SimpliSafe Security Camera Options and Pricing

An easy-to-use system with options for indoor and outdoor cameras

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SecureScore™: 9.3 / 10 This rating is derived from our editorial team's research, hands-on product testing, and customer surveys.
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When it comes to home security, you don’t want anything overly complicated — you just want it to work if (or when!) it’s needed. Simple doesn’t just mean uncomplicated, though. It can also mean cheaper. If that’s what you’re looking for, the SimpliCam, SimpliSafe’s standalone security camera, might be the perfect camera.

That’s not to say the SimpliCam is a bad camera. SimpliSafe manages to combine usability and affordability in all of its equipment, and the SimpliCam is no exception. It can be a remarkably useful addition to your home security system, especially if you already use other SimpliSafe products. You just need to know its limitations before you buy.

FYI: SimpliSafe recently updated their pricing, so be sure to check out the chart further down in the article to get the most up-to-date information before you make your purchasing decisions.

If you’re interested in the SimpliCam, you came to the right place. This guide examines the original $99 SimpliSafe camera, digging into both its positives and negatives. In fact, let’s start with a quick rundown of the SimpliCam’s pros and cons.

  • Easy Installation and Everyday Use
  • Smartphone Controls
  • Fast Performance
  • Smart Motion Detection
  • 60-Day, Money-Back Guarantee
  • Three-Year Warranty
  • Cloud Video Storage Available

  • No built-in local storage
  • Limited Features
  • Comes in Black Finish Only
  • No Battery

SimpliCam Cost

Editor’s note: SimpliSafe still offers the older SimpliCam – though they have now given it the far more pedestrian name Wired Indoor Camera. In addition, they have an updated version in the Wireless Indoor Camera. In addition, the company now offers a Wireless Indoor Camera. It’s more expensive at $139.99, but it has more features than the wired version and, crucially, it’s compatible with their new Fast Protect Monitoring. That service allows security professionals to look in when an alarm is triggered and get emergency personnel on site faster than most other monitoring services. We have more information in our updated review of SimpliSafe.

If you already own a SimpliSafe home security system, it can make sense to add a $99 SimpliCam. Your first line of protection is the outside of your house, but it’s never bad when you can see what’s going on inside as well. The SimpliCam integrates perfectly with other SimpliSafe equipment, and the $99 price tag means you’re not dropping a bundle on a component that’s less important to your overall security.

If, on the other hand, you’re looking for a standalone indoor camera, there are probably better options for you. Lorex, for instance, offers a choice of dozens of models. In fact, the SimpliCam’s features are pretty basic, and you’ll find most of them in cameras priced significantly cheaper from most companies, including Blink, Zmodo, and Wyze. The $60 Ring Indoor Cam we reviewed is one of our favorite low-cost options.

Unpacking the SimpliSafe Camera

Unpacking the SimpliSafe Camera

Of course, you can also invest in SimpliSafe’s new wireless indoor camera, which offers some features you won’t get in the SimpliCam, such as Fast Alert monitoring. It is fast replacing the SimpliCam as SimpliSafe’s go-to indoor option. That said, the SimpliCam remains the best option for SimpliSafe users looking for a product they can count on at an affordable price.

FYI: SimpliSafe also sells their namesake Video Doorbell Pro, which costs $169. If you’re looking for a doorbell camera, check out our full SimpliSafe doorbell review. If you already have a Video Doorbell Pro and need to set it up, check out our walkthrough on installing a SimpliSafe Video Doorbell Pro.

SimpliCam Subscription Cost

Keep in mind that buying a camera isn’t just about buying a camera. You always have to consider how you’re going to store video. With SimpliSafe, video storage means cloud storage fees. Now, you don’t necessarily have to save video footage — for no charge, you can get motion-triggered notifications on your smartphone and use your app to livestream and see what’s happening.

