Update: Nest has recently lowered its pricing for cloud storage, reflected in the written portion of the review.
It’s a battle as old as time itself: Google vs. Amazon. Both Internet giants have expanded into the home security industry, manufacturing their own devices that integrate with their respective ecosystems. I know what you might be thinking- shouldn’t I just choose the one that matches the connected devices I already have?
Unfortunately for you, smart home integration is not the only factor that goes into selecting a security camera. There is a ton of information to consider, like storage, artificial intelligence, night vision– the list goes on. Fortunately, we have done the work for you.
In this article, we’ll compare the Google Nest Indoor Camera with the Amazon Cloud Camera, discussing the products’ similarities as well their key differences. To do this, we’ll pull information from our Necessary Features Tests, Security Baron’s gold standard for cameras. Finally, we’ll help you decide which camera is right for you. Let’s jump in!
Let’s be honest: sometimes it’s necessary to judge a book by its cover. After all, these cameras are going to be inside your home, so you don’t want some clunky monstrosity ruining your carefully curated aesthetic. Here’s what I had to say about the Google Nest Indoor and Amazon Cloud Cam’s designs.
Nest Cam Indoor
All in black, Google’s Nest Cam Indoor has a circular base and camera, connected by a 360-degree swiveled mount. While the camera itself is a reflective plastic, the base is coated in gunmetal, creating a sleek look. I love that the camera has a magnetic base- along with the full-circle swivel, this makes mounting the camera on a wall super simple. The camera can also be placed on a flat surface or used on a tripod.
Related: Best Security Cameras Overall
I did take off a few points for the camera’s white USB cord, which creates a harsh juxtaposition with the black of the camera, but overall, I love the design of the Nest Cam Indoor.
The Nest Cam Indoor is Nest's original indoor camera with 1080p HD video, two-way audio, infrared night vision, and other Necessary Features.
Amazon Cloud Cam
The Amazon Cloud Cam has a similar shape to the Nest Cam Indoor, with a circular camera, a round base and a skinny bridge connecting the two. Unlike the Nest Cam Indoor, however, the Cloud Cam is white with a black camera.
The camera comes with all the gear needed for mounting, but also has a rubber base if you just want to plant the camera on a table. Like the Nest Indoor, the Cloud Cam can be rotated on a ball mount to face whichever direction you prefer.
Both cameras are pretty similar in terms of engineering design, but aesthetically, it really comes down to color. Now, let’s see some ways that the cameras are similar.
The Amazon Cloud Cam offers 1080p HD video, integration with Alexa, and infrared night vision, among other Necessary Features.
Right off the bat, the biggest similarity between the Google Nest Indoor Camera and the Amazon Cloud Camera is that they are both indoor cameras. Don’t put these outside unless you enjoy losing money. The Nest and the Cloud Cam are both plug-in, which prevents you from ever having to replace the batteries, and they both come with one-year limited warranties.
Video, Audio and Night Vision
Video and audio-wise, the two cameras are nearly identical. They both have 1080p HD, the industry standard, plus an 8x field of zoom.
When it comes to the field of view, the Nest Indoor wins by a hair with 130 degrees, 10 more than the Amazon Cloud Cam.
Both cameras have two-way audio, an awesome feature that allows you to virtually communicate with anyone in the area that you’re recording.
Both cameras have excellent infrared night vision, which I prefer to a bright white light because it’s completely inconspicuous- the person being recorded would be completely aware of the camera.
Both the Nest Cam Indoor and the Amazon Cloud Cam have eight infrared LED sensors.
Full marks for audio, video, and night vision, although the Nest Indoor has a slight advantage over the Cloud Cam due to the difference in their fields of view.
Unfortunately, neither camera has local cloud storage. This is a huge minus for people that like to be completely in control of managing their footage. When it comes to cloud storage, the Nest Cam Indoor comes out on top. 30 days of cloud storage will cost you $6 a month with Nest or $20 a month with Amazon. If you paid by the year, you’d save $140 with Nest. Nest Aware also includes some AI features, which you can read about in a second.
Smart Platform Integration
Although both the Nest Indoor and the Cloud Cam received full marks for smart platform integration, the Nest Indoor is the clear winner. While the Amazon Cloud Camera only integrates with the Amazon ecosystem, the Google Nest integrates not only with Google Assistant, but also with Alexa, Fire TV, and Phillips Hue lightbulbs.
I love that Google gives you so many options when it comes to connected devices. If a diversified smart platform integration is important for you, then the Google Nest is the way to go.
From your Google Assistant or Alexa, you’ll be able to arm and disarm the camera, livestream your footage, and make any custom adjustments without using your hands. Hopefully Amazon will smarten up and expand to systems outside of its own brand.
