the end, I wasn’t sure I wanted to keep the camera anyway. What if I don’t like the camera? Do I want holes in my brick? With that in mind, we decided to use a piece of industrial strength 3M adhesive on the power adapter (the power adapter weighs about 4.5 oz) and a regular 3M strip on the camera wall plate. Everything seemed fine at first. At about 10 o’clock that night, I heard a loud crash. Thankfully, the camera was fine, but the power adapter proved to be too heavy for the adhesive.

Other than the process of physically installing the camera, installation is just like the indoor Nest Cam – fast. I simply had to add the camera to my existing Nest account. You’ll need to make sure the camera has access to both WiFi and power, and you should be good to go.

To summarize, installation has pros and cons:

  • Exposed Wiring
  • Requires Power and Internet
  • Drilling Required
  • My Experience: 60-Minute Install

Ring Video Doorbell

I installed Ring 10 months before I installed Nest Cam, so I might have rose-colored glasses. However, from what I recall, and from reading my notes, it was nowhere near as aggravating, and the result is more aesthetically pleasing. Of course, it was easier to drill into my wood door frame than my experience with trying to drill into brick. But if you plan to install your Ring Video Doorbell onto a brick surface, Ring has instructions for you. They offer instructions for installing the device on wood, vinyl, brick, etc. The instructions will also be different depending on if you choose to hardwire the device to your doorbell’s existing wires (recommended) or if you prefer to use battery power.

For most, the process will involve downloading the free Ring app. Next, you will need to remove your existing doorbell. Once that is complete, you will install Ring’s mounting bracket and connect the existing wires to your doorbell. Finally, place your new doorbell on the mounting bracket and tighten the screws. Ring will be able to use your existing doorbell chime if you hardwire. If not, you can purchase a Chime accessory including the Chime or Chime Pro. Pro not only emits a sound when someone rings your doorbell but also acts as a WiFi extender, improving your wireless signal.

Ring Doorbells Compared

As you are using either your doorbell wires or battery, the end result is more aesthetically pleasing. For me, the only problem is that Ring is too large for my door frame. I have about a 1/3″ overhang. It doesn’t bother me, but if you think it will bother you, Ring also sells the Ring Doorbell Pro. The Doorbell Pro is 1.85″ wide; the original doorbell is 2.43″ wide. Pro does not have a battery; it must connect to the wiring from your existing doorbell. It also has a few extra features (more on that later). Finally, the Ring ELITE is a flush mount option that uses Power over Ethernet (PoE). Ring ELITE is coming soon. You can compare all of Ring’s cameras here.

Pros and Cons of a Ring Installation:

  • No Exposed Wires
  • Uses Existing Doorbell Power or Battery. Requires Internet
  • Drilling Required
  • My Experience: 15 Minute Install

Ring Spotlight Cam Battery and Solar

Ring Spotlight Cam Installation

Ring sells three versions of its Spotlight Camera: Wired, Battery, and Solar. Battery and Solar are the same camera. The only difference is that Solar ships with a solar panel.

Installing Spotlight Cam Solar wasn’t that simple, which I expected since it requires drilling, but the process was made even more complicated by two issues. First, the box design would have Steve Jobs rolling over in his grave. In fact, I’m not one for exaggerations so know that when I say it’s one of the worst box designs I’ve ever opened, I mean it. On a more serious note, there’s a discrepancy between the instructions found on the app, those printed on the included quick start guide, and those found online.

Being a cautious optimist, I first followed the app instructions; this was a mistake. Unfortunately, the app instructions are incomplete and leave out important details. Next, I moved on to the included instruction manual where I learned that the first step of the installation process is to fully charge Spotlight’s battery. Unfortunately for me, it was too late for that. The app also skipped another essential step found in the instruction manual: mounting position.

The device shipped ready to be mounted on an eave, but I decided, thankfully, that I wanted to mount it on a wall. To do that, you have to swap the mounting plate from an upward facing to a downward facing position. What I learned while doing so is that Ring fails to mention that the device does not ship with the security screw already in place so even if the mounting plate is already in the position you want, make sure to check on the security screw. Instructions on removing the mounting plate are found on page 15 of the included instruction manual.

What have we learned so far?

Step One: Download the Ring App
Step Two: Charge Spotlight Cam’s Battery
Step Three: Decide if you want to mount on a wall or an eave and position the mount appropriately.
Step Four: Even if the mount is in the right position, double check the security screw.

No matter where you choose to mount Spotlight Cam, Ring suggests you mount it at least 9 feet off of the ground. You should also test your camera before drilling to make sure that:

A: The camera has a strong wireless signal.
B: You like the view.

The camera connects to the included wall mount using a ball socket. If you’re installing on brick or another hard surface, you’ll need to drill and insert wall anchors. If you’re installing your camera onto a wooden surface, you can use the included screws and screwdriver to secure the mount. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to keep Spotlight Cam so both options seemed like rather permanent solutions. I decided to create the most unattractive, temporary solution.

Yup, it’s not pretty, but it works. With the mount in place, simply slide the camera into the socket until it pops. You might have to loosen the screws around the socket for it to slide in place, but even then, you have to give the camera a little push. Next, adjust the camera angle, and tighten the side screws to keep it in place.

Unfortunately, though I purchased the Solar Panel version, the camera did not ship with Solar Panel installation instructions. The Solar Panel itself had an instruction pamphlet, but it’s picture book style, which is not my favorite. I decided to ignore all instructions and guess at the install, which wasn’t a good idea. After installation, the camera’s video feed kept flickering in and out (a problem which I have yet to resolve) so I went back through my install steps to see if I had messed up along the way. I had. I found Solar Panel installation instructions online which I recommend and followed step-by-step.

The aesthetic result of two devices mounted and connected by a wire isn’t overly pleasing. Thankfully, my setup is installed in a spot where it isn’t publically visible. If it were on my porch, I would probably return the solar panel to use two batteries. That’s right, two! During the install, I was most surprised to find that though Spotlight Cam ships with one battery, it has room for two.

Pros and Cons of a Ring Installation:

  • Wired, Battery, and Solar Versions Available
  • Uses Existing Doorbell Power or Battery. Requires Internet
  • Drilling Required
  • My Experience: 20 Minute Install

Canary Flex

Canary Flex Installation

Installing Canary Flex was easy. Part of that comes from the fact that I’m a Canary indoor camera user. To add Canary Flex, I plugged it in (Even though it can be battery-powered, Canary recommends starting with a full charge.), turned my phone’s Bluetooth feature on, visited the app, and selected “Add Canary device”. From there, you confirm the physical location of your camera, tap the button on the back of the device, and it begins to pair.

After the battery is charged, you can move the camera to a new location, so long as it’s within your WiFi’s range. The camera will work using battery power alone, or you can continue to use it plugged into a power outlet. If you are willing to pay an extra fee, you can even add 4G LTE through a mount for Canary Flex (coming soon). The weatherproof (IP65) mount allows the camera to work in places where WiFi doesn’t exist or where it cuts in and out. It can also be used to provide extra battery to Flex if no outlet is available.

While having three power/connection options already provides flexibility, there is even more flexibility thanks to accessories (sold separately). The first accessory is a Secure Mount. The Mount locks your device into place. Replacing the magnetic base, it helps prevent against device theft. The second is the Stake Mount: Stick the mount into the ground or a potted plant to give Flex a hidden camera effect. The Twist Mount can bend and wrap around an object so that you can hang it virtually anywhere. Canary suggests using the Twist Mount to place Flex on fixtures, railings, or even branches.

Pros and Cons of a Canary Flex Installation:

  • Battery, Outlet, or 4G (Coming Soon)
  • Mounting Options Flexible Through Accessories (Sold Separately)
  • No Drilling Required
  • My Experience: 2 Minute Install

Arlo Pro and Pro 2

Arlo Pro Installation

If Arlo shipped their cameras packaged in frustration-free packaging, the process would be a lot smoother. Beyond that, installation was easy.

As Arlo Pro is a cordless camera, it shares similarities with Canary’s installation process. The difference is that Arlo requires a base station. Another difference is that Arlo ships their cameras fully-charged and ready to go directly from the factory. Thanks, Arlo.

To install Arlo Pro, simply pop the included battery into the camera, download the free mobile app (iTunes, Google Play, Amazon), plug in the base station (requires Ethernet and power), and sync the camera to the base station. If you have multiple cameras, you will need to sync them one at a time.

The next step is camera placement, and Arlo Pro offers a few options. First of all, the camera is magnetic. It can sit on a flat surface, stick directly to a magnetic surface, or you can use the included plate to mount it to a wall. While you can place Arlo inside or out, the camera’s power cord that ships with the package is not weatherproof so plan to use battery power when placing the camera outside. Finally, they also sell an $80 solar panel. The panel works with Arlo Pro, Pro 2, and Go, and can power one camera continuously. Keep in mind, however, that the solar panel powers the camera connected to it, but it does not charge the camera’s battery.

