Attracted by an irresistible offer, you purchased a series of IP cameras and proceeded to place them in strategic points of your home. Now, however, you would like to understand how to remotely view the images acquired by them, as the instructions contained in the camera manual are not very clear. If this is the way things are, then know that you are in the right place, at the right time!
In fact, below I will explain to you in detail how to view IP cameras from the Internet, using a series of programs and apps designed for the purpose. Do not worry if you are not very familiar with technology, you have no reason: the tools that I will provide you in the course of this guide are easy to use and do not require advanced skills to be exploited.
So, without further ado, take a few minutes of your free time to devote to reading this guide: I’m sure that, by following my advice, you will be able to get exactly the result you wanted. Having said that, there is nothing left for me to do but wish you good reading and good work!
- How to see your IP cameras from the Internet
- Preliminary operations
- Programs to view IP cameras from the Internet
- App to view IP cameras from the Internet
- How to view city IP cameras from the Internet
How to see your IP cameras from the Internet
To see the footage taken by your IP cameras even when you are not in the building where they are located, you can use some software designed for this purpose. Before you can even use them, however, you must properly configure the IP cams in your possession, then connecting them to the Internet: in the following sections of this guide, I am going to explain everything in detail.
IP cameras, by definition, are independent cameras that can connect to the Internet via a Wi-Fi network. Configuring them is quite simple: after positioning the camera and connecting it to the power supply, you need to access the wireless network created by it using any computer, smartphone or tablet and, using the configuration panel displayed, set up Internet access.
At the end of this phase, you should have the CID of the camera available (i.e. its unique identification code), together with the username and password to be used to access the footage: these data must necessarily be entered within the program or app. through which you will control the cameras.
Unfortunately, I cannot provide you with detailed information regarding this procedure, as it varies from manufacturer to manufacturer; if I could not implement my suggestions, you should take a look at the user manual of the IP cam in your possession, or perform a Google search using the phrase how to connect [IP camera brand and model] to the Internet.
If you are reading this guide for preventive purposes and you have not yet purchased any IP cameras, you can take a look at my guide dedicated to the best IP cameras on the market, to get some more information on this topic.
If, on the other hand, you are interested in examining the operation of these devices in detail, you may find it useful to read my specific in-depth study dedicated to them (or the guide dedicated to the Hive View system, if you want a concrete example of use).
Note: there is another category of video cameras, the so – called surveillance cameras, which do not have an “independent” Internet connection but must be connected to the Network via a DVR / NVR device, that is a mini-computer specifically dedicated to managing the cameras. and registration of flows. For more information on this category of devices, you can take a look at my guide on how to connect cameras on the network.
Programs to view IP cameras from the Internet
After completing the configuration of the IP cameras of the home or, in general, of the building of your interest, you should be able to view their images in real-time (together with the audio, if provided), even from the outside, through some programs made for the purpose.
If you have Windows, for example, you can evaluate the use of AtHome Camera, a special program created for video surveillance using IP cameras and compatible with almost all devices of this type available on the market.
To get it, connect to its website and click first on the Download button and then on the AtHome Camera V xyz button (next to the Windows logo ), to download the compressed archive containing the program files.
When the download is complete, extract the archive into a folder on your computer, access it and launch the executable file it contains, to start the program installation, then complete the latter by pressing the Yes, Next buttons 5 consecutive times, Install and Finish.
If everything went smoothly, the software should start automatically: when prompted, answer affirmatively to the Windows Firewall warning indicating the need to add an exception and, having reached the initial program screen (the login screen), create a free account on the AtHome Camera portal, by entering your email and password and pressing the Register button.
At this point, you should arrive at the main screen of the program, through which you can add the cameras to be viewed via the Internet: therefore click on the Add camera button (located at the top left) and indicate, in the appropriate fields, the CID of the room, the username and password to access it.
Alternatively, if the camera is on the same network as the computer you are working on, you can automatically detect it by pressing the Search button. However, if necessary, repeat the same steps for each IP camera to be viewed.
Finally there we are: you can switch from one camera to another by selecting the name of the device to bring to the foreground from the left bar of the program; if you are interested in seeing the images from all the configured cams at the same time (up to a maximum of 8), go to the Live Video tab instead. If you deem it appropriate, using the tabs at the top, you can perform some additional operations, such as recording the audio/video stream ( Scheduled recording ) or viewing alerts ( Alert video ).
If AtHome failed to satisfy your needs, you can evaluate the use of Tebocam, another excellent software for Windows designed with the same purposes as the program we have just seen. If, on the other hand, your cameras are configured on a DVR / NVR system, you can access the video stream by downloading the program associated with the device in your possession, or by connecting to the integrated web interface. To find out more, I invite you to read the user manual of the DVR / NVR you have, or to consult the technician who installed the equipment.
If you use a Mac, on the other hand, you can rely on Periscope Pro, a program that allows you to view the stream coming from the configured IP cameras and save the recordings offline and online, even on Dropbox. At the time of writing this guide, Periscope Pro costs € 18.64 (each single license is usable on 3 computers), however, it is possible to try the program for free for a short period of time.
