A smart security light and camera that protects your home with a dash of style
Editor's Note: Kuna has rebranded some of their products. They now offer the Porch Camera Light (a newer version of the Smart Security Light), the Camera Floodlight (the next generation Maximus,) and the Dulcam Doorbell.
If you’re looking for a home security camera, sometimes you want form and function. If you find yourself turning your nose up at blocky, boxy, obtrusive security equipment, Kuna might just be what you’re looking for. Simple, smart, and stylish, these devices look great and perform well.
Kuna is all about the marriage of home security and home decor without sacrificing any of the features that set them apart from the competition. Their high-quality cameras, smart detection features, and active deterrence functionality puts them up there with other higher-end camera manufacturers.
FYI: Kuna offers a 60-day, money-back guarantee, which is something I rarely see in the industry.
This is why Kuna makes our top 10 list for the best security cameras, but there are some things you’ll definitely want to consider before choosing this brand. So in today’s review, let’s dive in to see how Kuna measures up to the competition, and if they have a security camera that makes sense for you.
Check out more recommendations from the SafeHome team:
Kuna was founded in 2012 when a handful of brainiacs from Caltech and Stanford wanted to put their AI know-how to work in helping secure people’s homes. And this tech-forward posture runs through all of their equipment. It’s clear they have what it takes to build high quality products.
Did You Know? Back in 1995, one of the Kuna founders (who also runs YesVideo) led a team to winning an Emmy Award for their digital TV innovation.
But that doesn’t always mean they’re going to knock it out of the park with user experience, cost, or other important factors people look for when they’re shopping for security equipment they’re going to use day to day. With that in mind, let’s see how Kuna did when put to the test.
Our tests are simple. Our team has a combined 30 years of experience testing security cameras, and in those years, we learned that the best way to assess them isn’t in a lab or a controlled environment. Since we are reviewing consumer products, we test them as if we’re real consumers in our real homes living our real day-to-day routines.
I lived with the Kuna cameras for more than two weeks. On Day 1, I set up the cameras and tested its default features. On Day 2 onwards, I started configuring and fine-tuning its settings. As my tests went on, I also simulated break-in scenarios to see how the cameras reacted. Lastly, I spent the rest of the testing period focusing on the features, hardware and software build, and video storage options. Here’s my complete experience with Kuna.
I truly enjoyed testing out these security cameras. The installation was fast and easy, they looked fantastic on my front porch and were very easy on the eyes. But looks aside, let’s see just how well they’ll protect your home when it matters most.
Here are a handful of features you can expect with Kuna.
The Kuna Camera Floodlight offers 1080p HD resolution, motion sensing up to 70 feet, and app-based controls. I think it’s reasonably priced at $243, and it’s quite similar to the Ring Floodlight Cam (read my Ring Floodlight Cam here). Here are a few other features you’ll like:
The Kuna Camera Porch Light is the company’s other main product. It’s best for folks who want a more discreet and elegant camera experience, minus the ultra-bright floodlights. It costs $200 and comes with the following features:
The Camera Porchlight is a really unique security camera find. I’ve seen lots of smart light-equipped cameras from brands like Ring (Spotlight Cam and Floodlight Cam), Nest (Nest Cam with floodlight), and Arlo (spotlight-equipped Arlo Essential, Pro, and Ultra), and Blink (Blink Wired Floodlight Cam), but all those products use bright lights.
The Camera Porchlight, however, makes use of a more subtle ambient or accent lighting compared to the competitors mentioned above, which is perfect if you want to make your security camera inconspicuous. Plus, with its stylish design, you won’t have a problem putting up multiple cameras around your home.
FYI: Kuna claims that it plays well with Alexa, but that’s not entirely true. You can only control the lights with Alexa, not the cameras.
Like most DIY cameras these days — think Blink’s affordable wire-free devices — there’s nothing complicated about installing Kuna equipment. Everything is ready to go right out of the box; all you have to do is download the app and follow the on-screen instructions. It even shows you best practices for mounting the cameras, something we get a little more in depth with in our guide to security camera placement.
The setup and installation should only take 10-20 minutes, from start to finish. Of course, that depends on how compatible your home is. The Kuna cameras are best used to replace existing floodlight or porch light. If you don’t have those, or if there’s none where you’re planning to put up the cameras, I’d suggest hiring an electrician to wire up the cameras. That said, if a simple swap-out is only what’s required, you can be done in under 20 minutes.
I thought the installation and placement were flexible enough, but note that Kuna isn’t as versatile as, say, Canary’s all-in-one security cameras. Canary’s cameras require zero installation. You just plug them in and set them on a flat surface.
With Kuna, you have to handle some wires and your placement options are limited by those very same wires. But again, these are cameras for a very specific buyer: homeowners who want security cameras they can display as functional light fixtures. Despite their versatility, no camera from Canary can provide what Kuna does.
