Wireless Home Security Cameras

Wireless Home Security Cameras

Wireless security cameras are less invasive to install and don’t require the use of wires. However, they must maintain a clear line of sight to the hub to function properly.

These devices typically communicate with Wi-Fi to upload footage to the cloud. Some also have onboard storage and connect to voice-controlled smart assistants like Alexa, Google Assistant and Apple HomeKit.

Video Quality

While wired security cameras still exist—and some top-rated models have a wired hub that connects to a computer monitoring system or TV—wireless and wire-free cameras use your home’s Wi-Fi to transmit video signals. Once these signals reach your wireless router or hub, they can be stored locally (or on the cloud) for viewing and playback in real time. Some home security camera systems use batteries or a micro SD card to store footage; others plug into power outlets and operate on your standard electricity network.

Most wireless security cameras communicate through your home Wi-Fi, but some, including our top-rated Arlo models, use a bridge that plugs into your router and stays in your house. They can record to local DVR units or to storage clouds, which offer 24/7 access from anywhere. These cameras can also integrate with smart home devices and systems, such as Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant. They can be used with voice controls or to receive alerts via a smartphone app. Standard features include night vision, two-way audio, and a wide field of view.

Two-Way Audio

Many wireless home security cameras use Wi-Fi to communicate with the Internet and other devices. This lets them pair with smart home gadgets like voice-controlled assistants (like Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant) for voice commands and remote viewing, as well as send video to storage clouds.

But a Wi-Fi connection can leave you vulnerable to digital snooping from hackers outside your network, which is why some models offer extra protection against this threat. They may feature a built-in firewall to shield your camera from hackers and offer encryption to protect data in transit.

Some wireless models also have battery backup to keep recording even when power goes out — an important feature to consider if you live in an area with frequent outages. Others have features to make life at home Home Security Wireless Camera more pleasant, such as the ability to soothe a crying infant or let a sick parent know help is on the way.

Wired systems require professional installation and often require hardwired connections to a DVR, which can add up to significant installation costs. But they provide more reliable video performance because their signal doesn’t depend on the strength of your Wi-Fi connection or the distance it can travel through walls and furniture.

Motion Detection

Wireless cameras work over Wi-Fi to send footage to a central hub or connected smart devices. This eliminates the need for long, obtrusive wires running across floorboards or through walls like you might see with hardwired security systems.

Most wireless cameras use motion detection to alert you of activity in or around your home. These advanced features typically scan incoming video footage pixel by pixel to detect Home Security Wireless Camera movement. Some more sophisticated models can even recognize irregular or aggressive behavior.

The best wireless cameras include a mobile app for making adjustments, livestreaming footage and reviewing recordings. Some apps also let you control your cameras using voice commands through digital assistants like Alexa or Google Assistant.

Wireless security cameras are less invasive than hardwired options, which can be a big benefit for renters or landlords. They require less of an upfront investment, and they’re easier to move when tenants or owners relocate. They’re also more resistant to digital snooping from outside sources. However, the wireless signal can be affected by other nearby devices that use the same radio frequency, such as cordless phones and routers.

Night Vision

When choosing a security camera, look for night vision capabilities. This lets you see who’s coming up to your door and help deter crime even in the dark. Some models even have LED floodlights and industry-leading Starlight technology to brighten your doorstep and give intruders a clearer picture.

Some models are wireless, requiring only your Wi-Fi connection to transmit video signals to your viewing device. Others require a wired base station that plugs into your router and remains in the home, or work with cellular connections that broadcast to an internet-connected device. Wired systems can work better for those who want the reliability of a wired connection or have a large property with walls that block wireless signals.

Some models use Z-Wave or Zigbee for communication, which can make them more secure by eliminating the possibility of hackers intercepting your data. Other cameras use Bluetooth to connect to hubs or other smart home devices, but they don’t have the bandwidth for video transmission.

Cloud Storage

Unlike analog wired security cameras that require video cables to connect to a central hub, wireless systems connect directly to your home Wi-Fi. Some have built-in storage that lets you save video on the camera itself, while others use cloud or home automation network technologies for remote access and local control of multiple cameras (and sometimes additional devices in your smart home).

Wired security systems connect to a central hub, which processes footage and stores it on a hard drive. Traditionally, these have required a dedicated cable for each camera and can only be accessed on-site or via VPN. Newer wired models, however, connect to a router and support a variety of home automation networks like ZigBee, Z-wave, and HomeKit.

Some wireless home security cameras create their own wireless network and don’t broadcast to the internet. This can be useful if you live in an area with spotty Wi-Fi or a difficult-to-reach outdoor space where the signal doesn’t reach. These cameras may also have a second layer of protection by using two-factor authentication to verify you’re the person trying to log in.