Story image

Hands-on review: D-Link HD Wi-Fi camera review

24 Jul 15

Home security options are getting cheaper and easier-to-use all the time, and D-Link’s newest HD Wi-Fi camera packs a lot of great features in a (theoretically) simple to install and manage package.

With full-colour high definition images, night vision up to 5 metres and an intuitive app that even the most tech-illiterate will be able to grasp with a minimum of fuss, the camera is a respectable entry-level security or monitoring camera for those who want solid performance on a budget.

The key to a device like this is simplicity - D-Link want you to be able to take the camera out of the box and be viewing your video stream within minutes. Unfortunately I didn’t find it quite as easy as advertised, and it took a fair bit of fiddling around in the free accompanying app (available on both iOS and Android) before I could take in the view of my living room. A handy folded card inside the box holds two QR codes to aid set-up, but it took some trial-and-error before I was underway.

The finicky set-up also has repercussions for anyone who might be compelled to move their camera around their home. While testing, I personally could only get a consistent feed when the unit was placed within a few feet of my Wi-Fi router; straying any further would lead to frequent disconnections (accompanied by increasingly frustrating app and email notifications). A Wi-Fi range extender might solve the connection issues, and this particular model carries a comparatively low cost meaning multiple cameras aren’t completely out of reach, but it would be nice to be able to plug-and-play a bit easier.

On the plus side, once the camera is set-up correctly and working as it’s supposed to, the experience is pretty seamless. Viewing the live stream from either a web browser or the app is basically fool-proof, with just a couple of button presses getting things underway. The ability to create groups for various set-ups is also simple, for those with multiple cameras or locations.

It’s a shame you can’t start recording footage through the app, but there are options for capturing a screenshot, switching between day and night vision modes, and changing video quality settings. Recording of video can allegedly be done through the web interface, however a fairly thorough investigation didn’t yield any success for me. The downloadable PDF manual does seem to be a little outdated so it’s possible an update could smooth things out a little, but at this stage it’s disappointing.

While it may take a little TLC from the outset, the D-Link HD Wi-Fi camera is a decent option - just don’t expect the world from it. For use as a baby monitor (or in my case a cat observation system) it’s a nice option, and if the recording system can be successfully negotiated there is definitely deeper potential there, particularly for those looking at a multi-cam set-up.

Commerce Commission report shows fibre is hot on the heels of copper
The report shows that as of 30 September 2018 there were 668,850 households and businesses connected to fibre, an increase of 45% from 2017.
Dr Ryan Ko steps down as head of Cybersecurity Researchers of Waikato
Dr Ko is off to Australia to become the University of Queensland’s UQ Cyber Security chair and director.
Businesses in APAC are ahead of the global digital transformation game
“And it’s more about people and culture - about change management - along with investing in the technology.”
HubSpot announces fund for 'customer first' startups
HubSpot is pouring US$30 million (NZ$40 million) into a new fund to support startups that demonstrate ‘customer first’ approach of not only growing bigger, but growing better.
Mac malware on WatchGuard’s top ten list for first time
The report is based on data from active WatchGuard Firebox unified threat management appliances and covers the major malware campaigns.
LearnCoach closes $1.5m seed round
The tutorials are designed for students who want to learn NCEA subjects but can’t make it to a physical classroom.
Bin 'em: Those bomb threat emails are complete hoaxes
A worldwide spate of spam emails claiming there is a bomb in the recipient’s building is almost certainly a hoax.
Marriott sets up call centres to answer questions on data breach
Marriott has released an update on the breach of the Starwood guest reservation data breach which affected 500 million guests.