Webcams are old news, but the Belkin NetCam HD from Verizon has a few tricks up its sleeves. I brought one to WISN for this morning's tech segment to show it off.
The NetCam stands apart for its ability to stream HD video to your mobile device via the NetCam app, available on Google Play and the App Store. Setup is a breeze and only takes a few minutes. Once setup is complete just open the app and access the camera to see 720p video. I found performance to be very good; there was only a 3-second delay with the video.
The most obvious use is security, but my immediate thought was that I wished Andy had one last fall when Jabie went missing. He set up a webcam watching his back door in case she came back, but had to keep one eye on the camera hoping to catch her coming by for the food he left out. The NetCam can send you an email when it detects motion - which would've been a huge help for him. The camera also uses night vision to remain useful 24 hours a day.
Security aside, the NetCam has some other great uses around the home. One person who tested it used it to keep an eye on their dog while they were at the office. As a WeMo compatible device, it can be used to trigger other WeMo devices/events, such as turning on the lights when motion is detected.
The NetCam also has two-way audio capabilities, which provide some really useful functionality. If your kids get home before you, you can check in with them, chat a bit, and continue to keep an eye on them until you get home.
I didn't have any other WeMo devices to connect to it, but I'd like to give those a try in the future. It seems like everyone I talked to about it had another idea on how they'd use it. Did I miss any? Have another idea? Let me know via the talkbacks below or tweet at me @iamnickbarth.
OnMilwaukee.com's senior developer Nick Barth has been a part of the team since 2008. After an 18-month stint in Portland, he returned to his hometown with a new love of food trucks, bike life, and simple and effective gadgetry. The self-proclaimed gear geek and denim addict now presents OnMilwaukee's #wewant series weekend mornings on WISN-12.