Security cameras are surging in popularity thanks in part to prices quickly dropping. A Blink floodlight camera is one example of a quick and easy solution to protect your home, or so it appears. Many unsuspecting homeowners do not realize the major flaws in these wireless cameras until it is too late.
Not only are there better options, but a Blink Floodlight Camera poses security and privacy concerns. Worst of all, you have to pay a monthly subscription fee to access the saved videos. While the low price is enticing, it may not be enough to overcome some of the flaws. Keep reading as we explore the reasons why you should avoid a Blink Floodlight camera today.
Some Background on Floodlight Cameras
Floodlight cameras have been around for several years now, and they are only getting more popular as technology continues to improve. In essence, a floodlight camera is a very simple device. It has an outdoor security camera mounted beneath an LED floodlight.
The camera still has night vision capabilities, but the attached light makes it much easier to see what is going on late at night. Devices like Blink’s Floodlight Camera use a subscription model, and the recorded footage is saved in the cloud. Amazon purchased Blink in 2017 and a year later purchased competitor Ring to become a dominant force in the smart home market.
Reasons to Avoid a Blink Floodlight Camera
A Blink Floodlight Camera may seem like the perfect choice to add some extra security around your home. While it is undoubtedly convenient, there are numerous reasons to avoid a Blink Floodlight Camera. Check out the reasons listed below and avoid being lured in by the camera’s low price.
Costly Subscription Model
The most important thing to know about Blink cameras is the subscription model for recording data. Blink cameras do not have internal memory, so they must connect to the internet. In addition, you will have to pay for a monthly subscription at either $3 for one device or $10 for unlimited devices. Without a subscription, you can only watch a live stream and get alerts on your phone.
If someone tries to break into your home, you will have no pictures or videos to share. A new option for the Blink Floodlight Camera is the Blink Add-On Sync Module 2, which lets you record data locally to a flash drive. However, you are limited to a 256GB flash drive. Using the camera without a subscription means you will lose out on many benefits.
Does Not Integrate With Other Smart Devices
With so many advancements in smart technology, it is easy to believe there is more integration between devices. But that is not the case, especially for Blink devices. In fact, most smart cameras are incompatible with devices outside of that brand. This means you cannot view the camera feed through any other app or smart interface.
For instance, Amazon owns both Ring and Blink, but the apps are not cross-compatible. Therefore, you would need a separate subscription for Blink even if you already pay for Ring. You also cannot combine “scenes” like you can with Z-Wave devices. It is best to think about buying a Blink camera as if buying into a product ecosystem.
Limited Wiring Options
Blink makes two different versions of its floodlight camera. The first is a hardwired camera that replaces a conventional floodlight mounted to your home. The other is a wireless option that is good for sheds and areas that do not have a power source since it runs on a battery pack. The problem is that you cannot easily switch between these different power options.
The battery-operated model relies on four D-Cell batteries for the light and two AA-Cell batteries for the camera. Blink touts that these can last up to two years, but that is with little use. Since these cameras require network connectivity, the hardwired model has no battery backup. The lack of flexibility starkly contrasts other devices like smart doorbells that often support hardwired and battery-powered configurations.
You Can’t Replace the Bulbs
A growing problem with residential lights is that it is impossible to change the bulbs. The Blink Floodlight Camera is no exception, as it uses integrated LEDs. The benefit is that they are significantly more efficient than halogen or incandescent bulbs but also add to a growing E-waste problem.
Not only are the bulbs not replaceable, but Blink currently does not sell the bulb modules. This means you must replace the entire assembly if just one light panel fails. The problem exists on both the hardwired and wireless versions, as well as on sister brand Ring’s products. Therefore, you are better off leaving your existing floodlight and adding a camera nearby.
Unlike a traditional security camera system, the Blink Floodlight Camera only records when motion activates it. Conventional camera systems record video on a loop and overwrite the data once the storage drive is full. Since Blink saves data to the cloud, it minimizes the amount of storage required by only saving key moments.
This becomes a reason to avoid the camera because there is an inherent risk that the camera will not start recording. Remember that you can manually start a recording from the Blink app, but only while watching a live view. Another recording limitation is that a Blink Floodlight Camera cannot record if you lose internet or power.
