Connected home security cameras have been on the market for quite some time, but D-Link recently began selling the first HomeKit-compatible security camera.

Priced competitively at $199, the D-Link Omna 180 Cam HD camera has several perks over competing cameras that don't offer HomeKit integration -- it's guaranteed to have Apple's required level of encryption, it works with Siri, and it can be viewed right in the Apple-created Home app.

Design

The Omna is made from brushed aluminum and is palm-sized, so it can be placed just about anywhere, but it needs to go on a flat surface and can't be wall mounted like some other options. Size wise, it's a bit taller than a standard soda can, but skinnier.

dlinkomna
The camera portion is mounted on the front, a microSD card slot is at the bottom along with a reset button, and there's a small grated area at the bottom, presumably for heat dissipation, since the Omna does get somewhat warm. A green LED on the front lights up when it's powered on, and a power cord is attached to the back.

omnasizecomparison
There is no included battery, so the Omna can't be used without a power source, but it connects to a home Wi-Fi network so only a single power cord is needed for operation.

omnadesign
Along with the camera, it includes a microphone for two-way communication purposes. All in all, it's a compact, simple camera that fits in well wherever it's placed, but it's not going to go in as many places as the cameras that can also be wall mounted.

Camera Quality

One of the Omna's best features is its 180 degree wide-angle lens, which offers a wider view than many of the other home cameras on the market. The super wide angle captures almost the entirety of my office, and if I had it back further in the corner, it would be able to see the entire room from wall to wall.

The camera is 1080p for a clear picture in both bright and low light situations. Quality wise, it is on par with my Logi Circle and the Flir FX that I've tested in the past, and I was impressed with the resolution. Everything was clear with little blurring, but there is distortion due to the angle of the lens.

omnaroomview
The Logi Circle has a zoom function that I use often, something that's missing here in the Omna. There's no zoom capability to get a closer look at what's going on in the room.

When the lights are out or in low light situations, the Omna has an infrared night vision setting for capturing clear video even when it's dark.

omnanightvision
Because the lens is so wide, the Omna needs to be positioned carefully. If it's next to anything, the object may block a portion of the field of view, which somewhat limits where it can be placed. In my office, I needed to put it at the very corner edge of a side table for a decent view.

App

The Omna app is bare bones and offers surprisingly few options in comparison to other similar camera apps. It opens to a home screen with buttons to view the camera, change Home/Room settings, add accessories, and choose between a live view and SD playback for video saved to an SD card.

omnaapp
There are also options to turn on motion detection and set a motion detection area, which allows you to single out areas where motion detection should be focused, such as a door or window, while ignoring other areas. A re-trigger delay can also be set, as can a sensitivity feature.

Motion detection can be used with HomeKit and it can also be used to send you alerts whenever motion is detected. Unfortunately, there's no way to use a timer with motion detection to turn it on automatically when you leave the house -- it's on or it's off and it needs to be toggled on or off in the app. You can create a motion detection automation in the Home app, but it's limited to always on or on after sunset, and it can't be used in scenes. There are no deeper levels of customization.

omnamotiondetection
There is no cloud storage option in the Omna app, so there's no way to store footage remotely. For some people who don't want their camera streams uploaded to the cloud, this is a plus, but for others concerned about home security, it's a negative.

If someone broke into a home and was captured on the Omna camera, the footage could be erased and made inaccessible simply by taking the camera or the SD card. It's not exactly inconspicuous with a green LED that doesn't turn off, and, at night, an additional two red LEDs for the night vision.

The SD card option seems to only save 20 seconds of footage at a time, with no option to extend it, which seems way too short. Recordings happen whenever motion is detected. Based on the motion delay you've set in the app, you'll get 20 second snippets every 30 seconds to 5 minutes. Mine's set at five minutes, so my camera is essentially recording 20 seconds of footage at five minute intervals whenever it sees movement (by the way, it's activated by movement only - not sound).

I would rather be able to have continuous recording that captured a longer length of time but overwrote footage as the SD card fills up because I don't think these 20 second snippets would be useful in a situation where I need camera footage. It's also not possible to set the SD card to record only at specific times -- it's all or nothing.

The 20 second limit is designed to allow users to check in and watch a short snippet whenever a motion detection notification is sent, which is useful, but I would have liked to have additional recording options. The Omna app's organization for SD recordings is also abysmal, with each snippet denoted by just a date and time, and there's no way to save footage to the camera roll.

HomeKit Integration

The Omna Camera can be used with either the dedicated D-Link Omna app or with the built-in Home app that's available on iOS devices. In the Home app, if added as a favorite accessory, the camera feed will be viewable directly on the home screen, which is useful for getting an overview of all HomeKit-enabled products at a glance.

