Wireless home video, accessible from anywhere, is a hot topic – and it’s only getting hotter. Homeowners are using these affordable and advanced security cameras to check on everything: kids, pets, service providers, who came to the door, and in the case of an intrusion, to provide visual identification to the police. In fact, the uses for these “smart cams” are limited only by our imaginations. I even read a story of one FrontPoint customer who used a wireless camera to catch a neighbor stealing Christmas presents that had been left on the porch by FedEx and UPS.
Like Being There
Having wireless cameras in your home is just like being there, and that’s exactly what video surveillance can do for you. We’ve already seen the alarm industry – led by FrontPoint and our technology partner Alarm.com – evolve to include remote control arming/disarming, text and email notifications, and mobile apps for your iPhone, B’Berry or Android device – so now it’s time to focus (!) on cameras.
How Smart People Use Smart Cams
Progressive home security providers like FrontPoint have now made interactive video an affordable and easy component of protecting your home and family. Plenty of FrontPoint customers have already taken advantage of these advanced features, and more add video services every day. These are powerful security cameras you can access (and control) from anywhere. Place a camera to keep tabs on specific rooms or areas. Some of our customers point an indoor wireless camera out an exterior window to see who comes to the door, or to monitor the driveway or backyard. I have one covering my back yard and side door, and another covering my basement office/entertainment center.
How They Work
Historically, video was based more on reviewing recorded tapes than live viewing. Anyone remember VCR’s?! These days we have cheap memory, faster processors, and the Internet to change the game: video storage is still important, but today it’s mostly commercial enterprises who use DVR’s (Digital Video Recorders) to hold terabytes of data. Imagine 1,000 copies of the Encyclopedia Britannica – or 300 hours of high quality video – and that’s a terabyte! The more important shift, though, is toward live video viewing. Now think Skype, since you’re viewing what’s happening in your home real-time. I use my iPhone app and our home cameras to check out the inside and outside from time to time – yup, someone did remember to bring in those deck cushions before it rained!
Now add in video analytics. The same technology in high-security cameras that can identify fixed objects that were taken, or suspicious objects suddenly placed in empty locations, is available to you today. These cameras actually sense motion, and create a video clip and send it to you real-time, as well as storing it at a remote site where you can retrieve it later. Hey, the kids just got home from school – but who is that with them? If I want to see more, I log in to view for as long as I want. And I get to control the privacy – only I can see the clips or live video.
FrontPoint offers three different cameras. There are two indoor wireless cameras that operate on your WiFi network: one is a fixed, wide angle camera, and the other offers “pan & tilt” features so you can actually move control the field of view – even from your smart phone! These are high resolution, color cameras that operate in low light. They do need power, and can be placed anywhere your WiFi works. We also offer a hard-wired camera for outdoor use that has the high resolution and quality, but it will even operate in no light, using infrared technology. And like all our products, these cameras are very affordable.
You’ll Need an Internet Connection
Remember, video is usually sent over the Internet, so you’ll need a broadband (Internet) connection to use your cameras. You’ll also need FrontPoint’s “Ultimate” level of monitoring – the same level that allows you to control your lights, thermostat and door locks using Z-Wave technology. But that’s a topic another blog post!
Great Video Stories
Every week FrontPoint receives more great stories from our customers about how their cameras solved a mystery, or gave them greater peace of mind. One my favorites is from upstate New York, where a customer was able to record the license plate of the car driven by deer poachers trespassing on her property – with a FrontPoint wireless camera pointed out the front window. And that’s just a sample of how these products can be used. So set up your FrontPoint cameras, and roll ‘em: more great technology from America’s leader in wireless home security.