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Wednesday, April 26th, 2023 10:27 PM

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Outdoor Camera Delay

Hello,

Our engineering team is aware that some users are experiencing extended delays on the Outdoor Camera - both when the user attempts to livestream, and when the camera's motion sensor is triggered for a recording.

Work on optimizing performance through firmware updates is IN PROGRESS. Our engineering team has had some success, but we're not finished yet! Firmware 1.15 is rolling out now, and more are on the way.

In the meantime, there are a couple of steps that you can do on your end to help with performance. In order to save battery life, the Outdoor Camera goes into a deep sleep, and part of the process of waking up the device requires communication with your Base Station. So it might help to move your Base Station to a different spot that is closer to the same side of the house as your Outdoor Camera.

98 Messages

2 years ago

Why does it take SO LONG for the New Outdoor Cam to wake up? It can take 5-10 sec. I've read many people post about the same thing.
This means that when motion is triggered it catches the "end of the act" if at all.

Note: This comment was created from a merged conversation originally titled New Outdoor Camera wake time is SO Slow

(edited)

16 Messages

Having the exact same issue, and it's terribly sad because I wanted to like the outdoor camera.  Obviously a poorly designed, half-baked product that isn't going to work for most people, which is terribly disappointing because I really do think they typically make great products.  Their technical support has been particularly unhelpful, so it seems like they want me to return to my indoor camera in the outdoor camera cover.  Really disappointed.

Captain

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5.8K Messages

Not to defend Simplisafe, but to refer to history, the Simplicams and doorbell pro cameras were a lost slower when first released too. At this time they load very quickly and perform well. I suspect overtime and firmware updates the Outdoor camera will too.

For SImplisafe, a question:  Is it possible if the camara is on an alternate power source (AC adapter or solar panel) you can leave it on at all times, not checking for battery status to make it perform same as the Simplicam or doorbell?  It would seem the "waking up camera" and "connecting" stages would no longer be necessary.

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Hi folks,

The Outdoor Camera is designed to go into a deep sleep when not active to preserve battery life. It might take a second or so for it to wake up - but definitely shouldn't be as long as 10 seconds!

Our dev team pushed out a firmware update that helps with the issue a little bit, targeting a decrease in that wake-up time. If the update hasn't rolled out to your device yet, it should soon.

- Davey D.
Community Development Manager
SimpliSafe Home Security

Community Admin

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5.3K Messages

@Captain,

No, the battery is always the main power source, and the Outdoor Camera is not aware of when an external source is plugged in.

- Davey D.
Community Development Manager
SimpliSafe Home Security

98 Messages

Mine updated today to v1.4.4.262 and the wakeup lag is better. still slow but better.

10 Messages

2 years ago

Hello everyone,

I installed two outdoor cameras and set the sensor sensitivity to high. I get so many alerts (as the zoning seems still not working) but the start of the recordings seem to be delayed 2-3 sec. For example, I had a delivery guy bringing a package to my porch ~20ft from the road and the camera caught only the delivery guy leaving the porch.

Anyone any ideas what can be wrong?

Note: This comment was created from a merged conversation originally titled Outdoor cameras - motion detection delayed

64 Messages

Seems everyone is having this issue. Davy?

10 Messages

Is this a community help site or is actually someone from the company monitors the threads? 

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5.3K Messages

Hi @siameselynx,

It's both! And yes, we've been hearing some reports of sluggishness from the Outdoor Camera - perhaps partially a side effect of the camera's Deep Sleep feature that helps preserve battery life.

Improved responsiveness is definitely a focus for future firmware updates. Stay tuned.

10 Messages

@davey_d​ thanks!
Is there a way to have the recording running 24/7 to make sure every event is captured?

99 Messages

@davey_d​ Looking forward to this update. My outdoor camera is missing a lot of stuff. I have it set to people only and medium sensitivity. I tried high, but the battery drains quickly. Also the activity zone blocking does not work well at all.

11 Messages

2 years ago

When checking the outdoor cameras first it says "waking up camera", then "connecting", then "launching live view". If you get an alarm you want to see the camera quickly not 5-8 seconds later. Can anything be set to speed that up?

