Blink Outdoor Camera Review: The Best Outdoor Security Camera
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Amazon bought Blink in December 2017 to enter the smart home security market. Upon its acquisition, Amazon added a wide array of products to its brand lineup.
The Blink Outdoor camera is among its line of smart home security products. It has a small and sleek design that is easy to handle and hard to spot. This is an ideal combination for security.
This little camera has impressive video quality. We dive into its other fantastic qualities and walk you through the whole product, from unpackaging to installation and use below.
Unpackaging Your Blink Outdoor Camera
Once you get your Blink Outdoor Camera, it is time to commence the unboxing, which is, arguably, one of the best parts of any new tech item.
You can buy the Blink Outdoor Camera as a single or in sets of two, three, or five.
Before selecting the set for you, you should determine the amount of square footage and which areas of your home you want to monitor. Remember, more cameras, more discounts overall.
What Comes With the Blink Outdoor Camera
Amazon makes sure you have everything you need when purchasing a Blink Outdoor Camera.
When you finally get to the unboxing, you will find the following inside the Blink Outdoor Camera box:
- Sync module
- Batteries (AA)
- A mount
- A camera
- Adapter/Screwdriver combo unit
- Sync module power block and cord
- Installation instructions
- User guide
You should open the box by removing the plastic film around it first. Then you need to cut into each sticker tab on the bottom and top of the packaging.
Once the tabs are released, simply slide the sleeve upward. You will gain access to the box where all of the camera components are nesting.
Installing the Blink Outdoor Camera
Blink has made it easy for new users to set up and install their outdoor security cameras right out of the box.
If you have never set up a home security camera, then this camera is a simple and easy introduction.
The very first thing you should do is download the Blink Security app on your smartphone. Login and make an account.
Set Up the Sync Module First
It is important to set up the Sync Module first. This will make it so each camera talks to the app appropriately if a motion event triggers. It also stores the cloud footage.
The Sync Module is easy to set up if you follow these steps:
- Launch the app and log in
- Tap the + button on the top right of the home screen
- Scan the QR code from the Blink Camera packaging and press ok
- Create a new system, give it a name, and press done
- The next page will feature a green and blue dot. Once the blue dot blinks and the green dot is steady, tap Discover Device.
- Grab out the Sync Module and enter the serial number. Then select Join.
- Add your WiFi network (ensure it is 2.4 GHz)
- Tap Done
Once the Sync Module is completely installed, you can go ahead and begin the installation of the cameras. They now have their hub to talk to and will work efficiently and as designed.’
Installing a Blink Camera
Adding a Blink Camera is extremely simple. If this is your first time adding one because you have a new system, follow these quick and easy steps for success:
- Tap the + button at the top right of the screen after launching the Blink app
- Select the wireless camera type you want to connect
- Scan the QR code on the camera
- Complete the onboarding/setup on-screen instructions
- Tap done
- Mount the camera outdoors
The camera is now set up and ready for use. During setup, you likely noticed that it goes through a calibration process and suggests tips for angling.
This is helpful because if the camera is constantly angled toward animals, cars, or the sun, it will not function properly. This could result in motion notifications every few minutes.
Once that is all set up, consider pairing it with an Echo Show.
Blink Outdoor Camera Features: The Good and the Bad
The Blink Outdoor camera is full of optimal features for home security experts and enthusiasts., There is a lot the camera does right, but there are some less helpful features too.
Below we go into detail about the good and the bad to help you make a more informed decision when buying your smart home security device.
As we said earlier, the Blink Outdoor Camera has many good qualities. These good qualities outshine the ‘bad’ qualities, which makes the device extremely popular.
The best qualities this camera has are:
- Batteries that last for two years
- 1080p HD video
- Motion detection
- Two-way audio
- Privacy zones
- Alexa integration
- Local storage
Each of these qualities provides Blink with a competitive edge. This security camera is a robust option with many options its more expensive counterparts lack.
Blink Outdoor Camera Batteries
The Blink Outdoor Camera comes with a set of 2 AA batteries per camera. These batteries are Energizer’s ultimate-performance lithium-ion batteries.
These batteries are high-quality and long-lasting. They are known to stand up to cold and inclement weather without losing charge.
These batteries will last at least two years before the user needs to change them. Once the battery begins to die, the user will get an alert on their app so that they can change them.
HD Video Resolution
Although the Blink Outdoor Camera looks tiny, it has high-quality HD resolution regarding the video. Its clear 1080p video can see anything within a 110-degree viewing angle.
If you think the 110-degree viewing angle is too narrow, don’t fret. You can use your phone to zoom in to see something happening a little farther away or closer to home.
This makes it so you can see every small mammal or person walking around at any time. This amps up your security and your peace of mind.
The Blink Outdoor Camera also comes with motion detection capabilities. This means it is not just a static camera; it can sense when something is moving around outside and react.
The motion detection can be adjusted within the Blink settings. If the sensitivity is too high, it will pick up perceived motion, for example, the wind, a squirrel, or raindrops.
While some think this is greater due to the extra security it provides, it can be frustrating if your phone chimes an alarm every few minutes because of a stray leaf.
