Netatmo Welcome

A face-recognising home-security cam that stores data on its own micro SD

Image: Hugh Threlfall

One of the most heart-sinking things about a lot of home-security cameras is discovering that: a) all the stuff they video in your home is uploaded to the cloud; and b) you have to pay for the privilege.  

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However, this new DIY security cam from Netatmo of Paris (known until now for slick weather-monitoring devices) stores data on its own 8Gb micro SD and makes no charge beyond the purchase price. But these are the second and third headline points of the Welcome cam, as its real USP is recognising faces. It is designed to be trained on a front door and alert you by phone or computer app when it spots someone it doesn’t know, be that a stand-in cleaning person or Bertie the burglar. Unlike the Piper cam I reviewed earlier this year, you can’t then listen (or, even better, talk) to the unknown party, and the Netatmo also has a lesser 130-degree field of view as opposed to the Piper’s 180. But it’s an intriguing and effective twist on the Piper. And unlike the more heavily publicised Nest Cam, released days after Welcome, there’s no direct debit involved to nibble away at your bank account.

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