Dropcam WiFi Wireless Video Monitoring Camera Review

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The Dropcam Wi-Fi Wireless Video Monitoring Camera is a wonderful product that has some definite appeals, as well as a few distinct drawbacks.

The result of a collaboration between Dropcam Inc. and Google Nest Labs, this camera is a sure winner if you fall in its demographic.

dropcam review

What we love most is the flawless camera quality and the compatibility with Nest features. The audio that allows you to talk to visitors, and hear their response, is also a touch we appreciate.

All these fancy features do come with a pretty hefty taxation on your Wi-Fi, so be prepared for this prior to installing the camera in your home.

Few of our testers were willing to give up this camera after an initial testing round, although the Wi-Fi issue was mentioned as the main reason for not falling in love with this wireless device.

Of course, there’s more we have to tell you about this surveillance camera, so read on and get all the details.

Dropcam Wi-Fi Wireless Video Monitoring Camera: The Details

Specs

  • Product Dimensions: 3.15 x 3.15 x 4.5 in.
  • Product Weight: 5.44 ounces.
  • Product Type: Wireless video monitoring camera.
  • Compatible with: Amazon Alexa, Nest Protect, and Nest Thermostat.
  • Video Quality: 720p HD.
  • Extra features: Night vision and zooming function.
  • Batteries: 2 CR123A batteries required.

How Does it Work

Setting up a surveillance camera used to be reserved for fancy companies that could afford to get other people to install them. With the best wireless surveillance camera, this becomes a task anyone can perform.

Thanks to the 60-second rule, all you need to do is turn on your camera and PC, and have them sync up. This it! Talk about a pretty sweet deal, right?

Of course, you’ll need to spend a bit of extra time connecting other systems if you want full access to every feature, but the entire set-up process is so smooth, it hardly feels like work at all.

The activity recognition feature gives this Dropcam camera a leg up when it comes to sending notifications.

You can add certain activity types (cars passing by or a gardener working while you’re away) that your camera will recognize and by adjusting the settings, you can then choose to not receive notifications for this type of movement.

dropcam camera review

In the same way, you can set someone walking towards your house as another activity that does need monitoring. Finding it in your surveillance files becomes easy since you can filter through certain pre-set activities.

The night vision feature is not to be underestimated, especially for a camera that streams your footage 24 hours a day. The last thing you want is to be paying for several hours of pitch black after all.

Keep an eye out into the night, or check how your baby is sleeping without turning on the lights, and discover a new way of living.

Also, connect with Nest Protect to safeguard your home. In case Nest Protect discovers a fire or elevated CO levels in your home, it will send you a notification and record everything that happens, even if you’re not a subscriber to the recording service.

Finally, if you add Nest Thermostat to this configuration, you’ll find your thermostat lowers while you’re not home and all cameras switch on to do their work. Perfect for the lovers of a truly smart and interactive home!

Dropcam Inc. and Google Nest Labs: The Brand

Dropcam Inc. was started in San Francisco as one of the leading companies in smart home surveillance technology.

After creating the best wireless camera their company had ever conceived, they drew the attention of Google Nest Labs. Even after the merge in 2014, they continued to use the name Dropcam to commemorate the original work.

Now Google Nest Labs continues to use this smart technology to ensure that it becomes a feature which can be added to their lives with ease.

This combination has produced some winning products already, and they’re not displaying signs of slowing down.

smart security camera

Dropcam Wi-Fi Wireless Video Monitoring Camera Review

The Positives

No Unwanted Notifications

While smart security cameras are definitely convenient, some of them can be more of an annoyance than a security feature.

With the Dropcam, once you’ve designated a certain type of activity as normal, your camera will stop sending you emails about it every half hour.

It doesn’t sound like much, but coming into your lunch break with 10 emails telling you about suspicious activity when it’s just a passing car is not how we want to live with smart surveillance.

Take advantage and be sure to use this feature to the fullest.

Automatic Updates

Thanks to constant Cloud connectivity, you’ll always receive updates as soon as they become available.

It has become impossible to buy a surveillance camera that becomes outdated after a few years as long as it’s connected to the Cloud, and you’ll enjoy each new software feature just the same as people who buy later models.