Once you fine-tune your settings, all the frustration melts away, and you will begin to get notifications of events that matter. Waiting for dor a package? Blink will tell you when it arrives.
If you are more introverted and do not like to interact with visitors at your home, Blink has incorporated a solution. Their outdoor cameras all have two-way audio.
This means that the user who owns the camera can speak to the person outside looking at the camera and vice versa.
This is also a great function if you travel or work away from home., If you have a visitor, you can speak with them through the camera to inform them to return later.
Keep it Private
Blink has recently introduced privacy zones for its camera. This was in response to a vulnerability where outside users could get into the cameras and view the footage.
These privacy zones make it so that a user can select and create them and choose how much space a person can see at any given time.
This is great if you live in an area where homes are close-knit.
If you have an outdoor camera pointed at the back of the house, it may have too wide of an angle and look at your neighbor’s house.
When this happens, you can implement a privacy zone. This will prevent the camera from recording that area, granting the other party privacy.
Voice Assistant Compatibility
Smart homes often come with smart voice assistants. This is no different for the Blkink Outdoor camera. It is Amazon Alexa compatible which only amplifies its features and abilities.
Owners who use Alexa in their home can ask the Blink camera to pull up the last video, playback the last motion, or arm or disarm the camera.
This is convenient for those with a busy lifestyle or who always have their hands full working on the house. Users just simply need to ask, and a result is provided.
One of Blink’s biggest features is the ability to add local storage. Not many home security cameras of this capability.
Instead of simply storing it in a cloud for small spurts of time and deleting them, the expandable external storage will provide a place for notifications and alerts to store.
Local storage can be bypassed for those who prefer the process to be automated, and a cloud storage plan can be purchased.
Some of the best local storage options for the Blink Outdoor Security camera are:
These USB drives are highly rated because they are fast, store data securely, and offer enough storage for multiple video snippets.
The Bad (Or Not So Good)
So although there are disadvantages with the Blink Outdoor Camera system, they aren’t detrimental. Think of them as small inconveniences.
These small inconveniences occur with other popular outdoor security camera brands, too, so Blink isn’t alone while they struggle to perfect their device.
The least favorite features of the Blink Outdoor Camera are:
- Cloud storage isn’t free
- The viewing angle is narrow
- The continue button
- Poor night vision
Again, these features are great for many things; they are just not executed as well as they could be. Below is an overview of each one.
Cloud Storage With Blink Outdoor Camera
Blink cameras do not offer free cloud storage. This means a user must either subscribe and pay for a plan or install local storage.
There are different tiers for cloud storage subscriptions with Blink. These tiers are:
So what is included in each of the Blink Camera’s cloud storage?
Blink Camera Cloud Storage
The free version does not allow video sharing, recording, or discounts on future Blink products.
The basic version will cost $30 a year. It includes video recording, 60 days of rolling cloud storage, and support for one Blink camera.
The Plus subscription is the best option for anyone with more than one Blink camera. This plan will cost $100 for the year.
It supports unlimited cameras, allows video recording, and has 60-day video clip retention.
Additionally, its warranty is extended to the total length of the subscription. Some people will see this as a positive, while others want more bang for their buck.
Narrow Viewing Angle
The Blink Outdoor camera has a 110-degree viewing angle. This is significantly more narrow than its competitors. Many smart security cameras have a 140-150 degree viewing angle.
With this narrow viewing angle, some parts of the viewing will be cut out, for example, the porch or a part of a walking path.
This angle can be viewed from a different point of view through the app. It allows the user to zoom in and out to help improve the angle.
The Blink Outdoor camera only allows the user to stream live for about 5 minutes. During this time, it will ask incessantly if you want to continue the live stream.
This is where the continue button becomes a bane instead of a boon. It constantly asks you and interrupts the feed, so you must click continue many times during the stream.
Many users find this annoying. There is nothing you can do to toggle it off, either.
Lackluster Night Vision
Although the Blink Outdoor camera has night vision incorporated into its design, it is not executed well.
The camera only comes with one infrared sensor, likely the root cause of the poor night vision.
So instead of opening the app to see who is at your home at night with good, clear night vision, you will see glowing people-shaped lights instead.
You can adjust the location of the camera and its video settings to try to help improve the quality, but it’s tough to crack.
Using the Blink Home App
The Blink Home App is the hub that will keep tabs on your cameras and other Blink devices.
This app can also help you adjust settings and review cloud-stored video recordings for up to 60 days.
The app is available on the Google Play Store and Apple Store.
The app itself is user-friendly and easy to use. The interface is clean and well-labeled for easy navigation. It is a great app to support a great smart home system.
Is the Blink Outdoor Camera Worth it?
The Blink Outdoor camera is worth the investment. This affordable home security camera allows users to keep tabs on the outside of their homes.
Whether they want to add additional security, keep an eye on a pool, or see when deliveries occur, this camera is the right choice.
It is easy to install and set up and has many features to adjust the notifications, view, and recording outcome to a user’s specific preference.
If you are looking for a smart and durable outdoor security camera, opt for this one. It will not disappoint.