Best Video Intercom Systems for 2020
There's nothing like a video intercom system to add convenience and safety at your front door or gate. You'll be able to see and hear who's at the front door without getting anywhere near it. And these days you don't even need to be home to see who is at your door.
There are different technologies you can use depending on your application and the image below sums them up.
Hybrid Video Intercom
A hybrid system is wired between the outdoor station and the indoor video monitor just like a standard wired video system. But it also has Wi-Fi capability so you can add tablet PCs and smartphones with an app. This gives you the best of both worlds. It has the fast reliable connection between the camera and monitor that a wired system gives you, plus you can still take calls no matter where you are as long as you have a data connection on your device.
Wi-Fi Video Intercom
There are a couple of types of Wi-Fi intercoms. The really low cost ones are called doorbell intercoms. Those doorbell units are not commercial quality but can be good for residential or light-commercial use. Then there are the commercial kind that can be used at security doors and gates and they include a keypad that can be used to enter codes to open a door or gate. This is what we call a Wi-Fi Video Intercom.
Wired Video Intercom
A wired intercom requires running wire between the monitor and camera, which can be expensive or impossible to do in some situations. However, once the cable is run then installation is very easy and you have an always reliable connection. One of the downsides is that you don't have any mobility on the monitor side so you always have to walk over to a monitor to answer a call.
Cell Phone Network Video Intercom
If you want some of the benefits of wireless video but your gate is too far away, you can use the AT&T or TMobile cell network to give you wireless benefits. It transmits video over a data connection for a low monthly fee. So no matter where you are, as long as you have an Internet connection on your phone, you can see and talk to visitors.
Wireless Video Intercom
A wireless video intercom does not need Wi-Fi to communicate but rather it just sends data back and forth between the door camera and the inside monitor. However, we have one that does that but you can also use Wi-Fi to extend range or to also connect with apps on smartphones or tablet PCs. It's sort of like the hybrid video intercom above but only the connection between the camera and inside monitor is wireless.
Doorbell Video Intercom
These are the lowest cost and most widely used systems that you'll see sold everywhere. These are light-duty units that connect to your home's Wi-Fi router and do all of there communication through your Wi-Fi router or over the Internet. They are very dependent on having a good Internet connection in your house.