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Best Nanny Cams of 2021

Nanny cams, also known as indoor security cameras with motion detection, can help keep your home safe while also allowing you to check in on kids and pets. We’ve reviewed the best nanny cams of 2021 to help you choose the right camera for your home.

Home Security Blink Home Security

Nanny cameras have many uses: as home security cameras, as baby monitors, as part of smart home systems, and many more. Nearly all nanny cams turn on when motion is detected, giving you the ability to watch in real time or record for later. Most also allow you to communicate with anyone in your home at the touch of a button.

The This Old House Reviews Team has broken down some of the most popular features these cameras offer and recommend the five best nanny cams for your home security needs.

Five Best Nanny Cams

Google Nest Cam Vivint Ping Omples Hidden Camera Wyze Cam V2 Blink XT2
Google Nest Cam Vivint Ping Omples Hidden Camera Wyze Cam V2 Blink XT2
Best Overall Best Monitored Security Camera Best Hidden Camera Best Budget Pick Best Wire-free Camera
Best balance of price and features Person and familiar face alerts Professional or self-monitoring Professional monitoring available Make one-touch outgoing calls Widest field of view Camera lens hidden in clock Live video or local storage Full HD video Same video quality as more expensive cameras Free cloud and local storage Night vision Two-year battery life Good balance of price and features Free cloud storage
$119.97 $199.99 $54.99 $25.98 $99.99

What Is a Nanny Cam?

The phrase, “nanny cam,” usually refers to an indoor home security camera that can be monitored remotely. The camera is placed to pick up movement in interior rooms instead of doors or outdoor areas. You may purchase a nanny cam to monitor children or pets or ensure that no one gains access to areas of your home you wish to remain private.

Types of Nanny Cams

Broadly speaking, there are three different types of nanny cams: independent indoor cameras, cameras that are a part of a home security system, and hidden cameras.

Independent Indoor Cameras

Many home security companies now offer single-unit indoor cameras that can easily serve as nanny cams. Nowadays, these cameras are usually wireless and nearly all of them let you watch live video footage on your mobile device streamed over WiFi.

Part of a Monitored Home Security System

If you opt for an entire home security system, you’ll often have the opportunity to include one or more indoor video cameras. If you want to have this system professionally monitored, your camera may also function as a sensor that alerts a dispatching center if there’s unwanted movement in your home.

Hidden Cameras

Hidden nanny cams, which are disguised as common household objects, will reveal the behavior of people in your home who don’t know they’re being watched. Although there can be some legal issues with recording people without their consent, many parents simply use them to check up on their children.

How Do I Find the Best Nanny Cam?

Nanny cams offer a stunning array of features. Here are a few questions to ask yourself to avoid getting lost in a laundry list of specs.

  • Size and shape—Will this camera blend in with my decor? Do I want a camera that’s easy to hide?
  • Resolution—How high-quality do I need the images to be?
  • Audio—Does the camera have two-way audio to allow me to speak to anyone at home?
  • Power source—Does the camera run on batteries or need to be plugged in?
  • Video recording options—Do I want to live stream the footage or be able to watch recordings as well? Where is the footage saved?
  • Night vision—How well do I need this camera to see in the dark?
  • Smart home compatibility—Do I want the camera to link to devices like Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant?
  • Special features—Do I want the camera to be able to distinguish between people, animals, and objects?
Home Security Google Nest

Best Nanny Cams

The best nanny cams will provide quality footage without breaking the bank. Here are our picks for the best nanny cams of 2021.

1. Google Nest Cam: Best Overall

Our favorite nanny cam comes from Google’s Nest line of home security systems. Although it’s compatible with other Google products and can be professionally monitored, the Nest Cam is easy to install and use on its own.

Some of its benefits include professional monitoring, three hours of free cloud storage, and smart home compatibility, while a drawback is that person and familiar face alerts are only available with a paid subscription to Nest Aware.

Top Features

  • 1080p HD video
  • 130-degree field of view
  • Night vision
  • Two-way audio
  • Person alerts discern people from other moving objects
  • Facial recognition minimizes false alerts

Purchase Now: $119.97

2. Vivint Ping: Best Monitored Security Camera

The Vivint Ping indoor camera works best as part of Vivint’s professionally monitored security suite, and it’s the only model on the market that allows someone at the camera to initiate a video call to the person monitoring on a mobile device.