That it's viewable in the Home app also means there's no need to download the Omna app on each device - you can just use the Home app when you need to access the camera. You will need to use the dedicated Omna app for viewing footage recorded on the SD card, though. Home can only show a live view.

homeappomna
Because it uses HomeKit, the Omna was simple to set up. I downloaded the Omna app, chose "Add Accessory" and then scanned the HomeKit code on the device. It took just a few seconds to get it up and running from there, and I also could have set it up directly in the Home app to save even more time. I already have a HomeKit setup so I didn't need to go through that process, but if this is your first HomeKit product, there are a few other steps, such as creating a room.

In HomeKit, the Omna camera and its motion sensing capabilities are treated as two different accessories, which allows for motion sensing options when creating an Automation in the Home app. When motion is detected, HomeKit can do things like turn on your lights, but I'm not sure how useful this is because, as mentioned before, no real timers can be set.

omnahomemotiondetection
As I mentioned before, motion sensing can also be used for sending an alert to an iPhone whenever motion is detected, a great option when away from home, but again, this will need to be toggled on manually in the app unless you want constant alerts. When you get a motion detected alert, it comes with a quick snapshot of what's going on in the room.

As for Siri integration, you can ask about the camera to bring up the live view in the Home app, or you can ask whether or not the camera is detecting any motion, and that's about it. Siri isn't super useful with camera accessories.

The other HomeKit aspect worth mentioning is encryption. Apple has high encryption standards and requires all of its HomeKit-certified products to implement strong encryption, which brings peace of mind, especially with a product like a camera.

Bottom Line

If you have an extensive HomeKit setup or are interested in HomeKit products, the Omna is worth checking out. If you don't have a HomeKit setup, there's no real reason to get the Omna -- it's clearly been designed to work with HomeKit and the app is a little barebones compared to the apps of other camera products like the Logi Circle or the Flir FX.

HomeKit has some undeniable benefits like encryption, an ability to see the camera view in the Home app and motion detection triggers, but beyond that, this is just a standard camera that has some shortcomings compared to other home security cameras on the market. It's a solid camera, but if you don't need HomeKit compatibility, there are better options.

If you're looking for a security solution, the Omna is probably also not the greatest choice. It doesn't offer a lot of options when it comes to recording video, and without offsite storage, a thief can just walk away with your camera. If you just need something for checking in on pets and kids every now and then and aren't concerned with the drawbacks, the Omna is worth considering.

Pros:

  • Simple setup
  • HomeKit-level encryption
  • 180 degree field of view
  • Infrared for recording at night
  • No subscription fees

Cons:

  • No cloud storage
  • Motion detection isn't customizable enough
  • Need to buy separate microSD card
  • No sound activation, movement only
  • Can't easily save footage to iPhone
  • Can't view recorded footage in Home app
  • No zoom
  • Can't turn off LEDs

How to Buy

The Omna 180 Cam HD Camera is available from Apple.com for $199.95.

Top Rated Comments

vertical smile Avatar
59 months ago
I can't remember if this is it or not, but it might be similar to what you are looking for.

Netatmo Presence ('https://www.macrumors.com/2016/01/04/ces-2016-netatmo-presence-security-camera/')

If I remember correctly, the thing I liked about this camera was the subscription-less operation, and the ability to do long-term storage separately from the unit, such as a network drive or a cloud.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Eggy123 Avatar
59 months ago
This article is missing the point. This camera is pointless. Thief sees the camera turns it over and takes the SD card. No back up... worthless camera.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
jclo Avatar
59 months ago
This article is missing the point. This camera is pointless. Thief sees the camera turns it over and takes the SD card. No back up... worthless camera.
Review most definitely mentions that negative. I would not use this for home security, but it's okay if you want to check in on a dog or a kid throughout the day.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
vertical smile Avatar
59 months ago
I need a hidden cam for thief and car scratchers!!!!
There was a camera that looked like an exterior wall/porch light that was posted on MR like a year ago. I wouldn't say it was completely hidden, but it looked like a pretty good deal.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
cerote Avatar
59 months ago
Seen cheaper cameras but it's about the HomeKit.

Been searching for a decent priced IP camera some ok ones for 89$.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
sudo1996 Avatar
59 months ago
As someone who has set up extensive security camera systems at both my parents' and grandmother's houses, this market is a mess. Sure you can get good hardware like high-quality cameras, but there's no easy-setup, easy to monitor, distributed, fault-tolerant, and inexpensive DVR solution despite all the hardware and software being there. And this thing in the article is useless. If I had more time, I'd build a Linux machine or two as a DVR for our cameras instead of these PoS things from China we have that are a pain to use and would probably be part of several botnets by now had I not firewalled them off.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

iphone 12 colors 2021

iPhone 12 Colors: Deciding on The Right Color

Thursday November 5, 2020 8:35 am PST by
The iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro arrived last October in a range of color options, with entirely new hues available on both devices, as well as some popular classics. The 12 and 12 Pro have different color choices, so if you have your heart set on a particular shade, you might not be able to get your preferred model in that color. iPhone 12 mini and iPhone 12 The iPhone 12 mini and iPhone 12...
original iphone

