Webcams are nothing new in the world of tech. Heck, webcams that run off of mobile data are not new either. The truth is, cameras are a tough market to get into with lots of competition at great prices. link-U has sent us one of its 4G Hybrid Connection Smart Cameras to help show what sets them apart from some of the competition.
The setup for the link-U is incredibly simple. Starting off it is powered by POE (Power Over Ethernet) which means that the only cable you need is an ethernet cable. It comes with a POE injector in case you don’t have a $200 POE router sitting around. Once plugged in, you can install the link-U app and setup an account. Account setup is simple, all it needs is a name, email address, and password to get you going.
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Once you get logged into the app, the next step is to sync your camera with your account. If your camera is already on the network, then the app should find it without any issues. If it is not, there is a QR code on the back that you can scan to sync up the camera with your app.
The link-U camera brings one major thing to the table, the ability to use a 4G LTE sim card to stream your HD camera videos to your mobile device, wherever you might be. The camera also houses an 8-hour battery so that it can function during a power outage without any issues, giving you peace of mind no matter how far away from home you might be.
The HD camera takes a great picture and streams a very clear picture, making it perfect for surveying any location you choose. The HD picture looks great whether you are connected to the internal network or over 4G on your smart device.
The app gives you the ability to customize the triggers for when you want recordings to take place and how long to record after a trigger occurs. The recordings can be found in a somewhat confusing calendar button that takes you to a search screen.
The final nice addition of this device is a built-in Bluetooth radio which allows you to control other smart devices from your phone. Within the app, you can allow the camera to be a hub for some other smart devices.
The first thing I want to bring up here is the app. As an Android site first and foremost, I want to address the app that is associated with this camera. I cannot speak to the iPhone app, but the version for Android is simplistic and basic. The simple blue background with a list of cameras is not what I would expect to see for an app that is associated with a $300 webcam.
While there is 4G capability, the handoff between the two is not what I would expect. In my testing, it could take up to a full minute for the camera to become available again. I, again, would expect the experience to be superior to this for a camera in this price range.
While the link-U bring brings 4G LTE to the security camera game, I’m not completely convinced this camera is a must have. The hardware included in the package is good quality and the premise of the camera is a great idea, my issue is with the execution of some aspects of the software package. If you were pressed to get a webcam at this price point I would say to give this one a pass.
If you’re interested in purchasing the link-U with LTE, you can find it here. Additionally, link-U offers the camera without LTE and other accessories like smart lights, plugs, and more. You can find them all here.