Tech tip for using IP cameras to watch your office over the holidays

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Tech tip for using IP cameras to watch your office over the holidays

Rely on storing lots and lots of video surveillance files of your business? Here's one IP surveillance feature that's handy to know about.

One of the useful features of IP security cameras is that you don't have to store the footage on your own premises.

It isn't especially difficult to set up a server on your premises to store the files, especially as some cameras come with easy-to-use software for this purpose.

But online video storage has several advantages, including preservation of the recordings if your premises are subjected to fire or flood. Plus you can access the footage from anywhere you have Internet access.

One such service is that offered by Mangocam.

We decided to flag Mangocam here, as they have just announced that a new feature that could be handy if you rely on having lots and lots of video files to store.

An issue with transferring digital video across the internet is that it can involve lots of data. 

There's a tradeoff between image size, quality and framerate on one hand, and file size on the other - the bigger the image, the higher the quality and the faster the framerate, the more data must be transferred. 

H.264 is relatively new format for encoding video and one that is well suited to surveillance cameras are it generates substantially less data for a given image size, quality and framerate. 

Consequently, a growing number of IP cameras can use H.264. 

Mangocam has now added H.264 support to its service.

This is available on plans starting at $5 per month (up to two cameras, two frames per second, seven day retention and up to 15GB of storage). 

The company offers a range of IP surveillance cameras from as little as $70, 

Overall, plans start at one camera, one frame per second and one day retention (maximum 3GB) at no charge, and range up to as many as 24 cameras, four frames per second and 31 day retention (maximum 200GB) for $46 per month. 

Paid plans include email or SMS alerts triggered by movement in the image, among other features.

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