Best wireless security cameras 2022

Best wireless security cameras 2022
(Image credit: Google)

The best wireless security cameras need not be an expensive outlay reserved only for those that can afford an entire system, as they once were. Now there are a host of brands competing for your attention - and pushing the price down - on individual cameras that work as part of wider systems that you can build up as needed. This means home security can be tight, even if your budget is too.

If you have the freedom to add cameras all over your property it's a good idea to start by thinking about how many you want to purchase initially as you can get deals on packages. If it's just the one, then where do you want it? Does it need to come with a security light or siren option? Should it be smart connected so you can view and control it from your smartphone?

Once you've narrowed down those details, you may want to think about quality as a 1080p video will offer more resolution to zoom in than 720p. Night vision is also pretty standard now although some also offer color night vision – ideal if you're using it a lot during the darker hours.

There are battery and mains powered options, so it's worth considering if you want the easiest to install and don't mind charging the cameras, or if you can wire it in and forget about power issues.

The best wireless security cameras

1. Arlo Pro 2: The best wireless security camera overall

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Best Wireless Security Camera

(Image credit: Arlo)
The best wireless security camera overall

Specifications

Resolution: 1080p
Camera lens: 130-degree
Night vision: Yes
Recording options: Cloud via subscription, USB storage
Two-way talk: Yes
WiFi: 802.11n

Reasons to buy

+
Easy to install
+
Can record video to USB storage
+
Excellent camera control via app
+
Magnetic mount makes installation easy

Reasons to avoid

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Activity zones require permanent power or paid-for Arlo Smart cloud subscription
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Night-time footage is fuzzy

The Arlo Pro 2 offers all the excellent app features that the 4K Ultra gives you, only for a far more affordable price. You still get full 1080p quality which is enough to identify individuals clearly in the day and still enjoy pretty decent night time footage. 

Since this camera is cloud based you'll be pleased to hear it comes with seven days of free storage, for free, for life. Yup, that means anything that happened within the last seven days is stored there for you to scroll back and view. This makes the camera stand out against rivals like Nest where a subscription is needed for such a privilege. Activity zones are a nice touch but you will need the camera in mains power mode to take advantage of this feature.


2. Nest Cam Indoor: The best smart home camera

Best Wireless Security Camera

(Image credit: Nest)
The best smart wireless home camera

Specifications

Resolution: 1080p
Camera lens: 130-degree
Night vision: Yes
Recording options: Cloud via subscription
Two-way talk: Yes
WiFi: 802.11ac

Reasons to buy

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Excellent 1080p video quality
+
Easy setup
+
Can sync with Nest home heating

Reasons to avoid

-
Expensive subscription plans

The Nest Cam Indoor is the smart home camera that started it all and still offers one of the best experiences thanks to updates and that superb build quality.

The Nest works really well both in daylight and in night conditions thanks to its infrared lights for night-vision. Another great Nest positive is its ability to play nicely with other smart home gadgets which makes it superbly versatile. Location detection allows you to let this turn itself on and off as you come and go automatically and when linked with things like Nest home heating, that can be activated using the app too.


3. Nest Cam IQ Indoor: The best for video quality

Best Wireless Security Camera

(Image credit: Google)
The best video quality wireless security camera

Specifications

Resolution: 4K
Camera lens: 130-degree
Night vision: Yes
Recording options: Cloud via subscription
Two-way talk: Yes
WiFi: 802.11ac

Reasons to buy

+
Powerful facial recognition
+
Can track motion around the room
+
Records continuously

Reasons to avoid

-
Doesn’t record at 4K
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Relatively expensive
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Geofencing doesn’t work with scheduling

The Nest Cam IQ Indoor is the best indoor-only model we’ve tested when it comes to video quality. The footage itself is super clear and that applies to both day and night time scenarios. On top of that you also get top quality motion detection meaning you only get alerted when it's important, so you don't get pestered via the app.

Nest Aware, is the cloud storage option that will cost you extra. This gives you 24/7 video recording, meaning you can catch anything bad that's happened, like an intruder, to use later as evidence. Without paying for this service the camera isn't quite so useful. That said this model does offer facial recognition over the standard model, but you do pay a premium for that.


4. Hive View: The best flexible wireless camera

Best Wireless Security Camera

(Image credit: Hive)
The best flexible wireless camera

Specifications

Resolution: 1080p
Camera lens: 130-degree
Night vision: Yes
Recording options: 24 hours free, 30 days on subs
Two-way talk: Yes
WiFi: 802.11b/g/n

Reasons to buy

+
Smart IFTTT channel
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Battery mode provides extra flexibility
+
Free cloud storage

Reasons to avoid

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Hard to filter events
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Motion can trigger a lot of events
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No smart assistant integration

This is another camera on the list that features basic free cloud storage, a huge positive. That is combined with a battery-operated mode, making is safer from intruder tampering. For more cloud storage you'll need to pay out but there are lots of options to suit every budget.

