Ring’s Stick Up Cam Wired is solid, but I’m holding out for free cloud video storage.
The $180 (£180) Ring Stick Up Cam Wired is a significant improvement over the first-gen model. It has all of the basic specs you want from a DIY home security camera, but this version is designed to go inside or outside (the original was outdoor-only).
That added flexibility isn't unique to the Stick Up Cam -- Arlo, Logitech and Canary already sell indoor/outdoor cameras -- but we've been waiting for an indoor version from Ring.
My main hesitation with this model is that Ring still doesn't offer free cloud video storage. Even though the subscription starts at just $3 per month, all three competitors I mentioned above offer at least 24 hours of free video storage. This Ring camera doesn't work with Google Assistant either, just Alexa.
The Stick Up Cam is a fine camera, but its lack of free cloud storage and Google Assistant support is frustrating. Consider it if you already have a bunch of other Ring products and want everything to work in the same app. Otherwise I'd look at the Canary Flex for a similarly priced camera with free cloud storage and a rechargeable battery.
How does the Stick Up Cam Wired compare to the competition? Let's take a look:
|Ring Stick Up Cam Wired||Logi Circle 2 Wired||Arlo Pro 2||Canary Flex|
|US price||$180||$180||$480 (two-camera kit, plus required hub)||$200|
|Color finish||Black, white||White||White||Black, white|
|Power source||Power adapter, Power over Ethernet (PoE)||Power adapter||Rechargeable battery, power adapter||Rechargeable battery, power adapter|
|Resolution||1080p HD||1080p HD||1080p HD||1080p HD|
|Expected battery life||N/A (must use power adapter)||N/A (must use power adapter)||Six months||Two months|
|Field of view||150-degree viewing angle||180-degree viewing angle||130-degree viewing angle||116-degree viewing angle|
|Cloud storage||Optional 60-day event-based video history for $3 or $10 per month||Free 24-hour event-based video history (Optional 14- or 31-day event-based video history for $4 or $10 per month)||Free 7-day event-based video history (Optional Arlo Smart cloud service subscriptions ranging from $3 to $15 per month)||Free 24-hour event-based video history (Optional 30-day event-based video history for $10 per month)|
|Mobile app||Yes, Android and iPhone||Yes, Android and iPhone||Yes, Android and iPhone||Yes, Android and iPhone|
|Web app||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes, with cloud subscription|
|Alerts||Motion||Motion (person alerts with Circle Safe Premium subscription)||Motion, audio (person alerts wtih Arlo Smart)||Motion and person (package detection with cloud subscription)|
|Activity zones||Yes||Yes, with Circle Safe Premium subscription||Yes, with Arlo Smart||No|
|Two-way audio||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes, with cloud subscription|
|Operating temperature range||-5 to 120 degrees Fahrenheit (-20 to 48.5 degrees Celsius)||-4 to 122 degrees Fahrenheit (-20 to 50 degrees Celsius)||-4 to 113 degrees Fahrenheit (-20 to 45 degrees Celsius)||-4 to 113 degrees Fahrenheit (-20 to 45 degrees Celsius)|
|Third-party integrations||Amazon Alexa, Wink||Amazon Alexa, Apple HomeKit, Google Assistant||Amazon Alexa, Apple TV, Google Assistant, IFTTT||Amazon Alexa, Apple TV, Google Assistant, Wink|
As far as design goes, the Ring Stick Up Cam Wired reminds me of Ring's Spotlight Cam, just without the built-in lights.
The Stick Up Cam Wired comes with two power adapters, one geared toward indoor use and the other weatherproofed for outside use. You can also power the camera via Power over Ethernet (PoE).
Ring makes the installation and in-app setup pretty painless. Mount the included base to a wall or a ceiling -- or set it on a table. The box includes all of the mounting hardware you should need, a small screwdriver and even a drill bit.
I started off by downloading the Ring app, which is typically my first step when I'm installing any DIY smart home device. Once you've created your Ring account and signed in, Ring walks you through the entire configuration process, including naming your device and entering the Wi-Fi information for your local network.
Once everything is connected, you can pull up the live video feed from your app and enable motion detection, motion-related notifications and customizable motion detection zones.
The livestreaming view looks solid in day and night mode, although you should test the quality of your Wi-Fi connection where you plan to install your camera, because its performance is only as good as its connection.
Creating motion detection zones is simple too. Drag your finger to create an area where you want the camera to detect motion and it will ignore everything else, like tree branches swaying in the wind or the traffic on a busy street near your house.
The camera did a good job picking up on motion activity and you can adjust the sensor's sensitivity if you're getting too many -- or too few -- alerts on your phone.
I also tested this camera with an Amazon Echo Show and was able to say, "Alexa, show me the patio camera" to view the live feed on the Show's screen. The Alexa command worked well, but make sure you give your camera a unique name. At first I named the camera "side camera," which is apparently the name of an existing security camera at the CNET Smart Home. That confused Alexa.
My main gripe with the Stick Up Cam Wired is with Ring's cloud storage subscription. Yes, $180 is a decent price for a product like this, especially considering that some of its competitors, like the Arlo Pro 2, cost significantly more. But the Arlo Pro 2 offers seven-day free cloud storage -- and you get two cameras. The Canary Flex costs $20 more, but it works with Alexa and Google Assistant and you get free 24-hour cloud storage.
Cloud storage temporarily saves video clips recorded whenever the camera detects motion. If you miss a motion alert and don't catch the activity happening live, you lose that footage forever if you don't have a cloud storage plan.
If you plan to pay for cloud storage anyway, the Stick Up Cam Wired could still be a good fit, particularly if you already have Ring devices at home. A Ring representative told me the Stick Up Cam will work with the Ring Alarm security system "in the coming months." Keep in mind, too, that Ring will start shipping a battery-powered version of this Wired camera later this year, so you might want to hold off if you're interested in ditching the power cord.