Skip to main content

Comparing security camera subscription plans

Security cameras often have both an initial cost and monthly subscription fees (along with optional annual payments to save some money). Sometimes these subscription fees are optional, but you may miss out on so many features that it can be difficult to use the camera otherwise. And some security companies offer multiple plan options depending on whether or not you want professional monitoring, how many cameras you have, and other factors.

Let’s clear up that mess by taking a look at popular security camera brands and what their plans look like. This comparison of security subscription plans will help you find options that work for you.

Ring

Ring outdoor security camera keeps guard.
Erika Rawes/Digital Trends / Digital Trends

Ring Protect Basic

Fees: $3 per month or $30 per year

Included features: This plan gives you cloud storage for captured video clips that will last for 60 days, along with the ability to save and share those videos. You also receive features like the ability to take photo snapshots throughout the day, customize “rich notifications” with more detail (like if the cam recognizes a package), and AI to recognize people. Without this plan, you cannot use online video storage with Ring cameras.

Ring Protect Plus

Fees: $10 per month or $100 per year

Included features: The Plus plan is similar to the Basic plan, but it adds an extended warranty to all Ring devices you bought and gives you a 10% discount on future Ring purchases.

Ring Protect Pro

Fees: $20 per month or $200 per year

Included features: This is Ring’s professional monitoring plan, where a monitoring center will also receive alerts and take action if you aren’t available. This plan is bundled with a number of extras, including cellular backup for alarms, Alexa Guard Plus if you have an Amazon Echo device, backup features, and online security.

Arlo

The Arlo Pro 4 home security camera installed outdoors.
Arlo

Arlo Secure

Fees: $2.99 per month for one camera, or $9.99 per month for unlimited cameras

Included features: Secure adds support for video resolution up to 2K (it’s otherwise capped at HD) and online video storage for 30 days. You also get several video features including animated preview, interactive notifications, customizable activity zones, the ability to call a friend via alerts, and smoke/CO alarm detection if you have compatible devices. It also adds AI detection of people, animals, packages, and cars to the camera. Plus, get a discount on the purchase of future products.

Arlo Secure Plus

Fees: $14.99 for unlimited cameras

Included features: The Plus plan bumps up the potential resolution to 4K (although you’ll need a compatible camera) and adds an emergency response feature that provides additional alert options to automatically call fire, police, or medical responders without needing to find the right phone numbers.

Wyze

Wyze Cam Pan v2 on a table.

Cam Plus Lite

Fees: This is an odd, donation-like plan where you can name your own price, basically setting it at whatever you think it’s worth. That could include setting it at $0. It covers all eligible Wyze cams.

Included features: For free, Wyze cams offer snapshot video recordings every five minutes … possibly useful, but not especially effective. The Cam Plus Lite plan adds proper recording up to 12 seconds long and more advanced AI that can detect people.

Cam Plus

Fees: $1.99 per month per camera

Included features: You get unlimited video recording length, and the camera no longer waits five minutes between recordings. It also adds more AI features to detect pets, cars, and packages. You can fast-forward when watching recordings, use a Web View option to view recordings, and get select Wyze discounts.

Google Nest

Google Nest Cam (battery) on wooden table.
John Velasco / Digital Trends

Nest Aware

Fees: $6 per month or $60 per year — the latest version of Nest Aware covers unlimited cameras

Included features: You receive a 30-day cloud video storage log and the ability to get intelligent alerts that can recognize familiar faces, as well as listen for smoke alarms and the sound of glass breaking. Plus, you gain access to an e911 feature that allows you to quickly call a variety of emergency services.

Nest Aware Plus

Fees: $12 per month or $120 per year

Included features: The Plus plan adds online video storage for up to 60 days instead of 30 and provides 24/7 video history to check for up to 10 days.

Eufy

Eufy SoloCam E40 on screw mount outside.

Cloud Storage

Fees: $2.99 per cam to $100 annually

Included features: Eufy separates its video cloud storage into an independent series of plans designed for self-monitoring. These plans all provide the same rolling 30 days of online video storage. They vary in price depending on paying monthly or annually and whether you want to pay per cam or for up to 10 cams.

Basic Plan

Fees: $4.99 per month or $49.99 per year

Included features: This security-focused plan doesn’t add video storage, but it does connect you with professional services that help reduce false alarms and add emergency call buttons, and it has a practice mode for arming systems. This shouldn’t be confused with direct, professional monitoring.

Plus Plan

Fees: $9.99 per month or $99.99 per year

Included features: This plan adds professional monitoring with a center that’s able to dispatch emergency services at any time, along with more customization options for monitoring settings.

Blink

Blink Outdoor cam wet from the rain.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Basic Plan

Fees: $3 per month or $30 per year for one device

Included features: Blink is an Amazon-owned company, so you’ll manage these subscriptions through your Amazon account. With no plan, you can only view live video for up to five minutes at a time, with no video storage options. The Basic plan allows you to livestream for up to 90 minutes and adds recording and online storage for up to 60 days (plus the ability to share videos). You can also turn on a photo capture mode.

