I’ve used a few wireless, always-on webcams in my day and I’ve found Dropcam to be the best. Suddenly, however, Dropcam just got better.
Dropcam cameras connect wirelessly to the Internet, allowing you to connect to them remotely and watch live audio and video from anywhere. They had a few basic apps available, including an iPhone-only app that offered very little in the way of usability on the iPad.
The new app, however, allows you to place up to four of your Dropcams on the same page. If you have more, you can simply swipe to move to another set of four. It also allows you to play back events on the camera with a simple draggable interface. The video is crisp and clean and looks great. It essentially turns the iPad into a fairly capable security camera system.
“It wasn’t easy to build,” said Greg Duffy, Dropcam CEO. “In fact, we even had to write our own video decoding framework for iPad.”
The quality is quite nice – the $149 Dropcam HD supports 720p streaming – and the app even includes a number of public Dropcams that display pet stores and beaches around the world. “We think it’s pretty game-changing, because we’re now the only ones in the space with realtime 720p video, multicam, and seamless DVR browsing all figured out on iPad,” said Duffy.
I rarely like to talk about app updates – usually they’re blips in the app store – but this one was pretty interesting. Now I can turn my Dropcams on myself and watch myself from all angles. Maybe I’ll make the feeds public.