TP-Link Kasa Cam KC120 is an affordable smart camera with Amazon Echo Show

TP-Link’s new smart home camera, the Kasa Cam KC120, is a small, simple, and affordable device that still packs a punch. It records 1080p video from a 130-degree wide-angle lens and comes with Amazon Echo Show integration to connect to other smart home devices. This isn’t TP-Link’s first networked security camera, but it is the company’s first with home users in mind, and at $130, it is priced very competitively with what’s on the market.

The Kasa Cam KC120 includes all of the standard-issue smart home camera features, like two-way audio, infrared night vision, and motion and audio-triggered recording. It also allows users to set the active area of the frame to monitor for motion, much like D-Link’s Omna 180, which helps prevent false positives. The built-in stand doubles as a wall mount and is also magnetic, allowing it to be easily attached to a fridge or other metal surface. The camera is wired and designed for indoor use only, but can be powered over USB.

Amazon Echo Show integration is perhaps its main strength, however, which allows users to control the camera with their voice, saying things like, “Show me the living room camera” to bring up a live feed. Multiple cameras can be set up in different rooms.

In speaking with Digital Trends, TP-Link mentioned that it focused its engineering efforts on minimizing video lag. Live feeds are just about one second behind reality, which is not bad for a camera that has to upload footage to the cloud before it is sent to your phone or tablet for viewing. Lag isn’t generally a huge issue if security is your main use, but it does come into play for using the camera as a communication tool to talk to your kids, guests, or pets while you’re away.

All footage is stored in the cloud on Amazon Web Services servers via an encrypted connection. The camera does not have any form of local onboard storage, but TP-Link explained that this just wasn’t a feature that its customers were asking for. Local storage can be cheaper than purchasing a cloud subscription (and may have less of a creepiness factor for the more paranoid among us) but it has one major security flaw: if your home is burglarized and the camera is stolen, you lose all the footage of the incident.

The Kasa Cam does come with a decently generous two days, or 1 gigabyte, of free cloud storage, which is more than the one day of storage offered by most competing smart home cameras. This is particularly good for a camera costing just $130. Users can upgrade to two weeks of cloud storage for $5 per month or $50 per year, or 30 days for $10 per month or $100 per year. Additional cameras can be added to any plan at half off those prices.

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