Some of the latest in home trends is the voice assistant and security cameras. Many kitchens are housing a smart speaker to ask questions about your day ahead and control the smart home, while Wi-Fi based security cameras are becoming more common due to their ease of use and installation. Nest have introduced a product which is capable of both, in the one unit.
The Nest Cam IQ Indoor is a security camera first, smart home assistant second. Nest have been in the home monitoring space for some time now and this is not their first entry into the security camera market either. The Nest Cam IQ Indoor is meant to sit in a great location where your home can best be seen, for me this was a space in the kitchen which looked towards multiple entry points and also a busier part of the house.
Being a new addition to the household, it was important that it looks good, the Nest Cam IQ Indoor is a lovely white and looks relatively unobtrusive, it passed the test for aesthetics meaning it could stay where it was. The setup of the camera is very simple and within minutes the Nest Cam IQ Indoor was able to monitor my home. Some of the neat features here include a live connection to the cloud for recording whenever motion is detected, facial recognition to alert me who was home and smartphone integration. The smartphone integration is where this camera earns it’s stripes.
Upon any motion being detected an alert with image is sent to your phone and with one touch you can be connected to view live into the home. From here you can also speak into your phone from anywhere in the world and have the audio beamed out of the cameras speaker with a two conversation capable with the microphones also built into the camera. We wouldn’t suggest using this product as an intercom or replacement for a normal phone call due to lag and audio quality but it certainly works well enough to pass a message along, such as “get out of my house, put the TV down”.
The Nest Cam IQ Indoor is capable of being managed to be active when you are away from home and off when you are home. There is little point in being alerted to motion in the home when you’re that person making the motion but we did think that if we were home but asleep, an intruder would be able to do what they like without being captured on the camera. We decided to disable this feature and control it manually.
The quality of the recordings were very impressive also. A 4K sensor means that even if the camera chooses to zoom on a subject it is still recording in 1080 high definition. In the night time you are also fortunate to have fantastic night vision.
As mentioned, the microphones and speaker built into the Nest Cam IQ Indoor means it technically has some of the hardware that a smart home voice assistant would require. As such, this indoor security camera can be enabled for the Google Voice Assistant. It took us a minute to setup and start speaking to the security camera to control my lights or to tell me how long it would take to get to work simply by starting my questions with “Hey Google”. This is extremely handy. We wouldn’t recommend purchasing this if you want to use the Google Assistant to play music as the speaker, while capable of projecting loud enough sound, is not a great sounding speaker for actually enjoying music. Perhaps talkback radio would be fine though.
At $479 this is not the cheapest indoor security camera on the market, nor would it be the cheapest smart home speaker, but you won’t find another that combines the two. We’re not only impressed by the multitasking abilities of this device but also by the quality and simplicity of it all. The Nest app and the ease of setup and day to day usage makes this one of the easiest products to use. For something with multiple purposes it goes against all the common complaints of tech in the home, this one is actually easy and could be enjoyed by anyone. If you have a home that requires eyes and ears inside then this could be the product for you, even if nothing of issue occurs, you’ll always be able to use it as a voice assistant and we love that.
More info: Nest website
Living in Sydney his entire life, Geoff has always had a close eye on technology. Through school and immediately after, tech held his focus. Attending University later in life, Geoff began his IT career immediately after leaving high school and has been in the industry ever since. In his spare time he launched a YouTube channel focused on consumer tech that had millions of views. This led to work on community radio talking tech every week and has now stepped him into the studios of 2GB / 4BC every Saturday helping people with tech problems and reviewing the latest gadgets.
When Geoff is looking away from the screen he can be found holding a glass of red wine, spending time with friends and/or watching the Formula 1.