You are here

I Spy Wi-Fi!

I Spy Wi-Fi
by Gary Woods

The latest craze in wireless networking better known as Wi-Fi is the ability to hookup Webcams allowing us to look in on all manner of things. These Wi-Fied cameras are being used as nanny-cams, security cameras, and are even keeping track of growing plants. You can tuck a Wi-Fi Webcam into any nook or cranny inside or outside the house and watch the video feed over the Internet. With prices ranging from $130 to $1,000 and up it's time to start checkin' things out!

The usual suspects in the Wireless Internet business are well represented with products from Linksys, D-Link and Panasonic. All products mentioned here are 802.11g models that can trigger video recording and/or e-mail alerts. Also, they all can record snapshots and video on a live or scheduled basis. Even thought they transmit wirelessly none of them run on batteries so you still need an outlet close by.

The least expensive model is the Linksys WVC54GC. The palm-sized $125 unit captures basic 320 by 240 pixel video with no audio. It comes with well designed software that supports multiple cameras in one window and has WPA support.

For those with deep pockets the D-Link DCS-6620G lists for $1000 but has a street price of about $825. It has 2 way audio, a 10X optical zoom, and support for remote control panning and tilting.

The Panasonic BB-HCM371A has a street price of $775 and also features 2 way audio, outdoor mounting and remote pan/tilt controls.

If you have any suggestions or questions for me please drop me a note at or see my column on the Internet at or call me at (805) 729-0910

Gary Woods is the Computer Trainer for the Santa Barbara Association of Realtors. You can hear Gary on the Radio at 1290 AM Monday 9-10 AM and he is a Broker/Associate at Home Realty & Investments, Inc