While monitoring the premises of your home used to just be a matter of finding a closed-circuit monitoring system that fits your needs, today’s smart home security is a different animal. With a bunch of options flooding the market, it can be overwhelming to know which smart camera works with which software. Here, we are going to look at the Canary cameras and their compatibility with various smart home ecosystems, apps, and devices.
The Canary camera is compatible with both Amazon Alexa and Google Home, but it is not compatible with Apple’s HomeKit or Amazon’s Ring devices. However, the camera can only live-stream to Alexa, not Google Home.
To better understand how the Canary camera will fit into your smart home, we’ll first take a look at what it can do before diving into the pros and cons of syncing up your camera with the various smart home apps currently available.
What Can a Canary Camera Do?
The Canary camera is essentially a smart security camera for your home. By using the Canary app, you can watch a live stream of what the camera is seeing at any time in HD. Currently, Canary offers three models: the Canary Pro, the Canary View, and the Canary Flex.
With each device, there are four major modes that the Canary cameras make use of: away mode, home mode, night mode, and private mode (Source: Canary). When you enter and leave your home, Canary automatically engages a different mode to fit the circumstances.
- During away mode, Canary monitors for activities and sends notifications.
- Home mode is engaged while you’re at home, disarming the camera from monitoring.
- Night mode can be scheduled to monitor for activity and send you notifications while you’re asleep.
- Finally, private mode disables Canary’s camera and microphone completely.
The Canary camera also has a few other features. It can monitor air quality, temperature, and humidity, and you can set it to send alerts to your phone should anything become abnormal.
In the event of an emergency or unwelcome intruder, you can activate a 90-decibel siren or connect with the local police right from your Canary app. This allows you to give your property the best chance of being protected, and whatever is captured by the Canary camera is stored on your timeline, which you can access at any time.
What is the Canary Camera Compatible with?
The following table shows a list of ecosystems and apps that the Canary camera currently works with:
|Google Home Assistant||Yes|
Canary Camera Compatibility with Alexa
Having these features is nice, but what sweetens the pot is connecting your Canary camera to a smart home app. With Alexa integration, you can ask your Alexa device (such as the Echo Show, Echo Spot, Fire TV, and Fire TV Stick (2nd generation)) to stream live video from the Canary cameras.
The compatibility is available in the US, UK, and Germany for now, with plans to expand integration to other regions later this year (Source: Canary).
To get your Amazon Alexa connected to your Canary camera, follow these seven simple steps:
- Download and open the Amazon Alexa app.
- Navigate to Skills.
- Search for Canary.
- Tap to Enable.
- Sign in with your Canary credentials.
- Agree to share data with Amazon.
- Discover devices.
Once Canary is connected to Alexa, you’ll be able to say commands like, “Alexa, show the Front Door” just to see what your local mailman is up to.
Canary Camera Compatibility with Google Home
With Google Home, there are slightly different commands that can be used. With the Canary camera, you can ask the Canary to check the temperature and air quality at home as well as asking who is at your place.
It seems that the Canary camera is not quite yet able to live stream to Google devices, but you can still make use of Google Assistant to get the most out of the camera. There may also be future plans to integrate live streaming with Google Home devices like the Google Nest Hub.
To get your Google Home connected to your Canary Camera, follow these five steps:
- Download and open the Google Assistant app.
- Speak or type in “Talk to Canary.”
- Tap on Link.
- Sign in using your Canary credentials.
- Agree to share data with Google.
Once Canary is connected to Google Assistant or Google Home, you’ll be able to say commands like, “Hey Google, what’s the air quality like?”
Canary Camera Compatibility with Ring
If you’ve ever seen a smart doorbell, chances are you’ve come face to face with an Amazon Ring doorbell. Installed in many homes by people who want an added measure of security, the Ring allows homeowners to see whatever’s going on at their doorstep. In fact, it might be useful to pair the Canary camera up with a doorbell to see any blind spots.
However, currently, there is no direct compatibility between the Canary camera and Ring devices. One might be able to buy a separate hub to work as an in-between, but this is likely going to be more complicated than necessary to use the Canary camera.
Canary Camera Compatibility with HomeKit
Though Alexa and Google Home stand at the forefront of home automation, Apple’s HomeKit is slowly catching up.
Since you can use devices that you may already own (such as the Apple TV 3rd Gen, Apple TV 4K or 4th Gen, iPad with the latest OS, or a HomePod Smart Speaker) as a “Home Hub” to control things like cameras, remote video streaming, and Automation, you won’t need to shell out any more money to automate your devices.
However, due to Apple’s late arrival to the game, it finds itself stranded in terms of options. The primary cameras on the market that are compatible with HomeKit include the Logitech Circle 2 and the D-Link Omna 180 Cam.
The list of compatible devices doesn’t go on much longer than this, unfortunately. Though Canary did have plans to launch a “Canary Plus” with HomeKit integration, they have confirmed that they no longer plan to do so.
There is one small integration with Canary (though it may have been since removed). If you own an Apple TV, you can download the Canary app to watch a live stream of your Canary camera on whatever monitor your Apple TV is connected to.
This may be sufficient if you have your Canary camera positioned in a place that you would like to monitor from the safety of your home. Still, you will not be able to check the live stream apart from wherever your Apple TV is placed.
Long story short: if you’re looking for Canary integration with HomeKit, you’re better off looking elsewhere.
The Bottom Line
There are many things to take into consideration when purchasing a Canary camera. When comparing it to other top brands such as Ring, the Canary camera holds its own and is a relatively well-integrated camera.
Given the ability to integrate your Canary with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant, you’ll be able to control your Canary camera from anywhere (as long as you have your phone with you). With features like monitoring air quality, you might even consider purchasing a smart air filter to connect to Alexa or Google Home.
But, if you’re a fan of either the HomeKit or Ring smart apps, you will be forced to look elsewhere for a smart camera, such as Night Owl.