WyzeCam

A $19.99 tiny smart home camera

#3 Product of the DayOctober 25, 2017

WyzeCam is a smart home camera designed for, well, whatever you want. It’s easy to find uses for a $20 camera that fits in the palm of your hand, or rests comfortably on just about any surfaceWyzeCam is

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Reviews

  • Pavlo GrozianProduct Designer, co-founder @Jerrycan
    Pros: 

    Price, 2 weeks of storage, cleaver design by Xioami's vendor (yep, it's OEM-over-OEM).

    Cons: 

    No microSD. Shady Terms of Use that covers only vendor if someone crack 'commercially reasonable efforts to prevent unauthorized access'.

    "to maintain video data recorded from Your WyzeCam on the WyzeCam cloud. Wyze Labs shall use commercially reasonable efforts to prevent unauthorized access to Your recordings maintained on the Wyze Labs cloud. However, You acknowledge, understand, and agree that as a result of issues unrelated to Wyze Labs’s fault, including the inherent limitations in all hardware and software, unauthorized access to Your recorded video data may occur. As result, in addition to, and without limiting any other provision of this Agreement, You agree to and shall indemnify and hold harmless Wyze Labs, its employees and agents for and against all claims, lawsuits and losses arising out of or related to video data recorded from Your WyzeCam and Wyze Labs’s storage of that video data. This provision shall apply to all claims, lawsuits or losses whether or not based on negligence (active or passive) on the part of Wyze Labs, its agents or employees"

    Pavlo Grozian has never used this product.
  • Pros: 

    Ease of Setup, App quality, Access Speed, Mounting Hardware, Camera Quality

    Cons: 

    The users of PH who thinks this is a chinese ripoff that are missing the forest for the trees. Motion detection needs "zones".

    While WyzeCam shares hardware with the Xiaomi Smart Home cameras that everyone has PROUDLY pointed out in the comments, it is the firmware, the app experience, customer support, and the cloud service offering that sets it apart.

    So let's address the most common sentiment in the comments:

    "This is just an upsold Xiaomi/Xiaofang/Chinese Smart home camera".

    The cheapest I could find the Xiaomi camera using the recommended search term "Xiaofang Smart IP" from Aliexpress is $24.15 and ~$21 for a similar looking "wanscam" + $6 shipping, both with 60 day guaranteed delivery! The GearBest site selling it warns "you need to set the usage area for Mainland China. Please do not choose other areas." This means it is region locked and not meant to be sold/supported outside of the country.

    My order from WyzeCam was $25.98 shipped. It was "backordered" when purchased on Friday 3 Nov and I received it in the mail on Tuesday Nov 7.

    People have also noted that the Xiaomi cameras have a different firmware and will not work with the WyzeCam app, so this means that you can't get cheap hardware cheaper and use the WyzeCam app.

    Ok, so lets say you are magical and get a Xiaomi camera for $15 shipped and you get it in 1 day. You are still going to be using the Mi Home app and let me tell you, it is a mess of an app. I made an account just to look at it and there were elements popping in and out, most of it was in english, but there were some important settings toggle buttons that were not translated and only displaying chinese. Also, the Mi Home app is rated 1.5 stars. https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/mi-home-xiaomi-smarthome/id957323480?mt=8

    Another thing mentioned multiple times in other reviews was a "Lack of an SD card slot".

    Not sure how people could think this if they even took 20 seconds to look in the specs. Maybe they were disappointed it didn't come with one?!? I can report that it has an SD card slot and it is impressively fast when skipping around in playback. It works incredibly well, just format it Fat32 (if isn't blank), pop it in and set it to continuously record in the settings menu. Even tells you how much space it has, which helped me realize that the card I was trying to use had some weird Fat/Fat32 partitions that needed to be cleared.

    Now with all that debunking out of the way here are some other thoughts:

    Setup

    Very simple, just make sure the phone/device that you are using to set this up is on a 2.4ghz network and not a 5ghz! The software asks for your wifi password and passes whatever the setup device's currently connected network is.

    Cloud Storage

    WyzeCam has free 14 day cloud storage for motion detected videos. At the time of writing, there aren't any upsell options either. It works very quick, and it is my fastest cloud connected home device, and I have a few!

    Devices Access

    As long as the WyzeCam and your viewing device both have access to the internet, you can view it from anywhere instantly. You can view it live, and if you have an SD card set to continuously record, you can watch every second, from anywhere! (That blew me away as I assumed it would only work locally).

    Software

    WyzeCam has taken existing hardware and wrapped it in a wonderful firmware and software experience. The app is intuitive, clear, and works flawlessly.

