annke-boxI was given an Annke Sparkle I to review. This was a brand I had not heard of yet but was excited to see how it stacked up against other IP cameras.

To begin, it’s important to note that this is a cloud-based IP camera. Unlike my post on Foscam’s IP Cameras, this camera uses the cloud to deliver the feed. More on this later.

Setup

annke-QRRight from the start, Annke differentiates themselves from much of the competition with a native app. The Annke camera has its own app that is quite useful. To begin, you can either go to the app store or scan the QR code that is right on the box. The setup process is one of my favorite aspects of the Annke Camera. Very impressive!

 

The App

annke-appThe app itself is quite nice. The app can be used for changing settings, moving the camera, toggling audio off and on, speaking through the speaker on the camera, and even firmware upgrades. I was impressed. Moreover, the app led me through a process to change my password, and then I was connected to my camera in less than 5 minutes. Very nice!

Annke’s Cloud

Again, this is a cloud-based IP camera which comes with advantages and disadvantages.

Advantages

  • Easy access to the camera anytime you have internet access
  • Easier setup

Disadvantages

  • Security concerns since it is streaming outside of network onto 3rd party server
  • Internet bandwidth usage (although the manufacturer informed me bandwidth is only used when app is running).
  • Possibility of reliability issues if cloud server has temporary outage (I had a few instances of this when testing).

Annke Sparkle I Camera

annke-cameraOut of the box, the camera looks sharp. The plastic housing seems to be of higher quality than a Foscam, and I loved the addition of a micro SD slot to allow for recordings directly to a storage media. Very nice!

Picture quality is sharp, infared imagery is on par (maybe slightly overexposed, but this can be adjusted), and the cameras movement is smoother than the Foscam’s I’ve used.

My only small complaint is that the lights in the front were a little too bright to put in a nursery. My son immediately started pointing to the camera as it blinked many different colors. My wife promptly wrapped the camera with duct tape to mask the light.

annke-sd-slotThere is a slight hum of the built-in speakers. It’s very subtle, but I did notice it. The microphone picked up the audio in the room quite nicely, and I was able to hear when my son was waking up easily.

Overall

If you are in the market for a cloud-based IP camera, I would recommend giving the Annke Sparkle a look. For the price (especially when compared to the over-priced Dropcam), it is a fantastic value. I was impressed with the camera’s quality, the apps usability, fantastic setup process, and the unique features included such as the micro SD slot.

If interested, you can purchase the Annke Sparkle I on Amazon.


6 Comments

  1. Derek says:

    Does this security camera only use my Internet usage when turned on?
    I’d be very grateful if you could help me with this question

  2. Andrew says:

    Hi Brock.

    After setup and disabling all the notification/ motion detection settings the camera still appears to be capturing images and there is a clicking sound coming from the camera. I have also set the camera to both auto and day/ night mode but I still have this random clicking sound coming from the camera. Have you experienced this? Or know of how to remove this function?

  3. Walter says:

    4 questions:
    -can you use the camera without the cloud and store and playback on the SD card only?
    -if there is a noise and not motion, will the camera send a notification?
    -how easy is it to set up all the options through the app? Some cameras are difficult.
    -can the app be downloaded using a blackberry phone and can you use a pc laptop to operate the camera?

  4. Walter says:

    Waiting for reply on 4 questions.
    Walter

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