Remote monitoring is all the new rage in the field of security and ensuring safety. Having a set of cameras installed at your shop, driveway, or home and accessing it remotely at the convenience of your mobile device or desktop is one great, advanced way to assure that everything is in its place. For people who are suspicious of local activity, or other, more malicious activities at your home or workplace, having a cloud-based monitoring system will help you fend off your skeptical fears. Having your cameras installed in desired places and getting them connected via a cloud network to your remote device was not conceivable a few years in the past, but now, establishing such a network is a piece of cake, thanks to the developers working relentlessly to bring the technology at the fingertips of everyday users.
We will be talking here about SpotCam, a cloud based remote monitoring service that provides both the monitoring cameras and the smartphone and tablet apps. Integrating a simple set-up process and user interface is something SpotCam has been able to achieve pretty neatly. SpotCam lets you configure the cameras and set up your computer or smartphone to access the same via a live video feed. Hotels, shops, homes, driveways, almost everyone is getting them installed, now that this technology isn’t as expensive as they used to be.
Build and Design
SpotCam possess a sturdy build for a remote camera monitoring system. The camera is mounted on a firm stand that possesses a myriad of features that we will be shortly examining in detail. The SpotCam HD Camera comes along with a snap on the base, allowing wall mounting. The AC adaptor, to which the device needs to be plugged in whenever in use, comes with a 10 foot cable to place the device at your convenient location.
SpotCam comes in two versions: A normal one, and the HD Pro. The normal one is made of a white plastic body that is particularly aimed at home users, and the SpotCam HD Pro version is aimed for outdoor usage. The camera of the device is surrounded with a lens that features a status LED and a microphone below it. The camera features a pivot that allows for tilting of the camera, as per your needs. The non-slip rubber base ensures that your device sits straight in its place.
Features and Hardware Specifications
Coming to the hardware part of the device, it allows video recording up to 720P HD (1280×720) at 30 frames/sec. It features a H.264 codec, and the field of view is at 110 degrees. The device possess both a speaker and a microphone, ensuring a two-way communication with the aid of this device. So you can basically use this device either to listen to audio clips at its installed location, or output your voice to the device’s built-in speaker. The device boasts 12 high-power LEDs to provide a better quality night vision. The bank-level SSL encryption ensures that your live video feeds are always secured.
Working and Performance
The setting up of this device is pretty straightforward, taking 5 minutes of your time if you properly follow the detailed instructions in the Quick start guide. The device needs to be connected to a power output and a Wi-Fi network all the time. At the back of the device features switches that are to be turned on for power and connecting to a Wi-Fi network. Now, you can place the device at its preferred location and this is all you would be required for physical setup of the network. Now, we come to establishing the remote video feed.
At SpotCam’s website, you will be first required to create an account, allowing you access to the camera from anywhere. The web interface requires you to open the feed with your browser that supports Flash support. You can access live feed from the device’s camera, allowing you to view up to 24 hours of cloud-captured video on the free plan. You can subscribe for the premium plans to extend that limit from 3 days to a month’s time. The web interface is plain and clean, showing you a list of your cameras. Click on the desired one and you will see an extended view of the same. A great feature in SpotCam is that you can configure the device to send you notifications via email for specific motion or audio event detection. The device comes with free smartphone apps for your Android and iOS device, and can be downloaded from the respective app stores.
Time-lapse is another cool free feature very recently ingrained into its services that let you take time-lapsed videos by selecting a period and the photo taking interval. Although the live feed comes with a little bit of lag¸ it isn’t as sluggish as one would expect from this technology.
The better pricing of its cloud storage services for the live feed and playback well places SpotCam ahead of its competitors. SpotCam costs $149, and its ease of setup and usage is definitely an added advantage for the regular home user. Although Android app could be a bit glitchy sometimes, the web and iOS app work flawlessly. This remote monitoring device when compared to other similar services provides best bang for your bucks, if you are limited to a tight budget.
[Image via SpotCam]