It's been almost a year to the day since Nest purchased Dropcam for $555 million, and today we're seeing the first real fruits of that acquisition. At an event in San Francisco this morning, Nest unveiled the new Nest Cam — a home security and monitoring device that looks exactly like the one that leaked just last week.
As predicted, it's not radically different than what Dropcam already had in the marketplace — it's very similar in specs to the Dropcam Pro, our pick for the best home security camera last fall. The Nest Cam records 1080p video at 30 FPS with a 130-degree field of vision, compared to the Dropcam Pro's 720p output. Somewhat surprisingly, it is actually rated worse in the low-light department — the Nest Cam's infrared night vision is rated at 20 feet (according to the Best Buy product page), while the Dropcam Pro is rated at 25. The night vision is powered by eight infrared LEDs built right into the camera.
From a physical perspective, a big part of the new Cam is its stand — there's a new zinc alloy stand to make it sturdier but also easier to position. There's a magnet in the base so you can stick it on your fridge, and there's even a standard tripod mount if you'd like to put it "anywhere you want."
Nest's Cam owes a lot to the Dropcam Pro
You'll be able to stream live footage from the Nest Cam to devices running iOS 8 or Android 4.0 (and higher), and Nest is also launching its own cloud service called Nest Aware — it'll be a subscription service that lets you save footage for viewing later rather than live streaming. It'll let you save up to 30 days of recordings and share or save selected clips. You can also choose a less expensive service that saves 10 days of recordings, up from the seven days that Dropcam previously offered. The Nest Aware service will start at $10 a month, the same price as the older Dropcam service.
Nest Aware replaces Dropcam's old subscription service
There's also a feature called Activity Zones, that let you highlight specific parts of what the camera can see so that you can get alerts when something happens in that area. It helps you determine motion in areas that you might want to pay attention to and ignore things you don't care about. When things happen in the activity zones, you'll see those clips highlighted on your smartphone as well. Naturally, that Nest smartphone app has been massively redesigned and updated to work with the Nest Cam; there's also a big design update for the Nest Project and Learning Thermostat features, as well. Dropcam products will also work with the new Nest app, as well.
Naturally, the Nest Cam integrates with Nest's other products, as well — the Cam will automatically turn on and start recording if the Nest Protect smoke and carbon monoxide detector senses smoke or carbon dioxide. As for price, it'll be identical to the $199.99 price point for the Dropcam Pro — Best Buy is taking pre-orders now. Pre-orders from other retailers start today as well and it'll be shipping later this month.
Correction: This post originally stated that the Dropcam Pro shot video at 1080p, not at its 720p resolution.
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