Cloud-based WLAN cameras are primarily aimed at users who do not want to deal with the commissioning of an IP cam. An important point is the storage of recordings in the operator’s cloud, so that the user does not have to set up his own server or network-connected storage (NAS advisor); however, this is possible with some models. However, cloud services from the manufacturer of the security cameras usually have restrictions: only those who take out a paid subscription get the full range of functions.
Almost all of the cameras we tested do a good job with motion detection and notification functions. Some devices have poor picture and sound quality. Some models, including Smartfrog, Logitech Circle 2 or Yi Home Camera 2020, are only available to a limited extent.
Platz 1: Eufy Indoor Cam 2K
In first place, the Eufy Indoor Cam 2K (test report) replaces the Somfy One +. It costs just 30 instead of 300 euros. In addition to very good person, animal and baby noise detection, it offers local storage via micro SD card (in the camera) or NAS (external). Night vision and daytime shots are very sharp and rich in detail.
The control is possible via app or web interface as well as via voice assistants Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant and Apple Homekit. This means that the camera can be easily integrated into a centrally controlled smart home surveillance system and sirens or other cameras can be added. The obligatory cloud service costs money every month, but it can safely be left out.
2nd place: Somfy One +
The Somfy One + (test report) offers an excellent overall package; despite the very high price. This is not just a WLAN security cam, but an all-in-one security solution for the home. The device integrates a 90 dB loud siren and can be networked with motion detectors and other sensors from the manufacturer. Somfy One also works with Amazon Alexa, Google Nest and TaHoma.
Somfy One + proves to be the most professional security camera in the test. Not least because the user of the camera even gets his own security service for 9.99 euros a month, which checks what is going on in the event of an alarm. Viewing and downloading the videos of events in front of the lens does not cost anything, the entire video for the day costs 4.99 euros per month for the owner.
3rd place: Instar IN-8015
The IN-8015 (test report) from Instar takes 3rd place on our list of the best. It is a swiveling camera for indoor use, and the company also offers various cameras for outdoors. Among other things, we liked the good image quality and the quick response when turning the camera. The latency for the live image was also lower than in any other model in our test series.
The Instar IN-8015 is not as intuitive to use as some other IP cams, but in addition to a wide range of functions, it offers more in-depth setting options. The camera can also be controlled via Amazon Alexa. In terms of additional costs, the user is not required to take out a monthly cloud subscription. However, if you want to keep your data on a German server, you pay, for example, 5 euros per month for 10 GByte. If you don’t want to take out a subscription, you can also save your recordings on an SD card in the camera or on an FTP server.
4th place: Blink Mini
Night vision, motion detection and as small as a nectarine – the Blink Mini surveillance camera (test report) costs just 35 euros. Setting up and using the camera is child’s play. The range of functions is abundant and the image quality is outstanding.
The downside is the poor quality of the audio recordings and the cloud subscription requirement. Because only those who pay monthly can use Blink to the full extent. In sound recordings, there is persistent noise in every recording. You can still hear voices fairly clearly, but the noise covers a lot. A local backup of recordings, for example using a micro SD card, is not possible. Instead, you have to buy the Blink Sync Module 2 separately if you want to save your video recordings locally. If you don’t do that, you have to rely on the cloud. As with Arlo or Ring, you pay 3 euros a month to save your recordings.
5th place: Arlo Essential
The Arlo Essential (review) is a good indoor surveillance camera. In a direct comparison with the Blink Mini (test report) or the Eufy Indoor Camera 2K (test report), the Arlo Essential Indoor Camera is simply too expensive. There is no option for local storage of recordings, only a cloud subscription that costs at least 3 euros a month. Functions such as person or animal recognition are only available if you pay for a subscription.
Anyone who already uses other products from the Arlo ecosystem should also take a look at the Essential. Above all, it scores with good picture and sound quality as well as a mechanical flap that slides in front of the lens to protect privacy.
Platz 6: Ring Indoor Cam
The Ring Indoor Cam (test report) convinces above all with its performance and operation. We liked loudspeakers, night shots and the general image quality in the test. We recommend the cam as a supplement to existing ring systems at home. Unfortunately, the only memory available for the recordings is the ring cloud. Unfortunately, because the free version, like the Arlo Essential, only offers live stream and notifications on the smartphone. If you want a memory, you pay 3 euros per device per month. In addition, Ring repeatedly comes into negative headlines when it comes to data breaches, as does his colleagues at heise online to report. That only gives you sixth place in our list of the best.
