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Turn your old iPhones and iPad into home security cameras: CNET News Video

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CNET News Video: Turn your old iPhones and iPad into home security cameras

2:14 /

With Apple expected to unveil an updated iPhone next month, you might be looking for ways to recycle or reuse your older Apple products. As CNET's Kara Tsuboi shows us, there's a way to turn used iPhone and iPads into a do-it-yourself home security system.

-Gene Wang can keep an eye on his dog and kids even when he's not at home. -Hallelujah. -But he didn't have to pay for pricy home security system with extra cameras and hardware. Instead, he turned a used iPad into a security camera and monitors the activity on his iPhone with a free app called Presence, which Wang developed at his company, People Power. -So, what we're doing is we're breathing new life into these old devices and making them useful so that you can kind of have your eyes and ears at home even when you're away. -Users must download the Presence app onto two devices. One serves as a camera, and the other monitors the action. You need a constant WiFi connection and power source. But as long as the camera is working, the phone does not need to be in pristine condition. -Let me check in on my kids. People are using it for kid tracking, pet cams, elderly cams-- so, if you have a elderly relative you're worried about and you don't get to see them all the time. -Wang got the idea after his mother's home was burglarized. And he realized a nice security system would run from around $1,800 and a monthly service charge. The app also allows for two-way audio and video communication. -Sally. How are you doing? -The app can also detect motion, like walking through a door. The camera will record a five-second video clip of the action, and then send that clip directly to your e-mail. Schools have even reached out to People Power to use the setup for added security. -There's actually this one school district in particular who has voted to go out and ask the parents to donate their old iPhones and so on to set up these campus-wide security systems to improve the safety of our kids. -People Power is working to expand the app's capabilities so it can control more things around your home, like a radio-controlled thermostat and specialized electric plugs to control energy consumption. In San Francisco, I'm Kara Tsuboi, CNET.com for CBS News.
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