In search of a security camera last summer, I tried out one of the best of the breed, by a US brand, costing over £300 with its base station. It didn’t work. Then the company said it had solved the problems, and would I like to try the updated version? It didn’t work. I spent two hours with customer support, and it still didn’t work.
Next stop, the Smartech store-within-a-store in Selfridges, a new happy hunting ground for gadget lovers, where I came across this camera from Yi, a Chinese company I hadn’t heard of. It is not only simpler – no clunky base station – but has features the £300 failure doesn’t, especially a motorised head that you can pan and tilt remotely and the ability to give complete 360-degree coverage when not in use to prevent any unauthorised filming. Whisper it, but it’s also less than a third of the price.
And the Yi has been an absolute triumph. Installation was a joy – 10 minutes or less that the camera itself talks you through. And it’s been flawless in operation: a brilliant product, with thoughtful tweaks such as being able to reduce the sensitivity of the motion sensor, so you don’t get too many alerts when you’re asleep in one time zone and the cat’s on the prowl in another.