The Best Wireless Security Cameras of 2020

Wireless cameras make for easy installation, and some of them even have rechargeable batteries.

By
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Aliza VigdermanGabe TurnerChief Editor
Last Updated on Jul 8, 2020

Best Outdoor Wireless Camera

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Best for Local Storage

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There are a number of great reasons to get a wireless as opposed to a plug-in security camera. One, they’re easier to install, two, it meant we didn’t have to worry about where our outlets were and three, if the power went out, our wireless cameras stayed on. We’ve reviewed dozens of wireless cameras, and these options performed the best. Keep reading to see which is right for you and your home.

Summary of the Best Wireless Cameras

Our Top Picks

Arlo Pro 3

The Arlo Pro 3 is the most impressive wireless security camera we’ve tested in terms of both video and artificial intelligence. Video-wise, it has 2560p HD with HDR, which made our outdoor footage look as it should without shadows or glare. Plus, the camera came with a three month trial of Arlo Smart Home, which gave us intelligent detection for people, packages, vehicles and animals. This meant we were only notified when it mattered, not just whenever the camera detected motion.

Arlo Pro 3
Arlo Pro 3

eufyCam E

Another top pick is the eufyCam E, an option available in one, two or three camera packages. This indoor/ outdoor camera works in temperatures from negative four to 122 degrees Fahrenheit, making it a great wireless option for those in a variety of climates (we’re located in NYC, which definitely falls into the acceptable range). Did we mention its battery lasts for a year?

eufyCam E
eufyCam E

We’ve thoroughly tested all of the wireless cameras on this list from our offices and apartments in Brooklyn, New York, which definitely requires some surveillance to ensure our safety. All of the cameras on this list work both indoors and outdoors, so we tried them with our front door and our living room. All of the cameras work with mobile applications, which let us receive notifications when they detect motion (or people, if they had artificial intelligence), livestream footage, speak through two-way audio, and view cloud storage. Let’s see what each camera has to offer!

The Best Wireless Home Security Cameras of 2020

Arlo Pro 3Blink XT2eufyCam ERing Spotlight Cam BatteryAll New Ring Stick Up Cam Battery
Prices$199.99 for add-on camera99.99 for add-on camera$179.99 for add-on camera$199$100
Indoor/ OutdoorBothBothBothBothBoth
Video quality2k HDR- 2560p HD1080p HD1080p HD1080p HD1080p HD
Field of view in degrees130110140140110
Night VisionColor and infraredInfraredInfraredColor and infraredInfrared
Two-way Audio?
Local StorageYes, can connect USB to Arlo base station but cannot be used on it’s own w/o cloud recordingX16 GB micro-SD cardXX
Cloud StoragePaid options of 30 or 60 days2 hours freePaid options for 30 daysPaid options for 60 daysPaid options for 60 days
Smart Platform IntegrationAlexa, Google Assistant, Apple WatchAlexaAlexaAlexa, Google AssistantAlexa, Google Assistant
Artificial IntelligencePerson, packages, vehicles, animal detection with Arlo Smart HomeXXXX
ExtrasSpotlight, siren, activity zones, safety buttons.Temperature monitoring, activity zonesSirenSiren, spotlightPrivacy zones, can disable motion recording, alerts and audio.
Battery Life3-6 months2 years1 year6-12 months6-12 months
Read ReviewArlo Pro 3 ReviewBlink XT2 ReviewNoneRing Spotlight Cam BatteryRing Stick Up Cam Battery

A Detailed List of the Best Wireless Cameras

  • 1. Arlo Pro 3— Best Wireless Camera for Video

    Editor's Rating
    9.0
    /10

    Pros and Cons

    What We Like
    • High-quality video
    • Color and infrared night vision
    • Smart platform integrations
    • Works indoors and outdoors
    What We Don’t Like
    • No free person detection
    • Relatively short battery life
    • Needs Arlo hub
    • No free cloud storage
    Arlo Pro 3
    Arlo Pro 3

    2K HDR Video

    The Arlo Pro 3 has the best video quality out of any of the wireless cameras on this list. It’s 2560p HD compared to the industry standard of 1080p HD, plus, with HDR, our outdoor footage was free of glare and shadows. Especially if you’re using the Arlo Pro 3 outside as we did, expect video that’s as close to real-life as possible.

    Night Vision Options

    Due to the camera’s spotlight, our night vision was in color, although when we wanted to be less conspicuous, we opted to turn the spotlight off and depend on the infrared LED sensors. Either way, we could see clearly at night, whether it was in full color to greet our friends or in black and white to give directions to the takeout delivery men.

    Tip: While we appreciate a spotlight, they can also make cameras very conspicuous, which may not be the best for home’s security. We recommend only using the spotlight when you’re speaking to visiting friends and family rather than having it on all the time.

