I travel a lot and use a webcam to keep in touch with family and friends in other states and countries. One of my friends has a Nest camera and wanted to know if they could use it as a webcam, so I went online to find the answer for my friend. 

Can Nest Cameras Be Used as a Webcam? Nest Cameras cannot be used as fully- functioning webcams. However, a Nest camera’s live stream can be shared with others online using a link or embedded in a webpage.

There are several ways to share your Nest camera’s video stream with others through the Google Home app or Nest app and online. Knowing all of the features and uses of Nest cameras can ensure you get the most out of your smart camera. 

Nest Cameras Cannot be Used as Webcams

Most webcams are easily integrated with various apps and programs such as Skype and Zoom. While Nest cameras cannot be used in this way, they do have some capabilities similar to webcams such as embedding the camera’s live stream on a webpage. 

Live Stream Sharing Options

There are two options to share your Nest Cam’s video stream with others. 

  1. Share publicly: This option allows anyone with the link to your webcam to view its live stream anytime the camera is on. Keep in mind that with public sharing, you have no control over who is watching your camera stream. Anyone can view and share it. If you want to embed your camera’s stream on a webpage, you must share the camera publicly.
  1. Share with password: This option allows you to control exactly who can view your camera’s stream. When others click on the shared link, they will be required to enter a password that you created. Up to ten people can view a password-protected live stream at one time, and you can change the password anytime. 

How to Share a Live Stream 

You cannot share your camera’s live stream from a phone or tablet. You must use your Nest account on a computer using the steps below. 

  1. Sign in to your Nest account on a computer.
  2. Select the camera you want to share.
  3. Click on the Settings icon in the top-right corner. 
  4. Click on Camera Sharing. 
  5. Select the sharing option you want and click on Argee & Share.
  6. If you have chosen to share with a password, you will be prompted to create a password at this time. 
  7. Copy the link and share it with others as you wish.

You can stop sharing your camera’s live stream anytime by going to Camera Sharing in Settings and clicking on “Stop sharing camera”. 

Sharing Nest Camera Access 

If you want family or other housemates to have more access to using your Nest camera than just viewing the live stream, you can share full access to your account with them through the Google Home or Nest app. 

If you are still using the Nest app to access your camera, you can grant up to nine people full access to your account. Keep in mind that sharing access in this way gives shared users access to all other devices connected to your account and the ability to change your device settings.

Follow these steps to give someone full access through the Nest app:

  1. Select the Settings icon.
  2. Select Family.
  3. Select Add a person.
  4. Enter the person’s name and click Continue.
  5. Enter the person’s email address.
  6. Tap Send.

To grant full access to others using the Google Home app , you will need to add them to your Google account as a “home member.” You can add up to five home members. Use this link to learn how to add and manage home members. 

Sharing Recorded Video 

You can create customizable video clips from a Nest camera’s recorded videos and share them on social media or elsewhere with a link.

On a phone or tablet, you can download and share video clips of up to 2.5 minutes. On a computer, you can share video clips of up to one hour and create time lapses. 

This webpage has detailed directions to help you download and share recorded videos using a phone, tablet, or computer. 

Nest Camera Compatibility

Nest cameras used to have more possible uses with integration through IFTTT. For example, you could set your living room lights to turn on when your Nest Cam sensed motion. However, Google removed IFTTT compatibility in 2019 to encourage Nest owners to use more Google devices. 

If you previously used IFTTT to connect your Nest Cam with other devices, check out this article for information on how to continue using your IFTTT applets with Nest devices. Unfortunately, if you did not have IFTTT previously set up with Nest devices before August 2019, it is not available. 

Nest cameras are somewhat compatible with Google Home and Amazon Alexa smart home assistants. If you have a Google Home or Alexa enabled device with a screen, you can say “[wake word], show the [camera name]” to view your camera’s live stream.