Canary vs Nest Cameras

When upgrading your home security system, you should pay particular attention to your security cameras. There are a variety of home security providers available to choose from. Canary and Nest are two great options.

Canary is a modern provider launched in 2013 following a successful Kickstarter campaign; Canary is known for offering all-in-one camera systems.

Google Nest was founded in 2010 and is best known for offering home security cameras and smart home equipment.

Let's take a look at what they have to offer.

Canary vs Nest: What do they have in common?

  • Video storage: Canary and Nest offer free cloud storage. Nest will allow you to store up to three hours of video recordings, and Canary will allow you free access to 24 hours of video history.
  • Night vision: You'll have access to night vision regardless of your chosen provider.
  • Flexibility: You won't be forced to take out a long-term contract with either provider - you have full flexibility.
  • Video quality: Nest and Canary cameras have excellent 1080p HD video resolution.
  • Equipment quality: You can trust that the equipment quality is excellent.
  • Two-way audio: You can use two-way talk to make it seem like you're home, even if you're not. It's a convenient feature to keep your home safe and help you direct delivery people and guests.
  • Mobile app: You can manage your security system with a secure mobile app. The apps are available on iOS and Android.
  • Voice control: You can use Amazon Alexa to control your system with voice commands.

Canary vs Nest: What are the differences?

  • Smart home integration: Our SecurityNerd rated Nest 5/5 for smart home automation, and Nest has some of the best third-party integrations available.
  • Professional monitoring: Canary doesn't offer professional monitoring, but Nest does via a partnership with Brinks.
  • Warranty: While both offer a warranty, Nest offers a two-year warranty, but Canary provides a 60-day warranty.
  • Camera variety: Nest cameras have more variety.
  • Equipment variety: Canary only offers cameras - Nest offers contact sensors and other smart home equipment.

Canary Security: What you need to know

Canary launched in 2013 thanks to a successful Kickstarter campaign. Canary has excellent offerings, including local storage, If This Then That (IFTTT) compatibility, night vision, live streaming, and more; let's take a look at what Canary has to offer.


The wireless security cameras are the easiest to install; you don't need to drill any holes. You can set up your whole system in under 30-minutes, as long as you have an internet connection. If you need assistance, you can chat with customer support.


Canary offers limited equipment, including only cameras and mounts. Some cameras have built-in equipment, including climate monitors. Canary offers full security in one device; the equipment available includes:

  • Canary View
  • Canary Flex
  • Canary Pro

You can also purchase a mount to install your system, including a stake, twist, or secure mount.

Home automation

You can download an app to monitor your entire system, and it's available on iOS and Android. Only basic third-party integration is provided. There are no smart bulbs, locks, etc. The home automation offered is:

  • Amazon Alexa
  • Google Assistant
  • Apple Homekit


You'll need to consider various costs when buying your new security cameras; prices include:

  • Equipment: You'll need to pay upfront for your equipment; if you subscribe, you'll receive a discount. Without a discount, the most expensive camera is $129.
  • Monthly costs: If you don't choose a premium plan, there are no monthly fees. But if you subscribe, you'll pay $9.99.

Nerd pros

  • Warranty: Canary has an extensive warranty; you'll be able to return your equipment for up to two months after purchase.
  • HD video quality: Canary offers 1080p HD resolution and a high-quality frame rate.
  • Unique features: Canary offers additional features such as climate control, person detection, AI technology, two-way talk, and a siren.
  • Outdoor security cameras: Canary provides security cameras for outdoor use; additional features include incredible AI and other advanced features.
  • Price: Canary has affordable cameras; the most expensive camera is the Flex. The Flex is $129 and includes weatherproofing.

Nerd cons

  • No door or window sensors: Canary cameras don't have contact sensors, leaving your home vulnerable. You can mount a camera at each entrance, but this is expensive.
  • Activity zones: Canary doesn't offer customizable motion detection.

Nest Secure - What you need to know

Nest is very new on the home security front; they are owned by Google and provide simple solutions for home security. Our SecurityNerd rated them highly for customer support and smart security. You can purchase professional monitoring for a modest fee.


This system is geared towards DIY installation; you won't need professional help, but the customer service line is responsive. The system is easy-to-assemble and comes with complete instructions. Most installations can be completed in less than 30 minutes.


You'll likely purchase an equipment package; the cheapest is the Nest Guard, which includes two entry sensors and key fobs. The base package is $399. You can buy additional add-ons for a more comprehensive package. Available add-ons include:

  • Indoor cameras
  • Outdoor cameras
  • Video doorbells
  • Door locks
  • Carbon monoxide detector
  • Smoke detectors
  • Yard signs and decals

Home automation

One of Nest's most significant selling points is its smart home options. You can integrate Nest smoothly with many convenient products. You can also manage your system remotely. You can create a unique smart home ecosystem with a handful of purchases.

  • Your Nest video doorbell can notify you if someone is at the door.
  • Security cameras will tell you if motion is detected.
  • Smoke detectors can send you notifications if triggered.
  • You can adjust your security system using Smart locks.
  • You can adjust your home's climate with your phone.
  • Turn lights on/off with smart lights.


There are several key costs to consider; pricing includes:

  • Equipment costs: A basic security package without any cameras is $399; if you want an outdoor camera add-on, you'll pay $598. If you want a smart lock package, it'll cost $633.
  • Monthly fees: Purchasing professional monitoring will cost $29 per month (flexible option) or $19 per month with a three-year subscription. You can also purchase cellular backup for $5 monthly, which keeps you safe in the case of an outage.

Nerd pros

  • Customization: You can buy a base package and add-ons, including safety equipment, smart home security equipment, etc.
  • Easy install: Wi-Fi-capable systems are the easiest to install; you can purchase backup for $5 per month. Customer support offers timely assistance if you have issues.

Nerd cons

  • Price: For a DIY system, the price could be off-putting, especially next to Canary.
  • Limited monitoring options: Nest Secure has limited professional monitoring; it's outsourced to a third-party (Brinks Security). This professional monitoring is only compatible with some alarm products such as door and window sensors.

Canary or Nest?

Canary and Nest have many similarities, including excellent mobile apps available on iPhone and Android and excellent storage options (including cloud storage without a subscription plan). But if you're looking for the best smart security system, Nest offers weatherproof cameras, IFTTT compatibility, continuous recording, and professional monitoring, including emergency services response. It's worth paying extra for everything that Nest offers.

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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