When I say that Security Baron values cameras with artificial intelligence, I’m generally thinking of one thing: person detection. Some cameras can differentiate between people, pets, and other moving objects, while some even have facial recognition technology so advanced that it can learn the difference between your loved ones and intruders. When it comes to artificial intelligence, the Google Nest wins over the Amazon Cloud Cam hands down. The Cloud Cam does not have any free person detection software, making this category extremely easy to judge.
On top of the free person detection feature, the Nest Indoor can differentiate between a person talking and a dog barking, a friend visiting and an intruder breaking in. I also love that it can detect not only motion, but sound. As a security camera’s principal function is to make its owner secure, I think sound detection should become an industry standard. Smart criminals know ways to get around motion detection cameras, but sound detection is more unusual in the home security market.
Even on a paid level, the Amazon Cloud Cam only has person detection. If artificial intelligence is important to you, I would definitely go with the Google Nest Indoor.
Both cameras are effective and definitely worth their prices. I also had no trouble setting up either camera. It’s especially easy if you already have a Google or an Amazon ecosystem set up.
If the above features aren’t enough for you, both cameras come with optional subscription plans. I like this because you can choose which features you want.
Nest Aware is Google’s add-on software for its security cameras. It can be purchased with the Nest Indoor or separately. In order to get any cloud storage over three hours, you must buy Nest Aware. With that, however, you do get some additional features, such as:
- Motion/ sound detection
- Dog barking alerts
- Person speaking alerts
- Familiar face alerts
- Activity Zones, which allow you to mark special zones on the area you’re recording like a window or a baby’s crib
- 24/7 continuous recording
Due to its advanced artificial intelligence features, I think Nest Aware is definitely worthwhile if you choose to buy the Nest Indoor. They’re even offering a free 30-day trial to test it out!
Cloud Cam Subscription
Like the Nest Indoor, the Cloud Cam comes with a few different subscription options: Basic, Extended and Pro.
The main differences between the three subscription plans is the number of days of cloud storage plus the number of cameras that can be under one subscription. Over 24 hours, the paid cloud storage options include seven days, 14 days, and 30 days. Please see the “Storage” section for specific pricing information.
On top of cloud storage, all of the paid subscription plans come with person detection and activity zones. Although I am disappointed that I get no artificial intelligence software included with the camera, I am glad that it is available as an option.
It’s also important to note that all Cloud Cameras come with unlimited sharing. This is great because you’re able to download and share as many video clips as you want for free.
Overall, however, I am underwhelmed by the Cloud Cam’s paid subscription options. Nest clearly has better artificial intelligence which means more meaningful notifications. Still, I do think that if you are buying the Amazon Cloud Cam, the subscriptions are worth it. Like Google, Amazon also offers a free 30-day trial to test out a subscription.
I had no trouble with either camera’s app. In my opinion they are both user-friendly and offer similar features.
From the Google Nest app, you can tell the camera if you are home or away, as there’s little point in recording if you are home. You can either set the home/away status manually, or link the system to your phone- that way the camera will automatically arm when you leave and vice versa. The app is also where you’ll find the option to stream 24/7, set up activity zones and person detection, manage storage, and control the camera’s rotation. You can change everything from the mic’s sensitivity to the status lights on the camera.
The Amazon Cloud Cam app is similarly useful, although its Google and Apple store reviews are less than stellar. Here, you can livestream footage, change motion detection sensitivity or turn it off completely, control the frequency of your notifications, and even flip the video if the camera is being hung upside-down.
Both apps are intuitive to use, making it easy to control your camera from the palm of your hand.
If you’d like to learn more other options, read our review of the best home security cameras.
I know what you’re thinking: cut to the chase. Which camera is better, the Nest Camera Indoor or the Amazon Cloud Cam?
The truth is, both cameras are so similar that it really comes down to what you want out of a security camera.
The Nest Cam Indoor might be better for you if want:
- Integration with the Google ecosystem, plus Amazon and Philips Hue lightbulbs
- A field of view over 120 degrees
- Person detection included, plus more paid artificial intelligence options
For more information, read our full review of the Nest Cam Indoor.
On the other hand, the Amazon Cloud Cam is your choice if you are looking for:
- 24 hours of free cloud storage
- Free, unlimited sharing
- A more affordable camera overall
Want to learn more? Read our full review of the Amazon Cloud Cam.
Hopefully this comparison helped you choose between the Google Nest Indoor Camera and the Amazon Cloud Camera. If you have any additional questions, please leave us a comment and we’ll be sure to respond. Or, if neither option sounds right for you, be sure to check out 2020’s best home security cameras.