Pros and Cons of an Arlo Pro Installation:

  • Battery Power, Outlet, or Solar Panel
  • Base Station Requires Power and Internet
  • No Drilling Required
  • My Experience: 10 Minute Install

WINNER Arlo is the winner. They offer several flexible options including indoor charging, battery power, as well as a solar panel. And if you need to place the camera in a spot without internet, you can buy Arlo Go with 4G.

Home Security, Video Storage, and Advanced Features

  Nest Logo Ring Canary Logo Arlo
Finding Video Evidence Easy via Sightline and Timelapse Timeline Timeline and Incident Support Timeline
Recording Records Continuously Create Schedules Geofencing, Modes Geofencing, Modes, Schedules, Arlo Pro 2 Can Record Continuously While Plugged-in Indoors
Record On-Demand Records Continuously With Nest Aware Yes, by initiating a live stream.
Share Clips
Storage Cloud Cloud Cloud Cloud or Local
Expand Security With Other Devices Nest Cam, Nest Protect, Nest Thermostat, Nest Secure, Nest Hello, Nest Cam IQ Ring Stickup, Solar Panel, Chime, Chime Pro, Ring Floodlight Cam, Ring Spotlight Cam, Ring Protect, Video Doorbell Canary Arlo, Arlo Go, Arlo Q, Arlo Baby, Arlo Security Light
False Alerts Best Due to Person Detection

Nest Cam

snapshot

Nest Cam’s software (Nest Aware) can’t be beat. Better yet, they continuously launch improvements to the software for all users. Their most recent update granted a limited amount of free snapshot access for both Nest Cam AND Dropcam users. If you want more storage, Nest Aware comes in two flavors: 10-day for $10 a month or 30-day for $30 a month.

  Without Nest Aware With Nest Aware
Motion Detection Basic Intelligent
Live Streaming:
Video History: 3 Hour Snapshots 10 or 30 Days Video History
Continuous Video Recording:
Two-Way Talk:
Zoom 8x: Yes, 12x for Nest Cam IQ Yes, 12x for Nest Cam IQ
Person Alerts: Nest Cam IQ Only
Familiar Face Alerts Nest Cam IQ Only
Supersight Tracking Nest IQ Only Nest IQ Only
Activity Zones:
Create Clips and Timelapses:
Share Live Streams:
Geofencing
Sound Detection Basic Intelligent
Dog Barking/Person Speaking Alerts

Finding Video Evidence

One thing you may not realize until you use your camera to find video evidence is how difficult it can be to locate relevant events.

Nest uses Timelapse and Sightline features, both require Nest Aware. Creating a Timelapse can condense up to 24 hours of video into a clip no longer than a couple of minutes. You can create Timelapses from your computer.

Sightline is accessed from the mobile app. From the app, you can see your video history marked with color-coded activities. The colors represent different zones set by you. For example, a green dot might be driveway activity whereas an orange dot is an activity from your porch. You will also be able to see a “snapshot” of the event. Finally, using Sightline, you can swipe to fast forward through several days’ worth of footage.

Event Alerts

Nest will intelligently alert you, within reason. For example, you can have the street set as a zone, but turn off notifications for the street. Nest can also tell you when it sees a person or thinks it sees a person. In fact, you can choose to only receive alerts when it sees a person, which virtually eliminates false alarms.

Summary of what you need to know:

  • Activity Zones
  • Automatically Arms and Disarms Based Upon Your Presence
  • Person Detection
  • 3 Hours Snapshots Free, Paid Storage 10-day or 30-day

Ring Video Doorbell

Ring doesn’t offer free storage. While you will be able to see missed alerts, you won’t be able to view missed events without subscribing. The good news is that cloud storage is cheap. For $3 a month per device, you will be able to view and download up to six months of events. You will also be able to share clips, which is of vital importance if you want to use your video as evidence. If you have several Ring Cameras, you can subscribe to their Protect plan for $10 per month or $100 per year. This plan covers an unlimited number of Ring cameras and adds a lifetime product warranty. Beyond storage, all Ring features are free.

ring app

Finding Video Evidence

Rings offers access to a timeline-style feature where you can view events going back six months (if you are subscribed). From the timeline you can sort through ring events, motion events, or live view events.

Event Alerts and Accuracy

While Ring doesn’t offer as many advanced motion features as Nest, it does have a couple. For one, you can choose to be notified of both motion and ring events. With motion, you can customize motion settings from the app.

Motion zones should not be confused with activity zones. Motion Zones allow you to choose the motion detector’s range. You can choose to receive alerts for motion within a 5-foot range and up to a 30-foot range. For those who own Ring Pro or Ring Elite, you can draw custom shapes like Nest Aware’s Activity Zone feature.

Ring also supports smart alerts, the ability to set the motion sensor’s sensitivity. You can request to receive more alerts, “standard,” or “light” (fewer alerts). You can also turn notifications on and off from the main screen of the app. I prefer to receive all ring alerts (someone rings my doorbell), but I don’t like motion alerts. Even though I don’t have motion alerts turned on, I can still review all recorded motion events from the app or web portal.

Ring cannot automatically arm and disarm, nor would I expect it to, but you can create a monitoring schedule. You can disable motion alerts during specific days and times. Also, if you have multiple doorbells, you can place live events on hold to answer new calls. You can swap back and forth between calls without hanging up.

Finally, Ring offers a program called “Ring Neighborhoods.” With this feature, you can quickly share video clips with those nearby. You don’t have to invite your neighbors. Instead, Ring uses your set geolocation to find other nearby users. You can event customize your location by creating a smaller or larger shape around your home. By tapping on the Ring Neighborhood icon when viewing a call or recording, you can share that event with those nearby regardless of whether or not they own a Ring device. So long as your neighbor has the Ring app, you can share events with them. You can also choose to share events to Facebook and NextDoor.

Summary of what you need to know:

  • Activity Zones
  • Scheduled Monitoring
  • Motion and Doorbell Alerts
  • Storage Starts at $3/Month
  • Sometimes Ring Doesn’t Ring
  • Ring Neighborhoods

Ring Spotlight Cam Battery and Solar

Ring Spotlight has access to the same cloud plans as Ring Video Doorbell: $3 per month per device for 6 months of video history or $10 per month per account.

Motion Sensitivity

Finding Video Evidence

Spotlight Cam also uses the same timeline-style feature as Video Doorbell. In fact, if you manage both devices under one account, you will see events from both cameras listed. From the mobile app, you can sort events by Rings, Motion, Live View, or Starred events. From the web app, you can also sort by device so that you can separate your Spotlight Cam footage from footage captured by your other devices.

Event Alerts and Accuracy

Even if you have multiple devices, they don’t really play together beyond the ability to view them using the same app. For example, if someone rings your doorbell, you can’t trigger your Spotlight Cam to record. Spotlight is limited to three features to protect your home: its spotlight, a siren, and a motion sensor.

  Wired Battery Solar
Price $199 $199 $229
Resolution 1080p HD 1080p HD 1080p HD
Live View On-Demand
Night Vision
Viewing Angle 140° 140° 140°
Light Luments 700 lumens 700 lumens 700 lumens
Light Trigger Motion, Manual, or Schedule Motion or Manual Motion or Manual
Two-Way Audio
Motion Detection
Smart Motion Motion Zones Adjustable Motion Sensitivity Adjustable Motion Sensitivity
Siren 110dB Alarm 110dB Alarm 110dB Alarm
Includes 20-foot Power Cable 6,000 mAH Ring Battery Pack 6,000 mAH Ring Battery Pack, Solar Panel
App Web, iOS, Android, Mac and Windows 10 Web, iOS, Android, Mac and Windows 10 Web, iOS, Android, Mac and Windows 10
Works With Power Cable Solar Panel, Batteries Solar Panel, Batteries

What you can do with the motion sensor will depend on which version of Spotlight Cam you own. With the Wired version, you can create activity zones. You can tell the camera areas to monitor and areas to ignore by designating such areas within the camera’s field of view.

If you own the Battery or Solar version of Spotlight Cam, you will be limited to the same three features we’ve already discussed: motion zones, smart alerts, and scheduling. Motion Zones is simply a fancy name for the ability to adjust motion sensitivity and Smart Alerts is the ability to control alert frequency. Finally, you can create a schedule for your Spotlight Cam to follow. You can create a rule to disable motion alerts, but you can’t create one to enable them.

Spotlight Cam’s star feature is its light. The camera is equipped with two lights that automatically trigger when motion is detected. The lights aren’t very bright. At 700 lumens, they’re about as bright as a 60-watt light bulb. It’s not enough to scare someone away, but does improve the camera’s ability to see at night. And nighttime is the only time when the lights will automatically turn on, though you can turn the lights on manually at any time. When triggered, the light stays on for about 30 seconds. When turned on manually, it stays on until you end the live stream (required to access light feature).

