The best security cameras that run on batteries to buy this year

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The best security cameras that run on batteries to buy this year

Not only do battery-powered security cameras give you more installation flexibility than their wired counterparts, they’re also typically weatherproof for outside use. That means you can install a wireless security camera on a fence, in a tree — or pretty much anywhere — as long as your Wi-Fi network reaches it — to beef up your home security system, keep an eye on your house and help deter intruders.

I’ve picked three models that I especially like for a variety of reasons, though I took into account things like video quality, field of view, whether it offered a mobile app and recording options, if it connects to your existing smart home setup and, of course, battery life. The Arlo Pro 3 is my favorite all-around camera. Period. Since it happens to be battery-powered too, it’s my favorite for this list. I like the Blink XT2 for its reasonable price — $100 — and its long battery life (up to two years). The third and final camera in the list, the Logitech Circle 2, offers a wide range of compatible accessories to further extend its battery-powered convenience (and as a security camera that runs on battery power, it’s already pretty convenient). So, keep reading if you’re looking for the best battery powered security camera to meet your wireless outdoor security needs.

Read more: The best video doorbells of 2020

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The Arlo Pro 3 home security camera is battery-powered so you can mount it to a tree or a fence without having to think about an annoying power cord. This wireless camera is also weatherproof to tackle the elements and is supposed to last for a few months on a single charge, depending on usage. Basically, it’s absolutely perfect for outdoor security.

In addition to its convenient rechargeable battery, the Pro 3 has a lot of standout features: a built-in siren; arm/disarm modes; and person, animal, vehicle and package motion detection alerts (with an optional Arlo Smart subscription plan). The device also allows for two-way communication and has both color and black and white night vision for a crystal clear view of what’s going on in your yard. And the video quality is top-notch.

If you’re looking to incorporate your wireless outdoor security camera into your existing smart home system, the Pro 3 works with Alexa and Google Assistant.

Read our Arlo Pro 3 review.

Chris Monroe/CNET

The Blink XT2 costs $100. For your money, you get one battery-powered camera and one Sync module. The Sync module is supposed to extend the camera’s battery life and it helps the app and the camera communicate via wireless signal.

If you already have a Sync module from a previous Blink purchase, you should be able to use it with the XT2 as well. If that’s the case, you’ll only need to buy the standalone camera for $90. And, at that price, you might as well get a few for a whole security camera system.

The camera has 1080p HD live streaming, alerts, free cloud storage, night vision and weather-resistant housing. It sends push notifications to your smartphone via an app when its sensor picks up movement. The weatherproof device also offers two-way communication. It runs on two AA lithium-metal batteries that are supposed to last for up to two years.

I’ve been testing one since July 2019 — and it’s still going strong. The Blink XT2 works with Alexa.

Read more about the Blink XT2.


The Logitech Circle 2 comes in two versions — the $180 wired model and the $200 battery-powered model. I reviewed the wired model, but spent time testing both. 

The battery-powered Circle 2 is a solid camera. Like the Pro 3 and the Blink XT2, the Circle 2 connects to your wireless network and is weather resistant. It has 1080p HD live streaming for crystal clear picture, night vision, two-way talk and a time-lapse feature. It’s supposed to last between one to three months on one charge. It also offers free 24 hour cloud storage, storing 10 to 60 second motion based videos. Push notifications are sent via app to your phone when the camera detects movement.

It also works with a variety of accessories — the $30 plug mount, a $40 window mount and a $20 magnetic mount. If you use either the plug or window mount with your Circle 2 battery-powered camera, it will work with Siri (via Apple HomeKit and HomeKit Secure Video), as well as its standard support for Amazon Alexa.

Annoyingly, the battery-powered Circle 2 does not support Apple HomeKit without either the plug or window mount accessories. (Read more on that from Logitech here.)

Read our Circle 2 (wired model) review.

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