Abode vs YI Cameras

A home security system is a necessary and valuable upgrade; if you're looking for a new security system, you'll have plenty of providers to choose from. YI and Abode are two security camera providers that you might've come across.

They have some similarities and were both launched in 2014. YI Technology is headquartered in Shanghai, China. YI is best known for its affordability. Abode is also affordable but is best known for reliability, innovative equipment, and good service. Abode was started by ex-ADT representatives aiming to bring affordable and quality equipment to the home security market. Let's take a look at what they can offer you.

Abode vs YI: What do they have in common?

  • Video resolution: Abode and YI offer cameras in 1080p HD quality.
  • Customizable motion detection: Abode and YI offer customizable activity zones.
  • Video doorbells: You can purchase a doorbell camera from both providers, and they offer many of the same features, including two-way audio and color night vision.
  • Outdoor security cameras: Abode and YI offer a variety of weatherproof outdoor cameras.
  • Storage options: YI and Abode offer excellent storage options, including cloud storage and MicroSD local storage.
  • Window sensors: Abode and YI offer entry sensors.
  • Smart home automation: YI and Abode offer similar functionality compatible with If This Then That (IFTTT) technology, such as Amazon Alexa.
  • Warranty: YI and Abode offer a 12-month warranty.

Abode vs YI: What are the differences?

  • Professional monitoring: Abode offers professional monitoring; YI doesn't.
  • Equipment quality: Some reviews report that YI's equipment feels flimsy or breakable. Abode has studier equipment.
  • Baby monitors: While Abode offers indoor security cameras, there are no dedicated baby monitors. YI offers baby monitors with advanced features such as crying monitors.
  • DIY installation: YI only offers DIY installation, and Abode offers professional installation in some areas.
  • Pricing: Abode is very affordable, but YI is much cheaper.
  • Frame rate: Abode offers a better frame rate, which translates to better video quality. Better video quality is necessary if you want to make out details.

YI: What you need to know

YI launched in 2014 intending to offer affordable but advanced technology, such as HD video quality cameras for your home or business; YI also offers baby monitors and dashcams. Let's take an in-depth look at YI's offerings.


Installing your YI camera is easy; everything you need will come with your equipment. The customer support team leaves much to be desired; you may be disappointed if you require assistance troubleshooting your system.

Every camera is wireless, except the Kami wire-free outdoor camera - which still requires a power outlet, which is something to remember during installation.


YI provides a variety of compatible equipment with the YI home app, including:

  • Baby monitors
  • Indoor cameras
  • Outdoor cameras

YI cameras are wireless, with a live feed and motion-activated video recordings. Most are plugged in, except battery-powered cameras. Some YI cameras are 720p quality, which isn't great. But there are more 1080p HD cameras. They don’t offer the best smart home security compatibility, but there is some SD card compatibility if you require more storage options.

Battery life could be improved. Many YI cameras have a 110-degree field of view; compared to Abode's 121+ degree field of view, this is an area in which they could improve.

Home automation

YI cameras offer AI human detection, motion tracking, and Alexa compatibility but lack meaningful third-party automation.


  • Equipment costs: The YI Home cameras are cheap; the cheapest is the YI 1080p home camera which starts at just $24.99. The YI Dome camera is $59.99 but has more features. Either way, you'll get an excellent camera without paying too much.
  • Monthly costs: YI will keep 6-second clips when motion triggers; it'll record video clips. But if you require additional video storage, you'll need to sign up for one of three YI cloud plans.
    • The Entry plan is $5 per month and covers a single camera with seven days of history.
    • The Standard subscription plan is $12 monthly and covers five cameras with a 15-day history.
    • The Plus plan costs $19 monthly and supports five cameras with a 30-day history. You may be able to access a discount for paying annually.

Nerd pros

  • Cost: YI cameras are some of the cheapest in the industry, starting at less than $30.
  • Flexibility: YI doesn't require long-term contracts or monthly costs.
  • User-friendly: YI cameras are incredibly easy to install and use.

Nerd cons

  • Quality: YI cuts corners to some extent, especially regarding customer support and frame rate to keep prices low.
  • Professional monitoring: There's no professional monitoring offered

Abode: What you need to know

Abode is a reliable, low-cost provider set up by an ex-ADT representative to offer cheap smart security kits; they offer flexibility and compatibility with various Z-wave technologies such as Apple Homekit, Amazon's Alexa, and Google Nest. Abode provides professional monitoring, too. You can buy environmental sensors and other extras from Abode.


While you don't necessarily require installation, since everything you need will come with your order, a professional setup is available in some areas. Setup usually takes under an hour for Wi-Fi cameras, but a wired system may be more complicated, meaning you may want your Abode security system installed.


Abode offers a variety of security equipment; you can purchase a complete security system and secure all parts of your home. There are quality indoor and outdoor cameras, environmental sensors, and smart equipment.

Equipment includes:

  • Gateway control panel (or Iota control panel for an extra $30)
  • Water leak detectors
  • Power switch
  • Occupancy sensor
  • Window sensors
  • Door sensors
  • Keypad
  • Glassbreak sensors
  • Motion detectors
  • Smart locks
  • Carbon monoxide detectors
  • Temperature/light sensor
  • Smoke detector
  • Wide-angle motion camera
  • Abode indoor cameras
  • Sirens

Home automation

Abode offers a decent selection of smart home devices, including temperature, advanced security, smoke detectors, and more. They also offer compatibility with Apple Homekit, Alexa, Google Nest, and other equipment.


  • Equipment cost: You'll require a starter security kit. The Abode Iota is the most popular, and you'll pay $229 for that. You'll pay under $250 to get started regardless of your choice.
  • Monthly fees: Unless you want additional extras, you won't need to pay any monthly fees. Extras include cellular backup for $8 a month or $20 a month for professional monitoring.

Nerd pros

  • Camera quality: 1080p HD quality is excellent, especially at a low price.
  • Warranty: All equipment comes with a 12-month warranty.
  • Price: This is a perfect option if you want an entire home security system without the high price tag; you won't need to buy a long-term contract.
  • Person detection: Abode's advanced person detection can reduce the risk of false alarms.

Nerd cons

  • Pricing: YI is difficult to beat in price, with cameras starting at just $24.99.
  • Variety: Abode doesn't offer much variety, with only a few home security cameras.

Abode or YI?

YI offers the cheapest cameras. They can't be beaten on price. But when it comes to specs, they struggle a bit. Abode has a better frame rate, more high-resolution cameras, and additional features. Abode also offers professional monitoring and more smart security options. If you're looking for a comprehensive system with better quality equipment, Abode is a great option. If you're looking for the best deal and don't mind cutting corners, then you can consider YI.

This article has been reviewed and approved by Officer Banta.

Officer James Banta

Officer Banta is the official SecurityNerd home security and safety expert. A member of the Biloxi Police Department for over 24 years, Officer Banta reviews all articles before lending his stamp of approval. Click here for more information on Officer Banta and the rest of our team.

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