You get activity zones and motion detection as standard which can be used to make sure your alerts are kept to a minimum – key for long term use of the camera. The Nest Cam does this a little better but with higher monthly costs.


5. Logitech Circle 2: The best budget choice

Best Wireless Security Camera

(Image credit: Logitech)
Best affordable wireless camera

Specifications

Resolution: 1080p
Camera lens: 180-degree
Night vision: Yes
Recording options: Free cloud
Two-way talk: Yes
WiFi: 802.11n

Reasons to buy

+
Flexible installation options
+
Free cloud storage
+
Connects to your Wi-Fi network

Reasons to avoid

-
Motion Zones are an expensive option
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Struggles under bright direct light
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App can only be used in landscape mode

The Logitech Circle 2 offers the advantage of being a totally wireless camera without the need for a base station, meaning easy setup and space saving. You also get free cloud storage which works with smart alerts in order to keep alerts to a minimum. All that uses decent quality video which offers a clear picture of the screen for both day and night scenarios. 

Motion zones are an option but they require you to pay for the subscription service, which also gets you an upgraded chunk of cloud storage space. While there are better quality cameras out there, the Circle 2 manages to offer most of the best features with decent quality all at a price which undercuts the competition nicely. 


6. Arlo Ultra: The best 4K wireless camera

Best Wireless Security Camera

(Image credit: Arlo)
The best 4K wireless camera

Specifications

Resolution: 4K
Camera lens: 180-degree
Night vision: Yes
Recording options: Cloud via subscription, microSD storage
Two-way talk: Yes
WiFi: 802.11ac

Reasons to buy

+
4K sensor produces detailed video
+
Completely wireless
+
Smart alerts reduce notifications

Reasons to avoid

-
Doesn’t record 4K video out-of-the-box
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Positioning is important to save on battery 
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Magnetic mount makes the camera easy to steal

The Arlo Ultra is a fully fledged 4K camera that offers stunning quality video footage both during the day and at night. This is a great option for those that want enough quality at night to actually faces of people in shot. You will need to either store that video locally using microSD or pay for a cloud option.

While the cloud activity zones are useful for fewer notifications, positioning the camera carefully is the only way to preserve battery life.


7. Arlo Pro 4: The best hassle-free camera

Arlo Pro 4

(Image credit: Future)
A feature rich 2K camera that runs on battery power

Reasons to buy

+
2K quality
+
Spotlight and siren
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Decent app

Reasons to avoid

-
Expensive

Arlo is fast becoming one of the big names in home security cameras and its fourth generation model of the Pro is justifying that position. The Arlo Pro 4 is battery powered and super easy to install, making it a great choice for anyone that wants minimal hassle. It's also possible to detach easily using the magnetic mount should you want to move this about – doubling as a baby monitor when you're on the move, for example. 

In security mode this offers an impressive 2K quality video feed, loud siren and bright light as just some of the many features that can be controlled in the powerful app. You will need to subscribe for cloud storage to get the most out of this model and with the camera being quite expensive, that's worth thinking about before you buy.

  • Read our full Arlo Pro 4 (opens in new tab) review

8. Ezviz C6 2K+ 

Ezviz C6

(Image credit: Future)
A 360-degree rotating camera with 2K image quality and AI smart detection.

Reasons to buy

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360-degree physical controls
+
2K quality
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Intelligent detection

Reasons to avoid

-
App is still a bit rough

Ezviz is another name that's becoming more and more popular as it releases impressive cameras backed by very rich features and a premium build quality. In the case of the Ezviz C6 2K+ you can expect an expansive 2K resolution on a camera that swivels physically for control from the app, allowing you to take in a wider area than most. The app itself still needs a little refining in parts but does work well and offers lots of personalization. This camera features color night vision which sounds impressive but in reality isn't as good as it sounds, yet it still mostly works well at night. Usefully this also offers microSD storage so you can get a lot out of the camera without having to pay for cloud-based storage. This is also an option and offers lots of features but it's not required like it is with a lot of the competition. 


9. Arlo Go: The best 4G LTE wireless camera

Best Wireless Security Camera

(Image credit: Arlo)
The best 4G LTE wireless camera

Specifications

Resolution: 720p
Camera lens: 130-degree
Night vision: Yes
Recording options: Free cloud, microSD
Two-way talk: Yes
WiFi: 4G LTE

Reasons to buy

+
Can use practically everywhere
+
Free cloud storage
+
Excellent app

Reasons to avoid

-
Comparatively expensive
-
Requires additional data contract
-
Low resolution

The Arlo Go is the most mobile unit making it ideal for those who camp regularly, or have a motorhome or boat, or even an outbuilding away from internet coverage. This is thanks to its onboard SIM that offers 4G LTE connectivity wherever there's signal. That cost includes seven days of free cloud storage but remember this will still cost you on data used. You will also need to pay for a subscription service to get full use of activity zones and cut down on alerts and battery wastage. 