Plus Plan

Fees: $10 per month or $100 per year for unlimited devices

Included features: This plan is primarily for those with multiple Blink cams. It’s similar to the Basic plan but adds an extended warranty and 10% off Blink devices.

Logitech

Logitech TV Cam for Skype.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Basic plan

Fees: $3.99 per month for a single cam; $6.99 per month or $69 per year for up to five cams

Included features: This plan offers 14 days of cloud storage for your video, in addition to the free options, which include 24 hours of cloud storage, unlimited streaming and downloads, and smart alerts.

Premium plan

Fees: $9.99 per month or $99.99 per year for a single cam, $17.99 per month or $179 per year for up to five cams

Included features: This plan increases cloud storage to 31 days, adds AI person detection, and gives you customizable motion zones.

SimpliSafe

The SimpliSafe SimpliCam on a table.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Self-monitoring

Fees: $9.99 per month for up to five cameras

Included features: This plan skips professional monitoring and gives you unlimited storage to view your timeline events, along with other important cam features like push notifications and a variety of ways to customize your alerts.

Standard monitoring

Fees: $17.99 per month

Included features: This is a professional monitoring (fire, medical, and police) plan that also adds cellular backup. Note: The plan does not include various features from the self-monitoring plan, such as the ability to customize how to receive alerts. It also restricts online video event storage to seven days.

Interactive monitoring

Fees: $27.99 per month

Included features: This plan includes all the features from self-monitoring and standard monitoring together, including unlimited timeline event viewing, and supports up to 10 cameras. It also adds a lifetime equipment warranty and discounts on future products.

What about home security brands like ADT or Xfinity?

These security platform companies also offer a number of subscription plans. However, their plans are focused on whole-home security systems, and for this guide, we wanted to focus on plans for individual security cams that you would find in many of our best-of lists. SimpliSafe is the brand that comes closest to showing what full home security plans could look like in this guide.

Finally, if you want to avoid subscription fees altogether, you still have options. Many no-subscription cameras use local storage from SD cards and similar solutions, while some offer limited online video storage. Our outdoor security camera guide suggests some of the best options in this category.

Editors' Recommendations

Tyler Lacoma
Former Digital Trends Contributor
If it can be streamed, voice-activated, made better with an app, or beaten by mashing buttons, Tyler's into it. When he's not…
Best air conditioner deals: Portable and window units on sale
The GE 10,000 BTU portable air conditioner cools a living room while a woman reads.

As summer quickly approaches and temperatures rising the last few years, you're probably thinking of investing in an air conditioner to help get you over those very hot days. While most folks may have a hard time installing a split unit, there are a lot of other options, including air conditioners you can put in a window, as well as portable air conditioners, that you can fall back on. Luckily, you don't have to spend an arm and a leg on them, as even some of the best air conditioner brands have solid deals on them, which is why we've collected our favorite air conditioner deals down below. Pair these with air purifier deals and humidifiers deals and you'll be able to control the climate in your home perfectly.
Evapolar evaCHILL — $84, was $99

The Evapolar evaCHILL provides personal comfort on a small scale. At just 6.77 x 6.69 x 6.69 inches, it is highly portable and perfect for taking with you on camping trips or other excursions. To use it, just fill up its 800mL tank, which provides about 8 hours of continuous use (though customers report lower times for high-heat scenarios). This makes it perfect for getting to sleep. Plus, since it uses water as a source of chill, it can double as a humidifier. The Evapolar evaCHILL charges via USB cable and consumes less than 10W of power.

Read more
Ring Pan-Tilt Indoor Cam vs. Wyze Cam Pan v3: Which is the better pan-tilt camera?
The Pan-Tilt mounted on a wall.

An indoor camera capable of panning and tilting is one of the best ways to improve the security of your home. These devices make it easy to capture all corners of a room with a single device, making them a cost-effective way to keep tabs on a property. The Wyze Cam Pan v3 is one of the cheapest options on the market, but Ring has recently launched its own Pan-Tilt Indoor Cam that's quickly become popular with shoppers.

But is the expensive Ring Pan-Tilt Indoor Cam better than the Wyze Cam Pan v3? Or should you save yourself a few bucks and opt for the cheaper security camera? Here's a look at both to help you decide.
Pricing and monthly fees

Read more
Best washer and dryer deals: bundles from LG, Samsung and more
A washer and dryer sit next to each other in a laundry room.

A new washer and dryer can add some convenience and efficiency to your household routine, as many of the best washing machines and best dryers offer a wide variety of smart features. They can also get costly, which is why we’ve tracked down some of the best washer and dryer deals you can shop. They include top washing machine brands Samsung and LG, as well as some other quality options. You can often find some great washers and dryers bundled with appliance package deals as well, and if you’re looking to upgrade kitchen appliances you should check out the current refrigerator deals, dishwasher deals, and oven deals.
Best LG washer and dryer deals

LG makes some awesome appliances. We've picked some medium-sized options, including a fairly cheap package deal available at Best Buy.

Read more