The Wired Spotlight Cam also supports the ability to create light schedules, a feature missing from Spotlight Cam Battery.

Spotlight Cam also works with Ring Neighborhoods. If you prefer to take matters into your own hands, you can manually trigger the camera’s siren. Though it has a siren, there is no way to trigger it automatically. You can, however, set your camera to trigger your Chime automatically. If motion is detected, your Chime will play the same tone it plays when your doorbell is pressed.

Summary of what you need to know:

  • Activity Zones (Wired Only)
  • Scheduled Monitoring
  • Automated Spotlight Feature
  • Storage Starts at $3/Month
  • Built-in Siren
  • Ring Neighborhoods

Canary Flex

Canary Motion

Canary offers 24 hours of video history for up to four cameras plus unlimited sharing. For free, clips are 30-seconds in length and can be shared on social media, to your iCloud drive, etc. If you want to download videos directly to your phone, want longer clips, more storage, or more devices, you need a Canary Membership.

A Canary Membership provides 30 days of video history, full-length video clips, custom modes, two-way audio, desktop streaming, and unlimited downloads for $9.99/month. If you have two or three devices, that rate jumps to $14.99 per month, and each additional camera adds an extra $4.99. You can use an unlimited number of cameras in a single location with a Canary Membership.

Finding Video Evidence

Canary Membership also provides a unique way to sort through video evidence: Incident Support. With Incident Support, Canary provides a dedicated agent to help you retrieve video evidence if a home theft occurs.

Event Alerts

Flex uses the same algorithm as the indoor Canary. In theory, this sounds good. In reality, an outdoor camera needs its own algorithm. Motion events are processed to determine if they are false or if the event should be uploaded to the cloud for “further analysis.” This process not only helps to reduce false alarms, but it saves battery life.

With Canary, you can also adjust motion sensitivity, and the camera includes a PIR motion sensor, which works when the camera is plugged in or when running on battery. But even with these added features, Flex has trouble sorting true events from false ones. On windy days, false alerts are common, and sometimes Flex misses events. Worse, if you use Flex as a battery-powered camera, you must wait for it to wake up. I had problems with the camera sleeping through events. In general, the camera performs at a much higher level when plugged in.

Summary of what you need to know:

  • Incident Support($)
  • Automatically Arms and Disarms Based On Your Presence
  • Computer Vision Algorithms
  • 24 Hours Free Storage, Paid Video Storage 30-days
  • Camera Sleeps Between Events (Battery Mode Only)
  • Custom Canary Alert Tone for Push Notifications

Arlo Pro and Pro 2

Arlo App

Arlo offers 7 days of free cloud storage. How awesome is that? During setup, you will have the option of choosing between their home or business plans. For home users, they offer three flavors: Basic, Premier, and Elite.

For free, you have access to Basic which includes 7 days of free cloud recordings (up to 1GB), supports up to 5 cameras, and 3 months of phone support. Premier is $9.99 per month or $99.00 per year. It includes 30 days of cloud recording (up to 10GB), supports up to 10 cameras, and provides unlimited phone support. Finally, Elite is $14.99 per month or $149.00 per year and includes 60 days of cloud recordings (up to 100GB), support for 15 cameras, and unlimited support.

In addition to cloud storage, Arlo Pro offers local storage to a USB device (thumb drive, hard drive, etc.). Local storage cannot be used instead of cloud storage, but rather in addition to. However, if you lose your internet connection, all events will be stored to your USB storage device.

Arlo Pro 2 also works with Arlo’s continuous video recording (CVR) plan. The catch is that the camera must remain plugged-in in order for the feature to work, and Arlo’s power cord is not weatherproof. The subscription is per camera and also works with Arlo Q, Q Plus, and Arlo Baby. For $9.99 per month, they will provide 14 days of 24/7 CVR, for $19.99 per month you get 30 days, and for $29.99 per month, you will get 60 days. Arlo provides a discount if you pay for the year upfront and they offer a 50% discount if you have more than one CVR plan on your account.

Finding Video Evidence

All plans, including the freemium, offer access to the same security features and provide a semi-decent way of sorting through historical footage. Through their “Library,” you will have access to a timeline feature. You can view all recorded events by day where you have the option of favoriting an event, downloading it, or sharing it. You can also filter recorded footage by favorites, motion events, audio events, manual recordings, or recordings triggered by IFTTT.

If you are willing to pay for Arlo Smart ($3.99 per month per camera), your cameras will be able to tell a person from a pet from a car from trees. This smart feature also makes video sorting easier as you can filter recordings to show you what you want to see. For example, you can filter the results to only show recordings with people.

If you choose to keep your Arlo Pro 2 indoors and plugged-in, you will also gain access to Activity Zones. You can select up to three zones for Arlo to monitor. If activity is detected in one of your zones, you’ll receive an alert. Activity that occurs outside of your set zone will be ignored.

Event Alerts

For free, event recordings can be triggered by motion or sound. What happens after an event is triggered depends on the modes you create and use.

Arlo Pro is preprogrammed with four modes: Armed, Disarmed, Schedule, and Geofencing. Most of the modes are customizable, and you have the option of adding your own customized mode. You can even create different rules for different cameras. For example, armed mode on camera A might mean that if it detects motion or audio, it will record, while armed mode on camera B might mean that if motion is detected, it sounds the siren, but doesn’t record. You can also decide if you would like push alerts, email alerts, or no alerts.

If schedules aren’t your thing, you can use geofencing to have the camera automatically arm when you are away and disarm when you arrive home.

Back to Arlo Smart, you can pay for advanced alerts. You can ask only to receive alerts when motion is caused by a person while ignoring cars, for example.

And if you’re worried about missing events, plug the camera in. While plugged-in, Arlo Pro 2 offers Look Back, a feature that buffers three seconds of video at all times. If an event occurs, you’ll receive event footage plus the three second buffer.

Summary of what you need to know:

  • Activity Zones
  • Automatically Arms and Disarms Based Upon Your Presence
  • Scheduled Monitoring
  • 7 Days Free Cloud Storage, Paid Storage 30-day or 60-day
  • Camera Sleeps Between Events (Battery Mode Only)
  • Arlo Smart for $3.99/month/camera

WINNER Nest. While Nest Aware is a more expensive service, advanced features like person detection combined with the ability for the camera to record 24/7 make it a better overall home security camera. However, Arlo with Arlo Smart is also a contender as the service is less expensive and the camera includes free storage. You can also add continuous video recording to Arlo Pro 2, but only if using the camera plugged-in indoors.

Family Sharing

Nest Cam Outdoor

If you want to share your Nest Cam with others, you have three options: Family Accounts, Password Protected Sharing, or Public Sharing.

Using a Family Account, you can share access with nine other people. However, Nest’s sharing feature is problematically one-size-fits-all. All members will have full control over your account, including all cameras and connected devices such as thermostats and smoke alarms. As an example, I gave my family access to a camera placed at my grandmother’s. They can now view the camera at my grandmother’s and also the camera at my house. There is no way to limit their access. Also, they can’t set their own notification preferences, so they either have to put up with all the notifications from my house, or I have to turn off my notifications.

With Password Protected Sharing, you can share access to your video stream with up to ten people who have both the link and the password. Public Sharing is self-explanatory; it’s access to your live stream without a password. Both Public and Password Sharing allow others to view a live stream of your video, but they cannot view your video history, receive alerts, control cameras, or your other connected devices.

Ring Video Doorbell and Spotlight Cam

All Ring doorbells and cameras support multiple users. Users can interact with guests and receive notifications. However, each user can set their own custom notification settings. For example, you can ask to be notified of doorbell activity while another user might want to be made aware of ring and motion activity.

Second, you can take it to the next level with Ring Locations. The Locations feature lets you assign your different devices to different locations under one account. You can then decide who has access to each location. For example, this could theoretically solve the challenge I described above. If I had a camera at my grandmother’s, I could give access to my family, but exclude them from viewing footage from cameras located at my home.

Ring Locations also takes user access to another level. You can change a user’s access depending on the location. For example, you might be a Homeowner at your home and a Neighbor at another home.

Canary Flex

Canary also allows you to share access with other users. Through the Canary app, all users will have full control over your cameras. Canary also lets you choose who has access to what camera through the use of multiple locations. Multiple locations can be the same address or different address and can be managed under one account. You can learn more about using multiple locations here.

In addition to sharing camera access, having multiple users will make geofencing even more intelligent. The cameras will arm when everyone is away and disarm when at least one person is home. You can also see who is home and who is away using the mobile app. Finally, it brings everyone in on the action. If an event is detected, an alert will be sent to all users. If one user responds to the alert, other users will be able to see how that person responded. You can also leave a comment on the event and chat with other users directly within the app.

Arlo Pro and Pro 2

Arlo starts with one admin per account. The admin is allowed to share access with other users. However, all other users will have limited access to some features.

