If you have an old Android smartphone or tablet in a drawer somewhere doing nothing, then why don’t you put it to a good use by transforming it into a home security camera? There are a number of Android apps available on the Google Play Store that allows you to turn an old Android phone into a security camera. Thanks to apps like IP Webcam for Android and Manything for iOS, you can dust off your old device and turn it into a smart security camera. Read on to know how to do so.
Turn an Old Android Phone into a Security Camera
It’s not a complicated process to turn an old Android phone into a security camera and the process doesn’t even require you to root your device. Just allow the app do the work.
Step No.1: Get the Security Camera App Running on Your Old Smartphone
First of all, you will need to choose a security camera app for your smartphone. There are many apps that offer an array of standard features such as local streaming, recording and storing footage locally or remotely, cloud streaming, and motion detection and alerts. Once you set up, you will be able to monitor your living area and control your security camera from anywhere straight from your phone.
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Security Camera App for Android
Despite so many options to choose from, one of the best security camera apps available on the Google Play Store is IP Webcam. The application will turn an old Android phone into a security camera with multiple viewing options. You can view your camera on any platform with VLC player or web browser. You can also stream video inside WiFi network without Internet access.
There is a lite version available completely free of charge but you will need to purchase the Pro version of the app for $3.99 to unlock some premium features.
IP Webcam broadcasts both locally and over the cloud using a service called Ivideon so you can view your live streaming from anywhere. To turn an old Android phone into a security camera, walk through the steps listed below:
- Download IP Webcam from the Google Play Store to the old device
- Once you’ve installed the app, go ahead and launch it
- Next, you can set power management settings, video preferences, effects, and motion or sound detecting according to your needs
- To broadcast the stream remotely, you need to register or sign in to Ivideon, test compatibility, and then enable the cloud stream
- To start the stream, select the Start server at the bottom of the app
- To view the stream, find the given IP address and port number on the phone setup as a security camera
- From another device, enter the IP address in the address bar of the web browser
- If you set up an Ivideon cloud stream from a computer, you can visit the Ivideon site and sign in.
Security Camera App for iOS
You can transform an old iOS device into a smart security camera with an app called Manything. The application allows you to turn your old phone or tablet into a live-streaming webcam and offers cloud DVR features along with motion detection functionality.
With the help of Manything, you can choose between a video or stills-only mode, set up motion alerts, and even integrate with IFTTT for virtually endless ways to configure your security camera. It is free to download and use, and you can also shell out some bucks in case you need some extra cloud storage space or additional devices.
Follow the steps listed below to turn your iOS device into security camera:
- Download and install Manything on both the old and new iOS devices
- From the old phone, open the Settings menu and disable the Auto Lock option under General section
- Next, register or sign in to Manything using an email address or Facebook account
- Select Camera mode with the old iOS device and Viewer mode for the new device.
- Once done, press the red button from the camera device to start the live stream
- From the new phone, the live stream will appear in the list of streaming devices
Optionally, you can view the live streaming from a computer by signing in at Manything site.
Step No.2: Choose a Spot to Position Your Camera
Once you view live streaming, you will need to setup and position the camera. You can face the camera to the main entry point to your home or your backyard where you store valuables stuff. If you have multiple old phones lying around, you can setup multiple cameras for robust video coverage.
Step No.3: Mount and Power Your New Security Camera
In order to mount or position your new security camera, a small smartphone tripod or suction car mount can work wonders and help you position the camera in a subtle place. In addition, your device needs to be positioned next to a power source, so it can be permanently powered from the main supply.
If you want to broaden the field of view, you can buy a wide angle lens for your smartphone which can be purchased for between $5 and $20 online.
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