Note: This comment was created from a merged conversation originally titled Outdoor view delay

Captain

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5.8K Messages

@dmedwick I called support to ask the same question. They advised that due to the battery architecture these were necessary steps. Not being an electrical engineer like my father was (I know which end of a screwdriver to hold, however :-) if there is another power source like my two AC adapters for my cameras, I would think there would be a way to by pass that. Confident other, much smarter folks than I will explain the challenges.

On the plus side, the outdoor cameras are definitely getting faster to start streaming after each firmware update. And, for comparative purposes, the Simplicams were very slow when first released, but now are only a second or two.

Community Admin

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5.3K Messages

Hi @dmedwick ,

Yes, this is a side effect of the Outdoor Camera coming out of Deep Sleep, which is designed to preserve battery life when not in use. There's a little bit of a delay with the chain of connections, from your phone to our servers, then from the servers to your home's WiFi, then from your WiFi to the camera.

There should be a slightly faster response when the camera is triggered by actual alarm system events, as well as from the built-in Motion Sensor. But there's definitely room for improvement. We recently released an update with some gains on performance, but there is definitely more to come on that front.

Captain

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@davey_d​ Pointing out in my earlier post I am not an engineer, can you possibly ask one of the "techno wizards" what prevents a change in the firmware not to have the camera go into a "deep sleep" when the battery charging is no longer an issue due to the AC adapter providing power all of the time?  As a customer this would seem, on the surface, an easy thing to do, however, I do know in the real world that is usually not the case.

I would really like the camera to stay awake if plugged in to AC, especially since the cable was $50…

29 Messages

It would seem that at the very least, if the charge of the battery is sufficient, the circuit to SS should be sustained, in the same way it appears to be for the powered doorbell camera, or perhaps a variation of that so that a new circuit between the camera and SS doesn’t have to be initiated.  

What I don’t understand is if a trigger sends a notification and a video to SS which is accessible to a client app in a matter of a second or two, why does it take so long to establish a real-time connection? All the prep for establishing the circuit should have been done. Where’s the holdup?

2 Messages

2 years ago

Mounted to monitor sidewalk to front door  installed looking front door to sidewalk. By the time the camera ‘wakes up’ the only video is of them walking away. No frontal video. I spent a lot including the solar option and its worthless

I’ve Explored settings and there is nothing to trigger faster. 

Note: This comment was created from a merged conversation originally titled Outdoor camera is worthless

3 Messages

I am having the same issue. I have been experimenting over the last month with different settings and have even tried changing the location for a different angle, nothing is working. There are a lot of complaints, and the response from customer service reps is that it is a "top priority", but that remains to be seen.

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5.3K Messages

So sorry to hear about your experiences. We did release an update earlier this year with some improvements to performance. But our engineering team continues to work on further optimizations.

Community Admin

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@Austin​ we hear you. As I mentioned in a different comment, we've made some progress, but we're still working on it and more improvements are on the way.

5 Messages

These cameras are such a waste of time and money.  Customer service is the worst!  They just lie to get you off the phone or passed to the next.  I was told my order from 11/21 would be delivered this week and it hasn’t even been processed.  Email was sent out it will be another 5-6 months for smoke detectors.  Took too long to get cameras so can’t return to Best Buy.  I 100% regret SimpliSafe.   

3 Messages

I have the same issue... very slow to wake-up. It's not worth the money. I'm thinking of mounting it on a tree in the yard.  In addition, while I receive audio from both the outdoor and indoor cameras, pressing the microphone alerts me it needs permission... which, I don't think can be forced.

