More than ever it’s becoming easier and more affordable to add cameras to your home to keep an eye on things for you when you aren’t around. Enter the D-Link HD PoE Day/Night Mini Dome Cloud Camera – putting more descriptions in a product name than ever before.
While the name is complex, it is what it says on the box:
- HD – High Definition (720p) video
- PoE – Power over Ethernet, so no separate power connection required
- Day/Night – With infra-red illumination you can see even when the lights are off
- Mini – It’s small, they call it “ultra-small” but I’ll just call it small
- Dome – Yep, the lens is within a dome which allows you to adjust across a large viewing angle
- Cloud – Using D-Link back-end you can link to a cloud account for remote viewing
- Camera – well, that’s its primary function!
So with that straight, what does it do? Well aside from what’s in the name it also has a microphone and audio output so you could rig up 2-way communication which is cool.
The installation into the ceiling was a breeze – mind you I replaced a previous camera so already had an Ethernet cable in place. However my first disappointment came when I realised the camera was fixed, I assumed I could move it around with software, but nope – you adjust to your required angle and that’s that.
It does have a MicroSD card slot on board, and can link to a NAS for storage, both of which are not optimal for home scenarios but could be good in a managed small business IT environment.
To fit in, it comes with both black and white housings.
Once installed the software side of things isn’t ideal, and when compared to a more complete system like Netgear Arlo it is hard to justify.
The real advantage of this is the ceiling mount system which keeps the camera discreet – something not possible with the Arlo and others which need to be wall or corner mounted.
Access via the D-Link app or website is easy, which is a great bonus for plenty of people relying on hard-drive based storage with no remote access right now.
At $299.95 it isn’t cheap, but for a small business looking for basic surveillance, It should be considered. For home users, I think there are plenty of simpler installations available from companies like D-Link, Belkin or Netgear.