Friend access allows users to view live streams, view recorded clips, and favorite clips. If you want to share more, grant access rights. In addition to the rights already discussed, those with access rights will be able to record video footage, mute the speaker, enter full-screen view, zoom and drag video footage, access and change modes, manually record, take snapshots, favorite, and share or delete video footage. Finally, Arlo does allow you to control which camera or cameras other users can access. For example, you can give them access to your outdoor camera, but not your indoor camera.

WINNER: Ring and Canary. Ring has a slight edge as they allow you to customize user access by location. Canary has this multi-user thing down pat thanks to group geofencing and group communication.

Weatherproofing

Nest Logo Ring Ring Canary Logo Arlo
Camera Rating IP65 IP54 IP54 IP65 IP65
Power Adapter Rating IP67 NA Unknown Weatherproof Magnetic Plug Power Adapter for Indoor Use Only
Temperature Range -4° to 104° F -5°F – 120°F (Doorbell) -20°F to 120°F (Spotlight) -4° to 113° F, with deviations up to 122° F -4° to 113° F Range
Other Avoid Placing the Camera in Direct Sunlight Cold Weather, Wind Impacts Battery Life; Solar Version Requires 1 Hour of Sunlight Per Day Cold Weather, Wind Impacts Battery Life; Solar Version Requires 1 Hour of Sunlight Per Day Cold Weather, Wind Impacts Battery Life; Avoid Placing the Camera in Direct Sunlight Cold Weather, Wind Impacts Battery Life.

Nest Cam Outdoor

Nest Cam Outdoor’s temperature range is limited to -4° to 104°F. In the same breath, the Nest team warns of placing the camera in direct sunlight to avoid overheating the device. So if the device can only handle 104° and it might heat up in the sun, is it really ready to live outside? Perhaps it’s not that the device isn’t ready to live outside, but that it’s more suited for temperate zones.

I can’t say if the story shared below is true or not, but one Facebook commenter shared this,

Waste of time for me as the temp range only goes to -4. Gets -20 here in Colorado. Spoke to Nest customer support was told not to purchase for our climate.

That said, this might be one area where splurging for the Nest Cam IQ Outdoor makes sense. While you do have to drill to hide the wires, the camera itself has an IP66 rating and can work in temperatures ranging from -40° to 113°F.

Ring Video Doorbell

Ring’s temperature range is better than Nest’s (-5°F – 120°F). As mentioned above, I’ve been using it for nearly a year. My device has survived both summer and winter.

Ring Spotlight Cam

Spotlight Cam claims that it can work in temperatures ranging from -20°F to 120°F. The different versions will behave differently of course.

The Wired version uses a power source.

Solar uses a solar panel.The Solar Panel connects to Spotlight Cam’s battery via a 13-foot cable. In fact, if you buy a battery-powered camera and want to convert it to solar, you can buy the panel for $49. The panel is weatherproof and requires just one hour of direct sunlight per day to keep your camera charged.

And that is its job, to keep the camera charged. However, I noticed during testing that it does charge the battery too. When I installed the camera, the battery level was at 40%. Soon after connecting the solar panel, that percentage jumped to 50%. The next it rained, and the percentage climbed from 50-52%. Day three was overcast, and yet the battery level crept up to 56%. Day 4 was a beautiful sunny day and the battery level jumped to 78%.

According to Ring, the solar panel should provide a “Trickle Charge” of 1-2% per day. Clearly, I got more. That said, if the battery doesn’t charge and it dies, you will need to charge it in order to use the camera. You cannot run the camera on solar power alone.

The battery version of the camera can only use a battery. You can’t plug it in. According to Ring, the batteries should give you six months of life before needing to be recharged, but I’m still testing the camera with the Solar Panel. I plan to eventually unplug the Solar Panel to test the batteries. If you plan to use a battery, I suggest buying two. As mentioned in the installation guide, Spotlight Cam ships with one battery, but it supports two. This configuration will improve your camera’s uptime. When one battery dies, you can charge it while battery two kicks-in to power your camera. Ring sells additional batteries for $29.

Canary Flex

I ran my original Canary Flex test in December, and the temperatures failed to drop below 32 degrees. I tell you this because Canary claims the battery can last several months, though cold weather and heavy usage will reduce its lifespan.

After using Flex unplugged for a little over two weeks, the battery fell critically low before getting to the point where the camera would no longer turn on. I don’t blame this on the weather as much as I do the wind. Continued tests showed a battery life of 2-4 weeks. Per a reader request, I retested the camera in August. The weather is warmer here in August, it’s less windy, and Canary has since made several adjustments to help extend Flex’s battery life. This time, the battery lasted a full seven weeks.

Of course, there are things you can do to get the max life out of your camera’s battery. Canary provides the following tips:

  1. You can plug the device into a weatherproof, covered outlet if you see a green dot on the bottom of the power adapter.
  2. Protect your device from direct sunlight by placing it under an overhang or in a shady area.

Arlo Pro and Pro 2

Arlo Pro can be used outdoors only if running on battery or solar power. (While they once sold an outdoor power adapter, it is no longer available due to quality issues.) If you’re using battery power, you will have to charge your camera indoors as the included power adapter is not rated for outdoor use. Furthermore, if your battery is too cold from being outside, you might have to wait for it to warm up before you can begin to charge it. If you don’t like the sound of all of that, you can invest in the $59.99 Pro Charging Station and an additional rechargeable battery ($49.99). You can use the charging station to charge two batteries simultaneously so that you always have one ready to go when needed. You can also purchase the Arlo Pro UV-resistant silicone skins, which provide added protection against condensation and sun glare.

At two months, Arlo’s battery did last longer than Canary’s before it needed to recharge. Arlo also sent both an email and push notification encouraging me to charge the camera. I tried to time how long it took to recharge the battery, but it took five hours to reach 87% and then stopped. Even the next day, the camera’s battery did not charge beyond 87%. Also, like Canary, Arlo’s battery life was impacted by activity more than weather. The camera I placed in a lower traffic zone still has 37% battery life after two months and several sub-zero days.

I’m still testing the difference between Arlo Pro and Pro 2’s battery life. I have both cameras running side-by-side and will update this article with more data when I have it.

Device Issues and Troubleshooting

Nest Logo Ring Ring Canary Logo Arlo
Warranty Length 2 Year Limited Warranty 1 Year Limited Warranty (Lifetime with Protect Plus) 1 Year Limited Warranty (Lifetime with Protect Plus) 1 Year Limited Warranty (2 Years With Canary Membership) 1 Year Limited Warranty (90 Days Phone Support)
Availability Email, Phone, or Chat Email, Phone, or Chat Email, Phone, or Chat Twitter, Email, or Phone Email, Phone, or Chat
Phone Support Quality Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Offshore, Average
Wake Up To Livestream (on Average) Same Network 1 Second (Wired) 16 Seconds (Wired Doorbell) 4 Seconds (Solar Spotlight) 10 Seconds (Battery), 5 Seconds (Wired) 6 Seconds (Battery), 6 Seconds (Wired)
Wake Up To Livestream (on Average) Remote 6 Seconds (Wired) 19 Seconds (Wired Doorbell) 9 Seconds (Solar Spotlight) 12 Seconds (Battery) 6 Seconds (Battery)
Automatic Firmware Updates

Nest Cam Outdoor

One minor problem I’ve had with Nest Cam Outdoor is one that has also plagued my indoor camera for as long as I’ve had it. For some reason, when I physically move the device, even slightly, it loses connection. And when Nest loses connection, it can take several minutes to boot back up.

Another issue is caused by the device’s design. In theory, each clip cable needs to be screwed in. I’ve heard others claim this is for security reasons, making the device harder to steal. But I don’t see how this could be true. It’s not hard to walk up and unscrew the camera from the cord and walk away with it. The camera attaches to the base using a magnet, and it attaches to the power adapter using a cord that you simply push and twist to disconnect.

ups back

One final issue has more to do with software performance than hardware issues, but it’s important to point out. From time-to-time, the snapshot will record a little too late. In the example above, it caught the UPS man’s back. For those without a Nest Aware subscription, this is all you get. Those with a subscription can rewind footage to see the moments before the clip.

Ring Video Doorbell

live view ring

Ring’s biggest issue (in my experience) is that from time to time, it flops. This means that someone will ring my doorbell, but I won’t receive a notification on my phone. Also, it’s slow to wake up, which is surprising considering that I’m not running it on batteries.

Also, on the original Ring, resetting the device when it loses WiFi connection is a real pain. When this happens, you will need to use the proprietary screwdriver (make sure you save it) to unscrew the device to access the reset button. It takes about 15 minutes. In fact, the same process is required to recharge the camera’s battery. This is one of two reasons why you should opt for the Ring Video Doorbell 2. (The other reason is an improved resolution.) Ring Video Doorbell 2 features a removable battery, eliminating the hassle of removing the device for a recharge.

