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Cloud vs IP vs cloud IP security cameras: when and where to use them in your business (2024)

September 28, 2023

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

There is no one type of commercial security camera that can be used in all situations. One frequent question is whether you should install cameras that connect directly to the cloud or use a hybrid cloud setup. Here’s what you need to know about cloud vs IP security cameras to best place them in your business.

See how Solink maximizes the security value of your cloud IP security cameras.

What is a cloud security camera?

Cloud security cameras are one of the newest technologies to enter the business video surveillance market. These cameras have the ability to connect directly to the Internet. Therefore, they do not require an NVR or DVR.

Cloud security cameras usually have some built-in data to buffer through low bandwidth or Internet connectivity issues. Then, when they have a strong connection, the cameras upload all video footage directly to the cloud. 

Many home video surveillance systems use cloud security cameras. That’s because they are simple for the homeowner to install. Since they use Bluetooth or WiFi to upload their data and are usually powered by batteries, no cables need to be run. This also reduces any potential damage to the home, which could lower the resale value.

Since homes typically have lower security needs and fewer total security cameras installed, the downsides of cloud security cameras are less of an issue. However, connectivity issues and the need to replace batteries regularly make cloud security cameras a less desirable option today for most businesses. 

A cctv camera hanging from the ceiling of an office.

For example, Blink cameras advertise a battery life of two years, but that’s based on only recording when motion is detected for 30 seconds and the assumption that this will only occur a few times a day. For a business with constant motion and the need to record 24/7, these batteries might need to be replaced weekly. 

The cost of cloud video storage can also quickly become prohibitive if multiple cameras are streaming to the cloud directly with no local storage and a business requires 30, 60, or even 365 days of retention.

Cloud security camera pros and cons

Here are the main benefits and drawbacks of cloud security cameras.

Cloud security camera advantages

Here are the main advantages of cloud cameras:

  • Connect directly to the Internet.
  • Built-in storage capability.
  • Easy to install.
  • Come in a variety of styles and resolutions.

Cloud security camera disadvantages

Here are the main disadvantages of cloud cameras:

  • More expensive. 
  • Require more consistent and higher bandwidth to operate.
  • Battery-powered cloud security cameras require regular maintenance. 
  • Completely reliant on more expensive cloud video storage.
  • Not suitable for business use.

What is an IP security camera?

Internet Protocol (IP) cameras are managed through an IP network and transmit data digitally. Generally, IP security cameras connect to the cloud through a network-attached storage device. This reduces the total cost of video retention and may be necessary for some regulated industries. 

IP cameras establish connection to a network through either WiFi or a Power over Ethernet (PoE) cable. PoE cables furnish both power and network accessibility for data exchange. 

There are also wireless IP cameras, but they will still require a power source, either through batteries or by being connected via a power adapter.

IP cameras signify a huge leap forward in the evolution in business security cameras. They have largely supplanted analog cameras and will dominate the market compared to cloud business security cameras for the foreseeable future. This shift stems from their heightened reliability, generally elevated resolution, data provision in a digital format that streamlines video analytics, and their cost-effectiveness.

Cloud vs IP vs cloud IP security cameras-bullet camera

IP security camera pros and cons

Here are the main benefits and drawbacks of IP security cameras.

IP security camera advantages

Here are the main advantages of IP cameras:

  • Transmit data digitally.
  • Require a single cable for both power and data transmission.
  • Come in a variety of styles and resolutions.
  • Cloud video storage is supplemented by on-premises storage, reducing the cost of data retention.

IP security camera disadvantages

Here are the main disadvantages of IP cameras:

  • Typically do not have onboard storage.
  • Cannot connect to the Internet individually.

What are cloud IP security cameras?

Cloud IP cameras, often referred to as cloud-based, cloud-managed, or cloud-connected security cameras, are simply IP cameras whose network is connected to the cloud. 

This allows IP security cameras to take advantage of all the advanced cloud-based video surveillance features that some people believe are limited to cloud cameras. In addition, they are still able to store data locally to reduce the cost of ownership. 

For most businesses, the higher reliability of IP cameras make this hybrid approach more appealing than the purchase of more expensive cloud security cameras.

Cloud IP vs hybrid cloud security cameras

Cloud IP and hybrid cloud security cameras are the same thing. Hybrid cloud security camera system is another way of saying cloud-managed CCTV camera system. They are just like any other IP security camera connected to a cloud video surveillance system. 

Cloud IP security camera pros and cons

Hybrid cloud IP security cameras offer all of the advantages of any other IP security camera along with the benefit of cloud video surveillance. The only main drawback is that, similar to locally managed IP security cameras, cloud IP cameras require some skill to be installed. 

Solink is your one-stop shop for business security cameras. We can source business security cameras for cloud video surveillance at competitive prices and then have them installed.

Our AI video analytics platform comes with helpful features that lower costs, save you time, and improve revenue. By connecting your IP security cameras to cloud video surveillance, Solink upgrades your existing IP security cameras to cloud IP cameras, without any of the connectivity issues associated with cloud cameras.

If you are looking to install or upgrade your cloud IP security cameras, sign up for a demo today.

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Timothy Ware is Solink’s Content Manager. He brings over ten years of writing and editing experience to the job. When he isn’t writing about security, loss prevention, and asset protection, he’s enjoying his newest board game. His work has appeared on many B2B SaaS websites including Baremetrics, Security Today, TeamPassword, Cova, and SignTime.