Can Your Smartphone Support Mobile Video Surveillance

Tuesday, March 11, 2014 by under Cameras, IoT (Internet of Things), Monitoring, Smart Home

Today’s security systems often offer mobile options which allow you to access your account information, security settings, notifications and video feeds direct from your smartphone.

With this always-on availability, you can conveniently keep tabs on your home wherever you are.

For mobile access to work, however, you need both the right security system and a smartphone that supports it. While it may seem obvious, homeowners should double check that their provider’s mobile solutions are compatible with their device(s) before purchasing.

Here are some items to consider when evaluating mobile security options.

App Marketplace Availability

In many cases, you’ll be asked to download an app to access your security information from your phone. Make sure the app is available in your device’s marketplace in advance, as some are specific to only Apple or Android products. (Note: Vector Security’s mobile apps are available for iPhones, Androids and Blackberries).

Take it a step further, and inquire about the security and usability of the app.

  • Is it password-protected? (It should be!)
  • Is it intuitive and easy to use?
  • Are there costs associated with downloading it?
  • Does it get positive customer reviews?

Upon app installation, follow mobile security best practices in case your device is lost or stolen. For example, enable “Find My Phone” functionality and remote wipe capabilities, and never save your home security system passwords in your device. 

Video Bandwidth

If you’re interested in accessing live video feeds from your home security system, keep your phone’s Internet speed and bandwidth in mind. The good news is that most new models will be able to support video easily. It’s older phones that may not.

Perform the YouTube test. Does your phone play videos smoothly and uninterrupted? If so, then you should also be okay watching mobile video surveillance footage on it.

To improve video quality, close out of other apps that use the Internet, and don’t stream other videos or music simultaneously. 

Data Use and Capacity

The final consideration is your phone plan, and the amount of data you have available. Video eats through data quicker than other activities (email, web browsing, etc.). Prevent a data drain or large carrier bill with these tips:

  • Know your available monthly data allotment.
  • Set up alerts to notify you when you are close to exceeding capacity.
  • When possible, stream your video surveillance footage over a password-protected WiFi network, instead of 3G or 4G.
  • Close your home security app when not in use.

Enjoy On-The-Go Mobile Access

Check in at home with the swipe of your thumb, and rest assured that your family and property are protected. Read more about the benefits and applications of mobile security in our ebook, “Mobile Home Security Solutions: Starter Guide,” or contact a Vector Security sales rep today to discuss your unique needs.

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