2 Messages

2 years ago

I was so excited to order a new security system decided to go with SimpliSafe I was looking forward to the outdoor camera however I’ve had issues with the battery lasting only 3 days before recharging needed adjusted settings with representative hopefully it will last longer this time… also noticing it takes way too long for the camera to wake up it’s not capturing people or events until it’s too late… and they are back in car or leaving smh!!! So far I’m disappointed may be returning to try another company…

Note: This comment was created from a merged conversation originally titled Outdoor camera

7 Messages

Greetings Cyb10389.  I setup 3 outdoor cams when these were released, and returned them all after weeks of testing and help from a SS engineer.  Detailed feedback on my experience was posted here in the community.  Bottom line, the cams  are brilliant, but the current software driving the cams is not. They attempt to record everything that moves, 24 hrs a day, triggering too slowly to see anything useful and draining the battery.  I also had trouble with the spotlight turning on randomly, and not turning off after a recording event. There’s no way to schedule the time they’re active, and turning them on and off takes too many steps to reach in the menus. So the battery dies. Not useful at all.  

However, my indoor cams and SimpliSafe sensors have performed flawlessly for a couple years now.  I’m sticking with SimpliSafe, and recommend to friends and family.  Just not the outdoor cams.  I’m hopeful these software flaws will be fixed, I will buy them again if these issues are addressed.

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Thanks for the feedback, @cyb10389 and @andrewss2 ,

Improving the Outdoor Camera's performance is definitely a top priority for us. Our engineering team has already pushed through a couple of firmware updates this year that bring some improvements, and more are on the way.

In particular, there was a known issue that caused severe battery drain like cyb10389 was describing. So I strongly suggest checking in your Camera settings section to make sure that your camera has been updated to the latest version - 1.7. For more info, please head over to this thread.

3 Messages

I’ve been a SimpliSafe customer for years and was really looking forward to the outdoor camera when I finally bought two this year. I have been comparing it side by side to a Ring cam on my system for a couple months now and I’m ready to send the SS back. This camera should not have been shipped to customers, IMO. I’m not an engineer but the camera responds way too slowly, it doesn’t connect half the time despite it being 10 feet from a router, and it’s UI is inadequate. Does it even have an adequate processor for video streaming? And the video quality in daytime is way over-exposed compared to my Ring. It actually offers better video quality at night than during the day. I have zero issue pulling up my Ring (which is 2x farther from my router) every time and getting fairly true colors and decent clarity. I’m bummed.

13 Messages

The outdoor camera definitely wakes up too slowly.  Most of my recordings are of people at the top or bottom edge of frame disappearing from view in the first couple of frames, and that's people walking directly towards or away from the camera, not crossing left to right.

The toggle to night vision is also seriously flawed.  Half my videos at night are pitch black because the camera stays in color mode even though it's dark out.

A simple fix would be to set a timer on the camera that turns a camera to night vision only during certain times of the day.  The only way to do that now is to log onto the web UI (the app doesn't allow you) and set night vision to always on or always off, but you have to do that yourself, twice a day, for each camera.... which is of course a really inconvenient work-around.

5 Messages

This whole delayed capture thing has to be figured out.... It's not acceptable to tout an outdoor camera that catches things after the fact. In what world is that remotely helpful to anyone? This needs to be corrected immediately. The best way for a business to take quick action is when it hurts their bottom line so anyone who has experienced this should leave a one star review on Simplisafe's google result and anywhere else to get the attention. I have seen too many times on here they invalidate and dismiss the feedback of customers on here. Time to let them hear it loud and clear. 

2 Messages

1 year ago

When I view the camera it’s slow to connect and view. 

Note: This comment was created from a merged conversation originally titled Camera slow to connect

Captain

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5.8K Messages

@sherrieo78  The design is the same as the outdoor camera, and the wake up to live stream does take significantly longer than the doorbell pro and simplicam.  Since the release of the outdoor camera, I should note the time lag has improved and if the camera is not on a battery source (AC, solar pannel) SS has to find out a way to skip the start up process entirely.  My two Live Guard cameras will eventually both be on AC only (one is unplugged now to test the battery. Living in the greater Chicagoland area and the Mrs. who doesn't want cameras on the ceiling or walls make batteries a no no in our home and we are fortunate to have an AC source very conveniently nearby (indoor) and had a line run to the outdoor locations. 

Back to your original speed issue, suggest you use the Connection Check Tool to see what the signal strength is and the upload speed. I moved one of my Google mesh points directly between the two outdoor cameras and improved their performance.

