Do you need Internet access to use a WiFi surveillance security camera? The answer could be “YES” and “NO”, because that depends on how you “use” that WiFi security camera.
You may not have Internet network in your area, or you do have network but never want the WiFi cam to use up too much data of your network (in many cases you find the WiFi cameras are eating up the bandwidth). Anyway, using wireless security cameras without Internet access can be easily achieved.
Once you don’t need remote viewing on mobile phones, tablets or computers, which means the recording video doesn’t need to be sent over the network, you don’t need Internet connection at all to use a wireless security camera or a wired IP camera.
Editor’s Note: (Updated on Jan. 29, 2018) Many readers have left or shared their comments, and we’ve summed up the most asked questions with our answers in the last part. If you have any question or suggestion, pls leave it in your comment. We will reply to you soon, and we may add yours to this post.
Shortcut guides (click the one you want to read and you will jump directly to it ):
- Solutions for No Internet Connection (No WiFi at All)
- Solutions for Having Internet Connection (Cameras Won’t Use Up Bandwidth)
- Security Cameras without WiFi Network, and You Want Remote Viewing on Phone
- Frequently Asked Questions and Answers for Security Cameras without Internet (WiFi)
You have no Internet or network in your house (or grandfather’s old house), in your long range farm, at the workshop, at the warehouse, etc. and you need surveillance & monitoring at that place. Okey, and that can be done easily with wireless video cameras with no Internet connection.
All you need to do is to get a whole wireless security camera system, which comes with a WiFi NVR (Network Video Recorder) and several WiFi surveillance cams. RLK4-210WB4 wireless security camera video system is the good example.
Such wireless surveillance camera system kits enable you to do 24/7 surveillance and video recording without accessing Internet. Power on the NVR and the cameras. The NVR and the cameras will automatically connect to each other on its own proprietary network and start to communicate with each other without Internet access (without connecting to your router). Connect the NVR to a HD TV or a monitor, and you can start 24/7 monitoring.
And this is how you can make the IP camera set-up without Internet.
Those wireless security camera video systems have built-in WiFi modules with frequency from Channel 9 of 2.4 GHz (of course you can change the channel by yourself within the WLAN channels), so that it won’t mess with your router bands (if you have router networks).
Remember that you need to connect the system to a router if you need remote viewing, and monition detection alerts (emails or push notifications sent to your mobile phone).
Tips: Buy a WiFi surveillance camera system with 2T2R MIMO antennas, which guarantee stronger signal reception and no signal loss.
Updated: (Jan. 29, 2018) You can also try a wired security camera kit if your monitoring place has no Internet. Take the PoE camera kit RLK8-410B4 as an example. It works like the wireless security camera system mentioned above. The only difference lies in that the data transmission in this PoE kit is via cables.
Having Internet connection but you don’t want the WiFi camera to use the data because it could eat up the bandwidth? Try a wireless security IP camera. Let me explain more details.
Choose a weatherproof or waterproof wireless security IP camera (Reolink Argus 2 for example). You can put this wire-free camera outside or inside your house. Use its free software on your mobile phone to set up the camera and connect it to your router wirelessly – don’t get me wrong – connecting it to your router doesn’t mean the camera will use your network when it’s at work (see problems and solutions of connecting an IP camera to network).
Remember to make sure the motion detection alerts (yeah the WiFi camera is using the Internet but it’s just for a while) are enabled if you want to get informed on your phone. And DONE!
The camera will start to work – it will capture video to the SD card you insert into the camera, and be a deterrence of burglars.
And most importantly, the wireless security IP camera won’t get your Internet access unless you use your phone to connect to it and get live streaming remotely, or unless it detects burglars and sends video or images to you. In a nutshell, the WiFi surveillance battery camera uses your Internet only when it’s necessary, so it won’t “eat up” your data. (PS: it’s rechargeable battery powered and also can be solar-powered.)
An alternative to use little Internet network is to try the WiFi security camera RLC-411WS. It will watch over your home 24/7, record videos to its built-in SD card and only use your network when you remotely access the camera to get live view or when motion alerts are sent to you.
Your old house needs surveillance cameras but you don’t want to add network there, and you have to remotely get live streaming or get burglar motion detection alerts? Well, that would be a big big big headache to the security industry. Till now, no technology can achieve that goal without the real network. Although the transmitting frequency (take 433MHz as the example) of radio can reach long distance (probably 100m), that’s far not enough to solve that problem.
And that will be difficult for a phone to receive the signal without Internet because now all smartphones are receiving mobile phone standards WiFi signals (such as 2G, 3G, 4G, and LTE) and Bluetooth signals, not the UHF band radio frequency signals.
In a word, as long as there are data sent wirelessly and remotely from one side to another, there have to be network. And thanks to the new achievement on technology, there is a solution for “no network but want remote access on phone”, and that is – cellular security cameras – security cameras that use phone data.
We try best to answer all questions asked about security camera solutions without network and sum up the most asked ones in this part, so that you can get answers quickly without pulling down the comments. Leave yours and we will answer as soon as possible and will add it to this part.
Q1. No WiFi and need recording on a monitor. Any outdoor camera security system available?
“I need an outdoor camera security system. WiFi is not available. I don’t need to check it on phones but need recording on a monitor.”
Answer: RLK8-410B4 (or RLK4-210B4) is absolutely what you need. This non-wifi outdoor camera security system works without network and does 24/7 recording. You can connect the system to a monitor to see streaming and recording.
Q2. Can wireless cameras use a mobile hot spot to work?
“I have a mobile hot spot with no router on a jobsite. What wireless camera can use this? and give me remote viewing?”
Answer: Actually you do have network, and it’s a mobile network. Things can be easier with network. You can try the wire-free 2.4 GHz WiFi battery powered camera Reolink Argus 2, or the plugged-in 2.4 or 5 GHz WiFi camera RLC-411WS. Both can connect to your mobile hot spot.
Q3. Any security camera available that doesn’t need wifi but my PC’s Ethernet internet?
“I want a security camera that doesn’t need wifi but uses my PC’s Ethernet Internet connection.”
Answer: You can choose an IP security camera and use the same internet connection with your PC and watch the live viewing via your PC. Or you may also buy a security camera system and connect your PC displayer to the NVR for live streaming. A wide range of high quality wireless and wired security cameras and systems are available. Choose one you like in the store. If you want a recommendation, try RLC-410.
Q4. Can I access the camera with my mobile phone data network?
“I wish to monitor my boat at the pontoon beside my house – 30m away. I would place the surveillence camera at the house where there is internet , and wish to do the monitoring when we are away in areas without internet access. I wish to use my mobile phone for the access”
Answer: Definitely yes! As long as the camera is connecting to the internet, you can access the camera anytime and anywhere. Remote access is available via phone’s 3G/4G/5G data network.
Q5. No WiFi and no electricity? Any security camera available?
“I need to get security cameras at my ranch, but there is no Wi-Fi and I don’t have electricity over there. Is there any way to get security cameras?”
Answer: Reolink Argus 2 is the right security camera for you. It’s rechargeable battery powered (also can be solar-powered) and can work without network and without electricity. But as mentioned above, you need to use its free software (Reolink App) on your mobile phone with network to set up the camera. After that, no network is needed. It will do recording to the SD card (you need to buy one to insert into it) whenever it detects an event. Pls note that you won’t get live view and alerts since there is no network.