Can the Cam only use data when motion is detected?

I sent a simple question to wyze support and cannot get a straight yes or no answer from them. I’m considering getting this surveillance cam, but, my ISP is Hughesnet Satellite. I have a data cap for each month. Can the cam be idle until it detects motion?..and thus, not be using any of my data until necessary. If so, I would be able to use it with my wifi, and Not drain my data.

Found this thread that implies your answer: How can I prevent ANY videos from being stored in the cloud?

If you view the camera feed from outside your local network, then you’ll be using significant data.

If you are not viewing the feed, you can have motion detection on and the camera will send a 12-second clip to the cloud at most every five minutes. This would not use a whole lot of data.

You can have an SD card in the camera to have it record locally without using any data. But you would need to view the SD card video from within your local network to avoid data usage.

Does that clarify it?

1 Like

Thanks for helping me sort this out. Is it correct that viewing the feed outside the network turns on the camera and drains my data, whereas viewing the 12 second clips from the cloud is simply streaming the video thru my cell carrier plan? And, if so, does it confirm that, in this type of usage, the cam is only being activated, and using data, when motion is detected? In this mode of use, do you receive notifications that there was a clip recorded due to detected motion? There’s not a general default setting whereby the cam turns on at intervals, even if there’s no motion detected…is there?

Well, the camera doesn’t turn on and off. It just doesn’t send any video stream out over the internet unless (1) it’s sending a 12 second clip to the cloud because it detected motion, or (2) you accessed the live stream remotely.

That said, there is some light internet use going on all the time for the camera’s heartbeat, etc.

Yes, you can get a push notification the a 12 second clip is generated.

Ok…getting clearer. Seems obvious then, for the least impact of data usage, I only rely on the notifications to check out recorded clips. In this scenario, would you estimate total data usage to be a couple hundred MBs a day? Or is there any more specific way to determine that?

And one more question; under these usage conditions, is the cloud storage free, without a monthly fee/plan?

Yes, 14 days of cloud storage is free.

I don’t really have an estimate on how much data usage it would be. Among other things, it depends on the frequency of motion being detected. It also depends on how much compression the algorithm can do, which is a function of the features and lighting of the scene being observed.

After the 14 days, do you know what a plan costs? Can I use my own iCloud storage location, rather than this company’s?

After 14 days, the videos disappear. You can, of course, save any locally that you need to retain. There is no paid option at this time. You cannot designate your own cloud storage location.

You can put a microSD card in the camera to have it record continuously, locally. That does not use any extra internet data, unless you view the SD card video from outside the network.

1 Like

Guess that’s a deal breaker for anyone without an unlimited data plan. 2 weeks, and done.

It really has nothing to do with data plan limits. I would think that if you don’t realize that there’s a clip you need to save by the time 2 weeks has past, you’re not going to go look for it later. The more serious limitation of the cloud storage is the 5 minute timeout. Wyze is considering a paid subscription to reduce or eliminate that. You can vote for it here:

@topotony, I looked into HughesNet and Exede when my wife and I were searching for a new home. After reading about them, we decided to find a home that had better ISP options available. I personally wouldn’t by any type of WiFi based camera to use with those services. I’m thinking a self-contained DVR system or something that works via a cell network instead would be more practical for you. Just my thoughts. I wish you luck finding something that works for you.

thanks Pirate…I agree that any extracurricular activity using my Hughesnet service would drain all my data allocation immediately. The ideal would be a system that activates with detected motion, and sends you a notification, along with a short clip of what it captured…using my existing iCloud storage.

1 Like

I have HughesNet as internet service. One thing that nobody actually mentioned that I can tell is when the cameras are on and detect motion they upload the 12 sec video. Uploading not downloading !! HughesNet has a cap on how many gigs you can Download a month not upload.Regardless I have a extremely hard time connecting to my cameras when away from home due to the fact that the ping time on the satellite service is so high about 500 to 800 at least. That’s enough not to connectivity to the cameras outside the network especially if they’re on high definition. Now if I turn down the quality to standard or 360p I can. The lower the better.I’m currently playing around with a local DSL internet service provider that’s at a whopping 1.5 megabits a second,Yes that is all I can get snice I’m so far in the woods.I must say with the DSL service at a megabit and a half I can connect to my cameras while they’re on high definition with no problems. Ping times on that is no higher than about 50ms at the worst times and once again no problem connected.