Google Nest Cam review (Indoor, Wired): The best Nest yet


This is the Nest Cam (indoor, wired) in sand with the maple wood base.

Molly Price / CNET

Nest Cams debuted in 2015, the year after Nest bought DropCam and was then bought by google. Since then we have seen several models of smart home security cameras, including the now discontinued Indoor Nest Cam IQ and External IQ, which introduced facial recognition as a valuable feature for your home.


  • Attractive design
  • Cheapest Nest Cam Yet
  • Free smart alerts

Do not like

  • Brief history of the video clip
  • Familiar faces are not free

This brings us to the latest model on sale today, the Nest Cam (indoor, wired). This “hardwired” designation differentiates it from the recently released version. Nest Cam (battery operated), a heavier model designed for indoor or outdoor use. The Nest Cam (indoor, wired) is entirely an indoor cat.

At $ 100, it’s the most affordable camera Nest ever made. He is also the smartest. With machine learning on the device for specific object recognition, sound recognition, and free video history, there’s a lot to like. The price is steep and other competitors offer similar smarts for less, but Nest’s camera is well designed, well programmed, and fully integrated with the Google Home app.


Design was a priority for Google with this new camera. Google often puts a little extra aesthetic effort into its smart home products, but the Nest Cam (indoor, wired) looks especially good as it rolls out.

It comes in four colors and the light pink (ok very good, “Sand”) unit I tested is the single color available with an attractive maple wood base. Other colors include linen, snow, and fog, each with matching bases. I wish Google had taken a look at customization and offered interchangeable cameras and bases for customers, much like the watch faces and straps on smartwatches.


Here’s the full tilt range of the Nest Cam (indoor, wired).

Molly Price / CNET

The mount and camera are one piece, so you can’t detach them. The base has an integrated mounting plate and screws and anchors are included if you want to mount your camera to a wall or solid surface. The camera itself can tilt forwards and backwards thanks to a small metal arm that connects it to the mount.

Overall the design is simple and clean, but a little more articulation would have been nice. You cannot turn the camera right or left or telescope your arm to enlarge it. There is an option in the camera app settings to rotate the video stream 180 ° in case you need to mount your camera spiderman style I guess.


The Nest Cam (indoor, wired) is a nice package for sure. But there are also brains here. Thanks to the new machine learning chip on the Google device, the new range of Nest Cams (Nest Doorbell, Floodlight, wired and battery models) includes the latest software features such as object identification, activity and display and support of the Google Home app.

Nest Cam (wired) can tell the difference between people, animals, vehicles and generic movements. These notifications are free with your camera, as is 3 hours of event history. There were a few questions about this when we reviewed the Nest Cam (battery) and the new Nest doorbellSo let me be clear. You can consult all the events that have occurred in the last three hours for free. Once the event is four hours old, it is deleted from your history. If the dog walks through the living room at 1:00 p.m., you will be able to see this clip until 4:00 p.m. After that, it is no longer accessible.

It is a fairly small window of time to review the images. For example, if something happens overnight, you won’t be able to review it. You won’t know it at all. That’s the selling point of the Nest Aware subscription.

Subscribe to Nest Aware for $ 6 per month and you’ll get familiar face detection and audible alerts (smoke detector, broken glass, and carbon monoxide detector), the ability to call 911 from anywhere the Google Home app and 30 days of video event history. Upgrade to Nest Aware Plus for $ 12 a month and you’ll get all of these options, plus 60 days of video history and 10 days of 24/7 video recording.

Camera specs for the Nest Cam (indoor, wired) are decent, but not particularly impressive in the larger category. You will get 1080p video with HDR and night vision. Two-way conversation is integrated as well as a 6x digital zoom and a 135 ° field of view. This is 5 ° more than the Wyze Cam V3 and 5 ° less than the Ring Indoor cam.

nestcam screenshots

Nest Cam notifications for specific things and people work well.

Screenshots by Molly Price / CNET

My experience with the Nest Cam (indoor, wired) has been polished and easy. The setup was quick and I didn’t encounter any quirks while testing. The feed was crisp and the sound was surprisingly good. I could hear noises all over my house, not just in the room I was watching. The notifications arrived in seconds on my Android smartphone, and calling up the camera feed on a Google smart screen worked as expected.

Video footage will be encrypted while in transit from these video devices and at rest on Nest servers and all processing (such as distinguishing between packages, people, vehicles and animals, or processing facial biometrics) will take place. on the devices themselves, which means footage doesn’t need to be sent to the cloud other than for storage.

Encryption at these vulnerable points of transit and rest in the chain helps prevent unauthorized access to your data by potential hackers and spy eyes. While Ring offers deeper end-to-end video encryption, it is only on wired devices and is something users should opt for. Ring, of course, comes with its own set of confidentiality issues.


If you’re looking for a smart home camera that’s compatible with Google, the Wyze Cam V3 still delivers the most intelligence per dollar. The Wyze Cam V3 works with Google Assistant for viewing on Nest Hub and Nest Hub Max. It’s much cheaper at $ 35 and offers nearly identical camera specs and features. It is also strong enough for outdoor use.

You get 14 days of 12-second video clips for free. There is a five minute cool down between clips. Add the Wyze Cam Plus subscription for $ 2 / month and you’ll get unlimited video length, no cool-down, person, pet, package, and vehicle detection, with facial recognition coming soon.

What Wyze Cam can’t offer is viewing in the Google Home app. To view your camera on your mobile device, you will need the Wyze app. The Nest Cam (indoor, wired) can be accessed directly in the Home app. Honestly, this is the only pro I can pull together to decide which of these two Google-enabled devices to choose.

Yes. The Nest Cam (indoor, wired) is the best model we tested from Nest. That doesn’t mean it’s the best fit for your smart home. If you’re on a budget, sometimes use Alexa, or want more cloud video storage for free, Wyze and Blink Mini are better options.

If you’re looking for a Google-centric smart home security camera that offers quality build, attractive design, and cutting-edge intelligence, the Nest Cam (indoor, wired) is the answer. If you’re also willing to pay extra for features like familiar faces or Nest Aware’s monitoring capabilities, you’ll have a user experience that ticks all the boxes and then some.

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