Choosing the right tool for the job :/ Your opinion on Blink cameras?

blink
uk
camera

#1

Hello! This is my first post so I apologise if I ramble.

I’ve purchased a smartthings pack ready for moving into my new home end of this month, but also looking at getting some indoor cameras to monitor activity in the home. I’ve been looking at the Blink cameras, doing quite a bit of reading in the forums, but I must admit I’m a tad reluctant as they need linking to the smartthings hub in a particular way, is that correct? I love the blinks size as they can be out of sight but also they are wireless which is ideal.

Does anyone have any experience with the Blink cameras, how difficult would it take a newbie (me) to intergrate them to the ST hub? Samsungs own smart cams while good and link directly to the ST, they are quite pricy for just one camera as apposed to £270 for blinks 3 camera setup.

Anyone with past experience and/or feedback on these would be greately appreciated.

Thanks :slight_smile:


(DaveC) #2

Check below for Blink Camera and ST intergration


(Kevin) #3

If SmartThings integration is important, don’t go would Blink.

Blink wants to only offer IFTTT integration and they could pull the plug on the custom SmartThings integration at any moment.


(ActionTiles.com co-founder Terry @ActionTiles; GitHub: @cosmicpuppy) #4

My impression was that they had / have a strong partnership with @RBoy, and are using that as a way to foster reliable SmartThings integration.

It probably is a challenge to officially partner with SmartThings (earn WWST certification, and so on…), so alternative approaches are not necessarily a bad thing; especially for particularly unique type of device, like Blink.


(Ron Talley) #5

I have 6 Blink indoor cameras throughout the house. In my experience, they are great little cameras!

Setup: Simple with @RBoy app. Load the device handlers, load the app, put in credentials and done.

Uses:
These give me a good idea of what’s going on, when I am not home as I have 2 boxers that like to get into “trouble”.
I also use them to pop in on the children when I am away. I have them set to 30 second recordings with 10 second re-trigger times. This has proven to be sufficient.

Other cameras:
I have a 4 camera CCTV system that monitors outdoors. They are always on and always recording. There is a way to integrate these into smartthings with Camera software such as Blue Iris but I have not found the time or energy to fuss with it. I choose this over the XT outdoor cameras as I believed for true “Security”, the re-trigger issue could cause a problem if “ish” went down while the cameras was unable to record.

I have an Amcrest that is also a good camera that but less “fun”. A custom DTH and a little bit of configuration and I was up and running in 15 minutes.

Motion:
I tried using these as motion detectors for home automation purposes and although I was able to use the effectively to turn things off, they are not a good solution to turn things on.

Recommendation:
I was worried that Blink was going to pull the plug on the current integration in ST mainly because I was using them as motion for HA purposes. That is still a concern as my security relies heavily on ST routines. However, if just using them for recording events when system is armed, I wouldn’t worry too much.


(www.rboyapps.com - Make your home your butler!) #6

Yep, they don’t want to lose the community and we’re still trying to find a way to get native integration. The demand from customers has been pretty strong.


#7

Thanks for all the feedback everyone it’s very much appreciated. I really like the blink system and think it could be a great addition to my new home and ST. One final question though, how long do the camera batteries last or is that down to how often the cameras intialise and record? Do the batteries actually last 2 years like other people state?


(Ron Talley) #8

Purchased August 2016

Kitchen-Heavy Use-Replaced battery last month(LED light would make the camera unresponsive)
Day Room-Light Use-Battery reads 100%
Dining Moderate Use-Battery reads 78%
Den-Moderate Use-82%
Front Door-Moderate Use-87%
Back Door-Heavy Use-72%

Kitchen, Den and Day Room were used for motion sensors




(Stephen Hill) #9

After a recent attempted theft, I’m really eager to buy some Blink Cameras, but they need to be the Blink XT’s

Does anyone know whether it would be possible to buy the Blink XT’s from America and get them shipped to the UK and work?

Alternatively, what other wireless cctv units are out there which are battery operated with no ongoing subscription.


(Steve ) #10

I’m not sure but I believe the US users a different Z wave frequency to what we use in the UK.
That’s what i read somewhere as I was looking into having the Ecobee 3 thermostat shipped over.
I was reading the questions on the blink page of Amazon the other day and someone asked when they will be on sale in the UK and they replied saying they had no fixed date but we’re hoping for May/June time so shouldn’t be long.
If we can use them over here it would save us quite a bit as they are far cheaper over there.


(Stephen Hill) #11

Damn. Not what I wanted to hear.

I was willing to wait until they were released here in the UK, but given what’s happened recently, I just can’t wait any longer. Blink aren’t exactly the quickest either given that they were released in January (after initially supposed to be available in October / November last year).

Any other alternatives? Must be battery based, no subscription, connected via WiFi and obviously be able to be controlled by SmartThings.


(Steve ) #12

When I say May/June I mean just gone not next year so they are behind schedule, it was a old post from about Feb time.
The only cameras I’ve been looking at are these or the Arlo ones but their reviews are hit and miss


(Paul Ockenden) #13

Blink uses Wi-Fi, not Z-Wave.


(Steve ) #14

Ah right didn’t even look at that just presumed.
Cheers