Nest’s new smart home camera lets you zoom and enhance, for real

In the battle to control your smart home, Nest just dropped some serious ordnance in the form of a new home security camera. It’s called the Nest Cam IQ, and it’s brimming with cutting-edge imaging tech that could erase some of the biggest complaints with home security cameras.

The Cam IQ is built around a 4K imaging sensor, giving it four-times the number of pixels as a Full HD 1080p camera. However, rather than shoot and record in 4K – which would eat up bandwidth and be overkill for most situations – the camera captures two separate fields and merges them into one 1080p frame, capturing greater dynamic range than would otherwise be possible. This should help even out the lighting in rooms where bright windows can throw off a camera’s autoexposure.

Additionally, all of those extra pixels give users a greater ability to digitally zoom into the image. Impressively, Nest claims you can zoom in up to 12x while maintaining 1080p resolution. What’s more, the Supersight feature can detect when someone enters your home and automatically zoom in and track them, while keeping the full, 130-degree angle of view available simultaneously.

The camera also features infrared night vision and upgraded audio capabilities with three microphones and a louder speaker, so you will be able to clearly see what’s going on any time of day and talk to anyone in your home. Two-way audio isn’t currently available, but will be coming later this year.

Nest Aware members gain additional benefits like face recognition and intelligent audio alerts. Face recognition is just like it sounds, and uses cloud processing to learn the faces of your family members to differentiate between them and a burglar. Even without a Nest Aware subscription, the Cam IQ should be powerful enough on its own to at least recognize the difference between a human face and a dog face. Likewise, the intelligent audio alert system listens for sounds and knows the difference between a dog bark and a human voice, and will send different alerts accordingly.

The Nest Cam IQ is available for preorder now from Nest direct. The price is $299, but users interested in multiple cameras can save money by purchasing a two-pack for $498.

Amazon Nest

Emerging Tech

‘Tech vest’ prevents Amazon workers from colliding with robot co-workers

Amazon workers at its fulfillment centers are using "tech vests" to help protect them from collisions with their robot co-workers. The robots already have obstacle avoidance sensors, but the belt offers another layer of safety.
Smart Home

The best air fryers deliver fried food with a fraction of the calories

What is this magical mechanism? It's an air fryer, and when used correctly, it can mimic the effects of frying while using just a little bit of oil. You still get that crispy, golden exterior and the fluffy center.
Smart Home

Legrand’s Smart Lighting touts security, interoperability, and simple setup

Near universal connectivity including Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, Samsung SmartThings, Nest, Ring, and the Internet of Things is the theme of Legrand's Smart Lighting Radiant collection of switches, dimmers, outlets, and plugs.
Smart Home

Abode Systems upgrades its smart home gateway with new chip and Z-Wave Plus

Palo Alto-based Abode Systems is adding an upgrade to its popular smart home starter kit by replacing its central gateway with a second-generation version that supports cellular backup and enhanced Z-Wave support.
Smart Home

Put away that sponge and let us help you pick the best dishwasher for your buck

Tired of doing dishes by hand? Take a look at our picks of the four best dishwashers currently available and let a machine do the dirty work for you. They’ll do a much better job, anyway.
Smart Home

You can play NPR’s ‘Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me’ on your smart speaker

You can play "Wait Wait Don't Tell Me" on Amazon Echo speakers or Google Home devices with the new Wait Wait Quiz. It's hosted by Peter Sagal and Bill Kurtis and will be updated every week with new questions.
Product Review

Making a smart home can be a DIY job, but security should be left to the pros

Sure, you can DIY a smart home system, but when it comes to security, you should seriously consider professional monitoring and service. That’s where Vivint comes in. Is it worth the lofty price?
Smart Home

Walabot Home, a device aimed at keeping seniors safe, expands its capabilities

When you have to be away from your elderly family members, Walabot Home can serve as your surrogate. This device can detect when your loved one falls and will call for help — no wearables or user input required.
Smart Home

Allergies acting up? Thes best air purifiers on the market can offer relief

Indoor air is often more contaminated than the air outside, which can cause an array of health issues over time. Luckily, these air purifiers can easily rid your home or office of unwanted allergens and contaminants.
Smart Home

Hackers hijack Nest camera, issue fake warning of North Korea missile attack

A Nest security camera hijacked by hackers who used the device to issue a fake warning about an incoming North Korean nuclear missile attack heading toward Los Angeles, Chicago, and Ohio.
Smart Home

Starbucks coffee delivery lands in 6 more cities via Uber Eats

Starbucks is in the process of expanding its coffee delivery service far beyond Miami. Available via the Uber Eats app, the service has just launched in San Francisco, with five additional cities joining in the coming weeks.
Computing

Think someone's leeching off your Wi-Fi connection? Here's how to find out

It's important to find out immediately if anyone is stealing your bandwidth. Here's how to tell if someone is stealing your Wi-Fi using a few simple tools, along with some suggestions on improving security.
Smart Home

Sing with Freddie Mercury with the ‘Ay-Oh with Bohemian Rhapsody’ Alexa skill

20th Century Fox announced a new Alexa Skill for Freddie Mercury fans. To celebrate the digital release of Bohemian Rhapsody and a National Day of "Ay-Oh," fans can download the Ay-Oh with Bohemian Rhapsody Skill.
Smart Home

Instant Pot Duo vs. Lux: Which one is really better?

The Instant Pot Duo and the Instant Pot Lux are two of Instant Pots' best-selling models and both are great options. But what’s the difference between the two? Which one is better? Let's break it down.