Do You Need The Internet For Wireless Security Cameras?

Wireless security cameras are taking over the world- or so it can sometimes seem.

But because they are so popular, there are lots of questions that people have about them.

Most of the questions that we asked are based around how to fix problems and so a frequent question about wireless security cameras is whether they can still work if they lose connection.

I answer that question below together with lots of other related questions.

But first, does your wireless security camera become as useful as a chocolate teapot if it loses connection to the Internet?

Can wireless security cameras work without the Internet?

Yes, wireless security cameras will still work (but in a limited way) without a connection to the Internet.

The cameras will still be able to record footage but they will not be able to be:

*Remotely accessed

*Connect for Live Streaming

*Use two way talk

*Send notifications for motion alerts

*Upload footage to cloud storage

Do wired security cameras require the Internet to work?

It is the same as for wireless cameras. 

In order for a wired security camera to perform fully, of course they need to be connected to the Internet.

But to perform their basic function of recording footage, then these cameras do not need to be connected to the Internet.

Perhaps you could argue that a camera that is connected to the Internet via a wire is much less likely to lose connection. 

What is the difference between a wired and a wireless security camera?

Wired security cameras have either a power cable (for power) and/ or an Ethernet cable to provide a connection to the Internet.

Wireless security cameras connect to the Internet wirelessly and they are battery powered- they don’t require a power cable to be connected constantly. 

As the market develops for home security, most security cameras connect wirelessly to the Internet- even if they need to be plugged into a power source. 

Yet in specialist business settings, security cameras that use Ethernet cables are still preferred. 

These cameras are called PoE (power over Ethernet) and the Ethernet cable provides the camera with a connection to the Internet and a source of power. 

How do wireless cameras connect to the Internet?

A wireless security camera connects to the Internet via a home or businesses Wi-Fi network. 

Within each of these cameras is a Wi-Fi card similar to the cards that are in your laptop, smartphone or games console.

The cards scan the local area for active W-Fi networks, which they can connect to after a password have been entered.

The process of connecting a wireless security camera to a Wi-Fi network is done via a free app that most of the top security cameras have. 

Talk about how each wireless camera has a wi-fi card in it that enables it to connect to home wi-fi networks.

Most of these cameras will connect to the most common speed of Wi-Fi found in American homes, which is 2.4 Ghz. 

Some of the more high end cameras will connect to the faster type of Wi-Fi, which is 5 Ghz. 

Can wireless cameras connect to the Internet using a phone’s hotspot? 

Yes. A wireless security camera that can connect to your phone’s hotspot in order to connect to the Internet.

A phone’s hotspot is when we turn our phone into a router so that other devices can connect to it in order to access the Internet.

This function will be available in most modern smart phones either Android or Apple.

And it is an incredibly useful function to have but it does then limit what you can do with your phone!

On that basis you might want to only connect your Wi-Fi security camera to your phone’s hotspot occasionally or if you need to do this regularly, you might consider getting a cellular or 4G security camera.

but if you are going to connect Before you connect, there are a couple of things to bear in mind. Firstly, the speed of the Internet connection that is provided by your phone will not be as fast as the connection that your home wi-fi can provide.

That is unless you are using a smart phone on a 5G network.

Secondly, just be aware of exceeding your phone’s data plan. If your camera is streaming lots of video, your data will be used very quickly.

Thirdly, make sure that before you connect your Wi-Fi camera to your phone, your phone has got a decent connection to its network.

You can easily test this out by going to your favorite page on the Internet and seeing how fast it loads- just make sure that you disconnect your phone from any other Wi-Fi networks first.

How to turn your Android phone into a mobile hotspot

So, in order to establish a connection between a wireless camera and android phone, we need to use the hotspot feature present in the wi- fi sharing settings of the smartphone. J

All the androids have a built-in feature of mobile hotspot including the latest version of Android is 9 (Pie.). Following steps can be used to turn your android phone into a hotspot. 

  1. Check with your mobile data 
  2. Find and open the Settings menu.
  3. Select “More” in the “Wireless & networks” section
  4. Select the “Tethering and portable hotspot” menu. 
  5. Select the “Set up Wi-Fi hotspot” option to modify your default settings.
  6. Press the “Portable Wi-Fi hotspot” box to start the hotspot
  7. Link to the hotspot on separate device. 
  8. Press the “Data usage” option in the Wireless & Networks section of the Settings menu to observe your data usage.

How to turn your iPhone into a hotspot

The latest version of iOS is 12.4 and all the older versions have the Wi-Fi hotspot feature in them. The following steps can help you turn on your hotspot feature available in your iPhone:

  1. The first step is to open the settings application that is located within the iPhone apps. 
  2. Select “Mobile Data”
  3. Press “Personal hotspot” button in the menu and wait till it turns green. 
  4. Hotspot feature needs your WIFI or Bluetooth in “on” state, if not, the app will ask you to switch on them.
  5. Select the “WIFI-password” option within the menu and choose an appropriate password.
  6. Now switch on your device which you wish to get connected to the hotspot from your iPhone. The important thing here is that only Apple-made devices can be connected to it.
  7. Choose the WIFI hotspot from your apple device and insert the selected password and you can use the internet seamlessly.