The 720p resolution is looking a bit old now but it's still enough to do the job in most situations, both day and night. While you can record to SD, without an LTE connection the camera won't work fully which isn't ideal as you're recording blind.


10. Arlo Essential

Arlo Essential Indoor Camera

(Image credit: Future)
A simple and secure way to monitor your property indoors with lots of cloud-based features.

Reasons to buy

+
Full HD quality
+
Lots of cloud features
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Privacy shield

Reasons to avoid

-
Not as cheap as you'd expect

The Arlo Essential is the company's most affordable and simple to use home security indoor camera. As such, this tops out at a very capable 1080p quality, offers night vision and features a useful physical privacy shield. You can easily control all that from your smartphone with a wealth of features and tweaks you can use to personalize your notifications and more. It's not as cheap as some of the competition with similar specs, but then this app does a lot more than many. You will also have to pay for a cloud storage subscription if you want to get the most out of this model. But for ease of use, setup and reliable performance, this is a very solid choice. 

What to look for when buying a wireless security camera

The best wireless indoor security cameras have a number of features to look out for. First up is the video quality captured, with most now recording in Full HD 1080p. Some models now record in 4K and in High Dynamic Range (HDR), delivering even better clarity, especially in high contrast lighting. While the quality can be great, remember you’ll need a decent internet speed to cope with the large data transfer, so that’s something to bear in mind.

It’s not just daylight recording you need to think about, the quality of night-time footage is just as important too. WiFi security cameras use infrared LEDs instead of visible light, so they don't match the color or detail of daytime videos. The coverage is also reduced, but this does vary from camera to camera, with some only having a range of just 15ft, and others 30ft and beyond.

Coverage is also an important consideration. You want to see what’s going on in the whole room ideally, so you’ll want an indoor home security camera with a wide field of view. At around 160 degrees, you can expect to see every part of the room in front of the camera, though some cameras go even wider at 180 degrees. They work best if you mounted high in a corner that overlooks the room.

A wide field of view means digital zoom is important. This allows you to select part of the video and enlarge it, helping you get a closer look at something. Bear in mind that the quality of a digitally enlarged video won't be as sharp or detailed as the original.

Motion sensors

While you can easily live stream, you don’t want to be glued to your smartphone screen waiting for something to happen at home. That’s why the best wireless indoor security cameras feature motion sensors that detect both movement and sound, alerting you via a notification sent directly to your phone, as well as email. To avoid a load of unnecessary alerts, more advanced security cameras can recognize faces and pets as well, so it won’t pester you when your kids are home, but will when a stranger is lurking.

Many indoor security cameras not only feature built-in microphones, so you can hear as well as see what’s going on at home, but also speakers. This means you can communicate with whatever’s going in your house, whether that’s to tell the kids to stop jumping on the sofa or to ward off a burglar. 

Local or cloud storage?

You’ll find that most home security cameras offer a solely cloud-based storage solution, which sees footage automatically sent, stored and backed up at a secure remote location. For security, your files are encrypted so only you have access to them when needed. There are models out there that can either record or backup footage onto a MicroSD card as well.

Cameras with local storage let you access your video without subscription fees, though you might need extra memory cards or to write over older footage if you plan to keep your camera recording at all times.

Cloud storage is all about convenience compared local storage, but the trade-off is that there are often subscription fees. You typically don't need a subscription to view a live feed, while some will offer a free amount of storage over a specific period before you have to start paying for the privilege.

An important advantage of cloud storage is that any footage captured is safe and secure, whereas should a burglar break in and take out the memory card, you’ve got no evidence.

Battery or mains power?

Home security cameras will be mains powered, but for extra piece of mind, some also feature a battery power backup as power outages can and do happen. Some savvy burglars even cut the power, leaving your camera out of action if it doesn’t support a battery. That means you’ll have no video evidence of the break-in, so this can be a handy feature to look for.

Smart home integration

As well as creating a multi-camera setup by adding additional cameras, some systems even allow you to integrate them with other smart home gadgets. If you want to do this, check if any home automation (opens in new tab) or DIY home security systems (opens in new tab) work with the camera you’re thinking about buying.

These systems can use WiFi security cameras to control smart locks (opens in new tab), thermostats (opens in new tab) and other devices in your smart home. These devices can also tell the camera to record or not, based on your personal preferences. The biggest appeal of6 u9 these systems comes from using a single app to control all of your smart home devices.

Becks is a freelance lifestyle writer who has worked extensively for Top Ten Reviews during the past year. She started her career in print journalism at a local newspaper and has since then worked across digital and social media for food titles and home interior magazines. When she’s not writing, she’s reading and when she’s not reading, she’s writing. 


With contributions from