Got a packed social calendar over the holidays? Remember, flashy new gifts in empty houses can add up to a tempting target for robbers. Here’s a few of the latest in home security gadgets for the next time you worry someone other than Santa Claus will be heading down the chimney.
Gemini IP Camera Viewer app
Linksys has rolled out the Gemini IP Camera Viewer app, meant as a home monitoring companion for its Smart Wi-Fi routers. You can access your IP camera video streams through a Wi-Fi connection or via your cellular network. You can pinch to zoom in on your camera feed in real time; to switch between cameras, just swipe the display. An included wizard makes setup easy; after that, you’ll be able to check in whenever, wherever. It’s $4.99 at the Apple App Store.
"Did I lock the front door?" It’s crossed all of our minds at one point or another. With the Lockitron system, you’ll be able to look that up on your phone — and lock or unlock your door without having to turn around and head home. Lockitron consists of a Wi-Fi-enabled gadget that fits over your deadbolt and an app that contains two simple buttons: "lock" and "unlock". You can enable access for family members and loved ones or receive push notifications if someone unlocks the front door with a key. Installation is easy and unobtrusive — even renters can use the system without wreaking any havoc on their door. The next batch of Lockitrons will ship in May; to order one for $179, head to lockitron.com/preorder.
360° Fisheye HD 2 Megapixel Network Camera
Skip the multiple-camera setup: D-Link’s 360° Fisheye HD 2 Megapixel Network Camera has a fisheye lens that offers a full-circle view of an entire room, without distortion or blind spots. You can mount it on a wall or ceiling, or just pop it onto a table. It’s Wi-Fi enabled and can be monitored with Android or iOS devices over D-Link’s mydlink platform. In case you’re looking to touch base with whoever’s at home, there’s a mic and a speaker for two-way communication. Pick one up for $299.99 at futureshop.ca.
Brinno’s knocking sensor
Want to know who’s been on your doorstep? Brinno’s knocking sensor was created as an accessory for the company’s peephole viewer camera. The sensor detects vibrations from the knock and activates the camera automatically, so even if you’re not at home, you’ll know who stopped by. Also applicable for Grinches and/or Scrooges who want to avoid holiday well-wishers. Canadian distribution isn’t widespread, but Brinno’s peephole camera and the knocking sensor can be found on ebay.ca.