What exactly is Apple HomeKit Secure Video and what are its advantages for users?

Cupertino, August 3, 2023

Apple HomeKit Secure Video is a great way to connect cameras around your home and provide secure video recording. This HomeKit feature allows you to include camera streams, recordings, and notifications in the Home app. With end-to-end encryption through the Home app, only users who have access or are invited can view the content. Using iCloud for storage, HomeKit Secure Video can store up to 10 days of events such as motion detection for easy viewing.

Why Apple HomeKit Secure Video is Worth It

One of the biggest benefits of Apple HomeKit Secure Video goes hand in hand with iCloud+. While iCloud offers up to 5 GB of free iCloud storage, iCloud+ offers 50 GB (up to 2 TB) of storage for just $0.99 per month. With your iPhone, iPad, Mac, or Apple TV, you or anyone else in your Family Sharing group can view your home's CCTV from anywhere in the world. Once your security cameras are added to the Home app, you can safely stream, record, and store videos. In addition, the videos do not count against your iCloud storage.

Apple HomeKit Secure Video can detect people, pets, and cars using your home hub or on-device intelligence and notify you in the Home app. You can share this access with other iCloud users and decide whether they can easily view, stream, and manage your cameras remotely.

Is my camera compatible with Apple HomeKit?

If you see the "Works with Apple Home" logo on your camera manufacturer's website or packaging, you can use Apple HomeKit Secure Video. There is a wide variety of security cameras that are compatible with Apple HomeKit, including the Aqara Camera Hub G3, Arlo Pro 3 Floodlight Camera, and Logitech Circle 2, to name a few.

Are there any downsides to using HomeKit Secure Video?

There are a few drawbacks to note if you want to use HomeKit Secure Video. First, it is limited to 1080p resolution. Some compatible cameras can support higher resolution, such as 2K video. So you lose some quality with those cameras. You also need an Apple home hub, usually an Apple TV, HomePod, or HomePod mini to use the feature.

The Best Apple HomeKit Cameras

Apple HomeKit-enabled cameras usually have additional features that enable automation around your home. For example, some cameras can detect motion and therefore can be programmed to turn your smart lights on/off when you enter/leave a room.

  1. Logitech Circle View
    Image Credit: Amazon

    This wired security camera from Logitech is a great choice because it can be used both indoors and outdoors. It features high-quality 1080p video and a built-in microphone with two-way audio. Using high-performance sensors, the Logitech Circle View can capture clear photos and videos in sunlight and shade, as well as night vision from up to 4.5 meters away. It is exclusively compatible with Apple HomeKit, so you can use Apple HomeKit Secure Video on your Apple devices.

    Buy Now (Amazon)

  2. eufyCam 2C
    Image Credit: Amazon

    The eufyCam 2C is a wireless security camera with 1080p HD video and an IP67 rating. It's compatible with Apple HomeKit and offers a 135-degree view, so you can see what's going on in and around your home. This camera also has a 180-day battery life for added convenience and can intelligently detect body shapes and faces. This allows it to warn you only when people are approaching.

    Buy Now (Amazon)

  3. Aqara 2K Security Indoor Camera Hub G3

    This Apple HomeKit Secure Video-enabled camera comes with 2K resolution and a 360-degree viewing angle. It also features a hub that works with other Aqara products thanks to the integrated Zigbee 3.0 radio. The Aqara 2K Security Indoor Camera Hub G3 can distinguish between faces, pets, and gestures and welcomes you as you enter your home. When a stranger is identified, you will be notified in the Home app. The built-in IR controller works with 2.4 GHz/5 GHz Wi-Fi bands and is compatible with HomeKit, Alexa, Google Assistant, and IFTTT.

    Buy Now (Amazon)

Set Up Apple HomeKit Secure Video

Setting up Apple HomeKit Secure Video is a simple process thanks to Apple's ecosystem. All you need to do is enable Home on your device and then add your HomeKit-enabled cameras to the app.

If you're using an iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch: Go to Settings > Your Name > iCloud. If you are using iOS 16 or later, select Show all > Toggle Home. For iOS 15 or earlier, just toggle Home. For users who own a Mac: macOS Ventura: Select the Apple menu > System Settings > Your Name > iCloud > Toggle Home. macOS 12 or earlier: Select Apple menu > System Preferences > Apple ID > iCloud > Toggle Home. And finally, for Apple TV users: Open the Settings app on your Apple TV. Select Users & accounts > Your account > iCloud. Make sure you're signed in with your Apple ID.

Using your iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch, or Mac, you can watch Apple HomeKit Secure Video in iCloud using the Home app. However, with an Apple TV you can view the images via the Control Center.

Do you need a subscription for Apple HomeKit Secure Video?

Another great advantage of using an Apple HomeKit-supported camera is that up to 10 days of recordings can be accessed completely free of charge. With an iCloud+ plan, you can add a single camera (50 GB plan), five cameras (200 GB plan), or unlimited cameras (2 TB plan). Similarly, if you're part of a Family Sharing group, you can share your iCloud+ subscription with another user. Although an iCloud storage plan is required, video recordings do not count against your monthly storage limits.

Secure video access wherever you are

If you're an Apple user and you're considering upgrading your home with smart security cameras, keep an eye out for Apple HomeKit-enabled devices. With Apple HomeKit Secure Video, you can access a live stream of your cameras, recordings, and receive notifications from anywhere. So when you're at work or on vacation, you have the security you need, even when you're away from home.

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