Best wireless security cameras for small businesses

Our experts’ top picks of the best CCTV systems to keep your office or home safe

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  • Bryn Glover

The best wireless security cameras combine quality footage with the most useful features, so you can know your business is safe, even when you can’t be there.

IP or CCTV cameras start recording once they detect motion, and most work by keeping you in the loop with a phone alert of what’s happening your office or home while you’re out.

The top-of-the-range wireless surveillance cameras will include facial recognition and two-way audio, but at the very least you’ll want to make sure you have night vision (so the camera works day and night), decent video quality (at least 720 pixels) and an app that’s easy to use.

We’ve picked out and reviewed the best wireless CCTV cameras with everything you need to secure your business – whatever your budget and needs:

Plus, we've included a hot tip about a particular camera it's probably best to avoid.

Netgear Arlo Q: The best all-rounder

The good

HD video quality
Free 7-day cloud storage
Easy-to-use camera
Discrete design
Reliable motion detector

The less good

✘ No account sharing options
✘ No ethernet port
✘ Setup could be easier

The Netgear Arlo Q is a top-rated wireless security camera for small business use. It combines HD video with crisp audio and a generous 7 days of free cloud storage.

What's the Netgear Arlo Q like to use?

Unlike some CCTV security systems, Netgear's Arlo Q lets you get live and recorded access to your footage from your PC or or mobile app. It's so easy to control the camera from any of your devices and the app is simple and intuitive. Our only bugbear is that just one person can access the account at a time, but we know for many independent small business owners that won't be an issue.

How’s the video quality?

It's rare to find an affordable CCTV camera that records in full HD – but the Arlo Q just happens to be a first-class example. The wide angle lens keeps you in the picture without losing detail – and the infrared mode will secure your business day and night.

The Arlo Q captures clear footage at up to 12 metres from the camera. The motion detector is also pin-sharp and the video is some of the smoothest we saw (a must just in case you ever need to identify an intruder).

Is the Arlo Q for me?

Yes, it's the best wireless surveillance camera we tested. It's got top-notch video and audio quality, plus a stellar app, robust privacy using encryption and extra generous cloud storage.This is our best-rated indoor CCTV camera with some hard-to-fault specs at a surprisingly affordable price.

Foscam C2: Best value for money

The good

High quality footage
Excellent value for money
MicroSD card slot
Solid build
Great motion detector

The less good

✘ Web portal could be easier to use
✘ Poorer zoomed image quality

Quite simply, we've found the Foscam C2 is the best security camera on the market for video quality, app usability, but above all value for money.

What's the Foscam C2 like to use?

The Foscam C2 camera connects to an app that you can install on your smartphone or tablet and the user-friendly manual helps you get started right away.

Compared to the app, the computer interface is light on features, but it's always a good back-up for the rare occasions when you might not have your phone on you. At this price range, you can expect a mains (rather than battery) powered camera, so this CCTV system will need to reach a plug. But the Foscam C2 is wireless and versatile enough to fit on a shelf, wall or ceiling.

How’s the video quality?

This Foscam CCTV system has one of the best cameras we've tested. The image quality is crystal clear, even in low lighting and the infrared mode is hard to fault.

As with most digital cameras, you'll find a tad less quality when you zoom, but you'll still be able to pick out any intruders' faces should you need to. Subjects appear clear over 12 metres away and the wide field of vision covers even larger offices. You can save your footage to the cloud to make sure it doesn't get lost with reasonable pricing plans (between £39 and £99, depending on your time period).

What's more, small business owners get the added flexibility of being able to store the video footage on the camera itself and on the cloud.

Is the Foscam C2 for me?

The Foscam C2 is a stellar business camera if you care about protecting your office with quality footage and some of the most robust data privacy you'll find.In a nutshell, we find this the best CCTV security system you can get your hands on for under £100.

Logitech Circle: Best video quality

The good

Stunning night vision
Wide field of view
Rechargeable battery
Waterproof
Top marks for privacy

The less good

✘ Battery could last longer
✘ No computer access
✘ Only 24 hrs free storage

Logitech's new Circle 2 films top-quality video footage, day and night. It's ultra easy to use, waterproof for indoor and outdoor use and lets you check the last 24 hours of footage for free.

What's the Logitech Circle 2 like to use?

Most small business owners don't have the time to rifle through a heavy duty user manual. So the Logi Circle is extra easy to use and even comes with an installation wizard to get you up and running quick.

You can pop the Logitech Circle 2 on a table, or it mounts easily on a wall – and Bluetooth will connect the IP security camera straight to your Android phone or iPhone. The app is intuitive and lets you control the camera from the palm of your hand.

This CCTV system is powered by batteries as well as mains, which is handy for shuffling it around your work space. The rechargeable battery which doubles as a camera base is also a nice touch.

How’s the video quality?

The footage resolution is a generous 1,280 x 720 pixels – that gets you sharp videos day and night and the extra wide field of view is great for keeping every nook and cranny in shot. Plus the data encryption keeps all the videos safe.