Ring Spotlight Cam

Thus far, my only issue with Spotlight Cam is that the live streaming option is a little glitchy. It will live stream, but the video flickers in and out.

Canary Flex

Canary Flex Slow Wake

My indoor Canary is self-sufficient, and that is exactly what I want in a home security camera. Flex has yet to provide that same experience. I’ve had to physically interact with the device multiple times to get it to reconnect to my internet. Also, the geofencing feature is inaccurate, often marking me away while home and vice versa. As for power loss notifications? They’re hit or miss.

Additionally, when running Flex on a battery, it is often slow to wake up, even after a recent updated targeting Canary’s lag time.

My final issue with Canary Flex has less to do with the device itself and more to do with the company behind the camera. Over the years, Canary has made a lot of changes to their cameras, and the changes don’t always benefit the customer. For example, they promised free two-way audio, but then started charging for it, and for a long time they provided free cloud storage, now they offer what they call “digestible Video Previews.” Changes such as these are concerning.

Arlo Pro and Pro 2

I haven’t had any issues with Arlo Pro, but I called into their support team to get a feel for support quality. As Netgear owns Arlo, phone tech support is managed by Netgear, and they offer offshore support. It was the stereotypical experience you think of when you think of tech support. I called into a phone queue, waited a little bit (not long), got transferred to someone who struggled to understand my question, she put me on hold, she came back to clarify my question, she put me on hold, and then she came back with an answer. While it wasn’t a bad experience, it was sub-par compared to the tech support experiences provided by Nest, Canary, and Ring.

There is a known issue with Arlo that doesn’t affect me personally but may affect you. Danh Bui was kind enough to share that Arlo Pro sound currently does not work for T-Mobile users. T-Mobile uses IPV6 where Arlo Pro uses IPV4.

WINNER Nest, Canary, and Ring all provide excellent tech support experiences. That said, general word to the wise: When you self-monitor your home security system, expect to do some troubleshooting from time-to-time. It is an inevitable part of the process. Most of the outdoor devices I’ve tested have had issues, though Nest appears to be leading the way.

Final Thoughts

To me, Nest, Canary, Ring, and Arlo are like apples and oranges. Ring Doorbell protects your front door from intrusion. Nest has an advantage in that it can capture footage 24/7. Canary has an advantage in that it is wire free and will soon offer 4G wireless service as a primary form of connection or backup. Arlo Pro and Ring Spotlight have an advantage in that the cameras can run on battery power and they wake up for both motion and live streaming faster than Canary Flex.

They all have their issues. They all have false alarms. There is no perfect solution. I’m hopeful that soon new technology will emerge, and someone will take the best of Nest, the best of battery-powered cameras (Elon Musk, please make us an amazing battery!), and the best of Ring to make the ultimate outdoor camera.

In the end, the best camera depends on what you want to accomplish. There is no one-size-fits-all solution regarding home security. I want to use my camera to help my neighbors. I’ve found that continuous recording is crucial. After all the testing, I’m back to using Nest Cam indoor supplemented by my video doorbell. However, for my backyard, I feel Arlo Pro is ideal. I don’t need continuous recording, I don’t want more wires, and it wakes up faster than Canary.

Using the Nest Cam Outdoor vs. Indoor Nest Cam

Below is a brief comparison of using the Indoor camera to film through a window versus using the Outdoor Nest Cam.

  • NEST CAM INDOOR
  • No Sound
  • Less accurate at detecting people at night.
  • Aesthetically Pleasing
  • Theft Protected
  • No Night Vision*
  • NEST CAM OUTDOOR
  • Sound & Two-Way Audio
  • Slightly More Accurate
  • Sloppy
  • Vulnerable to Theft
  • Night Vision

*The indoor camera has night vision, but you have to turn this feature off to record through a window.

Nest Indoor or Nest Outdoor? There are pros and cons to both. The Nest Cam Outdoor might be slightly more accurate, but that’s probably more to do with positioning – it has a better vantage point. The fact that it is more accurate, has sound, and night vision makes me want to switch, but I simply can not deal with the way it looks when installed.

Arlo Pro vs. Arlo Pro 2

All of the differences between Arlo Pro and Arlo Pro 2 were tackled in the content above, but if you’re looking for a quick comparison, I’ll break it down below. If you want a detailed comparison, head here.

Pro 2 is essentially the same as Arlo Pro. It uses the same base station, it offers many of the same features, it looks the same, it’s battery-powered, and can be used inside or outside. In fact, there are only four difference between the two cameras.

  1. Resolution. Pro 2 is 1080p where Pro is 720p
  2. Look Back. When plugged-in, Pro 2 can pre-buffer to capture the three-seconds before motion is detected. This feature will also lower latency.
  3. Activity Zones. When plugged-in, Pro 2 has Activity Zones. You can create three rectangular shaped zones. The camera will monitor for activity in the zones while ignoring other areas.
  4. CVR. When plugged-in, Pro 2 can record continuous video, if you pay for Arlo’s CVR plan.

Other Outdoor Cameras

Blink XT

Blink is also a battery-powered outdoor camera. It’s built around a unique chip that should provide an amazing battery life. However, while my indoor cameras are almost at the two-year mark using the original AA batteries, my Blink XT batteries usually last between 1.5 and 2 months. While I love my Blink indoor cameras, I would not recommend Blink for outdoor use. You can read my Blink XT review and comparison to Arlo Pro here.

Arlo

I’ve heard others say Arlo is the perfect outdoor camera. I disagree. The original Wire-Free camera had even greater latency than Arlo Pro. Also, Pro includes a wider field of view, a rechargeable battery, a siren (built into the hub), and it adds sound with two-way audio, all features the original Arlo lacked. Arlo Pro 2 bumps up the resolution to 1080p and adds three features if the camera is plugged-in: CVR, Motion Zones, and Look Back.

Arlo Go is yet another Arlo camera. It’s an Arlo Pro plus 4G. The big catch is that a cellular plan via Verizon is needed as it doesn’t work with WiFi. It does come with 15 data minutes to send 15 minutes worth of video to the cloud for free. Once you’ve used those minutes, you’ll need to buy more time. Data plans start at $4.99/month for 15 data minutes and go up to $32.99/month for 225 data minutes. Arlo Go sells for $429.99 on Amazon or 399.99 from Verizon ($349.99 if you sign a 2-year contract).

Kuna and Toucan

Kuna is also intriguing, but using the device would require that I swap out my current light fixtures, and I have a different style of porch light. Toucan would potentially solve that dilemma. With Toucan, you can retrofit any outdoor light with a smart socket and a camera. But again, it works better with wall lights, and I have a hanging light.

Nest Cam IQ Outdoor

Post launch of Nest Cam IQ Indoor, Nest has announced that they are making an outdoor version of IQ. I’ve tested the indoor IQ and it is one of a few cameras that I’ve returned. In my opinion, the extra features (Person Recognition, Supersight, 4K Image Sensor, HD Talk and Listen, 12x Zoom, and HDR) don’t justify a price tag that is nearly double the original Nest Cam.

Nest Cam IQ Outdoor will offer the same features as the indoor IQ. Soon, Nest is also launching a firmware upgrade to the cameras which will enable them to act as Google Assistants. You will be able to ask IQ anything you can ask your Google Home, except it won’t be able to play music. The only other difference is the power cord. Unlike the original Nest Cam Outdoor, you will have to drill a hole to install the IP66-rated Nest Cam IQ Outdoor, unless you happen to have an existing opening. Nest Cam IQ Outdoor will start at $349. And this, my friends, is why I won’t be purchasing Nest Cam IQ. Not only is person detection sufficient and offered via the less expensive Nest Cam Outdoor, but I don’t have an existing opening, and I’m not going to drill.

Ring Stickup Cam

While the Stickup Cam would have been an obvious choice, it wasn’t for me. It does provide a wireless experience, and in the right conditions, the battery can last several months. Plus, if you add the solar panel, it can recharge itself.

My goal with a security camera is to help protect my neighborhood, not my house. (My house is protected as much as any house can be, trust me.) That said, to do my part, I need a camera that can record 24/7 (Stickup can’t). I also need a camera that can capture a wide angle (Stickup can’t), and I need a camera that will allow me to quickly sift through footage when my neighbor’s request help (Stickup can’t).

Ring Floodlight Cam

The Ring Floodlight Cam would be an interesting option if I needed floodlights. The Floodlight Cam is built to replace existing floodlights to make them “smart.” Not only would the smart lights add a layer of security by allowing you to flash the lights or sound the built-in alarm, but the device also has advanced features like custom zone creation and facial recognition. However, like Stickup Cam, the camera can’t record 24/7. Also, it requires that you have existing wires for floodlights.

Oco Pro Bullet

I was interested in testing this Oco camera, until I tested the indoor version. On paper, it has a lot of the same features as Nest Cam plus a PoE option.