Having video to review can be pretty useful, though, and it helps if you need to get the police involved in searching for a potential burglar. For just $10.00 per month, SimpliSafe lets you store up to 30 days worth of video from an unlimited number of cameras and watch 60-second clips of recordings. Also keep in mind there is no local storage option, meaning you won’t be able to record to, say, a microSD card. Simply put, there’s no storage without a plan.

Something else to consider: Like we said above, SimpliSafe recently released its new Smart Alarm Wireless Indoor Security Camera. It costs $139.99, and when coupled with their new Fast Protect professional monitoring — $29.99 per month — you can take your security to the next level with the ability to stop intruders and alert authorities in real time.

Heads Up: SimpliSafe is always throwing free extra equipment in with their systems. Right now you can get the Smart Alarm Wireless Indoor Camera for free when you purchase any package.

The SimpliSafe Camera Experience

Installing the SimpliCam

We’ve tested hundreds, maybe thousands, of home security products over the years. And most cameras are pretty easy to install. Most are DIY these days, and the majority take under half an hour to set up. As we noted in our Wyze Cam, our Wyze install took no more than five minutes.

That said, we’ve never come across a device that’s as easy to install as the SimpliCam. It truly does live up to its name. Technically, the installation is done once you’ve plugged the power cord into a standard outlet. Of course, you also need to download the SimpliSafe mobile app and connect the camera to your Wi-Fi, but that takes just a minute or two.

What stands out the most, however, is SimpliCam’s straightforwardness on the day-to-day. Once you’re done setting it up, you can leave it be and enjoy home protection. Unlike with high-tech indoor cameras like the Nest Cam (indoor), which requires you customize your notifications and do a number of other setting-changes, the SimpliCam is a set-it-and-forget-it kind of device.


SimpliSafe Indoor Camera

One thing to bear in mind is that the SimpliCam doesn’t work outdoors. It’s simply not rugged or protected against the elements enough. In the past, SimpliSafe gave its users the option to buy a “wet suit” for the indoor cam so users could use it outdoors. Now, though, there’s an outdoor camera option that offers a lot of the same features as the SimpliCam, but rugged enough to live outdoors. The outdoor cam costs $189.99, which for an outdoor camera is a great price. However, it only works with a SimpliSafe security system, so I wouldn’t recommend it unless you’re already – or planning to become – a SimpliSafe security system user.

SimpliCam Performance

After reviewing the camera’s specs, expectations weren’t super high for SimpliSafe’s camera. Sure, the company hypes up the SimpliCam with fancy marketing-speak, claiming it has Variable Bitrate Compression1 to improve image quality. This is all well and good, but I wanted to see how it performed off-paper and in the real world. Thankfully, the camera handled very well in some categories.

First, you should know that we tested the first generation of SimpliCam, which only offers 720 HD resolution. It’s lower than the industry standard 1080p HD, but it’s still decent. Thankfully, if you buy a SimpliSafe cam now, the current version has a 1080p HD resolution.

FYI: For crystal-clear resolution, you can’t go wrong with Arlo. Get the full experience of Arlo in my latest Arlo Pro 3 camera review.

As soon as we had the system up and running, we started receiving mobile alerts. Thankfully, we didn’t get messages every time the AC came on and stirred up the papers on our desk. That would get old fast. The SimpliCam features smart detection. According to the company, it operates using sophisticated algorithms that can recognize human heat signatures. In our own testing, it was pretty reliable. A number of low-cost cameras on the market, including the Ring Indoor Cam, are prone to false positives.

Fielding alerts was easy using the SimpliSafe app. Once a notification comes through, a simple swipe of the finger takes you to the livestream. Note that SimpliCam also provides two-way talk. The built-in microphone allowed me to speak to the kids through the camera, which is always helpful. To speak through the cam, hold down the microphone icon in the app. Just remember to take your finger off the mic if you want to listen in. Two-way audio is nice, but it’s a pretty standard feature nowadays.