Professional monitoring and smart home compatibility are available with the Vivint Ping, but this camera is more expensive than others on the market and it must be professionally installed. It also requires a Vivint Smart Home Video subscription for full functionality.

Top Features

  • 1080p HD video
  • 155-degree wide angle field of vision
  • Two-way audio
  • Customizable motion detection
  • Night vision
  • Customizable mobile alerts

Get a free quote from Vivint here or call 855-740-4217.

3. Omples Hidden Camera: Best Hidden Camera

This camera is disguised as a simple analog bedside clock and offers the same high-quality resolution and night vision as other indoor cameras. Though it’s easy to install and provides 24/7 recording, it doesn’t pick up sound or have cloud storage. It also only works with 2.4G WiFi only

Top Features

  • 1080p HD video
  • Motion detection
  • SD card slot for local storage
  • Mobile app
  • Night vision

Purchase Now: $54.99

4. Wyze Cam V2: Best Budget Pick

Despite its bargain price, the Wyze Cam V2 offers many of the same features as its larger, more expensive counterparts. It’s extremely small and unobtrusive and has an easy installation process. The camera also comes with motion and sound detection and free, 14-day rolling cloud storage. However, the Wyze Cam V2 is not smart home compatible.

Top Features

  • 1080p HD video
  • Cloud or local storage via SD card (not included)
  • Night vision up to 30 ft
  • Two-way audio
  • Time-lapse recording
  • 110-degree field of view

Purchase Now: $25.98

5. Blink XT2: Best Wire-Free Camera

If you want an indoor camera you can place anywhere, the Blink XT2 may be your best bet. It can be used indoors or outdoors and is priced similarly to indoor-only cameras. Blink XT2 batteries last up to two years, it’s smart home compatible, and it doesn’t require a contract or data fees. However, the camera’s recordings only last a maximum of 60 seconds and some have reported a slight pinhole distortion in the recordings.

Top Features

  • 1080p HD video
  • Night vision
  • Customizable motion detection
  • Temperature monitor
  • 2 hours of free cloud storage
  • Two-way audio

Purchase Now: $99.99

Other Nanny Cams to Consider

Here are a few other nanny cams with unique features that are worth considering:

  • Wyze Cam Pan—This does everything the Wyze Cam V2 does and adds mechanical pan-tilt capability, all for less than $40.
  • Ring Stick-Up Cam—Available in plug-in or wire-free models, this Ring model integrates easily with Amazon Alexa and features a built-in alarm siren.
  • Arlo Pro 3—This camera can go indoors or outdoors and features nearly every bell and whistle out there. However, its expensive price kept it off our top five list.

Frequently Asked Questions about Nanny Cams

What is the best nanny cam?

The best nanny cam for you will depend on what you need it for. All nanny cams should provide peace of mind and quality footage.

How much do nanny cams cost?

The price of a nanny cam can range between $25–$500, depending on what features it offers.

Where can I hide my nanny cam?

Some nanny cams are already disguised as common objects like clocks or phone chargers. Others are small enough to conceal on a bookshelf or a desk. The best place to hide your camera will depend on its color and size.

What’s the difference between a nanny cam and an indoor security cam?

These terms are often used interchangeably, though some people use “nanny cam” exclusively to refer to hidden cameras. Additionally, some indoor security cameras may be designed to work within an entire home security system.

Do I need to tell my babysitter that I have a nanny cam?

Legally speaking, it’s always best to inform babysitters or other visitors they are being recorded to prevent lawsuits and to ensure that footage can be admissible in court if necessary. All U.S. states allow video-only recording in public spaces, but bedrooms and bathrooms are considered private. Additionally, 11 states require anyone appearing on video and audio recordings to consent to it.

Our Conclusion

Though nanny cams can help improve the safety of your home and give you peace of mind, we recommend looking into an inclusive home security system for comprehensive home protection. Consider trusted companies like ADT, SimpliSafe, or Vivint to help out with your home security needs.

To share feedback or ask a question about this article, send a note to our Reviews Team at reviews@thisoldhousereviews.com.