Home Security & Monitoring: A Great Disappointment

I originally had several Nest outdoor cams for my home security. It was nice because I could see all the cameras on my large wide-screen Windows 10 system. My desire was to have one in my office, one in the master bedroom suite, and one in the family room. That way, we could monitor the outside perimeter of our home. Before Google took over, I had set things up so that if the driveway cam picked up human motion from midnight-6 am, it would turn on the lights in the two front rooms, which would stay on for a set amount of time. The Google took over & did away with the Nest app, and that ended that.

I purchased several Wyze cams because (1) they seemed to do a good job with video, (2) they were relatively inexpensive, (3) there wasn’t the expensive monthly service charge, and (4) I had heard that Wyze was responsive to customers. All-in-all, Wyze seemed to be the company I wanted to support via their products.

The Windows app for Wyze was a lump of coal in my Christmas stocking. It is pretty much useless for me. OK, so instead of having wide screen Windows monitors displaying my cams, I had to move to the Android app world. So I got several Android tablets, placed them in the rooms, and loaded up the Wyze app on each. So far so good, albeit quite a bit smaller than I wanted.

I then called up the driveway cam on the first system. It displayed live for a few minutes, always stop-&-start herky-jerky video, before loosing connection. Same of each & every tablet. No matter which brand tablet, same results. And apparently is it NOT my home network that is the problem. The Nest cams supply smooth non-stop video to my displays.

he problem seems to be on Wyze’s end. The video has to stream to a Wyze server & then be sent back to the user, rather than going from cam directly to the user on the local WiFi network. I’ve made numerous contacts to Wyze support regarding this problem of video playing on an Android device for only a few minutes before disconnecting, and have never gotten the issue adequately addressed, let alone fixed.

From my experience the past few years, if all you want to do is to answer your doorbell or view a cam for a few seconds on your phone, all goes swimmingly well. But if you want to have any sort of continuous monitoring of even a single cam, you are SOL (simply outta luck).

Greatly disappointed, and seriously thinking about abandoning all the Wyze cams I have (several of which I haven’t even installed yet).

Not defending Wyze here, but that statement is incorrect. The viewing device connects and authenticates to the Wyze servers and then connects to the camera locally, when using the Wyze app if they’re both on the same network. VLANs, firewall rules and VPNs can screw that up, however.

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Not too much to disagree with but this part is not correct. Although an initial connection does have to go through the Wyze server, the video stream is direct from camera to viewing device. Want to prove that? Start a video stream where both your camera and watching device are on the same Internet service. Then kill your Internet service and the stream will continue. That has been demonstrated MANY times.

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Google has done a terrible job of migration of our Nest cams from Nest App to Google Home. Much of functionality is gone and they keep asking me to convert.

First off, I’m sorry you’re having problems. That’s frustrating. I can understand your dissatisfaction.

I do want to help clarify a couple of seeming incorrect assumptions:

Just to clarify, what Windows app for Wyze were you using? Wyze has never made a Windows-specific app. There are 3rd party ones out there, and fake ones and scammers out there pretending to be a windows app from Wyze (most of them don’t work because they’re just scamming you), and there are some that allow you to view Wyze cams if you are using the deprecated RTSP firmware or a conversion container (ie: you have to have an RTSP stream, not a normal Wyze stream), but Wyze has never, ever supported a Windows Wyze app. That might be why it never worked for you on the Windows app you have. For all of those, the issues aren’t on Wyze’s end because they have never supported Windows.

They do have the browser “webview” or Web portal, but that isn’t a Windows-specific app…it works in any browser on any system and is only for viewing cameras right now. Is that what you meant?

Just to clarify, that is not how the live stream works when you are using the Android app, even if you are away from home, nor when you are at home on the same WiFi. The Video stream never gets routed to the Wye server. This is the way it works:
In the App, you click on the camera to start the live stream. This initiates an “Authentication” / approval through the Wyze servers that doesn’t contain the video stream. Wyze checks if the Phone/app and the camera are both approved to talk to each other. If they are, and it is approved, then Wyze gives the app and the camera permission to directly connect to each other with what is called a peer-to-peer connection. If you are on the same WiFi as the camera, then your camera connects locally to your phone. The video never even goes out to the internet, and it definitely doesn’t go through the Wyze server. If it did, Wyze would’ve gone broke long ago and they would’ve had INSANE Bandwidth issues. It’s just not happening. Many networking professionals over several years have tracked the connections to prove that the video stream stayed local. Some of them have even been able to start the live stream, then once it starts, they unplug the internet/modem and were able to continue streaming the video, proving that the video was indeed local and not going through the internet or Wyze servers. It was pretty conclusive.

If you are away from home or on a different network in any way, then the phone and the camera directly connect to each other through the internet (again, not routed through the Wyze server…the Wyze server only checks to make sure your phone is ALLOWED to talk to your cameras, once it verifies that, it allows it to connect directly without going through Wyze at all).

FYI, there is a recent known issue where some people are struggling to connect to their cameras unless they are on the same WiFi. Wyze is working on that now.

While I am not having any of those issues (I have over 50 cameras, all of them recording continuously and working well with cloud events and live streaming, etc), I know some people are absolutely having some very serious issues and frustrations right now, and if I were experiencing them, I would be really frustrated and disappointed too. Their/your experience is very valid and important for Wyze to hear. Thanks for sharing your experience and I hope Wyze hears and considers it to work on improving the experience as a high priority for those who are having frustrations like this.