    Works with Alexa, Google Assistant and Apple Watch

    There were a bunch of ways to control the Arlo Pro 3 aside from using the Arlo app. If we were feeling particularly lazy, we did voice commands through Alexa or Google Assistant, pretty common integrations when it comes to smart security cameras. However, Arlo took it a step further than most. It also worked with our Apple Watch, so whenever the Arlo Pro 3 detected motion, we got alerted and could even speak through the camera right from our wrist. And during our three month trial of Arlo Smart Home, we made it so we only got alerts when the camera detected people or packages, making for less checking of our Apple Watch throughout the day.

  • 2. eufyCam E— Best Wireless Camera with Local Storage

    Editor's Rating
    9.2
    /10

    Pros and Cons

    What We Like
    • Water-resistant design
    • Infrared night vision
    • Alexa integration
    • Battery life
    What We Don’t Like
    • Needs eufy HomeBase
    • No free cloud storage
    • No Google Assistant integration
    • Lack of zoom
    eufyCam E
    eufyCam E

    Easy Installation

    We set up our eufyCam E in three simple steps. First, we downloaded the Eufy Security app, which walked us through the setup process step-by-step. In a nutshell, we plugged in the eufyCam E’s HomeBase to power our router via an ethernet cable, which was included. After running through a firmware update, we added the camera to the app and mounted it magnetically outside our front door. All in all, the process took less than 20 minutes!

    Discounted Packages Available

    If you want to buy more than one eufyCam E, the company offers two and three camera packages, which both include the eufy HomeBase. Although the HomeBase is an added cost compared to other cameras that didn’t include hubs, we liked that eufy at least gave us discounted options if we wanted more than one of their cameras.

    Note: The eufyCam E requires a HomeBase, although add-on cameras are also available if you already have one.

    Two-Way Audio

    There was nothing better than having conversations through the eufyCam E, thanks to the eufy app as well as the speaker and microphone on the camera itself. This came in handy when we got a mattress delivered and needed to tell the delivery people the code to access our door so we could have it brought directly to our front door, as we live in an apartment. It saved us the trip downstairs, meaning we could stay in the air conditioning and wait for our bed to arrive.

  • 3. Ring Spotlight Cam Battery— Best Outdoor Wireless Camera

    Editor's Rating
    9.5
    /10

    Pros and Cons

    What We Like
    • Siren and spotlight
    • Works with Alexa and Google Assistant
    • Color and infrared night vision
    • Works in temperatures from -5 to 120 degrees Fahrenheit
    What We Don’t Like
    • No local storage
    • No artificial intelligence
    • No free cloud storage
    • No person detection
    Ring Spotlight Cam Battery
    Ring Spotlight Cam Battery

    Optional Professional Monitoring

    To get the most protection possible, we signed up for the Protect Plus plan from Ring, which meant that a team of people responded to our alerts in addition to us. If we couldn’t answer, like one time when we were doing jury duty, the monitoring team responded to our alert and checked in to make sure an emergency wasn’t happening (this time it was just our plant sitter coming in to do her duties). It was nice to have some additional help with our home’s security, and for only $10 a month, it certainly didn’t break the bank. To learn more about the Protect plans, read our Ring camera pricing page.

    Rechargeable Battery

    Rather than having to go to the hardware store every time our camera’s battery ran out of power, with the Ring Spotlight Cam Battery, we could simply recharge it. When the battery was charging, we placed it with another battery so that the camera could still run, but we also had another option of using a solar panel that charges continuously. This is a pretty cool feature that not many companies aside from Ring offer, and in our opinion, the more options, the better.

    GO GREEN: If you’re using the Ring Spotlight Cam Battery outdoors, we recommend adding the solar panel so it’ll charge continuously. You’ll never have to recharge the battery again!

    LifeTime Theft Protection

    Fortunately, we didn’t actually have to use this offer, but if our Ring Spotlight Cam Battery was stolen, the company would have replaced it for free. Another area where Ring is unique (not to mention ahead of the game).

  • 5. Ring Stick Up Cam Battery— Best Wireless Camera with Alexa

    Editor's Rating
    9.5
    /10

    Pros and Cons

    What We Like
    • Affordable price
    • Privacy features
    • Video quality
    • Two-way audio with noise cancellation
    What We Don’t Like
    • 110-degree field of view
    • Storage
    • No person detection
    • Ring’s history of security breaches
    Ring Stick Up Cam Battery

    Smart Platform Integrations

    Amazon owns Ring, so it’s not exactly shocking that the Ring Stick Up Cam Battery works with Alexa, their voice assistant. Using Alexa, we had our footage shown on our Echo Show 8 along with our Fire TV, even speaking through the devices. Whenever our Stick Up Cam detected movement, Alexa let us know along with our app notification. But the Stick Up Cam also works with Google Assistant, for those in the Google smart home ecosystem, as well as a bunch of other connected devices from brands like Dome and Geolink. All in all, we love how seamlessly the Stick Up Cam Battery fits into our larger smart home.