Poor Video Quality
An ongoing complaint about Blink cameras is the video quality, and that alone is a good reason to avoid purchasing one. To start with, Blink is considered the lower-end alternative to Ring, which also has many complaints about quality. In fact, many wired security systems have poor video quality and reliability issues.
Unfortunately, Blink has done little over the years to improve the quality of its newer cameras. Close-up shots are sufficient, but it is difficult to make out faces that are more than 15-20 feet away. In comparison, the newer Ring cameras offer better video quality. It is worth noting that night vision is also poor, but that isn’t really an issue since the floodlight illuminates the area nicely.
Another valid reason to avoid a Blink Floodlight Camera is privacy concerns with the video footage. Some people do not like the idea that Amazon has access to video around their homes. This may or may not be a concern for you, but it is worth remembering that the video data is stored on Amazon’s servers. In addition, Blink touts that the communication signal is encrypted, but the stored data is not encrypted.
Hackers could also gain access to your login information and access your video footage from your own account. Finally, Amazon has been known to turn over security camera footage to law enforcement without a warrant or your knowledge. If you do purchase a Blink Floodlight Camera, you should carefully consider its placement for privacy.
You Have Spotty WiFi
The final reason that you should avoid a Blink Floodlight Camera has a lot more to do with your home’s wireless network than it does with the camera. Blink cameras require an excellent network connection, even if you are saving data locally. This may be difficult if you have a large house or thick exterior walls.
Before purchasing, you should test the internet signal in the area you plan to mount the light. If it is weak, you will want to consider moving your router or adding an access point. However, this may start a cat-and-mouse game as you try to find the best location for the router since other devices may end up out of range.
Alternatives to the Blink Floodlight Camera
As you’ve seen, many reasons exist to avoid a Blink Floodlight Camera. Unfortunately, there isn’t one perfect alternative since most competitors have similar issues. You should really consider purchasing a larger security system that uses wired cameras. But if you just need one or two cameras, then these are some of the best options we’ve found.
Ring Floodlight Camera
The first alternative is the Ring Floodlight Camera, which is best for those who already have a Ring subscription. This camera is a little bulkier and has a higher price tag. Additionally, Ring offers a monitored security plan, but they do not have a local storage add-on. However, the Ring Floodlight Camera offers better video quality with more customizability.
Next up is the Reolink Duo, which has a wider range of features compared to the Blink Floodlight Camera. While it is a little more expensive, the Reolink Duo has dual 4K lenses to capture a full 180-degree field of view. You also get more flexibility with connectivity as it works with other smart devices such as Google’s Nest. Additionally, it supports remote access and local recording to an internal SD card or an NVR.
Wyze Cam Floodlight
- It comes with an SD card slot for local video recording
- 270 degrees of customizable motion detection
- Identify and record motion
- Two super bright, adjustable LEDs
Finally, the Wyze Cam Floodlight is similar to the Ring and Blink systems, with annoyances like integrated LEDs. However, it features better video quality and a much larger motion sensor. The Wyze Cam Floodlight is a wired light that also has a port to connect an extra camera for a larger field of view. In addition to a subscription plan, there is an SD card slot for local video recording.
Reasons You May Still Want to Purchase a Blink Floodlight Camera
Although numerous reasons exist to avoid a Blink Floodlight Camera, it may still be an option in certain circumstances. For instance, if you already have Blink devices, then you should consider it as an add-on. You are already paying for the subscription plan, so there is no reason to pay for an additional plan somewhere else.
Another time when you may want to consider the Blink Floodlight Camera is if you get a really good deal. Blink cameras have an MSRP in line with other manufacturers. However, they are often on sale for half-off during major sales events. If you want an affordable outdoor camera, then the Blink Floodlight Camera will suffice, especially when using local video storage.
As you’ve seen, there are many reasons to avoid the Blink Floodlight Camera. Unfortunately, most competitor devices suffer from the same problems. Before jumping in with a Blink camera, check out other camera options. Also, don’t forget to make sure your WiFi signal is strong enough to support the new camera.
|Blink Floodlight Camera Alternatives Ranked|
|1. Ring Floodlight Camera|
|2. Reolink Duo|
|3. Wyze Cam Floodlight|
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