SimpliSafe App - Overview

SimpliSafe App

So far so good. But again, none of these features is especially innovative. That said, one unique feature of the SimpliSafe camera is the stainless steel privacy shutter. The shutter provides more control over the camera feed and privacy. It opens and closes — essentially turning the camera on and off — only with user permission. It also looks like an eye-opening and closing, which I thought was kind of cyborg-chic. If you’re worried about your security camera being used by hackers to invade your privacy, I’d definitely recommend the SimpliCam for you.

Did You Know? SimpliSafe used to charge a monthly fee for smartphone controls (mobile app), but now it’s free!

Customer Service

In my experience, SimpliSafe customer service is rock-solid. Their Help Center is pretty robust, and the brand also has service channels via email, user forums, and good old-fashioned phone calls. I did come across some unflattering reviews citing long wait times, but I never waited more than a few minutes to get a friendly and professional agent on the line.

Money-Back Guarantee

SimpliSafe’s 60-day, money-back guarantee happens to be one of the better guarantees in the business, and it shows that they stand behind their product and service. If you do decide to return your equipment before your 60 days are up, SimpliSafe will even pay your return shipping. Not bad.

Standout Features of SimpliCam

Although SimpliSafe’s camera is fairly basic and barebones when it comes to features and tech, a few are still worth mentioning. Here are some standout SimpliCam features that can help protect your home and family:

Stainless Steel Privacy Shutter

If you don’t want the camera watching your every move while at home, simply switch it to “off.” This activates the stainless steel privacy shutter. You can always open the shutter (using the mobile app) once you leave home and want the camera capturing video again.

Intelligent Motion Detection

SimpliCam comes with an innovative feature designed to eliminate false alarms. The company claims its algorithms are calibrated to pick up the unique heat signature that only humans have. In my experience, this did help to reduce false alarms.

Internal Microphone

SimpliCam’s built-in microphone lets you hear what’s happening in your home, even while you’re away. Of course, if you want to record and store that audio, you have to sign up for SimpliSafe’s Cloud subscription service. Call us crazy, but it seems like that sort of perk should be standard. And free.

Did You Know? SimpliCam’s audio quality was on-par with the competition in my tests. You can expect fairly crisp and clear audio, but note that some higher-quality cameras can have two or three built-in microphones.

DIY Installation

Nobody does DIY quite like SimpliSafe. Remember, the company was founded to offer simple security solutions for renters. The do-it-yourself installation of the SimpliCam takes about 3 minutes, from start to finish. In my experience, it really couldn’t be easier.

Three-Year Warranty

SimpliSafe’s warranty is pretty generous compared to the rest of the industry. This is another advantage with SimpliSafe: Many competitors in this market offer one-year warranties. Generally, anything beyond that is going to cost extra. With SimpliSafe, the warranty is three years, and I think this is a nice touch.

Smart Home Integrations and Monitoring

I found SimpliSafe to be somewhat lacking when it came to customizations with smart home devices. But again, the brand is all about keeping things simple, and this is just part of their business model.

There is good news, though: Right now, if you purchase a SimpliSafe kit and sign up with their Interactive Monitoring plan, you can get something called “Visual Verification.” When your alarm goes off, the SimpliSafe monitoring pros can actually tap into your SimpliCam and view your live video. This way, they can verify a crime in progress and expedite emergency personnel getting to the scene. Catch ’em red-handed!

SimpliSafe Smart Lock

SimpliSafe Smart Lock

Is The SimpliCam A Good Option?

When testing security cameras, we consider several critical factors like security, privacy, and price. And the SimpliCam indoor camera did well in all those categories. It has the necessary security features – smart motion detection, clear video, two-way audio, and it has a physical privacy shutter. And at $99, it doesn’t break the bank. This adds up to make the SimpliCam a good all-around option.

