Nest is finally making an outdoor Nest Cam and it’ll ship for $199 this fall


Nest Cams (formerly known as Dropcams) are handy little things — plug it in, get it on WiFi, and boom, you’ve got a low-hassle indoor security camera.

Want to put it outside? That’s a bit more complicated. The original Nest Cam isn’t very rugged, so you’re looking at dropping at least $50 on a waterproof enclosure.

At long last, however, Nest is debuting an outdoor version of the Nest Cam. And it’s called… Nest Cam Outdoor. GASP.

So why buy Nest’s outdoor build instead of just getting an indoor one and slapping it in an enclosure? The price, primarily: at $199, the Nest Cam Outdoor will cost the same as the indoor model, but be waterproof without you needing to plunk down extra money.

That makes the decision-making process pretty simple: putting it indoors? Buy the indoor one. Putting it outdoors? Buy the outdoor one.

“But why wouldn’t I just buy the outdoor one and use it indoors too, if it’s the same price but waterproof?”

That’s where things get tricky. You see, the indoor Nest Cam — based on the original Drop Cam — is designed to work well when sat on a table or shelf. You don’t have to mount it the wall unless you’re feeling fancy.

The outdoor model, meanwhile… doesn’t work very well on a table or flat surface. It’s one of the first things I tried when I visited Nest’s office to check it out. It’s built for easy wall mounting with adjustable angles — but its design isn’t very good for plopping it on a shelf.

Speaking of that design: the Outdoor model looks considerably more like a security camera than the original Nest Cam, which the company says is intentional. Because outdoor security cameras are a good theft deterrent, they wanted it to be more obvious what it is. (On a side note, the design also looks pretty damned similar to Netgear’s Arlo camera… but, well, few people besides Netgear will probably care about that.)

Nest Cam Outdoor will hit the shelves sometime this fall — they wouldn’t give a more specific date than that — at the aforementioned price of $199.

Here are the specs:

  • 1080p video with 130º field of view
  • 8 Infrared LEDs for Nightvision
  • A built-in microphone and loudspeaker for two-way chat (like if someones at your door)
  • Weatherproof
  • Flat wiring designed to be easily paintable
  • Snap-on magnetic base lets you mount the camera to gutters and whatnot without having to drill holes