At GearBrain, we test all our products in real homes to see how they perform and if they can deliver on the promises they make to consumers. Our testing usually takes a few weeks and is very comprehensive. We were fortunate to get a first look at one of Aqara's new camera hubs recently and was very impressed. We found the new Aqara Camera Hub G3to be more than a 2K pan-and-tilt security camera. It's also a hub or controller for over 128 Aqara devices and has several AI-enabled features to protect your home. And since this camera just came out today and is available on Aqara Amazon brand stores in the US, Canada and France, we wanted to make sure you heard from us our initial thoughts.
What is the Aqara Camera Hub?
The Aqara Camera Hub G3 is a smart hub with Zigbee 3.0 built-in. It has a powerful NPU-equipped processor to support facial and gesture recognition features, both of which can be used to trigger home automations. Users can configure push notifications when their young kids arrive home or when a stranger is detected (i.e., a familiar face was not detected), or to stop video recording when the face of a family member or a preset hand gesture is recognized. The AI-enabled features will make homes safer and make people’s lives even easier as users can now trigger home automation with certain hand gestures or simply a recognized face.
The G3 camera hub also supports automatic cruising, face tracking as well as pet tracking, all enabled by the 110° wide-angle lens and the pan-and-tilt motor which provides up to 340° rotation angle. The pan-and-tilt motor can be controlled manually, by the preset cruising path, or via home automations (for example, to turn to the front door when Door & Window Sensor is triggered). Combined with the high-resolution 2304×1296-pixel sensor and the infrared night vision enabled by the 940 nm LEDs, which are invisible at night, the G3 protects homes in 360-degree with no blind spot, day and night.
Other features include better compatibility with third-party platforms. The Aqara Camera Hub supports HomeKit Secure Video and streaming to Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant smart displays. This allows users to connect child devices (i.e., Aqara door and window sensors) to support a wide range of third-party ecosystems and voice assistants, such as HomeKit, Alexa, Google Home, IFTTT, and more.
The Camera Hub has a built-in IR controller that allows it to automate infrared-compatible devices, and the IR automation is local which means it remains functioning without the Internet connection. It also works with dual-band Wi-Fi routers which can support both 2.4GHz and 5GHz Wi-Fi networks.
And if privacy protection is a concern, this new camera hub is equipped with a privacy shutter that physically covers the camera lens, and the shutter can be activated manually and automatically. And if with its Type-C port with video out, the Aqara Camera Hub can support low-latency, high-definition video output via UVC protocol.
Aqara Camera Hub G3 has Zigbee 3.0 Built-in and other powerful AI-enabled features.Aqara
Overall, this new Zigbee hub by Aqara is very powerful and works great not only with Apple HomeKit compatible devices, but with all the voice platforms, Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa. You can learn more about the G3 in our our in-depth product review. From what we learned in testing this new camera hub, it is worthy of good long look, especially if you are in the market for a new security camera. And if using Apple HomeKit devices, we recommend you consider this camera hub.
As part of their launch, the company is offering for a limited time discounts for North American customer. You can get a 20% discount with promo code USG#PRGE. It's valid through November 24th. And for French customers, you can get a 20€ OFF discount at its Amazon.fr store, with the promo code CAMERAG3FR. This offering will expire on Nov 25, 2021.
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