This keeps you refreshed on the products new additions without having to foot the bill for a newer device.

Save Your Data

Paying for a subscription can stop others from potentially destroying evidence of their breaking in.

Even if someone steals or destroys both your laptop/PC and camera, the footage will be stored safely on the Cloud, where you can reach it through your account.

Dropcam WiFi Wireless Video Monitoring Camera

In the case that you are facing legal matters, it’s great to have raw evidence of your own to take to the authorities.

Easy to Set Up 

When it comes to smart devices, we know those who aren’t on top of their tech game may be worried. With the Dropcam, you don’t have to stress.

Dropcam promises a 60-second setup, and current users can attest to that. Many owners of the Dropcam have noted just how painless this is to get up and running, so those of us who are less tech-savvy can manage on our own.

Once you find your Wi-Fi network with the Dropcam, you’ll be able to start live streaming right away!

Once set-up, the app is also relatively easy to use working with both Android and Apple smart devices.

High-Quality Home Monitoring

You’ll have a crystal clear feed with the Dropcam; 720p high-definition video to be exact.

This is the same quality many televisions and monitors use, so you won’t have to fret about not being able to get the whole picture.

Speaking of the whole picture, this camera has a great field of vision spanning over 100 degrees diagonally, and as for its night vision, you won’t be left in the dark. The night setting still allows you to see a clear picture, instead of a grainy feed other monitors use.

Whether you’re keeping an eye on a pet, baby, or just your overall home, the Dropcam ensures you won’t miss a thing.

Customer Service

Dropcam cameras come with a 1-year limited warranty protecting you against any errors in craftsmanship.

If you do find any faults with your camera, you’ll need to contact customer service and they’ll determine whether they need to repair or replace your product for you.

It always brings a peace of mind to purchase a product with a warranty, and it shows that a company stands by their product.

What’s even better is when a company is able to assist you if trouble does arise.

Dropcam’s customer service department has not disappointed with customers raving about their efficient, polite, and helpful service.

Not only do you have a warranty to back you, but a team of helpful experts too!

dropcam camera review

The Negatives

Heavy Data Consumption

The thing that makes this camera amazing is also what makes it hard on your monthly data plan. By streaming all day long, no matter if something is happening or not, it interacts with the Cloud for long periods of time.

Since this data consumption increases with every added camera, we recommend limiting your surveillance to only those areas where you really believe you need it.

Pay to Play

While this camera has a great surveillance capacity and a way of capturing video that will make it easy to identify any wrongdoing, you will have to pay a fee to get access to those files.

Streaming the video as live to your phone or PC at work is free, as is receiving the emails that notify you of unusual activity. But you can only access the records of those activities if you have a paid subscription.

When you compare this to surveillance cameras that save images for free but only for a limited time, you have to ask yourself which type of camera is best suited to your needs.

Here’s a video showing what the Dropcam security camera looks like out of the box.

Overall Verdict

We can recommend the Dropcam Wi-Fi Wireless Video Monitoring Camera to people who need live surveillance of a part of their home, such as keeping an eye on the baby bedroom.

Things become trickier if you also want a saved record of the footage since that does require you to buy a subscription. There are other cameras on the market that save footage for free, albeit for a very limited time.

We are most impressed with the camera quality and the compatibility with other Nest features. Especially the latter elevates your home from being just smart to one that is truly interactive.

This camera is not suitable for people who need to either keep a permanent record of their files without a subscription or for people who do not have a wireless connection that can keep up with this camera.

If all you need is a live video stream, or you don’t mind paying a bit extra for added features, this is a wonderful surveillance camera that will certainly perform as needed.

Where to Buy the Dropcam Wi-Fi Wireless Video Monitoring Camera

While the Dropcam has become a popular product in the world of smart security cameras, this model, in particular, may be a little hard to find.

With Dropcam partnering up with bigger names in tech like Google, the company (and the camera) has undergone a number of changes in a very short while.

Newer models of the Dropcam can easily be found both in-store and online at your usual prospects like Best Buy and Lowes, but you’re sure to find the Dropcam Wi-Fi Wireless Video Monitoring Camera on Amazon.

Dropcam camera review


That’s it for our Dropcam camera review. Curious to give it a try?

Staff Writer

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