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Secure in Style: The Top 7 Surveillance Essentials for Your Smart Home

by Ann Ferguson

When it comes to home security, the future is here, and it's brighter than ever. With smart homes becoming the norm, security has evolved beyond simple alarms and locks. Now, we're talking about fully automated surveillance systems that work seamlessly with your smart home.

These systems offer unparalleled security, convenience, and peace of mind. But, with all the tech out there, knowing what's essential can be challenging unless you have the inside scoop — which we do!

Let's dive into what must-have features you need to level up your home security!

1. Camera Essentials

Closeup of security camera over palatial living room

When it comes to surveillance, the camera is king. But not all cameras are created equal, so you want surveillance cameras that have these essential features:

  • High-Resolution Footage: High-resolution cameras, such as 1080p and 4K, offer clear, detailed images to help identify faces, license plates, and other vital details. They also perform better in low-light conditions, ensuring clear footage at night.
  • Night Vision Capabilities: There are two types of night vision: infrared, which uses IR LEDs to capture black and white images, and color night vision, which uses advanced sensors to deliver colored images in low-light conditions.
  • Wide Field of View: Wide-angle lenses can help cover more of your property, reducing the number of cameras needed and ensuring no blind spots in your surveillance.

These camera essentials are the foundation of that system, working together to keep your home safe and secure day and night.

Pro Tip: Don't worry too much about the details — our team can help you choose the right cameras based on your specific needs and the layout of your property.

2. Motion Detection and Tracking

Security camera tracking motion

Motion detection is a game-changer in the world of surveillance. It adds an extra layer of security by alerting you when there's movement in the camera's field of view. But it's not just about detection — some advanced cameras can also track the activity, keeping the subject framed and in focus.

This feature is especially useful for monitoring specific areas of your property, like entrances or high-value items. When the camera detects movement, it can send you an alert, start recording, or even trigger other smart devices in your home, like turning on lights.

And the best part? You can customize the sensitivity and set activity zones to focus on the areas that matter most to you. This helps reduce false alarms from pets, shadows, or trees swaying in the wind.

3. Two-Way Audio: Communication is Key

In smart surveillance, two-way audio is a feature that takes security to another level. This feature allows you to hear what's happening around your camera and communicate directly through the camera itself.

Imagine being able to greet your guests when they arrive or deter potential intruders by letting them know they're being watched. Or you can instruct a delivery person where to leave your packages while you're out (or in and don't want to get the door — we don't judge). All of this is possible with two-way audio.

Moreover, in case of any emergency, two-way audio can provide a critical line of communication. It's like having a virtual presence at home, even when you're miles away.

4. Video Analytics: Smart Surveillance at Its Best

Control panel showing intruder at the door

If you haven't heard it before, video analytics is a game-changer. This advanced feature uses artificial intelligence to analyze the video footage from your surveillance cameras in real time. It can identify and alert you to specific events, recognize familiar faces, and more.

For instance, video analytics can differentiate between a person, an animal, and a vehicle. It can alert you when someone lingers at your front door or a car enters your driveway while you're away. It can even recognize familiar faces, like family members, and ignore routine movements, like a pet roaming around, reducing false alarms.

Moreover, some systems offer advanced features like line crossing detection, which alerts you when someone crosses a predefined line, such as the geofence you set up around your property.

5. Storage Options: Keeping Your Footage Safe

When it comes to storing your surveillance footage, you have two main options: local and cloud storage. Each has pros and cons, so it's best to understand what they can do.

Local storage involves storing your footage on a physical device located on your property. It's a one-time investment; you don't have to worry about monthly fees or internet connectivity. However, if the device gets damaged or stolen, you could lose your footage, and you're limited by the device's storage capacity.

On the other hand, cloud storage stores your footage on a secure server over the internet. You can access your footage from anywhere, and it's safe from physical damage. But, it usually involves a monthly fee and requires a stable internet connection.

Pro Tip: A hybrid approach, using both local and cloud storage, can give you the best of both worlds. You can discuss this with our team to find the best solution for your needs.

6. Integration: Smart System Working in Harmony

Closeup of woman holding smart home control panel with smart security and other smart home settings

The magic of a fully automated smart home security system lies in its ability to create a symphony of smart devices, all working in harmony. Your surveillance system isn't a solo act; it's part of an ensemble, enhancing the overall performance of your home's security.

For instance, your surveillance cameras and smart locks work together, so when the camera identifies a familiar face, it cues the smart locks to open the door. Or if the cameras detect unusual activity, the system triggers the lights to flash and the alarm to sound, warding off potential intruders.

And the best part is you control every aspect of it, so nothing happens in your home that you're unaware of!

7. Professional Installation and Monitoring

Professional service tech installing cameras based on design

While DIY is great for some projects, when it comes to your home's security, it's best to leave it to the professionals (like our team!). Why? Because we have the expertise and experience to ensure your surveillance system is set up correctly and covers all the necessary areas.

We'll make sure your cameras are positioned for optimal coverage, capturing all potential entry points and eliminating blind spots. And we can help you navigate the technical aspects of your system, from setting up the software to troubleshooting any issues (and future-proofing for newer technology down the line!).

Plus, if you're interested in a professional monitoring service, we can walk you through what those look like and the costs of it and recommend the best one for your system!

Securing Peace of Mind

There you have it — the must-haves your smart security needs to keep your smart home working smoothly and safely. As you can see, there are several components that go into a fully integrated smart home security system, but don't worry; our expert team at Bjorn's is up to the task!

So, if you're ready to get started, call or stop by, and we'll go over your needs to begin planning your safe and smart home!