Accurate smart alerts
Easy to use
App can be slow sometimes
About the Wyze Cam Outdoor
Here are the Wyze Outdoor Cam’s specs:
- Price: $49.99
- Colors: White
- Connectivity: WiFi (2.4 GHz), Wire-free (battery-powered), Requires included base station
- Resolution: 1080p
- Smart assistant support: Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant
- Operational temperatures: -4 to 122 degrees Fahrenheit
- Dimensions: 6.4” H x 3.2” W x 2.9” D
- Weight: 1.2 pounds
Running on two 2,600 mAh integrated rechargeable batteries, Wyze's Outdoor Cam is completely wire-free and claims a battery life of three to six months for normal use (about 10-20 events per day). A base station is required to use the camera, but it’s included in the Wyze Outdoor Cam Starter Bundle, so there are no additional products to buy. Up to four total cameras can be added to the base station, allowing you to outfit the exterior of your home with multiple cameras for less than the cost of one Arlo Pro 4, our No. 1 pick for outdoor security cameras.
Wyze’s outdoor camera delivers 1080p video and night vision that are easy on the eyes, as well as two-way talk functionality that’s clear and easy to understand. Setup is quick and simple. Simply download the Wyze app, create an account, log in, and the camera can be up and running within minutes after plugging the base station into your router.
While it doesn’t offer as many features as some of the others we’ve tested, the camera is a great value given the less than $50 price tag and free 14 days of rolling cloud storage. You also have the option to back up your event history locally by inserting a MicroSD card into the base station (but you’ll have to provide your own card).
The camera has a weather rating of IP65, meaning it’s water-resistant but not waterproof. I tested the camera outdoors in the sunny and humid Central Florida fall and it withstood the occasional rainstorm with no issues.
What we like
A more affordable subscription plan than competitors
A paid subscription plan is key to get the most out of almost any smart security camera, and Wyze’s subscription plan is one of the most affordable out there.
Wyze's Basic Plan is free for all devices and includes alerts for motion, sound, and smoke, as well as recording events for up to 12 seconds at a time. However, there's a five-minute cooldown period when using the Basic Plan. This means that after the camera detects an event, it will not record any subsequent triggers for five minutes.
This is one reason to upgrade to Wyze’s Cam Plus paid subscription for $1.99 a month (or $25 per year). No smart security camera is perfect, meaning it’s bound to miss a motion event every now and then (and who wants to wait another five minutes after the first motion alert?). If you want to keep a watchful eye on your property and get unlimited event alerts, consider paying for the Cam Plus subscription. There's no cool down period to wait for, the recording length for events is one minute, and you can fast forward through events.
Accurate and timely smart alerts that are getting smarter
Wyze is trying to catch up to big-time competitors like Nest and Arlo in terms of tracking features, offering smart alerts that can filter between general motion and people only. Wyze does not currently offer alerts for animals, packages, or cars like Nest and Arlo do, but the features are in the works to be included with Cam Plus subscriptions starting in early 2021.
The camera's sensitivity settings for motion detection can be adjusted in the Wyze app. There's no option for click-and-drag custom motion zones like Nest offers (which can keep you from getting repeated alerts from a waving flag or other benign moving objects), but the detection settings offer a decent amount of control over the camera's sensitivity. During my tests, I paired the Wyze Outdoor Cam with a Cam Plus subscription and made a few minor adjustments to the sensitivity settings before receiving accurate motion and person alerts in a timely manner.
It can be used to record without WiFi
One cool thing about Wyze's outdoor camera is that it supports offline video recording using a MicroSD card if your internet is out or the base station becomes disconnected. This really enhances this camera’s value, especially if you travel with any regularity and want to be sure your camera will record the entire time you’re away. When utilizing the Travel Mode feature, which can record motion and timelapse videos to a MicroSD card, you won’t receive event alerts.
Easy integration with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant
The Wyze Cam works with both Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant, but like most cameras we test, you won’t find any support for Apple’s Siri with this camera. It only took a minute to add my Wyze Outdoor Cam to Alexa and Google Assistant, and I was able to pull up the live feed of the Wyze camera on my two smart displays, the Amazon Echo Show 5 and Google’s Nest Hub Max, without any problems.
A smart display is one of my favorite ways to view the live stream from my home security cameras or video doorbell because it’s easy to call out “Hey Alexa [or Google], show me the Wyze Outdoor Cam” and voilà there’s my front yard in real time (and I didn’t have to press any buttons to get to it).
What we don’t like
App can be slow to load
The one problem I ran into on occasion was a delay in loading the Wyze app. Whether I was connected to WiFi or using cell service, it would randomly take longer than expected to load the video feed. The companion apps for other outdoor security cameras like Nest and Arlo loaded almost instantly, but Wyze's took anywhere from 10-15 seconds sometimes to show the live video feed. This wasn’t the case every time we used the app, but it occurred enough that I made a mental note of the random delays.
Wyze privacy concerns
Wyze suffered a security breach to one of its databases in December 2019, which impacted 2.4 million customers around the world. While no account passwords or financial details were compromised, user email addresses were exposed, including shared users who were granted access to the camera’s live feed. While Wyze hasn’t experienced any major privacy mishaps since, we recommend turning on two-factor authentication within the Wyze app and creating a secure password that you don’t use elsewhere.
Should you buy it?
Yes, if you’re in the market for a reliable, budget-friendly security camera.
Outfitting your entire house with security cameras can cost hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars when using popular brands like Arlo, Ring, and Nest—but not so with Wyze. While Wyze’s security camera isn’t as top-of-the-line as our favorite, the Arlo Pro 4 Spotlight camera, or our best upgrade pick, the Nest Outdoor Cam, it does offer many of the same features, like person detection, instant smart alerts, clear video and audio, and more.
Considering that the entire setup costs only $49.99 for the base station and camera, you’re getting a lot of bang for your buck with the Wyze Outdoor Camera (don’t forget that free 14-days of rolling cloud storage). The app may not be as quick as others we’ve tested, but it’s a minor (and occasional) flaw if you’re in the market for an accurate and budget-friendly smart home security setup.
Prices were accurate at the time this article was published but may change over time.
Meet the tester
Senior Staff Writer@rachel_murphy
Rachel Murphy covers smart home for Reviewed. She holds a journalism degree from the University of Central Florida. Previously, she worked as a freelance writer for several major outlets and as an associate editorial producer for ABC News' Good Morning America.
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