“Blue from ADT Outdoor Camera”
“The Blue by ADT wireless outdoor camera has its advantages, but connection problems make the camera border unusable.”
Crystal clear optics and audio
Easy to install
Expandability of the SD card
Common connection problems
Boring box-shaped design
Bad battery life
Bad app experience
If you are interested in improving the security of your home, ADT is happy to send technicians to your home and install sensors, cameras, and all sorts of other security devices in your home. An invoice will then also be sent. However, smart home technology has advanced to the point where we can set up much of our security at home ourselves without the need for skilled workers. Not to mention, ADT founded Blue by ADT, the DIY branch of the company’s Home Security Tree.
We’ve already looked at Blue by ADT’s video doorbell solution. Now we have the outside camera in our sights. Blue by ADT offers a versatile, battery operated outdoor camera that follows the video doorbell in the hot look department. The device I tested is the pearl gray version – a darker graphite version is also available. The camera is generally large and box-shaped, with a large camera sensor on top and the diagonal slash in the corner. The device is IP-65 weatherproof and quite easy to install. But what comes after the installation is not that easy. We’ll get to that.
The base plate of the camera can be easily detached wherever you want. I found it difficult to take the plate off at first. Once it’s turned off, simply lock it in with three included screws and lock the camera again. The camera is fully adjustable – 360 degrees rotation in one axis and 90 degrees rotation in the other, so you can basically point it at anything you want.
Connecting the camera to the app is as easy as opening the app and adding a new device. Just follow the steps to pair the camera with your WiFi and you’re ready to compete in the races (or, as I mentioned earlier, you should at least be). The app allows you to adjust the video settings, including mirroring the video if you’ve mounted the camera upside down. Personally, I think this should happen automatically, but it’s easy enough to find the option.
You can customize a number of other aspects of the video feed, such as: B. Detection zones, notification settings and video quality (720p or 1080p). The camera has a wide 130-degree field of view and a full night mode, just like the Nest Outdoor IQ camera. The camera comes with a removable battery that can be used to power the camera for two to three months. In my tests, the battery life was just under a month. I’ve seen a pretty constant drop of 4% per day over the three weeks I’ve tested, so in math you can’t get the two to three months promised by ADT, compared to the 365 promised by the EufyCam2 Days is still minimal is professional.
When I put the camera in the front yard, I made the mistake of placing the camera within sight of our Halloween decorations, which were blowing in the wind and setting off motion alarms. I forgot to set the notification settings to people only, so this can affect battery life as well. I’ll take the hit on this one.
Just like the video doorbell, the camera is very sharp here and has excellent resolution even at night. Plus, the two-way voice function is loud and clear. ADT’s Blue knows exactly what it’s doing in terms of optics and audio, which is really great. What’s not great is the connectivity department.
Can you hear me now
So now we come to that. Simply put, keeping this camera connected to Wi-Fi was a nightmare. I placed the camera in three different places in and around my house. I added a doorbell extender provided by Blue by ADT. I reconfigured my mesh network base stations to keep this camera connected and in the end it was just a hit or miss.
I’ll be the first to admit that my networking skills are not great. I may not have the optimal setup for my mesh network here in my house. But at the height of the connectivity problem, I had the camera placed less than 30 feet from one of my network nodes. I put the camera on my porch, which was just a window away from the network. The camera’s habit of disconnecting frequently was insane.
A camera can only be reassured when it is doing its job, and this one is not.
I worked with a Blue by ADT product manager to resolve the connectivity issues. In the end, it helped a lot to put the camera on the porch, but even that wasn’t a bulletproof solution. While I admit that Wi-Fi is rarely as good as people think, I just can’t imagine being the only consumer that Blue by ADT will ever encounter with a setup like mine.
Simply put, the connectivity issues the camera suffers from make this a non-starter. A surveillance camera is so named because it gives the user a sense of security. This camera doesn’t. Even if the camera itself was inside where every other device of mine is plugged in and staying connected, that camera still failed. It honestly confuses the mind.
Is there a better alternative?
Yes. Despite the camera’s good performance, which includes ease of installation, the connectivity issues plaguing this device make it impossible to recommend it over alternatives. With other models such as the Wyze Cam Outdoor you get everything that the Blue Outdoor camera offers. For better connectivity, you can use a cable camera like the Vivint outdoor camera.
How long it will take?
The camera is built very robustly. I don’t expect any problems with the construction of the device. The camera is also weatherproof according to IP-65. ADT’s Blue recommends installing the camera under an awning. If you follow these instructions, the camera should last for a while. A one-year guarantee applies to all Blue by ADT devices.
Should I buy it?
No. As long as the connectivity issues persist, there are many better options. With a camera, you can only have peace of mind when it is doing its job, and it is not. The app also needs to be revised. If you want a professionally installed system, ADT is a great choice. But if you want to do it yourself, stay away.