If you are interested in obtaining the trial version of the software, connected to its official home page, press the Free Download button to download the .dmg package of the program and, when the download is complete, open it and drag the software icon to the Applications folder of the Mac.
Subsequently, go to the aforementioned folder, right-click on the Periscope Pro icon, click on the Open item attached to the context menu displayed on the screen and press the Open button again located in the screen that appears later, so as to overcome the macOS restrictions ( you only have to do this the first time you start the program).
Once you have reached the initial screen of the software, click on the button in the shape of a video camera and, using the form that appears on the screen, enter the information relating to the device you wish to view ( CID, username and password ). If necessary, click on the microphone button, to configure the audio (if available in the camera) or the Motion button, to intervene on the motion sensor (if present).
If needed, you can manually adjust the video capture and recording settings by clicking on the gear button; finally, to see the images from the configured cameras, click on the tabs indicating their names, located under the content display area.
If you feel that Periscope Pro is not for you, you can use alternative software, such as AirBeam Pro, to achieve the same result. As for the cameras configured via DVR / NVR, the same applies as already seen for Windows: you can use the “companion” program of the device, its Web interface or, again, contact the user manual or the installer technician to obtain further information on the matter.
App to view IP cameras from the Internet
If you do not have a computer or you want to rely on your smartphone or tablet to see the IP cameras installed in your home (or in your business), you can evaluate the use of AtHome Camera, the “companion” application of the PC software I told you about earlier. AtHome Camera is available for free for Android and iOS / iPadOS.
Now, if you already have an account associated with the service, press the Sign In button and enter your credentials in the appropriate fields; if, on the other hand, you have never used AtHome before, touch the Register button and indicate, in the form displayed on the screen, a valid email address and a password to use to access the service. Alternatively, you can speed up everything by choosing to log in via Facebook or Twitter (using the relevant buttons located at the bottom).
After completing the login phase, tap the Add first streamer button to add the first camera and, if applicable, frame the QR code of the same to quickly add it to the service. Alternatively, you can manually enter the camera’s CID, username and password: to access the manual entry screen, tap the pencil-shaped button (located at the top right).
Once the device has been added, touch the Save button to confirm its addition and, if necessary, press the (+) button and repeat the same steps seen above to configure the other IP cameras you have.
To switch from one camera to another, access the My Cameras tab and select the name of the IP camera to bring to the foreground; finally, if you want to create a group view, which allows you to keep an eye on multiple cameras together, tap the Group View tab and then the Create Group View button. It was easy, wasn’t it?
However, if AtHome Camera is not adequate for your needs, you can consider some alternative apps, such as tinyCam Monitor for Android (also compatible with DVR / NVR) or AirBeam Video Surveillance for iOS / iPadOS, created with the same purpose.
Finally, if you intend to access the cameras configured through DVR / NVR systems, you can use apps such as MEye ( Android / iOS / iPadOS ), the aforementioned tinyCam Monitor or, again, the “complementary” application available for the DVR / NVR that you own.
How to view city IP cameras from the Internet
You must know that, in addition to home IP cameras, there are also other categories of IP cameras, such as the so-called ” city webcams “. These are IP cams placed in practically every part of the globe, which can be viewed by anyone, in real time, using specific sites and apps.
How do you say? Now that you are aware of this, would you like to take a little “virtual trip” and know what is happening, at this very moment, in the city you would like to visit so much? So let me tell you about some services that, in a very short time, allow you to view city cameras around the world.
- EarthCam– is one of the most famous portals of this type, accessible by anyone and without any kind of limitation. After reaching the main page of the service, identify the city of your interest and, to view its footage in real time, click on its box. Alternatively, you can use the search field at the top to type the name of the place you are interested in, or access the Webcam of World section (at the bottom of the page) to choose the location of your interest from a virtual world map. EarthCam is also available as a free app for Android and iOS / iPadOS .
- Skyline webcams – this site allows you to view webcams from all over the world and, unlike the previous one, it is also available in Italian. To use it, connected to its main page, click on the flag-shaped button at the top and select the Italian language from those proposed. Finally, use the Live webcam, Webcam by category and Top Webcam menus to view the available world IP cameras.
- Webviewcams – last but only in order of list, there is Webviewcams: this site, among other things, also allows you to adjust the framing of the cameras, acting on angle and zoom. Then connect to the main page of the service, identify the city of your interest and, to view its active webcam, click on its name. If you wish, you can type the names of the cities using the search field at the top, or select the places of your interest from the world map located on the page. Once the webcam of your interest has been loaded, you can adjust the framing using the special side levers.
Also, if you want to broaden your “horizons” even more, you can find other free webcams by searching on Google (or other similar search engines), using the keys inurl: / view.shtml or title : “Live View / – AXIS ”inurl: view / view.shtml ^ . To learn more about this topic, I recommend a thorough reading of my tutorial on how to see a place in real time.