Blink Camera as a Motion Detector

I was wondering how the Blink Camera works as a motion detector compared to a dedicated motion detector…I really like the Iris Motion sensor and was wondering if the Blink could replace it?


Too slow… The Blink does not trigger a “motion detect” until after the recording has stopped. I dont know what they (Blink developers) were thinking when they implemented this. Hopefully, if enough people complain, future FW releases for this camera will “fix” this.

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Yup, too slow. @RBoy probably knows the full details. That was one of the factors that made me decide to run power to the front porch and install a Foscam.

That’s correct and this by design from Blink. The solution was to set the recording time to 1 second (via the DH) which will make it respond much faster.
I’ve put this request in to Blink but it never hurts for users to send in their requests to Blink. If enough folks ask for it they’ll do it. It’s a matter of simple popularity and prioritization. Just a small tweak to the firmware should do the trick. I believe the rest of the ecosystem should be able to work as is. I believe the question they’re debating with is, should Blink be positioned as a stand alone motion sensor (IMHO yes, you’re only expanding your market)

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Which Foscam camera are you using?

Foscam C1


Is the foscam C1 weatherproof? At least to the extent outside under a
protected eve?

Time will tell! :grin: Our porch is covered, so it doesn’t get rained on at all. But it’s only been up~3 months, so it hasn’t seen a Denver winter yet.

I use two F18918W “outside”. They are installed underneath the roof overhang thus are well protected from the rain/snow. One has been in this location for over 1 year (-20 - -25C this winter) without any issue.

I use iSpy software with all my cameras as it has the ability to send messages to ST (or web server) when motion is (in)active. Works really well and very fast. Biggest problem is the camera detects everything even dancing shadows of near by trees. iSpy has tons of features the refine motion detection but I havent found one that works as well as…
Smarthing Motion Sensor. Currently, my setup is this. ST detects motion, sends message to iSpy to start recording. Motion stops, send message to stop recording. While not perfect it is very close to error free. I can live with the odd false alarm

@cdikland Which motion sensor do you use to trigger the camera outside? The smartthings motion sensor? Any problem with that being outside? I get a lot of false alarms with mine but I’m also using a monoprice motion sensor outside… Under a porch.

I am using the ST Motion sensor (V2?). Not the original with the usb port nor the one currently advertised on their website.
The sensor is outside but well protected inside a door frame underneath a roof overhang.

As for false alarms, I got zero when it was inside (well over 1.5 years) but get the odd one outside. Given its track record inside I have to assume it is picking up something outside that my camera isnt seeing :slight_smile: Compared to the false alarms (i.e moving shadows, wind blowing branches, etc) I get from the camera the ST sensor is next to perfect. My only “complaint” is its huge range. It will pickup people walking on the other side of my street (40’ ??).

I have a Blink in my playroom and my kids have a habit of leaving the lights on. I’d like to turn off the lights when no motion is detected after 20 minutes even if we are home. However, I believe I then need to keep it armed at all times defeating the purpose of it being a security device and I would imagine would really drain the battery constantly taking pictures. Is there a solution for this to use Blink as s motion sensor when it’s disarmed? I use @RBoy device.

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Keeping it armed does not take up battery life since it uses a PIR sensor. Question being why would you have it take pictures all the time? One way to use it would be to configure the SmartApp taking pictures on camera motion notification is to configure it to work only when the Mode is away. So in other modes it acts like a motion sensor whereas when the
Mode is away it acts like a security device with the smart app taking pictures.

Thanks. Can you confirm my gameplan:

For the “Configure actions when motion is detected”, I set the lights to tun ON if motion is detected and then off after 10 minutes of inactivity. Is this correct?

Then for Arm/Disarm camera for specific SHM/Modes. Do I just de-select all of this and have it always armed by turning it on manually? This is how it keeps motion sensing on, correct?

Then for “Motion Based Camera Configuration”, I select the seconds and motion sensitivity for Away, Sleep modes, correct? This will ensure I am capturing videos properly only when I need to and not all day long when kids are down there playing, correct?

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There’s a difference between the camera capturing videos and ST taking pictures. The Camera will always capture video on motion detection (you can’t change that, it by design) but you can control the amount of the video it captures. You can use the Blink Camera Manager to capture only 1 second of video during the “Home” modes and then set it to capture 30 or 60 seconds of video during “Away” modes. ST taking pictures on motion detection is what you control through your SmartApp.

The rest looks about right.

Thanks. A few more questions:

  1. In the smartapp, I see we can record video up to 120 seconds but you mentioned 30:60. Can you clarify?

  2. So since I always have to keep the camera “armed”, I am now getting push notifications every time I walk into the room from the native Blink iOS app. I assume I need to disable all notifications in iOS for this app? Then I miss other notifications like offline notifications, etc.

  3. do the smartapp settings overwrite the native Blink settings for video recording?

  1. 120 if future compatibility, currently the firmware only allows for 60, if you specify 120 it will still use only 60
  2. You can disable notifications from the SmartApp, instead use a security SmartApp to look for motion detection from the cameras and take action/notify during the “Away” modes
  3. Yes

The problem is with the native iOS Blink app. The way I am understanding this is I have to keep the camera “armed” if I want motion detected, correct? The native Blink app sends me notifications when it detects motion (I don’t have any notifications set up in the Blank smartapp). I don’t see a way to disable Blink native notifications for motion unless I disable all notifications for it in iOS and then I miss other notifications such as offline, low battery, etc. can you clarify?

Yes you’ll have to disable notifications for the iOS app and only use ST for notifications to get the level of customization you want

Ok. Bummer, but certainly not anything you can do anything about. Ok, I am understanding it correctly now.

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