Oco Pro Bullet is weatherproof, has an SD card, cloud storage, night vision, smart motion detection, and records in FHD 1080p. It can also work in a wide range of temperatures, from -22 °F – 140 °F (-30 °C – 60 °C). But it has one massive limitation: viewing angle. Unfortunately, it only offers an 85-degree viewing angle. Also, the indoor version fell flat on many of its promised features. While the outdoor camera uses different hardware, the indoor experience left me feeling leery towards Oco’s ability to build a quality camera.

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82 Responses to "Nest Cam Outdoor vs. Ring vs. Canary Flex vs. Arlo Pro 2"
  • 09/20/2016
    Jeremy

    Thanks for the reviews! I’m anxious to see how the Canary Flex will score with you. The only thing I’m really worried about is the 14 degree minimum temperature. I live in Indiana, so it can easily get below that. I’m wondering what would happen if it went below? Does it just stop working until the temp gets higher? Does it break?

    (reply)
    • 09/20/2016
      Rose Thibodeaux

      Me too. I have the same concern. It’s supposed to be here in December or January. I live in Tennessee so it gets cold here too. It will be interesting to see what happens. I’m sure it will zap the battery for starters, that’s my hypothesis anyway.

      (reply)
      • 03/15/2017
        Adam

        Hey- just happen to be reading this, and full disclosure I’m one of the canary founders. Our battery is designed to sub – temperatures and i had mine sitting under snow and it still worked (though video was white as it was… well… under the snow). We say it goes to -4 degrees F (-20C). But yea, the battery won’t last as long in that cold, but you can keep it plugged in, or just charge it overnight to get it back up and running. Cheers, Adam

        (reply)
  • 10/22/2016
    Brian

    How long do the Canary Flex and Arlo Pro last on battery power?

    (reply)
    • 10/22/2016
      Rose Thibodeaux

      That will depend on how you use them and where you use them. Cold weather will zap batteries as will live streaming. Canary claims Flex will have a 4-month battery life, Arlo Pro claims 4-6 months.

      (reply)
  • 10/26/2016
    Jeremy

    Just found out about the Arlo Pro today! It looks like it has everything I am wanting in a security system. Hopefully you can get your hands on one and update this article soon to let us know about its pros and cons. Thanks!

    (reply)
    • 11/18/2016
      James

      Same here. Just a question mark on motion detection and how quick it is. Last thing a security camera like this should be doing is missing the event.

      (reply)
      • 01/30/2017
        Rose Thibodeaux

        Hey y’all. I just finished testing Arlo Pro and have updated the article. Motion is fairly fast for a battery powered camera. It outperformed Canary Flex consistently. Also, on average, it took 6 seconds for the camera to go from asleep to awake.

        (reply)
  • 11/18/2016
    James

    One big issue with the Flex
    I can see is that the rechargeable battery isn’t replaceable. Had it confirmed by Canary. I’m interested in this and the Arlo Pro. Unfortunately neither are available in the U.K yet.

    (reply)
  • 12/04/2016
    Chad Bentz

    Ring is cheap in its paid cloud option for major one reason… The pricing is per camera.

    (reply)
    • 12/06/2016
      Rose Thibodeaux

      Hey Chad, I thought this was really smart feedback so I added a new line to the chart to show multi-camera discount or lack thereof. I hope it’s clear in the way I presented it? Good idea.

      (reply)
  • 12/05/2016
    Jay

    Thanks for the really comprehensive review! I’ve been researching Nest outdoor / Arlo Pro / Flex and your article did a great job laying out the pro’s and con’s.
    I’m in the rocky mountain region where it occasionally gets well below -4 and can verify your reader’s quote about cold weather limitations w Nest outdoor. I asked Nest support about this and they suggested that a different product might make sense. Seems like there really isn’t a good DIY option for users that live in cold weather? Arlo pro battery life is impacted, Flex only rated down to 14F and Nest said I should try a different product in cold weather.

    Rose – how does your approach of using Nest Indoors and shooting through windows work for you? Is that an acceptable approach for so many of your readers who live in cold climates?
    Thanks again for the great review.
    Jay

    (reply)
    • 12/05/2016
      Rose Thibodeaux

      I’m actually back to that approach right now. My grandmother is to the point where she needs some help so I put the Nest Cam Outdoor in her living room – with her permission of course. That said, there are limitations to using Nest Cam through a window. To me, they aren’t deal breakers.

      1. You can’t record sound. In fact, I have sound turned off because I don’t want the camera to record constant audio of me inside. Seems creepy.
      2. You also can’t use two-way audio.
      3. You must turn night vision off. I keep my porch light on at night (they are automated to turn on at sunset) so that I can continue to capture footage but this isn’t ideal for everyone.
      4. Motion on Nest Cam is too sensitive, made worse if it faces trees or cars. You will get lots of false alarms, but that’s no different from the Outdoor Nest. Setting zones will help some, but you must pay for Nest Aware.

      (reply)
    • 12/07/2016
      Rose Thibodeaux

      I was updating our Kuna article today and it reminded me that it can work in temperatures of up to, or perhaps down to, -40ºF – food for thought.

      (reply)
  • 12/07/2016
    Jay

    Thanks Rose for this update! Not familiar with Kuna and will check them out via your link. Have been continuing to research the best outdoor option. Surprised that none of the major brands in your side-by-side can be used in colder regions – seems like that eliminates a lot of potential customers. Glad I found your review and keep up the great work in this space – very helpful!

    (reply)
  • 12/24/2016
    Jacy

    Thank-you so much for the in depth review. What a breath of fresh air to see someone actually try to live with the product and write a review vs. cnet’s 5minute opinions.

    (reply)
  • 01/14/2017
    Sug

    Rings Very Slow

    1- Door Bell-hard wired
    1- Camera
    The biggest problem is they are slow and buggy when it come to live view or when I
    get a activation or ring and it response so slow, I have to walk to look out the window to see, and the iPhone is still not showing the feed.
    I have supper fast wifi so its not my network, I talk to tech support they seem to always say they are having issues on there end.

    Ring why have it, if it does not serve its intended purpose,

    (reply)
  • 02/06/2017
    Minok

    Alas, there is no good outdoor cam that does a solid job it seams, other than the Ring as it replaces an existing power fed location and has a very limited mission: see whats at the button.

    Battery power is a non-starter, other than as a backup for power failure. An outdoor security camera needs to work and work 24/7/365 without me thinking about it or doing regular maintenance like recharging.

    Insecure installations like the Nest outdoor are also a no-go unless you plan on mounting it under the eaves up at the 2nd’ story and routing into the attic. External wiring and easy to cut or remove wiring and mounts are a non-starter.

    (reply)
  • 03/27/2017
    Researching

    Ring also offers a $10/mo (or $100/year) unlimited devices service.

    (reply)
  • 04/06/2017
    Hale Guerra

    i really look forward to your review of the blink xt camera!

    (reply)
  • 04/17/2017
    Sergio

    Rose – I’m interested in Canary Flex since I have the original Canary. I’d love to get these systems on some unified Platform. I currently use Nest for a thermostat, Ring Pro for the doorbell, and a Wink Hub 2 to connect them all. Another hub will make me, well, sad. 🙂

    My question: Do you think the reason you received a delay response with Canary Flex is due to network visibility? Have you re-tested or adjusted wifi settings to enable a better connection?

    (reply)
    • 04/19/2017
      Rose Thibodeaux

      haha. Don’t do anything that will make you sad :). I upgraded my internet package and purchased three Google Wifi routers to create a mesh network. Though this upgrade did nothing to improve Flex’s overall performance, it did help with connectivity a touch. Flex’s performance improves when plugged-in and it’s possible that the battery experience will improve over time. Canary has already proven their ability to make a product better – just think about where they started with the original Canary.

      (reply)
  • 04/26/2017
    Divyesh Dheeraj

    can we use arlo pro without battery directly connected to power outlet ?????? by doing this can we record or does the camera is enabled????

    (reply)
    • 04/26/2017
      Rose Thibodeaux

      I’m not 100% sure what you are asking here so correct me if I’m wrong, but …. you can use the camera plugged in. While it is plugged in, it will work the same as it does while running on battery. It will still detect motion and record motion in the same way and you can live stream.

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      • 04/27/2017
        Divyesh Dheeraj

        okkkk let me make it clear,can we remove battery and plug in camera with the adapter and cable already given in the box directly to the power socket by connecting directly does the camera gets damaged or does camera work while connecting it directly w/o battery in it.i knew it seems awful am asking this just to knew,i saw a reviewer saything that in his video and that why.

        Thankyou

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  • 05/17/2017
    Alex

    Hi and thank you for the exhaustive review. I like the option of Ring Doorbell Pro. However, my existing doorbell is on the side of the house, facing parallel to the door across the front steps. If I mounted the Ring there, the camera would capture a profile of the visitor as they approach the door. It would not capture their face head on, would not (likely) capture them them as they approach the steps, which is where delivery people often leave packages (my interest in Ring, Arlo, etc., came out of the neighborhood social app conversation about a rash of package thefts), and would not capture the car they drive as it would face parallel to the street, not into the street. My question is: what would the installation of Ring look like on or near the front door, where there is no existing wiring? Is my existing setup enough to steer me away from Ring and toward a battery powered option?