Community Admin

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9 Messages

As Don stated in the second paragraph, I would recommend running the connection check (Cameras > Settings > Select a camera from the list > Connection Check > Start Connection Check > Let's Go and wait for the results. This flow should help identify what the issue might be. 

 

We are working hard to enhance the Battery Camera experience. You should see improved speeds in the coming weeks/months. 

Community Admin

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9 Messages

As Don stated in the second paragraph, I would recommend running the connection check (Cameras > Settings > Select a camera from the list > Connection Check > Start Connection Check > Let's Go and wait for the results. This flow should help identify what the issue might be. 

 

We are working hard to enhance the Battery Camera experience. You should see improved speeds in the coming weeks/months. 

4 Messages

The cameras are definitely slower to connect than I would like. By the time I am notified of activity and get the camera running the incident is over. This is not bad when it is just a delivery but in a real emergency or break in it would make a difference.

2 Messages

1 year ago

Hello davey_d, when can we expect this update to be released? I'm about to return three systems within the 60-day period. Despite having three cameras set up at the front, 1gb fiber internet with wifi 6, and the base being just a few feet away from two of the cameras, it still takes an extremely long time to wake up, causing me to miss any activity occurring in front of my home. I am shocked that SimpliSafe received such high ratings when this should be the most basic requirement for a security system.

2 Messages

11 months ago

the delay and the lack of continuous recording is frustrating 

1 Message

11 months ago

Last night three men broke into my car and ransacked it yet all we got was them walking away. Useless products. 

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1 Message

10 months ago

We bought and installed an external camera this week.

The wake-up time is atrocious. It takes several seconds to start recording. We only see people leaving the property.

The connection test reveals excellent signal strength to our router, and 70Mbps upload speed.

What's even more concerning is that SimpliSafe here keep saying "it's a priority" for 2 years now!! The top post has a date of 26th April 2023, but they are obviously updating it since the comments below are from 2 years ago, with the same complaints, and the same responses by SimpliSafe.

Our camera has the latest firmware, which after 2 years of these 'priority' improvements is still rubbish at waking up. Since that's the whole point of a security camera, this product is not fit for purpose.

We will be returning it on this basis. Very disappointing, as the rest of our SimpliSafe system, including an internal camera, works brilliantly.

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5.3K Messages

@dinosm​ thank you for your feedback, and so sorry to hear you're seeing poor performance from your Outdoor Camera. We have been making solid progress over the past few firmware updates, but our dev team still has a way to go.

On the user end, however, and apart from making sure you have good bandwidth, the other piece is to make sure that there's a good wireless link between the camera and your Base Station. The camera needs the Base Station as part of the wake-up process, and that connection uses the same local RF as your sensors. So it might help to move the Base Station closer, or to a different spot where that link would have a better chance of connecting.

I sincerely hope we can help turn this around for you. But we thank you for giving us a tr.

15 Messages

@davey_d​  Well, the expression "blowing smoke" has found a home. LOL.

I spent last week making 3 phone calls, 2 resets, one camera complete disconnect and reset, updates checked, etc etc..  Nothing changed.  I didnt find this link till today, but thats what I kept telling the agent that it seemed like the camera is not waking up, and they acted like I was blowing smoke.  Well I had an unused camera that was going to put in backyard but never did.  So I switched it out and Shaazam, still has terrible wake up time.  I never see a face of anyone coming to the door and usually get their back only when leaving.  My driveway is about 70' so thats how slow and rather useless the camera is.  Your updates if improving it must be in milli-seconds.

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2.6K Messages

@KCOC​ We have an upcoming update on the way that will improve the Outdoor Camera's wake-up time when plugged into a Solar Panel or power cable. Once this feature is live, an update will be provided in this thread

In the meantime, I would use the Connection Check Tool in the SimpliSafe mobile app to help see if the camera has a strong connection and signal strength or not. This can be done by taking the following steps:

  1. Tap the “Cameras” icon at the bottom of the SimpliSafe mobile app
  2. Choose the gear icon in the upper right corner
  3. Select your camera
  4. Under “Connection” select “Connection Check”
  5. Tap “Start Connection Check” to find your Video Doorbell’s connection strength

9 months ago

I’m having this issue with my outdoor cameras. Very frustrating as it makes my video security virtually worthless. I hope you will provide status updates and a meaningful fix before I replace my entire Simplisafe system. Thanks

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2.6K Messages

@tomgunderson01​ I'm very sorry to hear this. Improving the wakeup time of the Outdoor Camera is a top priority for our dev team. They've made some improvements, and there are more to come. 

