Home security cameras keep watch over your home from both inside and outside, acting as an extra pair of eyes and ears to monitor your property. In this guide, we'll look at the benefits of installing indoor and outdoor security cameras, from their potential to deter criminals to other applications such as pet and baby monitors. We'll also explore the necessary and optional features of security cameras, as well as their drawbacks. Finally, we’ll discuss some of the other ways to protect your home if you’re not sure about installing cameras.
Home security cameras aren’t just useful for policing your property; they’re also helpful for keeping an eye on children and pets when you can’t be there. A security camera with facial recognition by your front door can send you a push notification saying, “John is at the front door,” so you know your child is home safely. Two-way audio on indoor cameras can act as an intercom, allowing you to see and talk to your family when you’re not home.Ultimately, home security cameras work best to protect your property when they're integrated with a home security system. To save their batteries, wireless security cameras only start to record when they detect motion, which means they may not record everything you'd want them to. With a home security system, cameras, especially mini camera, can be set to start recording as soon as any part of the security system is triggered, such as a contact sensor, a glass-break sensor, or a motion sensor. This makes it more likely the cameras will record everything that’s happening on your property and not just the few seconds of motion that occurred right in front of them.
Continuous video recording, also called 24/7 recording, is a luxury that you most likely don’t need. Unless you want to record every moment of the day on your property, you can skip this feature, which can be expensive on wireless indoor surveillance cameras and uses a lot of Wi-Fi bandwidth and internet data.
Another feature you probably don't need is an extremely wide field of view, which can distort the image. A 130-degree field of view is usually sufficient.
Finally, modern Wi-Fi security IP cameras have a host of smart features to give you more detailed information about what’s going on in your home without you having to pull up the video feed. These software-based features tend to increase the price of the camera and aren't essential, although they're nice to have. They include features such as person detection, which allows the camera to alert you that a person is on your property, rather than just telling you motion was detected. The ability to set activity zones means the camera will only notify you about motion in a certain area of the image (ignoring, for example, a tree that frequently blows in the wind). Other nice-to-have smart features include the ability to work with smart home systems, such as Amazon’s Alexa Google’s Assistant and Apple’s HomeKit, and to integrate with smart door locks to allow for secure in-home deliveries.
We strongly recommend that you enable any built-in privacy features that the camera offers, and it can be perfect as baby monitor. For example, cameras can be turned off in the mobile app or geofencing technology can turn them off automatically when someone in your family with a smartphone is home.
What Are Some Uses of Home Security Cameras Besides Preventing Burglary?
Today’s home security cameras, including outdoor surveillance camera, are multifunctional and can be used for much more than just monitoring your property for intruders. Here are just a few other uses for home security cameras:
Baby Monitor: Set up an indoor camera in your baby’s room and view a live feed wherever you are, as long as you have an internet connection. You’ll need a camera capable of recording 24/7 and it will need to be plugged in, but as long as it has two-way audio and will send alerts on sound or motion it will work as a reliable monitor.
Pet Cam: Indoor, outdoor or other cameras can be used to keep an eye on your dogs, cats, chicken coop, or bunny hutch. Some cameras can specifically alert you to the noise of a dog barking so you can talk to your pet with a two-way talk feature.
Wildlife Cam: Place a battery-powered camera with night vision capabilities at the end of your garden and keep an eye on destructive deer or predatory raccoons, or enjoy the sights and sounds of nocturnal nature on your property.
Smart Home Trigger: If you have other smart home devices in your home, your camera, or action monitor, can be linked with them so they can respond automatically. For example, the motion sensor in an outdoor camera can turn smart lights inside if it detects motion in your driveway when you come home.
What Are Some Other Ways to Prevent Burglary?