    Thanks!

    (reply)
    • 05/17/2017
      Rose Thibodeaux

      The original Ring has a battery option. I don’t know how I would feel about that because you do have to remove the doorbell to charge it. Ring claims it will last 6-12 months on a charge. If that’s true, that wouldn’t be so bad; however, I would expect it to last like 3-6 months. In my experience, when a company gives a top end battery life range, that’s how long it will last if you never use the device. All that said, I don’t know how hard it would be to move a wired doorbell to the front of your door.

      (reply)
      • 05/17/2017
        Alex

        Thank you. From your experience, do you agree that mounting Ring on a side wall (the way I described) is not productive? A camera more or less should face outwards from the front door, in some shape or form, wouldn’t you say?

        Thinking of battery-powered original Ring, I don’t think opening up the mount and recharging a battery every 3-6 months would faze me. Having two doorbells (the “real” one on the side and the Ring on the door frame) probably would bug me more than a little. It did not occur to me to move the existing doorbell, just to install the Ring in the new location on or near the door.

        (reply)
        • 05/17/2017
          Rose Thibodeaux

          It’s not ideal, but it’s not terrible. I just went out there and stood sideways to the camera and you could still see me. The farther back I stood, the better the picture. Take a look at the article and scroll all the way to the bottom. I put two pictures up temporarily. Let me know once you see them as I’m going to take them down. I suggest buying it and testing it out using the battery by placing it where your current doorbell is BEFORE you actually install it. If you think it will work, go for it. If not, send it back.

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          • 05/17/2017
            Alex

            Thank you for the pictures. I get the idea.

  • 05/17/2017
    Scott

    Hi Rose! Thank you for such an informative article. Unfortunately, I’m reading due to the fact that my street was just the victim of car break-ins overnight. I am curious to know what your opinion on the night vision (inside and out) for each of the cameras is. I currently have the older Logitech Alert cameras, but their night vision isn’t the greatest so I really couldn’t make out the burglars or the vehicles they were in. I have been leaning on Ring doorbell/stick ups, but no 24/7 recording is almost scaring me away.

    I’m also curious if you integrated with an automation system for any of the testing. I currently use Control4 and love any chance to add a new toy to it.

    Thanks so much!

    (reply)
    • 05/19/2017
      Rose Thibodeaux

      Hey Scott, sorry about your car. Under shortcuts, you will find the video reviews. For Nest, night vision is shared at minute 1:43 and keep playing for just a moment to see night vision from Ring. During the Arlo vs. Canary video (the third video shown), skip to minute :54 to see night vision from Canary and keep playing to see a side by side comparing it to Arlo. To me, they are all about the same. I’ve found that the best night vision comes when you leave the lights on. I actually have automated lights on my porch, and they turn on at sunset and back off at sunrise. Integrating the cameras with a smart home system: I’ve tested Arlo Pro with SmartThings, I wasn’t a fan of that. It actually changes the mode to a new mode called SmartThings. I prefer geofencing mode. Ring I’ve tested using IFTTT, but I haven’t tested it with SmartThings.

      (reply)
  • 06/12/2017
    Giovanni

    I’m thinking about getting the Ring doorbell, but add the Nest outdoor for back and side door entries. Not sure if it would make more sense to get the Nest indoor cameras as opposed to the outdoor. What would you recommend?

    (reply)
  • 06/20/2017
    Gary

    Hi Rose,

    I’ve had 2 Arlo Pro cams for a few months now. They both work very well, although the false motion trips by wind or in my case a train that comes by is a bit annoying. But what I have found is that I really want a camera that is on 24/7, that I can go back and scan thru in case there’s an issue. The other thing is the delay. I had a person enter my property and the Arlo caught him just as he was almost out of the camera. A friend of mine told me to check out a FLIR camera. I don’t have a good home security system, so I would like to have something that can expand as far as needed. I can always take my Arlo to my office and use it there if I decide to switch.

    (reply)
    • 07/03/2017
      Rose Thibodeaux

      I’ve settled on continuous video for my outdoor cameras too. Obviously, I use Nest for that. For indoor cameras, Arlo Q is also an option. For $9.99/month, you can add continuous cloud recording. SpotCam also has continuous cloud recording, but we haven’t tried it. Of course, there are other options where you store the footage locally, but then the trouble becomes finding usable footage when you need it!

      (reply)
  • 07/19/2017
    Colin

    Great review! Exactly what I was looking for.

    Just wanted to note that it looks like Arlo Pro has recently added an outdoor power adapter as well as a solar panel.

    (reply)
  • 07/19/2017
    Scott

    Thanks for the incredible reviews… after weighing all the pros and cons, I decided to go with Arlo for the wireless convenience. Got it from Costco and it was easy to install. Images look great, too.

    Biggest problem though is the ‘wake up’ time. You reported on it, but I didn’t really take the time to really consider, “Hey, if I want to catch the kids driving by banging mailboxes, by the time they drive by and the camera wakes up, they’re gone!’ Well, that’s just what I learned as I set everything up, had the ap working and started getting notifications when people drove by. I thought AWESOME! it works! Well, not so much. Unfortunately, the car is never seen on the video, so the purpose is pretty much defeated.

    I did find that when I walked out the front door, the wake up was pretty quick, whereas the road is more toward the top of the camera, so that may have something to do with it. Regardless, it looks like back to Costco the system will go once I get the mounts uninstalled tomorrow.

    Thanks again and I hope this helps others, too.

    (reply)
  • 07/25/2017
    Kathi

    I purchased a Ring video doorbell in late 2015. Just what I wanted so I could answer the door with my phone app.
    However, my internet speed isn’t fast enough on uploading! I’d ring the doorbell, walk through the door, then up to half a minute or more, I’d get the notification (I) was at the door.
    The minimum upload speed has to be at least 1 Mbs, whereas Consolidated Communications is only 0.7 Mbs. I returned the doorbell, much to my disappointment.
    Please alert customers to this crucial information.

    (reply)
    • 07/26/2017
      Rose Thibodeaux

      Adding minimum/recommended upload speed is a good idea. I’ll add that to my list.

      (reply)
    • 08/07/2017
      Sam S

      I understand your frustation. I had the same problem. My router was far from the Ring itself so I bought a WiFi extender and once I got that up and running – no more issues. I have the first generation Ring. Good luck with whatever you go with!!

      (reply)
  • 07/28/2017
    Paul

    Rose, not sure if I missed in somewhere but when I see reviews of Ring with ‘slow to activate’ and just catching the backside of someone leaving, do you know if this is an issue with Ring or only when running on battery? If hardwired do you know if it has this same issue? Thanks!

    (reply)
    • 07/28/2017
      Rose Thibodeaux

      I haven’t had that problem, and as you said, I’m running it hardwired. My clips include a front facing image of guests. That said, I’ve recently had issues with wake up times when I’m away from home. As an example, I answered a ring alert yesterday, but it just kept spinning. I had to hard close the app, open it back up, and then check the alert. By then, the guest was gone.

      (reply)
    • 08/05/2017
      Adria

      I think the slowness only affects the non Pro Ring Doorbells. Someone would need to confirm though but I’m pretty sure I read similar statement in the comments on a different site.

      (reply)
    • 08/23/2017
      Nick

      Rose, thanks for the great review! Paul, I have a Video Doorbell Pro and a Floodlight Cam — both are hardwired. Both lag at least seven seconds behind real time and sometimes even longer. During the lag, the would-be burglar is gone or could be in your house. Ring’s ads suggest you see things in real time which is not the case for me. The signal strength and wifi speed both test excellent. I hope this helps you. Nick

      (reply)
  • 08/11/2017
    CD

    Hi Rose,

    thanks for the comprehensive reviews. Do you want to get married? I have BOTH gigabit internet and eero mesh wifi + Ring 2 in transit – imagine how much fun we would have geeking out and setting up our security cams together…

    All kidding aside, question regarding Arlo and the base station:

    Does each camera have to connect directly to the BS or can it be routed via my home wi-fi system? Although wifi coverage is not an issue, if BS is in front of house, I’m concerned that a camera in the back will not be able to reach it.

    To add to your Final thoughts, I would add that an ideal camera would have flexibility in terms of both power (battery, solar, PoE) and connectivity + (a big plus) local storage so that I could use my NAS for storage and avoid any monthly fees whatsoever.

    thanks,
    CD

    (reply)
    • 08/11/2017
      Rose Thibodeaux

      Ha! That’s funny. Anywho, Arlo. Yes, Arlo needs the base station. The cameras only talk to the base station which creates its own network. The max range is stated at 300ft between base station and camera, which I assume is direct line of sight. If I had to guesstimate the distance between my base station and camera I would say 50 feet max? I haven’t tested beyond that.