Platz 7: D-Link DCS-8526LH
Good image quality, excellent noise and motion detection as well as storage options on micro SD card, NAS or free cloud make the D-Link DCS-8526LH (test report) a really good camera. Actually, because it turns out to be very cumbersome to use. The app keeps crashing in our test – that’s annoying. In addition, the built-in microphone and loudspeaker are far too weak to communicate meaningfully with them.
Platz 8: Hama Wifi Camera
No subscription requirement, good image quality and optimal noise detection – these are the pluses of the Hama Wifi Camera (test report). The inadequate motion detection and the inferior intercom function are big negative points. If you want to equip your Google or Amazon Smart Home with a cheap indoor cam for the first time, you should grab the Eufy Indoor Camera 2K (test report) right away. Amazon customers who already have a Blink subscription are better off with the Blink Mini (test report). The same applies to users who already pay a Ring subscription – the Ring Indoor Cam (test report) is a better alternative here. In our opinion, the Hama camera is mediocre and only makes sense if you don’t want to pay for a cloud subscription.
Platz 9: Canary Flex
The fact that the Canary Flex (test report) lands in ninth place is mainly due to the poor image quality. While all other IP cameras were at least satisfactory in this regard, the quality here is disappointing – although the manufacturer even promises a 1080p image sensor. However, the resolution of our videos was only 720p. The latency during the transmission of the live image was also very high with the Canary Flex.
We liked the camera, which is intended for both indoor and outdoor use, in terms of functionality and performance, but there are only a few setting options. For example, there is no option to manually record a video. Videos of the activities detected by the camera can be downloaded up to 24 hours after recording, for $ 9.99 a month for up to 30 days.
Platz 10: Yi Home Camera 2020
The Yi Home Camera (test report) was cheap and delivered a good result day and night. Unfortunately, that was it. Digital motion and noise detection are useless – they simply don’t work. The biggest problem, however, is that data protection is not guaranteed with the camera. It saves recordings in the USA, among others, but also in other countries where Yi is active; so also China. Fortunately, the camera has now almost completely disappeared from German shops, and prices have also risen significantly. We recommend other products.
Storage: cloud, NAS or micro SD card
In this context, the cloud usually refers to online storage on which the cameras store their material. Depending on the manufacturer, the entire video runs on the provider’s server; if the camera has detected a movement, the corresponding clip is marked. With other models, only the recordings on which something happened end up in the online storage.
The advantage of the cloud solution: You don’t have to provide storage space at the recording location and the recordings are protected. No burglar will steal the hard drives from the servers on the other side of the world – this is much easier with cameras with an integrated SD card such as the Yi Home Camera. In addition, you don’t have to worry about configuring network storage or dealing with IP addresses and port forwarding. The cloud provider also ensures that you can access your recordings or live images from anywhere at any time.
Of course, the whole thing also has disadvantages. In addition to the aforementioned bandwidth that is required for the uploads, it often costs money, as in the case of Ring, Blink, Smartfrog, Logitech and Arlo. The one-time investment in a surveillance camera becomes a permanent cost item. Usually it is only about a few euros a month, but over the years that adds up. And on the other hand, you put yourself in the hands of the camera manufacturer. Only the manufacturer himself knows whether his networks and online storage are configured correctly and securely.
With most models, recordings are saved locally using a memory card in the camera. Disadvantage: If the camera is stolen, the recordings are gone. Only a few models, including the Eufy cameras, save the recordings in the bridge, which is located in the living room or near the router. That is a better protection. Some models can be connected to a NAS. Anyone looking for suitable storage here will find the optimal network storage elsewhere.
Best quality also costs a lot? At least that’s what the cameras from Arlo or Ring prove. With the Indoor Camera 2K, however, Eufy holds up well and deservedly takes first place on this list of the best.
Ultimately, however, it depends on the individual areas of application. For example, if you already have a Blink subscription, the Blink Mini is worth it. If you definitely want cloud storage with a German location, Instar is an alternative.