December 6, 2010

Logitech Alert Review, Use For Video Security

Logitech Alert is a Video Security solution offered by Logitech.

While ADT Pulse provides a monitored service for Home Security, Logitech Alert provides a do it yourself solution for Home Video Security. Check ADT Pulse review to learn more and then continue reading for a Logitech Alert review.


Logitech Alert is a successor to the WiLife security solution offered by Logitech. With Logitech Alert you setup Logitech IP cameras at home, connect them to your Internet and then watch live video from the cameras remotely anytime. The live video can be seen on a computer, an iPhone, Android or Blackberry.

Installation

The camera installation is do-it-yourself – there are no installation charges and no technician walking through your home. Check How to Setup Logitech Alert and Tips to learn more.

Multiple cameras can be setup to monitor different areas of the home. The cameras use Homeplug powerline networking to connect to your Internet router i.e. cameras can only be placed next to a power outlet. 

Logitech’s Commander software running on a PC can send alerts on detecting motion and also record small video clips at the same time. The video clips are recorded on the microSD card on the camera that can be periodically downloaded to a PC. The recordings and alerts can be viewed with an iPhone app.



The Cost

There are only two cameras available for use with Logitech Alert. An Indoor IP camera which costs $300, and an outdoor IP camera that costs $350. Camera + software bundle will cost $810 for the indoor bundle and $860 for the outdoor bundle.

The cameras are available from Amazon, Tiger Direct, Best Buy and other retailers.  The cameras have a wide-angle lens, a nice feature that allows viewing more of the scene.


Logitech Indoor IP Camera


Logitech Outdoor IP Camera

You can install multiple cameras to monitor different areas of the home, keeping in mind the Internet upload bandwidth requirement per camera. 


The Good

  • There are no installation charges and no technician walking through your Home.
    You setup the system yourself
  •  No monthly fees – a big plus
  • Camera can be setup to send motion-detected alerts. It will send you an email when there is any kind of motion detected. Motion-detection zones can be set to reduce spurious alerts
  • You are the Security for your own home, you monitor it yourself.

The Bad

  • You are the Security for your own home, you monitor it yourself.
  • The Logitech IP cameras provide only basic features and are relatively expensive (compared to IP cameras from other vendors)
  • There is no choice in cameras or features – you are limited to the one indoor, one outdoor IP camera provided by Logitech
  • The Powerline networking used limits cameras to be placed near power plugs only
  • Only small video clips can be recorded – often there is a need to record security videos 24/7 and that is not possible.
  • Recordings are on the camera itself. If someone walks off with the camera, the recordings are lost
  • PC has to be On to send motion-alerts

 
Should I Buy
Logitech Alert is a basic Home Security solution that you can install and monitor yourself. A typical Home installation will have 1 – 2 cameras, which provides a reasonable cost with this system. If this meets your needs and the cost is within your budget, then it is a good choice.


Compared to ADT Pulse

If you can monitor your cameras yourself, prefer the do it yourself approach, appreciate the flexibility in installing cameras and like the low costs (overall), then Logitech Alert is the right choice.

However, if you like the comfort of a 24/7 monitoring service, need a person responding in case of an emergency and don’t mind the higher costs then ADT Pulse will be a good option.


Compared to Costco CCTV Security Cameras

While deciding to purchase Logitech Alert, you may also get attracted by the low price of Costco CCTV video security. After all, both solutions are offered as a bundle and are targeted for do it yourself users. Compared to Costco CCTV, Logitech Alert is the absolute right choice.

CCTV systems provide an attractive price but it is old technology with severe limitations (a subject of another post) and should be avoided. The biggest plus you will notice with Logitech Alert right away is that it eliminates laying down heavy video cables throughout the house as is required with CCTV systems.