      And yes, good thoughts on final thoughts :).

      (reply)
  • 08/19/2017
    Abe

    Hi thanks for your amazing review!!! Best one online! Q: One point I didn’t get clear yet, what are the differences between the Canary vs Canary Flex? and which one is better? Thanks

    (reply)
    • 08/20/2017
      Rose Thibodeaux

      Thanks, Abe. I have a chart that compares Canary and Flex here: https://homealarmreport.com/canary-flex-security-camera-review/. I still prefer Canary All-in-One over Flex. Of course, it’s an indoor only camera so that might be a dealbreaker for you depending on how you want to use it. It has a better picture, already offers two-way audio (if you’re a Canary Member), has motion zones, and multiple air quality sensors.

      (reply)
      • 08/20/2017
        Abe

        Thanks!! One other question I have: my wife is due this fall and (in addition to a regular home security camera) I’m seeking a good baby video monitor, the best actually. Do you have a chart or column that compares and reviews baby video monitors? (I searched online and there’s an endless amount of options, and there’s also so many articles each one claiming this one is better or that one is better – but no one is nearly as good or trustworthy as you as far, and as far as breaking down each product and giving us the full truth and clarity there’s no equal to the job you have done! Do you have anything on this (baby video monitors)? If not yet, do you plan to? Thanks!

        (reply)
        • 08/21/2017
          Rose Thibodeaux

          Congratulations! And that’s kind of you to say. Unfortunately, I’ve only tested one baby monitor and it was a long time ago. I think it was the D-Link DCS 820L? I wouldn’t recommend it.

          (reply)
          • 09/14/2017
            Veronica

            Hey rose I want to use inside for childcare but also have quality for when away from home what would be your recommendation !!?

          • 09/14/2017
            Rose Thibodeaux

            Since I’m assuming you will want to live stream often to check on your kids, I would recommend a wired security camera. The original Canary is a good option as is Arlo Q. Both will allow you to live stream from anywhere. Original Canary does not offer two-way audio for free, Arlo Q does, something to consider if you want to be able to talk to your childcare provider or children using the camera. Both cameras include free cloud storage.

  • 08/21/2017
    Abe

    Do you have reviews on Baby Video Monitors?

    (reply)
  • 09/19/2017
    T. Dwyer

    Great job on reviews. A lot of work there. Just installed a Ring Doorbell Pro and to spotlights. Kits include tools and more installation options than imaginable. Very thoughtfully done. But wake up time is as you described. Needs to be faster.

    (reply)
    • 09/19/2017
      Rose Thibodeaux

      Yup. I upgraded my router and internet speeds. My current download speed is 339 Mbps, and I still have issues with the wake time.

      (reply)
  • 09/20/2017
    Ray

    Can you do a compare with the new nest camera iq outdoor vs ring floodlight camera

    (reply)
    • 09/22/2017
      Rose Thibodeaux

      After testing indoor Nest IQ Indoor and Nest Cam Outdoor, I’ve decided to pass on Nest IQ Outdoor. Plus, it sounds like this version will require drilling, and I’ve found that Nest’s facial recognition feature doesn’t add more value than their face detection feature. I also don’t have a place for Ring Floodlight. However, I will buy Ring Spotlight. I have six devices in my office waiting to test, so I can’t promise that it’s going to happen quickly, but it will happen! 🙂

      (reply)
      • 11/08/2017
        Mair

        Rose,
        Did you have time to test the Ring Spotlight? I own the Ring doorbell which is ok, but now I need an outdoor security camera.

        (reply)
        • 11/08/2017
          Rose Thibodeaux

          I bought it, but I haven’t tested it yet. It’s been sitting in my office for a week. I hope to set it up ASAP.

          (reply)
        • 11/08/2017
          Mair

          Sorry Rose, forgot to mention I’m actually investigating the solar version of the Ring spotlight. Any input?

          (reply)
          • 11/09/2017
            Rose Thibodeaux

            I bought the solar panel as well, but I don’t have any feedback on it yet.

          • 11/16/2017
            Rose Thibodeaux

            Mair, I installed the Spotlight Cam and have been running it for a few days. I updated the content above, and I’m working on a separate review (which I will publish after Thanksgiving). So far it’s fine. There are some limitations with the Solar version, which is the same as the Battery version. One, you can’t create Activity Zones, that is limited to the Wired version only. Two, you can’t schedule the lights. The lights will turn on when motion is detected and you can trigger them manually, but that’s it. I’d say that the motion detector performance is on par with the Ring Video Doorbell. It includes the same feature that allows you to adjust motion sensitivity. There is no way to weed out false alarms, and sometimes I get alerts if the wind blows too hard. The camera wakes up fast, faster than my doorbell. The video quality is just okay. It doesn’t look like 1080p to me, it looks like 720p. Two-way talk works well. I was surprised that the cameras don’t play together. For example, if my doorbell detects an alert, I can’t trigger Spotlight to record. Spotlight doesn’t work with IFTTT so it’s not possible through their service, and though it works with Stringify, you can’t create this sort of relationship between cameras using Stringify. What else do you want to know?

  • 09/28/2017
    Larry

    Rose first let me say thanks for the reviews. But just wanted to let you know (and maybe the nest guy you talked with also) that you can choose to only get notifications for people and not motion. This has been available for at least 3 months now. Also have only had one time when it had reported a person and was not. Car lights was what it really saw.

    Anyway thanks again for the great reviews.

    (reply)
    • 09/28/2017
      Rose Thibodeaux

      Yes, I’ve been using Nest this way for awhile, and I love it! I didn’t realize that I hadn’t updated the article. I’m not even sure where in the article I mentioned this fact but I will read it now and get it updated.

      (reply)
  • 10/11/2017
    Bi Pi

    With the recent changes of Oct 2017 in Canary’s subscription vs non-subscription plans (owner’s used to at least received some reasonable length video), why would anyone go with a Canary now? Seems that they are trying to drive the customers that originally put them on the map toward other companies.

    (reply)
  • 10/20/2017
    Ron

    Hi Rose – great work here. I’m looking for a service like the Ring service that supports the use of POE Ethernet-connected (non-WiFi) cameras.

    Ring now has the Doorbell Elite which supports POE, but none of their cameras support POE.

    Do you know of any such solutions?

    (reply)
    • 10/20/2017
      Rose Thibodeaux

      When you say, “a service like Ring,” do you mean the ecosystem itself? As in, you’re looking for a doorbell and outdoor camera that work under one app? Or do you mean something different? Short answer is no, I can’t think of anything off the top of my head. Long answer: Ring Elite, as you said offers PoE as does DoorBird Video Doorbell, but I do not recommend DoorBird. Regarding security cameras, Arlo Q Plus (no doorbell, but it does work with IFTTT). EZVIZ Husky offers PoE (no doorbell camera, poor quality IMO, works with IFTTT). OCO Pro Bullet offers PoE as does their Pro Indoor camera (no doorbell, but it does work with IFTTT). In order, I like Arlo Q the best (it’s got a strong lead in this three-way race), followed by Oco, and EZVIZ. I have tested cameras from all three companies.

      (reply)
      • 10/20/2017
        Ron

        Yes, I’m looking for an ecosystem that provides cloud-based mobile access to security video in a reasonably low cost package. However, I don’t want WiFi cameras, because I don’t want the bandwidth burden on the WiFi when I already have CAT6 cables to each camera location and I already have a POE switch. I don’t need a doorbell at all, just the cameras.

        Thank you for your suggestion of the Arlo Q Plus – this looks like exactly what I need. After reviewing the Arlo Q Plus, the Husky and the OCO I agree with your ranking order.

        Much appreciated. This was very helpful.

        (reply)
  • 10/22/2017
    matthew

    My gate is too far from my router so I would prefer to hardwire the doorbell. I would rather not use an extender. I ran CAT5 when I installed my old doorbell (which is now outdated and does not have software to use on my iphone). Is my only option the Ring Elite? I have the Arlo set up indoor, but I was not sure if Arlo was going to make a doorbell. Any thoughts?

    (reply)
    • 10/23/2017
      Rose Thibodeaux

      The only “coming soon” doorbell that I know of is Nest Hello, which is not a PoE option. Arlo just announced the Arlo Pro 2 with no mention of a doorbell, and I doubt they would keep something like that under wraps if that had a doorbell in the works.

      That said, Ring Elite and DoorBird Video Doorbell are both PoE, but I do not recommend DoorBird. So I guess the answer is “yes,” Ring Elite is the only option that I know of.

      (reply)
  • 11/18/2017
    Gordon

    I was wondering if you had any plans on testing the new 4 camera wireless lorex system.Thanks Rose

    (reply)
    • 11/19/2017
      Rose Thibodeaux

      I do not. However, if you buy them, I would love to hear about your experience!

      (reply)
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