While Kuna does deliver when it comes to features, we have to say one of their strongest features is their equipment’s design. Once installed, the camera in the Camera Porchlight sits just beneath a halo of light, making it ultra-discrete. Although it’s not exactly hidden, it doesn’t draw attention to itself. A+ for you, Kuna.
Pro Tip: Dust off your stepladder and rotate the camera up to 45 degrees in any direction to dial-in the zone you want to monitor/view.
So what about functionality? Well, you can control the Kuna light using the mobile companion app. The moment you receive a motion-activated alert, you can react directly from your phone’s lock screen (a very nice touch). When you receive an activity notification of a visitor at your door — the HD live-video screen pops right up.
It gets better. The live-video screen displays a handful of options allowing you to jump into action. These options include: two-way intercom, an automated greeting, recording video, sounding the siren, and even a quick-calling 911 button. As you can see, there’s a lot of intuitive functionality here.
FYI: A standard push-to-talk feature is available, but you can also set up (to a maximum of six different) automated greetings.
Additionally, the device automatically starts recording footage starting from 10 seconds before activity occurs. This reminds me of the pre-roll feature in an Arlo camera suite I unpacked recently, and it’s helpful to give you full context of an event. With this in mind, the motion sensing was also pretty solid, especially with the Kuna Premium plans. There’s a motion sensitivity slider within the app, so you can set it and forget it. Just don’t expect it to be very accurate without a subscription plan (as you won’t have AI smart detection).
Paired with a Kuna Premium subscription and smart detection, my Kuna cameras came to life and were able to distinguish between people, pets, and cars without a problem. But this isn’t exactly earth-shattering technology; overall, the camera works just as well as it should.
I have a couple of bones to pick as far as features go with Kuna. First off, Kuna claims that their products work with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. But when paired with Alexa, you can only use it to turn the lights on and off; you can’t use voice commands to control the camera. This was a surprising drawback, given that Kuna claims to be a security brand with a focus on smart home functionality.1 So there’s one strike against Kuna.
Additionally, since Kuna’s platform is app-based, you can’t control Kuna cameras using anything other than the Kuna Home Security app. It sure beats the obtrusive extension cords and flimsy switches of cameras past, though, and Kuna does make a pretty robust app. It’s pretty cool being able to control security lights and cameras at one time from one device.
The biggest drawback I found when testing out Kuna’s cameras was the night vision, especially on my Camera Porchlight. Rather than focus on amplifying their night vision capacity, Kuna relies on “illuminating the scene” once the sun goes down. This means that you’re not going to be seeing much beyond the light the camera itself casts.
It’s not that I didn’t like that the Camera Porchlight used its built-in light to illuminate the surroundings. Plus, security experts agree that lights can deter burglars at night.2 When I tested the Argus 3 Pro for my Reolink camera review, I loved the night vision delivered by its powerful spotlight. It had issues, but it was great. The problem with the Camera Porchlight is that the light is not powerful enough to illuminate more than a few feet. If you want a longer range of vision, go with the Camera Floodlight instead. Its 2,300 lumens floodlight is powerful enough to illuminate a large front yard.
On that note, let’s compare Kuna with some of our favorite smart light-equipped cameras: The Ring Floodlight Cam Wired Plus and the Arlo Pro 4.
Like the Kuna cameras, both the Floodlight Cam and Pro 4 will cost you around $200. I think the main difference between those two and Kuna is that they are cameras with a built-in smart light, while Kuna is more of a smart light fixture with a built-in camera. Kuna focuses on the smart light, and then the camera, while Ring and Arlo focus on the camera features, and then the smart light features.
Kuna’s cameras aren’t too shabby, though, especially the one on the Camera Floodlight. I like that it has a 155-degree field of view, wider than both Ring and Arlo. Plus, Kuna outfitted the Camera Floodlight with a 270-degree infrared motion sensor, which gives it a uniquely wide detection range.
With Ring and Arlo, the motion sensor field of view is only as wide as the camera’s field of view, but with Kuna, you get a wider detection range than its camera viewing angle, so the smart security floodlight can actually activate even before an intruder walks into frame. Again, it’s a smart security light first, security camera second.
Of course, with Ring and Arlo’s tighter focus on their security cameras, they are better than Kuna in terms of video surveillance. Ring delivers a more refined viewing experience through the Ring – Always Home app, while Arlo’s battery-powered Arlo Pro 4 provides versatility with set-up and installation. Both Ring and Arlo cameras also work with Alexa and Google Assistant, and in a much better way than Kuna. You can, for example, stream videos to a smart display like the Echo Show 5 or the Nest Hub Max.
As this brand does things a bit differently, you won’t find the kind of robust product selection typical in this industry with Kuna. As you’ll see from my sweeping analysis of Lorex cameras, with their massive selection of equipment and accessories, Kuna’s selection is quite limited by comparison. This could come as good news or bad, depending on what type of homeowner you are. Personally, I like options, and, therefore, would like to see Kuna add more cameras to their menu.