    Final Thoughts:

    Is this copypreneur? Well, it uses a proven, properly licensed hardware design, with custom firmware, a unique app experience, with a US based support team, with US based cloud storage, in custom branded packaging, sold from a custom website and the order is fulfilled from the US. Their product is the software experience, which isn't copied. So i guess "copypreneur" is up for interpretation.

    I am very satisfied with this device and immensely disappointed in the PH community for users bandwagoning on a pitchfork clenched "it's a rebranded device" witch hunt without performing due diligence.

    I hope other small startups don't shy away from being hunted due to what has happened here.

    Callan Christensen has used this product for one week.

Discussion

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Saif Al Falah@saifalfalah · JavaScript Developer
@alextsayun This is exactly like this Mi Camera. 😱
Kyle McDonald@hustlinhack · Front End Developer
@alextsayun Pro dropshippers 😉
Conrad Barrett@conradd · Product Manager, ZX Ventures (AB InBev)
@alextsayun I believe the Xiaomi version only works in China.. This must have updated firmware to work in US. Would be great for makers to *drop* in and provide some clarity -
Dongsheng Song@dongsheng_song · Love home smart products
@alextsayun thank you for your comments. In creating the WyzeCam, we licensed the same industrial design as xiaofang, but we worked directly with the manufacturer to design a new version, the WyzeCam. So while the physical appearance is the same, we created our own Wyze app, firmware and AWS cloud service. We also provide US-Based Tech support to help our customers if they ran into any issues.
Alex Tsayun@alextsayun · Product Designer
@conradd Nope, it works fine outside of China.
Constantijn@iamconstantijn · Graduate student and tech enthusiast
Ripping off a Chinese product...what kind of parallel universe is this. It's clearly a rebranded Xiaomi security cam. https://xiaomi-mi.com/ip-cameras...
Dongsheng Song@dongsheng_song · Love home smart products
@iamconstantijn thank you for your comments. In creating the WyzeCam, we licensed the same industrial design as xiaofang, but we worked directly with the manufacturer to design a new version, the WyzeCam. So while the physical appearance is the same, we created our own Wyze app, firmware and AWS cloud service. We are a team based in the state of Washington and we provide US-Based Tech support to help our customers if they ran into any issues. pls let us know if you have other questions. We are very happy to be able to come here to discuss our product with you guys
carlos garcia@androidlove · Co-Founder, Internet Missionaries
Really cool, almost too cool. Wonder if they also have access to our videos and privacy.... I mean for $20 there I am bit leery.
Leon@leonn
@androidlove You can hack the camera to turn off access to internet https://github.com/samtap/fang-h...
Dongsheng Song@dongsheng_song · Love home smart products
@androidlove we use end to end encryption for all videos transmitted to AWS cloud for security purposes. As the company, we do not have access to your videos in the cloud. Only the Wyze Account owner can view their own videos.
Gwendolyn Evans@fluffinthewind · Marketing Specialist, Wyze Labs
@androidlove That's a totally understandable concern! We absolutely do not have access to your videos and privacy. We firmly believe that your videos are for your own use and respect your privacy.
Adithya ShreshtiHunter@adithya · Founder of Startuposphere | Knowmad Life
If I am not in the US, here's what I will do to get the camera: 1) I will visit Aliexpress dot com 2) Search for "Xiaofang Smart IP" 3) Sort based on number of orders 4) Choose the first one on the list 5) Check and wait for the delivery 😀
Gwendolyn Evans@fluffinthewind · Marketing Specialist, Wyze Labs
@adithya That's a nice method! But, unfortunately, the Wyze app doesn't work with the Xiaofang camera. The body of the camera looks the same but we have a different enough product that they are incompatible. We do plan to ship internationally later! You can sign up for our newsletter at wyzecam.com for updates on this and other topics.
Adithya ShreshtiHunter@adithya · Founder of Startuposphere | Knowmad Life
@fluffinthewind I knew about the firmware and app restrictions even before I hunted your product here :) Great little cam with great features.
Gwendolyn Evans@fluffinthewind · Marketing Specialist, Wyze Labs
@adithya Thank you!
Leon@leonn
It looks exactly like the Xiaofang camera made by Xiaomi, is this just the Xiaofang with custom firmware?
Cole Schiffer@crumbdaddy · Making things cosntatntly
Dongsheng Song@dongsheng_song · Love home smart products
@leonn In creating the WyzeCam, we licensed the same industrial design as xiaofang, but we worked directly with the manufacturer to design a new version, the WyzeCam. So while the physical appearance is the same, we created our own Wyze app, firmware and AWS cloud service. We are a team based in the state of Washington and we provide US-Based Tech support to help our customers if they ran into any issues.