    Privacy

    If you’ve turned on the news in the past few years, then you’ve probably noticed that Ring has its fair share of security breaches, and they can be downright creepy. Fortunately, Ring has created a couple of privacy features in response that definitely made us feel better about the whole situation. For example, with privacy zones, we could block our bathroom from the camera’s vision so it wouldn’t detect any motion within the area. On top of that, we also had the ability to completely disable motion recording, audio and alerts, which was really good for those private nights at home watching movies. While Ring certainly has a long way to go to gain back customers’ trust, this is a step in the right direction.

    Two-Way Audio with Noise Cancellation

    Two-way audio is a feature we’ve come to expect from smart security cameras, but Ring takes it a step further with noise cancellation. When we used the Stick Up Cam Battery outside, we noticed that when talking to our visitors, we couldn’t hear the background traffic noise as much, making for more distinct and easy to understand audio. In New York City, there’s always something going on in the background, so we loved that the Stick Up Cam Battery had that in mind when it came to audio.

Video Review

Did you know that Security.org is on Youtube? Watch our video review of the best wireless cameras to see their footage during the day as well as at night.

Wireless Camera Methodology

When it comes to reviewing wireless cameras, we like to combine technical specifications along with our experience installing and testing the cameras to judge it in terms of its video, audio, night vision, storage, smart platform integrations, convenience, and overall value.

We prefer cameras with 1080p HD video, the ability to zoom in optically, fields of view of 120 degrees or wider, two-way audio, infrared night vision, free cloud and local storage, person detection, integrations with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant, simple installation and a low price. We also look at each camera’s app to make sure that it’s user-friendly and has high ratings from either the Apple or the Google Play stores, depending on what kind of mobile device you have.

For wireless cameras, in particular, we’re looking for long battery lives and easy installation especially. Most battery-powered cameras can last anywhere from three to six months without needing a recharge or replacement, although we’ve also tested out options that worked for one to two years. Some companies offer solar panels with the cameras, which allow them to be charged continuously. If you’re using the camera outdoors, there’s no reason not to use the solar panel, as you’ll never have to take the camera down to recharge or replace its battery, but if not, we recommend getting a second battery pack so the camera can stay on all the time.

If it’s an outdoor camera, we want it to be completely dust-tight and able to handle water jets at the very least. It should also have a temperature range that works for your climate. You should always look at the camera’s IP rating to determine whether it will work for your outdoor conditions.

IP RatingsSolidsLiquids
0Not ProtectedNone
1A large body surface like the back of a hand, but no intentional contact with a body partDripping water falling vertically
2Fingers or similar objectsDripping water falling from 15 degree tilt
3Tools, thick wires, etc.Spraying water
4Most wires, screws, etc.Splashing water
5Dust protectedWater jets 6.3mm & below
6Dust tightPowerful water jets 12.5mm & below
7N/AImmersion up to 1m
8N/AImmersion over 1m

In addition to that, we prefer cameras with artificial intelligence, which usually comes in the form of person detection or, with more advanced devices, facial recognition. Person detection means that we didn’t just get notified whenever the camera detected motion. Rather, we got notified only when it detected a person, which made for fewer but more important notifications. Cameras like the Nest Cam IQ Outdoor also have the option for facial recognition, which meant that we could name our friends and family in the Nest app. However, note that this camera is plug-in, and none of the wireless cameras on this list have person detection or facial recognition.

Finally, for someone looking for additional security, we appreciate companies that offer 24/7 professional monitoring and cellular backup, especially useful for someone with a larger home security system. Professional monitoring can cost anywhere from $10 to $60 a month and usually encompasses the cost of cellular backup, which keeps the system connected to the app and monitoring center in case of a power outage. To explore our favorite tried and tested options, check out our list of the best home security systems of 2020.

FAQs about Wireless Security Cameras

  • What is the best wireless outdoor security camera?

    The best wireless outdoor security cameras are the Arlo Pro 3, Blink XT2, eufyCam E, Ring Spotlight Cam Battery and Ring Stick Up Cam Battery. For the best video and artificial intelligence, go with the Arlo Pro 3, as it has 2560p HD video display and detection for people and packages with Arlo Smart Home, their subscription service.

  • Do you need WiFi for wireless security cameras?

    Some but not all wireless security cameras require WiFi. For example, the eufyCam E can record directly to its 16 GB micro-SD card, which doesn’t require WiFi, although the user won’t be able to livestream the footage or receive notifications. Most cameras that have a corresponding app require WiFi.

  • Is there a wireless security camera system?

    There are many wireless security camera systems to choose from. Eufy, for example, offers systems of two or three camera kits, while Ring also offers packages for the Ring Spotlight Cam Battery and the Ring Stick Up Cam Battery.

  • How do wireless security cameras get power?

    Wireless security cameras either get power through a battery or a solar panel.

  • How long do wireless security camera batteries last?

    Wireless security cameras’ batteries can last anywhere from three months up to a year, depending on the make and model.