WyzeCam interesting

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I picked up a couple of these. You can view the SD recordings from the app. Although I can’t seem to figure out how to go to a particular time easily.

I think the video is ok. Night vision worthless. I have one in the garage and It shows nothing but blackness at night. I tried the various settings for night vision and nothing really worked.

But for $20 I guess I can’t expect too much.

Thats not good to hear, I’m still waiting for mine to ship. Im tempted to pick up another iSmartAlarm version of this camera as its %50 off right now ($50), I have one now and the night vision is great. https://www.ismartalarm.com/devices/cameras/spot/isa00013.html

When I look in my router at the connections of the cameras, one of them shows up as an ISmartAlarm. The other one shows up as Tianjin Henxinhuifeng Technology. And the one in the garage is the Tianjin one.

The one that shows up as ISmartAlarm is in my kitchen and there is always some light even if it is dim and that one seems to look ok at night. So I’m wondering what the difference is between the 2. They both have the same firmware. I may move them around and see if there is a difference.

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I tried both cameras in the garage. Both the same. Virtually no night vision.

Did you try using an IR illuminator?

I had issues even with my Foscams earlier and I grabbed a 96 LED IR illuminator from Amazon (I think it was like $30) and it made all the difference.

Anybody else seeing that the time on the camera didn’t change with the time change?

I can’t find a setting for this.

I just installed two of these earlier this week: one in the kitchen, and one in the garage without any outside light. They both work really well!

Things that suck:

  • The audio is terrible. It’s delayed, and it’s hard to hear anything very useful form it. And the speaker audio on the two-way is terrible. And the interface for using the two-way audio is terrible. So yea, basically everything about the audio is terrible Don’t get this if the audio is really important.
  • Scrolling through the continuous recordings. It’s awkward, and there’s no way to jump to a timestamp. It works, but it’s awkward.
  • Notification flexibility. The notifications themselves work fine, but the flexibility is limited. The “sensitivity” setting seems to do nothing, and there’s no way to define motion zones.

Things that are great for a $30 camera:

  • 1080 video. It actually looks pretty good. I can reliably identify people’s faces at 15’ in good lighting. I tested this by having a laptop slideshow of Google Images results for celebrities, while I viewed only through the camera. I could reliably identify the celeb from 15’+.
  • Night vision. It’s IR illuminated OK but not great, and I can make out my wife’s face clearly, including facial expressions, at 8’+. It’s definitely no where near as good as the well-lit quality, but it’s still useful for seeing if there are people, animals, or things in sight.
  • Continuous recording. I plugged in 32gb SD Cards into both, and the continuous recording just works. I can view it all in the app. I’ll get about 5-6 days trailing on my garage cam (mostly in night mode, so less to record) and 3-4 days on my kitchen cam.

There’s a lot Wyze can do to improve this, though thankfully most of it is software. They need some scheduling on their notifications (or allow it to be tied into ST, so Mode-based!), they need to consider opening the stream for local use (again, into ST!), there’s some general and minor usability issues in the app, and the audio delays/sync need improvement.

My verdict: money well spent for my purposes!

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Ditto everything you just said.

Thanks for the detailed review. Mine are coming in tomorrow. Anyone have success pairing with smartthings so they can be triggered with motion sensors or actiontiles?

I have 2 of these. One of them keeps disconnecting from my wifi on a daily basis. I have to unplug and plug back in to get it back up.

Neither one of them has very good night vision. Just a little bit of light and it pretty much knocks out the night vision. The one in my garage is useless at night. Apparently there is enuf light coming from the windows on the garage door to make it useless. All it shows is a dark garage. I can toggle the night vision on/off but it makes no difference. I have tried both of them in the garage and the same result.

For the price, I guess they are ok. But I wouldn’t pay any more for them.

These do NOT integrate with ST yet, but in some Reddit AMA and other places, they’ve hinted at a road map that could include some integrations. Take that for what it’s worth-- which is nothing actionable.

Personally, I want ST to be able to change the notification settings on the WyzeCam. I don’t want WyzeCam notifications for motion when I’m at home, but when I’m away I do want it to notify on motion again. Currently, notifications is a toggle in the app settings on each cam, which is inconvenient.

Bummer to hear that. My Kitchen cam seems to work OK with mixed light. My garage is completely enclosed, and that Garage cam works pretty well in total darkness-- at least up to about 10 feet. But I totally agree, these are not a premium camera.

An option for you might be to install IR lights in the space? There’s a version on the LiFX that can do that. That would preserve the darkness to human eyes, but it would be a strong illuminator for the camera.

Here is the discussion on the reddit forum, in which they discuss integration with Smart Home tech…

Camera aside, it would be great to leverage a device at this price point as an audio/motion sensor for triggering other ST actions/capabilities with video feed as a nice bonus.

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That is what I did. The boot time is under a minute and I find that rebooting it helps with some of the software issues. Hopefully they will correct all of the software issues and add features like geofencing. Works pretty well but I had to add black electrical tape to the front off it to prevent the glare from the window that it was setup to look out of. Capable little camera on par with the inexpensive Yi cameras with inferior software. The speaker and night vision is pretty poor also but the microphone works pretty well.

Using the Wyzecam camera as a motion sensor in SmartThings

I’ve found a way to get some limited “integration” between a Wyzecam and SmartThings. This allows the Wyzecam to be used as a motion sensor in SmartThings. It does not allow SmartThings to get video from the camera or to control when the camera sends notifications.

It does allow SmartThings to know when the camera detects motion.

This is just a quick overview (without details or pictures) to give people an idea about what is possible.