SimpliSafe Add-Ons

In addition to their affordable kits, SimpliSafe does offer a few add-ons, like a smart lock and video doorbell called the Video Doorbell Pro. Here are their offerings and what you can expect to pay:

SimpliSafe Add-Ons Product Type Price
SimpliSafe Outdoor Camera Security Camera $189.99
SimpliSafe Video Doorbell Doorbell Camera $169.00
SimpliSafe Smart Alarm Wireless Camera Indoor Security Camera $139.00
Smart Lock Electronic Door Lock $119.99
Home Security Kits Entry sensors, motion sensors, keypads, etc. $199.97 and up

A Snapshot of SimpliSafe

The SimpliSafe story is always a fun one to tell. The company was founded in 2006 by Harvard business students who were looking for a solution to prevent break-ins. They quickly realized no security system offered true DIY installation and no contracts. So they got to tinkering, and they soon created SimpliSafe. Ever since its inception, SimpliSafe has been a go-to alarm system for dorm-dwellers and renters. And from what I’ve seen, the brand fills a hole in the market for no-nonsense home security.

Final Thoughts on SimpliSafe’s Camera

The bottom line is that SimpliCam works very nicely with SimpliSafe’s security systems. As a standalone camera, we wouldn’t recommend it. It lacks features that are becoming standard for indoor cameras. While it can tell the difference between people and animals, for instance, it doesn’t include package detection or the facial recognition software you’ll find in Nest cameras. In fact, virtually all of its best features are available with other, less-expensive cameras.  Maybe if the SimpliCam cost $20 less, then we’d consider recommending it as a standalone camera, but not at its current price.

But here’s the thing: in most cases, you’d be better off going with a SimpliSafe system than purchasing a single camera from another company. SimpliSafe has a lot of positives. They’re a huge draw for apartment dwellers, and they’re highly recommended for folks who relocate frequently. The equipment is extremely easy to work with — really checking all the DIY boxes and creating a sort of cult-like following of users. Budget-conscious homeowners also appreciate SimpliSafe’s low-cost monitoring plans; this is a much smaller investment than you’d have to make by going with a Vivint system or the like. (Vivint happens to be really impressive in its own right, though. Take a look at my full Vivint system analysis for more info.) Even adding a SimpliCam, you’re not paying much more for a full SimpliSafe system than you would for an individual camera, and you get so much more.

Of course, if the SimpliCam is too pricey for you, there are other options. There are loads of home security brands like Ring, Blink, and Zmodo that have plenty of indoor camera options in the sub-$100 range. If that’s what you’re looking for, check out our list of the best cheap camera systems.

It’s just that sometimes a whole system is better than the sum of its parts.

SimpliSafe Cameras FAQs

  • Does SimpliSafe have an outdoor camera?

    Yes. The SimpliSafe Outdoor Camera costs $169.99, and it’s weatherproof, has a 1080p HD resolution, and a wide, 140-degrees viewing angle.

  • Does it require a subscription?

    No, once you purchase the product, you can self-monitor for free.

  • Is cloud storage available?

    Yes, SimpliSafe offers an affordable cloud storage plan which gives you 30 days of video history (among other features) for $4.99 per month.

  • Is the resolution any good?

    The resolution of the current SimpliCam is 1080p HD, which is the industry standard. However, it’s worth noting that if you want better image quality, there are 2K and 4K HD options out there from brands like Arlo and ReoLink.

  • Is there a warranty on the camera?

    Yes, SimpliSafe offers a generous three-year warranty, along with a 60-day, money-back guarantee.

Citations only uses high-quality sources to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial guidelines to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. PR Newswire. (2017, June 21). Introducing SimpliCam — SimpliSafe's $99 Smart Security Camera.–simplisafes-99-smart-security-camera-300477770.html

Rob Gabriele
Written By
Rob Gabriele
Managing Editor & Home Security Expert

As a home security expert and Managing Editor for, Rob Gabriele has written and edited over 1,000 articles related to home security. His expertise is in smart home protection with thousands of hours of testing and research under his belt. Formerly a reporter and producer for the USAToday network, Rob has been a writer and editor for over 10 years. He holds a Master’s of Science with an emphasis on writing from the University of Montana, and he currently lives in Indianapolis, IN.