Nanny Cam Review: Canary All-in-One Home Security System
Real Care.com employees test various home monitoring systems and give their honest feedback. Learn how one family fared with the Canary All-in-One Home Security System.
I want a camera because I'm a single mother of two children (ages 5 and 12) and I work full-time. While my job can be flexible, there are days when my children are left alone for three hours at a time. I have great neighbors who help watch my girls here and there, but there are days when they’re alone in the house and I don’t have any way of knowing what they’re doing. I’ve decided that if I’m going to invest my money in something like a nanny cam, I have to make sure it does everything I need and want it to do.
About the Camera
My camera is a white Canary All-in-One Home Security System. It’s very sleek, stylish and modern. It looks more like a speaker than a camera, so it isn’t intimidating to anyone. The color options are white, silver and black – though black is the most popular option.
Ease of Install
Installation was very self-explanatory. All I had to do was connect the camera to my wireless network and install the app on my smartphone. It takes a few minutes to sign up, but once you're on, you're ready to go. I chose to set up the camera in my living room because that's the room my kids use the most while I'm at work. It's doubly convenient because the playroom is directly behind it, so I'm able to see into both at the same time. The only issue is that the camera is a plug-in, which meant that I had to be near an outlet or use an extension cord to power it.
- Video Clarity and View: The video clarity is better than I expected it to be. The camera has an 1080p HD a large, 147-degree wide-angle lens, automatic night vision, and audio.
- Live Viewing: The upside is that I can see what the girls are doing whenever I want. The downside is that you pay for that storage in case you need to save it for future reference. A light does go on when you’re live-viewing from your phone, but neither my friends or family have had a problem with it. The camera’s so small that they hardly notice that it’s on or that they’re being watched.
- Remote Pan and Tilt: The camera doesn’t have any remote pan or tilt capabilities. It does have a wide-view angle, but that’s pretty much it. It would be nice to be able to use my phone to make it move left and right, and up and down.
- Recording Options: With this camera, you get 12 hours of video history, three video downloads, and five video bookmarks for free. The camera also comes equipped with motion-activated recording. If unusual activity is detected in your home, you get a push notification on your phone that alerts you, lets you to set off a siren, and notifies local police. It’s great for burglaries!
- Battery-Operated, Plug-In or Both? This particular model is a plug-in, which isn’t ideal for where I want to place it. However, this camera does also have battery-operated versions that may be more convenient.
- Sound and Other Features: The sound is fairly clear, but the closer and louder the kids are, the better it sounds. Another cool feature is the Home Health Technology capability that monitors air quality, temperature and humidity; three things I would never have even thought of! Apparently, the reasoning behind this technology is to help consumers understand how their home environments could affect their health (e.g. mold, carbon monoxide, etc.).
The camera costs about $199, or you can buy a 2-pack for $379. If you want extra storage for video, you’ll end up paying between $49 and $299 a year. These payments can also be broken up on a month-by-month, too.
Overall, I think that this is a very good camera and I definitely like a lot of the features it has. However, there were a couple things that I wish it either had or could do:
- I’d like it to be battery-operated;
- I’d like to have the remote pan and tilt option;
- I’d like to get video history of specific times during a day that I can revisit later; and,
- I’d like to have more free storage available to me.
The premium storage prices are a bit high for me because I don’t need that much storage space to begin with. Other than that, I liked that you get a 60-day guarantee and a one-year warranty with the camera. You even get free ground shipping!
*Care.com does not endorse or recommend any commercial products, processes, or services. The views and opinions of authors expressed on Care.com do not necessarily state or reflect those of Care.com, and they may not be used for advertising or product endorsement purposes.
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