Is the Circle 2 for me?

Yes, if you want quality footage that's easy to control from your phone. You won't get computer access to the videos, but the app works well and everything is backed up securely on the cloud (online) for extra peace of mind.

Nest Cam review: Best for user-friendly app

The good

Stellar image quality
Night vision
Two-way audio
Easy-to-use app
High level privacy

The less good

✘ Not the cheapest
✘ Ongoing subscription costs
✘ Small lag time with app

With a first-class camera, two-way audio and one of the most easy-to-use apps, Google's Nest Cam is one of the most popular wireless office security cameras out there.

What's the Nest Cam like to use?

Made by Google, this is as user-friendly as you'd expect. You can either just use the Nest Cam as a live cam which sends alerts to your phone, or add an ongoing subscription which lets you check back over your footage for a small fee (from £8 a month).

The setup process is a breeze thanks to the helpful quick-start wizard and the wireless camera connects straight to your work wifi. You'll get alerts for sound or movement with some footage, so you can check what's happening. The app interface is intuitive and it's easy to adjust the settings.

There's a tiny lag between the camera and viewing device, but this is fairly common in security systems and shouldn't be a deal breaker.

How’s the video quality?

The video footage is where the Nest Cam really shines. The resolution goes right to 1,920 x 1,020 which gives you a spotless level of detail even at up to 12 metres.

The infrared camera will even capture video with no lighting, so your business will be protected after dark – and your footage is stored straight onto the cloud.

Is the Nest Cam for me?

We think so. It's hard to beat for camera quality, app functionality, robust motion sensor and encryption-based privacy. Even if you can find cheaper digital wifi cameras, for specs at this level, you'd usually pay a lot more.

It isn't waterproof, but you can always pick up a weatherproof cover (for around £10 online) to upgrade it to a trusty outdoor CCTV camera system.

Netgear Arlo: Best outdoor CCTV camera

The good

Crystal clear video
1GB free storage
Intuitive app
Compact and slick design
Waterproof camera

The less good

✘ On the expensive end
✘ No two-way audio
✘ Setup could be simpler

This Arlo is ideal if you want reliable HD footage inside and outside your office.

What's the Netgear Arlo like to use?

You just fix the camera wherever you want it to go using magnetic mounts, install the Arlo app on your smartphone or tablet, sync the two devices and you're ready to go.

Arlo lets you live stream your video on your PC or phone app and it can either run all day long or via a motion detector setting that just picks up anyone who shouldn't be there – and alerts you with a snippet of the action.

We found it easy to customise the settings on our app and you can count on this Arlo not to miss a thing.

How’s the video quality?

The 1,280 x 720 pixels resolution is one of the best and the night vision is solid, but just a whisker less detailed than the Arlo Q.As you'd expect with a top-rated security camera, this nifty CCTV device has a wide field of vision and records detail up to 12 metres away (big enough for most small businesses).

Is this Arlo for me?

Yes, if you want quality indoor or outdoor footage, a premium build and one of the most user-friendly and features-rich apps around. The Netgear Arlo camera is on the pricier end, but remains one of the most trusted security systems for start-ups and small businesses.

Plus that price includes two cameras, so you can put one inside and one outside your business premises

To avoid: Yale Home View

For a brand that’s known for keeping our homes safe with thief-proof locks, we expected a top security system from Yale.

However, the video quality of the Yale Home View is not quite up to the task – you can barely make out faces which is a minimum requirement for IP security cameras.

What’s more the camera was too slow to detect motion to be of any use at all and the phone alerts were also hit-and-miss.

We can’t recommend Yale to our readers, but the wifi digital cameras listed above should do a stellar job of protecting your business when you can’t. Our expert picks cover a range of budgets and our reviews should help you pick the right one for you.

Best business security cameras: Our verdict

We checked out all the best wireless security camera brands (including Swann, Netatmo and Samsung). But for top specs, usability and value for money, only five models made the final cut here. So to sum it all up, whether you're on the hunt for a top-notch indoor or outdoor wireless security system, here are the five best surveillance cameras around:

Our Number One for all-round top specs is the Netgear Arlo Q. It's got an incredible HD video, a user-friendly app and free cloud storage for seven days – plus it's one of the most affordable CCTV cameras on the market today.

But if you're on an even tighter shoestring, go for the Foscam C2 which is the best security camera you can get for under £100.Even cheaper business and home surveillance cameras are available, but they didn't perform well in our tests – and based on the poor customer ratings, users aren't too impressed either.

Our final top tip when it comes to securing your business?

Look into the different security solutions available, and compare pricing quotes from several leading UK suppliers.

Sound like a hassle? We've created our business security solutions comparison tool to save you hours of researching time. Simply answer a few questions about your business, and we'll send you bespoke quotes from top UK providers who match your requirements – all for free!

Bryn Glover
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