I recommend running the Connection Check tool for your camera to ensure it has a strong signal strength and connection speed. This can be done in the mobile app by navigating to Cameras > Settings > [your camera] > Connection Check > Start Connection Check. If the strength and speed are low, it would be helpful to move the Base Station close to the Outdoor Camera.

2 Messages

8 months ago

I hope a resolution will be offered soon for this issue.  We've had a Simplisafe system for about a year.  We decided last week to get the outdoor camera.  Today, the mailman walked to our front door, rang the door bell, left and the recorded video only captured his last shoe in the frame as he walked away.  The camera is currently not performing in a way that makes this device useful.  My base station is on the same side of the house as the camera.  "Upload speed" and "Signal Strength" are both "good" according to the connection check.  Very disappointing.

Community Admin

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5.3K Messages

Thanks for reporting, @blueelfaloe9 . Sounds like the connection to your WiFi router is great, and that's good news.

But the other connection we want to keep tabs on is between the camera and your Base Station, because that communication is part of how the camera wakes up. Where is the Base Station located in relation to your camera? It might help to move it a bit closer, if it's not already.

3 Messages

8 months ago

Can there be an option to turn the “deep sleep” off or minimize the delay for those on a solar charge or hard wired? Crazy how something hasn’t been figured out yet after years of complaints. Its to the point now that I am willing to take the loss and buy something different. 

Community Admin

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@kurtissmith118​ Great news! That feature is indeed currently in development. Follow this thread to be notified when it's ready.

8 months ago

I've had the Simplisafe system for years. Bought two outdoor cameras when they came out. They have never been useful for anything other than checking to see what the weather is, or if someone is in my yard. They are so slow after a notification of movement that I can't see anything live, I have to wait five minutes for the recording to finish. 

Now, I have one camera that is "offline" but still sends notifications of movement. It's not recording and I can't live stream. I'm really considering the more expensive options like ADT or Vivent at this point. 

Community Admin

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2.6K Messages

@jenniferriedel99​ Using the Connection Check Tool on your offline camera should help diagnose what the problem may be. You can do this in the SimpliSafe mobile app by taking the following steps:

  1. Tap the “Cameras” icon at the bottom of the SimpliSafe mobile app
  2. Choose the gear icon in the upper right corner
  3. Select your camera
  4. Under “Connection” select “Connection Check”
  5. Tap “Start Connection Check” to find your Video Doorbell’s connection strength

15 Messages

7 months ago

Thats pure crap...  I have two outdoor cmaeras aimed down a clear driveway and everything checks good AND still it misses someone coming up the driveway totally or activates as they are leaving or catches them at the top of the driveway..  THE CAMERAS HAVE A SERIOUS LAG TIME AND MAKES THEM UNRELIABLE.  Too many phone calls trying to fix something they never tell you what the real cause is, so am looking into other systems.

Community Admin

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2.6K Messages

@KCOC​ To preserve its battery life, the Outdoor Camera enters deep sleep when it isn't in use. Our engineers are aware that some cameras may experience a slow wakeup time when motion is detected, and they are working on improvements. They're currently working on a new feature to disable deep sleep when the camera is plugged in. Once this feature is ready to be rolled out, an update will be given in this thread

In the meantime, it may help to move the Base Station closer to your Outdoor Camera to improve their connection.

4 Messages

@emily_s​ moving the WIFI has nothing to do with this issue.  

15 Messages

@emily_s​ so what your saying is hard wired one way or another???

15 Messages

@ndrake6322​ they are grasping at straws. Instead of stroking people just say it is what it is for a non-wired camera from simpli safe at this time.

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