At ESI, Emergency Systems Inc., Jacksonville’s premier security alarm company, we are committed to publishing the most up-to-date security alarm articles and archiving them on our website. This week our attention turns to a very popular topic, WIFI security cameras, the dos and don’ts of selection and purchase. Last time we looked at outdoor security cameras and paid particular attention to the considerations that should be known when installing security cameras outside. In that online article, we dedicated a large part to discussing the merits of wireless security cameras in general, but we didn’t dive as deeply as we wanted to, so we’re doing that today! This time on our security alarm blog we will discuss WIFI security cameras, how they work and what you need to know to select the right one for your specific application and needs!
OK, What Actually is a WIFI Security Camera
A WIFI security camera is really just another name for a wireless security camera product. Wireless camera transmissions actually send the video data that are captured over WIFI to whatever cloud-based software or server that is used to monitor them. The difference between the internet or what is referred to as WIFI is the internet is the language or data sent, WIFI is the highway or wireless computer network that transmits the data.
A WIFI security camera actually connects and communicates with your router, or whatever base your home security system operated on. While some of these components may have power cords, others may be battery-operated. That’s is an important feature or distinction, that the wireless operation here is specifically in reference to how it feeds and connects the data generated from the camera to the operational system, not the power.
This connectivity allows the security camera to immediately send its footage to the cloud also. Even if something were to happen to the camera, like getting smashed or stolen, you’ll still have the recording of the footage and access to it. Cloud-based storage is important because it makes it easier for users to view the footage on their cellular phones, tablets, or computers, anywhere there is a WIFI connection.
Let’s dive a little deeper into the pros and cons of WIFI security cameras.
WiFi Security Camera Advantages
- They are very easy to install, manage and operate.
- Depending on the make, model and grade they can have advanced features.
- Individuals can access footage from anywhere they have cellular service.
- No wires setups means that they are no easy target for burglars to disconnect.
These are 4 of the biggest advantages to installing a wireless security camera system and are the biggest selling points for most consumers. Mounting them onto a ceiling or wall takes a bit of drill work. Using the camera’s app makes it easy to connect to the wireless network and you’re good to go.
Speaking of apps that are easy to use, and allow you to store footage on the app. They also allow one to navigate through videos and events. You can also control your camera’s settings in the app.
WiFi Security Camera Disadvantages
- Ongoing fee for cloud storage.
- Reliance on the quality of the home or office WiFi.
- Battery operated devices need replacement as needed.
- They can be susceptible to hacking.
Additional monthly fees for cloud storage can be a drawback for some homeowners. If you are looking for a one-time purchase and setup, then the ongoing fees might not be worth it.
The biggest negative of WIFI security cameras is that they are based on their biggest positive component, reliance on your WIFI. If for instance your WIFI is spotty or slow, or the router is weak and located too far from the cameras, then the cameras will not perform up to their highest level. There also are a whole host of potential wireless connectivity issues that can develop and you could experience video lagging, slow rendering, or even failure to up load. Additionally, the quality of the video can fluctuate based on your internet’s bandwidth. There is also a distinct difference in commercial grade and off-the-shelf cheap renditions sold to many consumers. Wireless cameras connect directly to the internet, have remote access, and are susceptible to being hacked. Updating your camera’s software, as well as using encryption in your home or place of business, along with strong passwords can help to protect the data.
Remember WIFI Security Cameras Are Only as Powerful as Your WIFI Will Allow
Wireless security cameras can be a great option for many consumers, homes, offices, and businesses. It is really worth it to understand their pros and cons, and how your individual system would perform. At ESI we can explain, design and install a WIFI camera system to fit any need.
We are Jacksonville’s security alarm specialists.
If you need help understanding which is the right option for your home or business, Call ESI today at 904-388-3975 and let one of our security professionals create the perfect security solution for your needs.