What is Nest Aware, and do you need it to use Nest cameras?

You may not need it, but you will definitely want it.

Google released a few new Nest cameras this year: a wired, indoor-only model; A wireless indoor/outdoor model; a doorbell; And a floodlit camera. We’ve reviewed them all, and in each review, we’ve been annoyed by Nest hardware’s reliance on a paid subscription to a service called Nest Aware. So what is Nest Aware, and do you really need it to use a Nest camera?

What is Nest Aware and what does it do?

Nest Aware is a set of additional features for Nest branded cameras and speakers. Subscription comes with many benefits, including:

  • Thirty days of event clip storage. With Nest Aware, recordings of events—such as people or animals seen in your designated areas—are stored online and available for viewing or downloading for up to 30 days. Without Nest Aware, these clips last up to three hours.
  • Support for Google’s familiar faces feature. This year’s Nest cameras are able to distinguish between different faces and learn over time who’s closer, usually with better notifications. Despite being a hardware-level feature, it’s only unlocked with a subscription.
  • Alerts for sounding smoke detectors or carbon monoxide alarms. Both your Nest cameras and your Google-branded smart speakers can tell you if they hear a smoke detector or carbon monoxide alarm — as long as you pay for Nest Aware.

There’s also Nest Aware Plus, which offers double the duration of clip storage to 60 days, as well as reviewing what your wired cameras (except the new Nest Doorbell, for some reason) have seen and heard in the past 24 hours. capability of. Nest cameras cannot record continuously on battery power, so this feature requires a wired connection.

How much does Nest Aware and Nest Aware Plus cost?

Nest Aware costs $6 per month, or $60 per year if you bill it all together. Nest Aware Plus costs $12 a month or $120 a year. The pricing model used to be more complex, but currently, at any tier, a single subscription covers all your cameras and speakers.

Do you really need Nest Aware?

Technically, no. There’s nothing stopping you from paying another cent to buy a Nest camera and use it. Just be aware that the Nest Security experience is extremely limited without a subscription. Pay walling features like facial recognition are annoying, but the three-hour window you have to review and download clips from the event means if you’re not awake and your camera sees something, If you are not paying attention to the phone, you may not know about it very well. .

If all you expect from a security system is the ability to remotely monitor your home in real time, Nest Aware’s video storage features may not be particularly valuable to you. You may safely unsubscribe. Otherwise, you might want to pony up, or make sure you’re never away from your phone for more than three hours at a time.

Google Nest vs Amazon Ring: Which is the Better Choice?

Google and Amazon have incredible smart home lineups, but there are some key differences between Nest and Ring. These differences are most apparent when you compare each brand’s camera hardware. If you’re on the fence about which smart home cameras will suit your needs, you might want to check out the differences between the Ring Stick-Up Cam Battery and the Nest Cam Battery.

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