To do this, I used Tasker and SharpTools (paid apps) running on my Android phone. The phone also has the Wyzecam app (required) installed on it. It also needs the Tasker plugin for SharpTools. It depends on your phone receiving notifications from Wyzecam and being able to send information to SmartThings (via SharpTools). The Wyzecam notifications contain text that looks like this: “Motion sensed on camera01. Check out the alert…”

You would not need to use a phone (or at least not the phone you carry around). Any Android device capable of running Wyzecam, Tasker, and SharpTools will work.

The three apps need to be installed following their normal procedures. SharpTools needs to be installed in SmartThings as well and the appropriate secure link set up.

The steps are:

  1. Add a “Simulated Motion Sensor” to SmartThings using the IDE to represent the motion detected by the camera.
  2. Add this sensor to the ones that SharpTools can share.
  3. In Tasker, on the Android device, create a profile to detect a notification from the Wyzecam and relay it to SmartThings.

These instructions should give you an idea about how to set things up, but they aren’t detailed enough on their own to get you through the complete setup unless you are already familiar with each of the tools. I wanted to get this out there so that people could see what can be done.

In more detail, the steps are:

  1. Add the “Simulated Motion Sensor” to SmartThings
    1a) Log in to the SmartThings IDE online.
    1b) Go to "My Devices."
    1c) Click on the green “+ New Device” button.
    1d) Fill in the following fields:
    “Name” : The name of the motion sensor that will show up in SmartThings. Mine is “Camera01 Motion”.
    “Device Network ID” : Give it a name that won’t conflict with any other names. Mine is “Cam1motion”.
    “Version” : Select “Published”.
    “Type” : Select “Simulated Motion Sensor” from the list.
    “Location” : Select the location associated with the camera.
    “Hub” : Select the SmartThings hub you want it associated with.
    1e) Click the “Create” button to add this device to SmartThings.

You now have a new motion sensor called “Camera01 Motion” (or whatever you name it) that can be used to trigger events (or do anything else) just like a normal hardware motion sensor.

  1. Add the new motion sensor to SharpTools.
    2a) Go to the SharpTools interface within SmartThings: “Automation” > “SmartApps” > “SharpTools”.
    2b) Under “Which motion sensors?”, select the new motion sensor that you added in step 1.
    2c) Click “Save” at the top of the SharpTools interface to save your settings.
    2d) Open the SharpTools app on your Android device and confirm that the new motion sensor is visible.

  2. Create a profile in Tasker to interface between the Wyzecam notifications and SmartThings.
    3a) Open the Tasker app.
    3b) On the “PROFILES” tab, click the “+” button to add a new profile. When the list of profile types appears, select “Event”. The select the “Event Category” “UI” and the “UI Event” “Notification”. You will have selected “Event”, then “UI”, and then “Notification”.
    3c) On the “Event Edit” form that comes up, click the symbol to the right of “Owner Application” and select “Wyze” from the application list.
    3d) Then, in the text field you will type information containing the name of the camera. You need to match the name of the camera as it appears in the Wyze motion notifications. For my camera, it shows up as “camera01”. In the text field, type the name of the camera (exactly how it appears in the notification) surrounded by asterisks ("*"). In my case, the text field contains “camera01” (do not include the quotes “”). This will match any notification containing “camera01”.
    3e) Click the left arrow to go back and add the task to be performed when motion is detected. Select “New Task +” when it pops up.
    3f) You can give it a name or just click the check mark to continue without a name.
    3g) Click the “+” button in the bottom right corner to add the first action. Select “Plugin” > “SharpTools” > “A Thing”. The “Action Edit” form for “A Thing” will appear.
    3h) Click the pencil button next to “Configure”. Choose “Simulated Motion Sensor” under “Select the device type you would like to control:”. Then select the name of your SmartThings motion sensor (mine is “Camera01 Motion”) under “Select the device you would like to control:”. Then, select “active” under “Select the command to send:”. Click “Apply” when you are finished.
    3i) This will return you to the “Action Edit” form. Click the left arrow to return to the “Task Edit” form.
    3j) Add a pause to the task (between motion active and inactive). Click the “+” button to add a new action and choose the following: “Task” > “Wait”. On the “Action Edit” form for “Wait”, change the “Seconds” entry to something non-zero. I use “2” but it may make more sense to be a larger value. This is the delay between when the sensor indicates motion and when it returns to the no-motion state. Then click the left arrow to return to the “Task Edit” form.
    3k) Then add another motion sensor event using the same process as steps 3g and 3h, but choose “inactive” instead of “active”. You selections will be “Simulated Motion Sensor”, motion sensor name (“Camera01 Motion”), and “inactive”.
    Click the left arrow to return to the Task form.
    3l) You can test the task by clicking the “play” arrow in the bottom left corner of the display. This should trigger a motion event in SmartThings. You can verify this using the SmartThings application.
    3m) If everything is working, click the left arrow in the upper left corner to return to the “Profiles” tab. You can control whether the new profile is active or not using the “on/off” switch to the right of the profile.

It looks like there are a lot of instructions, but it’s really very simple to set this up if you already have the applications running.

If you follow this procedure, you will need to add a Tasker profile for each camera and motion sensor that you add. It is possible to create a more intelligent Tasker profile that will look for the camera name in the Wyzecam notification and trigger the appropriate motion sensor in SmartThings. But if you only have a few cameras, this profile is a lot simpler.

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Very cool use case for SharpTools + Tasker. Thanks for sharing!

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Do you mind sharing where you put that electrical tape? I’m experiencing the same issue.

Covered all the white areas of the front surface of the camera. You can also use a black magic marker but that is not reversible.

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