Device Review

Nest Cam Outdoor

You’re out and about.
A burglar intrudes into your backyard.  
The Nest Cam Outdoor detects human motion.
It notifies you through the Nest App.  
You check your live stream.
You alert him to the camera that he is being watched.  
He runs away and your house is safe.

The Nest Cam Outdoor is Nest’s security camera that aims to alert homeowners of intrusions as it’s happening so actions can be taken immediately all through the mobile app.


Features and Benefits

This Nest Cam features a weatherproof camera head with 1080p recording capability.  The head is connected to a 10-foot long USB cable, but can be attached to the included, 15-foot long extension cable.  The camera head is then attached to a magnetic mount, (allowing for a very wide, 130-degree, diagonal field-of-view) which you install at the location of your choice.

Nest cam can be combined with smart lighting system such as Lutron Smart Dimmers. With a subscription, it will ask Lutron Smart dimmer to turn on lights when Nest cam detects a person in front of your door.

It will also sense noise level in your home where the camera located, it will notify you if you are not at home and there is person conversation detects, it will notify you as well.

Unlike its competitors, the Nest Cam Outdoor provides users with 24/7 live streaming through the mobile app.  And with the Nest Aware subscription, you can choose to record every second for 5, 10, or up to 30 days, allowing you to rewind and watch the whole story.  With this subscription, you get a feature that Nest calls “Person Alerts”, giving the camera the ability to alert you every time it detects a human face. If the camera spots or even hears human activity, it will notify you through the smartphone so that you can check out what is going on at any time.  Additionally, with this subscription, you can link smart light systems (like the Lutron Smart Dimmer) and program them to turn on specific lights when your Nest Cam detects someone at the door; this way, you can ward off unwanted guests and also illuminate the path to your house at night.

Perhaps one of the most interesting features about the Nest Cam is its two-way audio: not only can you hear what the camera is recording, but you can also communicate with whoever is on the other end of the camera.  This way, one can verbally let burglars know that they are being watched to prevent further intrusion. This two-way audio feature can also be used to communicate with family members or pets.



The Nest Cam is a DIY installation; meaning, if you’re not a DIY type of person, you might need to hire someone like us to install it for you.

Because many of the camera’s features require a subscription, monthly costs may turn people away; but unless you get the subscription, you will be limited to only 3 hours of cloud storage, no Person Alerts, and no Activity Zone alerts.  Furthermore, the camera is WiFi dependent; so, if you have spotty WiFi in the locations that you want your camera mounted, you might have trouble connecting it to the Nest cloud storage and your smartphone or get poor quality recordings.

The Nest Cam’s reliance on constant power means the combined 25-feet of cord length you are provided must reach an outlet, and the cord will be seen running around the house unless cleverly tucked or hidden.  Though the cord is paint-ready, it will still be less appealing than its cordless competitors. Another thing we noticed is that the size of the USB type-A plug that is big so you would need to make a big penetration hole on your wall. It could’ve been better if it comes with a couple ring or at least micro USB-B type so that users don’t have to have a big hole on their beautiful walls. Luckily, as we discussed with a NEST engineer internally, they are planning to apply this suggestion to the next generation of their security cameras soon. So Let’s see about that. Those who want a cordless camera may want to check out the Nest Cam IQ, a newer, upgraded version of the Nest Cam that can hide the cord from the outside to inside. (Cord can be hidden from the outside but still be seen inside)



Nest Cam Outdoor is a decently-priced security camera that offers two-way audio along with a multitude of useful features like 24/7 live streaming and human recognition with alerts, all for a monthly subscription.  It’s $5, $10, or $30 per month for 5, 10, or 30-day cloud storage, respectively. With Nest Cam IQ, an upgrade version of Nest Cam with upgrade design, embedded face recognition engine, 4K sensor with Super-sight, the power cord can be hidden from the outside to inside. May need professional installation for Nest Cam IQ.

All in all, Nest Cam Outdoor is an adept outdoor security camera that is more than capable of serving its purpose.