Nest camera consuming data

  • 1
  • Question
  • Updated 9 months ago
  • Answered
  • (Edited)

I had service installed last Friday afternoon (Liberty 10) at a weekender house that we purchased. We used the service two days, only internet surfing, no streaming and left early Sunday afternoon. I went on Excede website Wednesday and saw that 6.3MB were already used of the 10, which was surprising for two days. Four of us share 15 on cell phone and have never exceded that amount in a month. On Thursday I checked and 8.3 were now used, even though no one has been at the house since Sunday. This morning I checked again and it is up to 9.1. The only thing I can think of is a small nest camera I installed for security, but that should not suck that kind of data usuage.

Is this typical for this company?

Photo of Al Fuller

Al Fuller

  • 4 Posts
  • 0 Reply Likes

Posted 2 years ago

  • 1
Photo of Jim16

Jim16, Champion

  • 1859 Posts
  • 1531 Reply Likes
If this is what you are referring to, then yes that would use all your data.   "Some cameras can’t stay on all the time because they rely on batteries, so they only start recording when they sense motion. But if they miss something, you do, too. With a Nest Aware subscription, Nest Cam continuously records 24/7. And saves up to 30 days of footage securely in the cloud. So you never miss a thing.
Photo of Old Labs

Old Labs

  • 3309 Posts
  • 3287 Reply Likes
Here are the official estimates from Nest itself:

https://nest.com/support/article/How-much-bandwidth-will-Nest-Cam-use#!

On a limited satellite (or any other severely capped internet service), the reasons against would be identical to those for mobile Wifi:

https://nest.com/support/article/Are-there-any-issues-with-streaming-Nest-Cam-over-a-mobile-Wi-Fi-ho...
Photo of Andy Schack

Andy Schack, Champion

  • 467 Posts
  • 339 Reply Likes
i appreciate you guys bringing this up. As of yet I haven't had a customer run into this but I KNOW the day is coming....now I'll have an answer.
I clicked on the nest links and read what I could but...and it might just be me missing it.....I couldn't find a definite data usage number.

Andy
Photo of Bev

Bev, Champion

  • 3009 Posts
  • 1249 Reply Likes
There isn't one, just information about setting the desired resolution. We know lower resolution uses way less data but, based on what I read, The Nest system is going to default to 180 on WiFi and, 720 on Cellular data. So it's going to eat a good chunk of data unless the user limits use and, or manually lowers resolution, or doesn't let it access the internet, which  kind of defeats the point of having it.
Photo of Old Labs

Old Labs

  • 3309 Posts
  • 3287 Reply Likes
Yes, the estimates are indeed there, they simply explain it more thoroughly, require some interaction and it's listed and varies by product... click to expand all the sections at:

https://nest.com/support/article/How-much-bandwidth-will-Nest-Cam-use

But for those wanting the quick answer:


P.S. The estimates above are when using Nest Aware and the article linked to above offers some strategies over limited connections.
(Edited)
Photo of Andy Schack

Andy Schack, Champion

  • 467 Posts
  • 339 Reply Likes
Thanks Lab. Guess I didn't click on their site enough.
I guess it is plausible that a customer could easily have MORE than one of these little data vampires installed at a location....yikes.

Things like this generate angry calls, and posts, from customers who are totally convinced that we (Exede) are stealing their data when in fact it was one of these little gizmos...not necessarily a Nest cam but something else that uses a lot of data.

Thanks again Labs

Andy
Photo of Andy Schack

Andy Schack, Champion

  • 467 Posts
  • 339 Reply Likes
I just emailed the other Council dealers and my contacts at Exede about this issue with these Nest cams using so much data. I'm also going to add it to the Data Usage handout that we leave with customers. Forewarned is forearmed.

Andy
Photo of Al Fuller

Al Fuller

  • 4 Posts
  • 0 Reply Likes
Wow, that little camera sucks the data right up. Guess I am not going to use it anymore, which is really discouraging. If I understand the plan correctly, if I go over my monthly data allotment, I will still be able to surf the net for no additional charge, just at a lower download speed. Is that correct?
Photo of Christine Conrad

Christine Conrad, Champion

  • 263 Posts
  • 292 Reply Likes
Al, that is correct. However, your speed can be noticeably slow, depending on the time of day. Evenings are usually the slowest.
Photo of George Balanchine

George Balanchine

  • 2 Posts
  • 0 Reply Likes
I'm facing the same issue with my Ring Cam and Nest Cam Outdoor security cameras. They're sucking the data like crazy and the problem needs to be addressed pretty quick.
Photo of Jim16

Jim16, Champion

  • 1850 Posts
  • 1519 Reply Likes
I hope you mean that you need to address the problem pretty quick.  The ISP has zero responsibility on this.
Photo of Judge and Jury

Judge and Jury

  • 1525 Posts
  • 870 Reply Likes
 
Why do people stream their cameras full time?  I have outdoor cameras here but I don't stream them continuously. I need to go to their web address and log on to see them on the Internet.  I use a DDNS service so they are always there when I need to look at them.  My cameras have built-in SD cards to record movement so i don't need to worry about the computers being off to identify intruders.  I get an email and a text from the camera and can look then or later.
 
Photo of Mathew Smith

Mathew Smith

  • 9 Posts
  • 13 Reply Likes
Unfortunately, cameras that automatically upload video to the cloud are just not viable with today's satellite internet -- they eat up the monthly bandwidth like it's candy.  As larger plans become available (for example, when Exede's new Viasat-2 satellite is ready to roll) that may help, although even then I'm not sure they'll offer enough data.

Some of these cameras only upload video when they detect motion (instead of streaming video 24/7 -- which would be like watching Netflix 24/7), so it's always good to check the settings and adjust them to reduce "false positives" for motion, such as limiting the area in the picture that the camera is sensing motion.  But, since they're all designed to store video in the cloud instead of locally, they're going to consume vast amounts of bandwidth.

The best option is to switch to cameras that don't use the cloud.  These aren't "turnkey" like a Nest Cam -- they require more work and technical know-how to set up -- but they'll use significantly less bandwidth.  I have a cabin and have 12 network cameras set up around the property, and I've set up my router so I can connect remotely to view the cameras whenever I like.  They're not normally streaming data over satellite internet unless I connect in, and then just for a few seconds or a couple minutes while I check on things.  But they are always recording data locally -- I use software on a Mac Mini designed to do this.  You can have the software send you an e-mail when it detects motion, which takes a lot less bandwidth than having it constantly upload the video to the cloud.  So, if I receive an alert, I can connect remotely and then view the video clip, only using my satellite data at that time.  This worked fine even when I was on a 10-GB plan.

Again, setting up network cameras with a local server and configuring your router to connect remotely is more expensive up front and requires more skill, but if configured properly it won't suck up your bandwidth and you'll also save on the monthly fees associated with the cloud-based, simpler cams.
Photo of Bev

Bev, Champion

  • 3009 Posts
  • 1249 Reply Likes
It appears as though that camera is capable of full HD (1080) over wifi, and uploading an hour of that to the cloud would be about 1 GB, at 720, half a GB per hour or so. If you get it to 420, about 1/4 a GB per hour. Even then that would be 2 GB per day if it recorded and uploaded 8 hours of video. Video is video, whether form your own cloud enabled camera, YouTube, On Demand TV, whatever and both upload and download counts against your usage so, yes, those cameras, if you allow them to upload video, will gobble up data pretty quickly.