So, I’m starting this thread because in the past week or so I’ve received about 10 eMails and messages from folks asking my views of the “best” camera for integration with SmartThings. The most common question being would I Blink or Foscam if I were to start over again (given that we’ve written Device Handlers and SmartApps to integrate Blink, Foscam and others and Blink and Foscam being the popular ones).
Here’s my response to @johnconstantelo, just to kick start the discussion:
Oh absolutely, there’s no way I can do what I’ve done around my house/labs without Blink. The BIGGEST plus is that it’s wireless and at my consumption rate the battery will last years. I use it primarily as a motion sensor when away from the house and camera (obvious) but also to peek in from time to time to see what’s happening and with teh price I have almost 20 of them covering every inch of my house inside/out. So it’s great peace of mind to check in on the dog or kids. A few days ago my door was ajar accidentally (hence my latest app) and ST didn’t tell me and my dog got out. Thanks to Blink I was able to track him down in seconds.
Now the downside it isn’t for continuous viewing (unless you’re using USB power in which case I can find better cameras). The second downside is that it can’t move. So around key places in the house where I need 270/360 viewing I use Foscam. The third downside it that it can’t tell the difference between a pet or human which even a Foscam can’t.
So both have motion sensitivity settings but I feel Blink has a greater range in selection. Foscam on the other hand can setup a motion detection section (ie. detect motion only in certain sections). To be honest I’ve never used this stuff, unless you have a specific reason for it but I know there are folks who do use it given their setup.
Overall very happy with blink, I arm my exterior cameras at night so it catches folks passing by which is good security for me.
Really it comes down to do you want constant viewing and motion pivot or a wide view sneek peek and totally wireless.
The other plus of Blink is the motion detection is more reliable just because it uses push v/s foscam pull which could miss a notification (again if that matters to you).
- SD/720p/1080p/indoor/outdoor (lots of models)
- Pivot and rotate
- Cruise actions (sentry mode)
- Night vision (IR)
- Constant live view
- Motion detection region selection
- Picture and Video through ST
- 2 way communication (not via ST though)
- SD card storage/FTP storage
- No battery option, need power wire
- Not completely discrete
- Low range of motion sensitivity
- Pull notifications (push for SD cams) (motion sensor)
- Runs on a batter or power
- Great battery life (compared to an Arlo)
- Wide angle lens view
- Great range of motion sensitivity
- 720p resolution (1080p maybe in future, but it’s good enough for me)
- Discrete and mount pretty much anywhere (outdoor camera in the works)
- Flash/light (which actually help sometime scare intruders away if they know they’re being recorded)
- Online video storage
- Push notifications (motion sensor)
- Picture and Video in ST
- No IR
- Only 10 second video clips
- Cannot get only motion notifications without video clips in ST (minimum 1 second)
- Limited battery life for extended video viewing (~20,000 seconds of videos) without USB power (on battery)
Hope this helps.