Kuna currently offers three cameras total, the Camera Porchlight for $200, the Camera Floodlight for $243, and the DualCam Video Doorbell for $180. The last few times I checked, though, the Camera Porchlight has been out of stock, so only the Camera Floodlight and DualCam are available.
Pro Tip: Read our guide to the best cheap security cameras to explore more options for affordable home security.
Note that the prices below are slightly higher than the industry average. For instance, you can get the high-performance Nest Cam (battery) for around $180, and the Ring Floodlight Cam Wired Plus for $199.99. Another thing to consider is that you’ll have to upgrade to Kuna Premium (a monthly subscription plan) if you want video history and AI features. See below for a breakdown of Kuna camera prices. For more tips on buying Kuna, head to our full Kuna equipment pricing guide.
|Kuna Cameras||Camera Type||Price|
|Camera Porch Light||All-in-one light and camera with elegant lamplight design||$200|
|Camera Floodlight||1080p HD camera with built-in 2,400-lumen floodlights||$243|
|DuelCam Video Doorbell||Dual-camera video doorbell with 720p HD and 1080p HD quality||$180|
Through Kuna, you can opt for subscription-based monitoring with Kuna Premium or do your own monitoring with the basic motion detection and other features Kuna offers. Kuna Premium adds person/vehicle detection to the camera experience, which more security cameras are offering nowadays. It’s not the same level of precision you’d get in a Nest Cam system, which has software that recognizes people’s faces,3 but I found person detection to be just as useful in many outdoor scenarios.
FYI: With the paid plans, you can customize activity zones by highlighting little blue tiles on the Kuna smartphone app. I recommend taking advantage of this.
Now, if you decide to upgrade to Kuna Premium, you can tap into their AI technology that offers intelligent, contextual notifications. You’ll also get up to 30-day video history, which can be helpful if you need to provide evidence after a crime.
I typically recommend signing up with a subscription plan, it’s worth noting that Kuna’s plans do run on the high side. For more affordable monitoring and storage, you’d be better off with one of Ring’s Protect Plans (starting at only $3 per month). But if you go with Kuna, here’s what you can expect on storage costs:
|Kuna Subscription Plan||Essential||Peace of Mind||Absolute Control|
|Number of Cameras||1||4||8|
|Cloud Storage||7-Day Lookback||14-Day Lookback||30-Day Lookback|
|Discounts on Products||5 Percent||10 Percent||15 Percent|
Notably, Kuna doesn’t have any built-in home automations like the above-mentioned Arlo’s suite of cameras does, but their lighting fixtures still play nicely in the sandbox with Alexa and Google Assistant.
Unfortunately, even the cheapest Kuna plan, Essential Security, is almost twice the cost of the average subscription plan I’ve tried. However, you’ll probably like that Kuna offers a 14-day free trial as part of their Peace of Mind plan (included with every camera).
Also, if you pay annually to cash-in on cost savings, but later find that Kuna isn’t for you, you can cancel and they’ll prorate your payment and send you a refund. Easy peasy. You really don’t have much to lose either way.
FYI: Kuna offers a theft guarantee. Should a bad guy steal your Kuna camera, the company will deactivate the hardware and send you a free replacement. Not bad.
During my initial research of Kuna, I did come across a number of negative reviews. Users mostly complained of faulty cameras and lackluster customer service. Thankfully, I didn’t have any issues in this regard. But I also didn’t need real-time assistance for faulty products.
With Kuna, I had access to phone and email-based customer assistance. The support desk is open Monday-Friday, from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. But note that this is for Kuna products only.
Overall, Kuna offers a straightforward and transparent service with a free plan and three Premium plans to choose from. While the up-front camera cost is more expensive than the industry average, I think you’ll enjoy the form and function that Kuna offers. It’s a great fit if you’re looking for an outdoor camera system that will add a dash of style to the exterior of your home. And with a 60-day, money-back guarantee, it’s hard to beat.
Of course, Kuna isn’t perfect. The home automation integrations aren’t so hot, and the company only offers limited camera options. And let’s not forget that most of their cameras are currently unavailable. That said, they seem to really obsess over the little details with the products that they do offer.
So there you have it. That’s the long-and-short of Kuna. And would you look at that, I made it all this way without making a “Kuna Matata” joke — what a wonderful phrase!
No, while Kuna offers three paid subscription plans, these are not required. If you do sign up with a plan, you can cancel at any time without penalty.
Kuna offers very limited home automation integrations. The products work with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant for voice control, but only to turn the lights on and off (no camera controls).
Technically no, it doesn’t. While you do get video at night, the device relies on the light feature to illuminate the area it records. In our experience, this results in substandard night-time video quality.
No, thankfully Kuna is a DIY camera system that only takes a few minutes to install, using only a screwdriver.
We think Kuna is a safe bet if you’re looking for an attractive light/camera combo. Otherwise we’d recommend looking at a stand-alone security camera.
ADT. Do Outdoor Lights Deter Crime? How to Deter Burglars at Night.
Google Nest Help. (2021). Familiar face detection and how to manage your library.