Phil Schiller Says iPhone Was 'Earth-Shattering' Ten Years Ago and Remains 'Unmatched' Today

Monday January 9, 2017 7:15 am PST by
To commemorate the tenth anniversary of the iPhone, Apple marketing chief Phil Schiller sat down with tech journalist Steven Levy for a wide-ranging interview about the smartphone's past, present, and future. The report first reflects upon the iPhone's lack of support for third-party apps in its first year. The argument inside Apple was split between whether the iPhone should be a closed...
iCloud General Feature

iCloud+'s New Custom Email Domain Feature Now Available in Beta

Wednesday August 25, 2021 7:48 am PDT by
Starting with iOS 15, iPadOS 15, and macOS Monterey, users with a paid iCloud+ storage plan can personalize their iCloud email address with a custom domain name, such as johnny@appleseed.com, and the feature is now available in beta. iCloud+ subscribers interested in setting up a custom email domain can visit the beta.icloud.com website, select "Account Settings" under their name, and select ...
iPhone 13 Dummy Thumbnail 2

Full iPhone 13 Feature Breakdown: Everything Rumors Say We Can Expect

Tuesday August 31, 2021 7:50 am PDT by
With the launch of Apple's iPhone 13 lineup believed to be just a few weeks away, we have compiled all of the coherent rumors from our coverage over the past year to build a full picture of the features and upgrades coming to the company's new smartphones. For clarity, only explicit improvements, upgrades, and new features compared to the iPhone 12 lineup are listed. It is worth noting that...
iPhone 13 Dummy Thumbnail 2

Kuo: iPhone 13 to Feature LEO Satellite Communications to Make Calls and Texts Without Cellular Coverage

Sunday August 29, 2021 7:39 am PDT by
The iPhone 13 will feature low earth orbit (LEO) satellite communication connectivity to allow users to make calls and send messages in areas without 4G or 5G coverage, according to the reliable analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. In a note to investors, seen by MacRumors, Kuo explained that the iPhone 13 lineup will feature hardware that is able to connect to LEO satellites. If enabled with the relevant...
macbook air deals

Deals: Amazon Drops Price of 256GB M1 MacBook Air to New Low of $849.99 ($149 Off)

Friday August 27, 2021 6:16 am PDT by
Amazon today introduced new low prices on the M1 MacBook Air for both 256GB and 512GB storage options. To start, you can get the 256GB model for $849.99, down from an original price of $999.00. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with Amazon. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site running. Only Silver and Gold are...
maxresdefault

New MacBook Pro Models Coming at WWDC, Suggests Leaker

Monday May 24, 2021 1:27 pm PDT by
New MacBook Pro models are coming at WWDC, according to leaker Jon Prosser who has a mixed track record when it comes to predicting Apple's plans. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. Prosser provided no additional information, but there are new 14 and 16-inch MacBook Pro models in the works. The new MacBook Pros will feature the most radical redesign to the MacBook Pro ...
calculatorapp

iOS 11 Bug: Typing 1+2+3 Quickly in the Calculator App Won't Get You 6

Tuesday October 24, 2017 2:03 pm PDT by
A bug in the built-in Calculator app in iOS 11 is getting some major attention this week, despite the fact that it's been around since iOS 11 was in beta testing. At issue is a calculator animation that causes some symbols to be ignored when calculations are entered in rapid succession. You can try it for yourself: Type 1+2+3 and then the equals sign into the Calculator app quickly. Due to...
maxresdefault

'Being James Bond' Retrospective Will Be Free to Watch Through Apple TV App

Tuesday August 31, 2021 8:25 am PDT by
Update 9/7/21: "Being James Bond" is now available to watch through the Apple TV app. Ahead of the theatrical release of James Bond film "No Time To Die" on October 8 in the United States, a 45-minute retrospective titled "Being James Bond" will be available to watch for free through the Apple TV app, according to Deadline. The story from MGM is said to feature Daniel Craig reflecting ...
ted lasso notchless phone

No, That Notchless iPhone Spotted in 'Ted Lasso' Isn't the iPhone 13

Tuesday August 31, 2021 2:15 am PDT by
Recent sightings of a notchless iPhone in highly popular Apple TV+ comedy "Ted Lasso" have led to sensational headlines suggesting this is a canny bit of product placement on Apple's part and that the iPhone 13 will be notchless. In actuality – and this could go without saying – the phone in question is very likely just showing a poorly superimposed display added in post-production. Notchless ...