Your eyes and ears
Much of the experience with either of these cameras will be the same. Each offers clear HD video with night vision, has a wide field of view, and both feature a speaker and a microphone. The mobile app offers a live view and visual thumbnails of archived footage and is easy to use no matter your choice. Though the Nest app and camera allow you to create a hot activity zone to watch for alerts, while Amazon's doesn't.
|Amazon Cloud Cam||Nest Cam|
|Live video in the app||Yes||Yes|
|Web portal for viewing||Yes||Yes|
|Free cloud storage||Yes||Yes|
As mentioned, these two are about equal when it comes to capabilities. The differences start to appear when you consider the price — both up-front and monthly subscription fees — and how the cloud storage options measure up.
Nest Cam's Nest Aware service
- Free Tier: Three hours of video storage.
- Paid Tiers:
- Five days of 24-hour footage for $5 monthly (or $50 yearly).
- 10 days if 24-hour footage for $10 monthly ($100 a year).
- 30 days of 24-hour footage for $30 monthly ($300 a year).
These prices are for one camera. Adding a camera to any plan increases the price by 50% — two Nest Cams on the 30-day plan would be $45 per month or $450 per year. You will have a 30-day Nest Aware trial when you purchase a Nest Cam to see how well the service works for you.
Amazon Cloud Cam storage options
- Free Tier: Clips captured through motion detection over the past 24 hours.
- Paid Tiers:
- Seven days of video clips for $6.99 monthly ($69.99 yearly).
- 14 days of video clips for $9.99 monthly ($99.99 yearly).
- 30 days of video clips for $19.99 monthly ($199.99 yearly).
These prices are for up to three cameras. You also have a free 30-day trial of the service when you purchase a new Amazon Cloud Cam.
Amazon's prices are lower. A lot lower if you use multiple cameras and want the 30-day plan. But you need to be aware of what you're paying for: Amazon stores clips it captures when the camera detects motion. Nest stores 24 hours of video capture that you can scroll through using the timeline feature. That's a pretty drastic difference and a big part of determining which is best for you.
If you want a connected camera to check on the dogs while you're at work or to let you know when the kids get home from school but aren't worried about using it to capture footage you may need to keep, the Amazon Cloud Cam with its far cheaper cloud options is the better choice. If you have no plans to pay for cloud storage, Amazon's camera is also better because 24 hours of clips beats three hours of video.
On the other hand, if you want to be sure to catch someone in your house when they shouldn't be there, the Nest Cam is the only real choice because of the way it stores all the video and not just a clip. I've used plenty of connected cameras and even the best of them will often trigger a motion event too late to see why or catch someone's back as they are walking out instead of catching them walk in.
Sometimes extra costs are justified, and the security of your home is one of those times.
A Great Price
The perfect camera for live video
The Amazon Cloud Cam is a great basic connected camera at the right price. The cloud storage options are also inexpensive, though it only keeps clips when the camera was triggered and not 24/7 footage.
The 24/7 Option
A better security solution
The Nest Cam includes two must-have options for a connected camera — the ability to create a hot zone and continuous 24/7 video archives. Count on paying for a cloud subscription though as the free tier is practically worthless.
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