Recommend me a simple, easy to use home monitor camera

I don’t travel too often–usually just once a year–but when I’m gone, I’d like to be able to set up a little camera that I can control through an app on my smartphone, just to let me keep an eye on a couple of spots in my house to verify that nobody’s broken in.

This doesn’t need to be (and I don’t want it to be) an all-the-time thing–I just set it up when I’m gone and take it back down again when I’m not. I used to have a nice little Philips one, but it doesn’t work anymore and apparently the company doesn’t even support the app any longer. I couldn’t find an update for it.

I tried buying one last year but it had some kind of arcane pairing thing with the router and we never could get it to work. We ended up taking it back.

So, what I’m looking for is:

  1. Set that contains one or two standalone cameras that can be plugged into the wall and controlled via wi-fi.
  2. No need to hook them up to a running computer.
  3. No need to pair them with the modem/router.
  4. No need for them to move or be controllable. I just point them at a couple of spots and let them go.
  5. Must be controllable using an iPad or iPhone app, so I can view what they’re seeing from wherever I am.

Any suggestions? Experiences with good or bad specimens?


If you find out someone did break in and steal your stuff, what then? Cut short your trip and come home?

If there’s no deterrent effect and no burglar-proof stored image, the utility of such a camera seems limited.

Well, I didn’t ask why I wouldn’t want one. :slight_smile: I asked if anyone could recommend one.

Essentially it’s a peace of mind thing.

Do you remember any details about this “pairing” that you speak of?

Any IP camera you will find will require some way for you to allow access to it from your smartphone when you’re away, and the camera will presumably be on your home network behind your router. This means that you will have to do some configuration on the router to allow this access from the outside.

The easiest way to set up this access is through something called uPnP whereby you enable uPnP on the router and then you instruct the camera to use uPnP as well. It’s pretty simple to use but if this is the “pairing” you’re talking about, then … well …


The original Philips one had very easy setup: you just plugged in the camera, downloaded the app, added the camera to your wifi network, and Bob’s your uncle. Admittedly it flaked out fairly frequently, but for the most part it did what it was supposed to do.

The other one (don’t remember the brand) had configuration that actually made you have to get it recognized by the router. We followed the directions, downloaded the correct setup/installation program for our router brand, and could not get the darn thing to recognize it no matter what we did.

So ideally, I’d like another one that just needs to be added to the wifi network and doesn’t care which router we have.