Confused about Wyze Cam Outdoor

Okay I got my Wyze Cam Outdoor - currently have four Wyze Cam v2 placed in various indoor and outdoor locations - this new one is placed at a location where outlet isn’t available (ceiling of our breezeway), so we’re good here.

I was successful in adding the outdoor cam to my ‘camera group’ and I can watch live feed from it.

My first confusion is that the outdoor cam has a slot for an SD card. I placed a 32GB card in it, set event recording ON and motion detection ON.

Now what? I don’t know where in the iOS app to watch ‘playback’ like on my Cam v2’s…

I thought maybe the Sd slot on the outdoor cam shouldn’t be used, so now I have the card placed in the base, and turned ‘back up to base station’ to ON.

I know it’s been mentioned again and again that the outdoor cam isn’t a v2… so if my goal is to use it like my v2’s in a home security type purpose, how should I use the outdoor cam?

Thanks and sorry for such an amateurish question.

I think the base needs another microSD card.

I added another SD card so both the outdoor cam AND the base station have SD cards…

Formatted both cards.

Still don’t know how to playback any motion recordings on my outdoor cam like my v2 Cams…

Welcome to the Wyze community!
I’ve seen this question asked around Here! I’m not sure of the answer and I haven’t seen any solutions.
@WyzeGwendolyn who’s the lead for the outdoor cam? Please past this along to them!

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Unlike V2 and Pan, WCO is a battery-powered camera and we can’t afford to add a continuous recording feature like v2 or Pan because it kills the battery in no time (one single charge of the battery lasts for around 10 hours of continuous recording). Plus watching local “playback” videos on the outdoor camera would wake up the camera from a power saver mode to transmit the video to your mobile device and that’s another huge battery usage. Cam Plus is a better option for your home security use case and it’s coming soon on the outdoor cameras.
Another feature that we’re working on is motion-only scheduled recordings where only motion events in a scheduled time interval are saved to the SD card inside of the camera. It’s a lot similar to V2 motion only local recording.

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Hello WyzeLi. Thank you for getting back to me.

I understand the need to preserve battery as Wzye Cam Outdoor (WCO) was meant to get charged once every few months…

But if the interface for WCO (through my iOSphone) doesn’t have a ‘view play back’ feature like the Cam v2, then what would be the purpose of the SD cards? Is this camera meant just to have a live-view function?

I would like to confirm what I am doing is correct - I have a SD card on WCO. I set it to detect motion, and set up to backup to base station. So far since these settings a few hours ago I see that my SD cards are being populated with data (it shows 0.02GB/29.79GB).

Based on the way WCO was designed to do, what would be the proper method to review these recordings?

I’ve been a supportor of Wyze for a few years now and have no problem supporting new developments like WCO - but sorry as I am quite confused - at this moment this device would be more like a novelty live-view only camera for me…?

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This is inane and one of the poorest choices I’ve ever seen. You disabled playback on demand completely. You are not permitting users to use the cameras to play back something they’ve recorded, no matter how short. Inane and customer hostile.

It’s to the point now where EVERY product from Wyze may as well come with the disclaimer, “Don’t use for any serious purpose.”. Cameras don’t send notifications. Person detection (and billing) a complete crapshoot. SD card reliability laughable. Scales and bands work randomly. Masks never arrive or break out of the box. 3 years “looking into” maybe letting people use a computer to see their cameras. Doorbell that doesn’t look like a doorbell. Sensors that only work sometimes. New product? Space heater fire starter. And now you have an outdoor camera that can’t be plugged in and can’t play back anything. Is this a joke? Performance art?

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@llau and @Customer,

The SD card in the camera is used to store scheduled recordings and time-lapse videos, they are not used to store motion event videos. The SD card in the base station serves as a backup location for the same videos.

Since motion event videos are stored in the cloud you can view them from the Events tab in the Wyze app.

I think some of the confusion and disappointment with the WCO is because it’s not an outdoor battery-powered V2. The WCO is generally a good fit as long as continuous recording is not required.

See above explanation about what’s stored on the SD card. Since anything the camera recorded in event mode is in the cloud already there is no need to play back from the camera itself. If a scheduled recording or time-lapse were recorded it would be playable from the SD card through the app by viewing the WCO Live view and tapping “More”.

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Okay thanks, @thequietman44, I may have to retract my rant then. So you’re saying @WyzeLi mis-spoke when he or she said local playback wasn’t possible? Because I thought that referred to the SD recordings you just said are viewable on demand, after all?

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The process has changed quite a bit throughout WCO testing, but if I recall correctly there is no direct streaming/playback from SD card on the WCO like there is on the V2. For scheduled and time-lapse recordings stored on the SD card the app downloads them from the WCO and then you can play back that downloaded video. The end result is the same, you can view recorded video in the Wyze app, but it’s not the same experience as a V2. In that sense @WyzeLi was correct, there is no direct playback of SD card videos.

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Thanks. That is (a) subtle but also (b) not that logical, because of course the camera has to wake up to transmit the data either way. The only savings would be on time spent rewinding et al. For straight viewing it would have to be a wash?

wow, that was quite a rant :roll_eyes: when people finally understand that the WCO is NOT a weather proof V2, but instead a different device all together, then maybe it can be appreciated for what it is. It’s a battery powered cam & they have taken steps to conserve battery. Hopefully down the line there will be improvements that will allow it to be more flexible & closer resemble a outdoor version of the V2, but until then, it works great as designed.

It’s subtle, but the difference between technically correct and incorrect :slight_smile:

It does make sense to go with download over streaming assuming the data transmission rate from the WCO to the Wyze app is greater than the bitrate of the video. For example, if you can download a 1 minute clip in 30 seconds, that’s half the power-on time for the WCO. If you watch the clip twice that’s 1/4 the power-on time for the WCO (30 seconds vs 2 minutes).

It’s all in service to battery life. So while some trade-offs don’t seem to make logical sense at first glance, there was a time during development where a decision was made to go one route to solve a battery life issue and we’re now seeing the finished product. I won’t say it’s perfect and every decision was also perfect, but it’s the result of some very long and intensive development by some very smart people, so I have to accept that the way it works is the best balance of features :man_shrugging:

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Wow overnight I see a lot of comments… Sorry but I am still confused.

I keep hearing that WCO isn’t an outdoor V2. I get it. Then what exactly is it? So far aside from it being a ‘fun’ camera which I can set it to record multiplen-minute videos, and a ‘timelapse camera’ I am not sure what else it is good for…?

As I said, I took the gamble and bought two of these WCOs based on a marketing video with minimal details… when the product arrived aside from the basic ‘quick start’ I still have yet to understand how this camera is to be used in Wyze’s mind.

If it is just meant as a novelty camera (like a garden cam) or a baby-cam (when I just need something to view the camera ‘live’ but not necessarily record motions), then just tell me - caveat emptor and I’ll just count this purchase as my own fault, cut the loss and try to resell the unopened one…

One main issue that I still have is this - let’s say that because of battery conservation, it is by design that I can not access the SD card in the WCO camera. But if I select ‘back up to base station’ and now the clip(s) are on the base station, what means do I have from the Wyze app to access these clips, from the base station that has constant power?

Until now still no one has explained to me how to access any data on these two SD cards (one in WCO and one in base station), aside from manually ejecting it, plugging it into a computer, and checking the SD contents…?

Thanks everyone for the input so far, and I hope to get more clarifications soon…

I would consider the WCO more of a “portable” cam, I guess that’s the best way to describe it. A place to mount a camera where it’s hard to get power to.

the sd card in the base station is for backing up cloud events only…and no, u can’t use the app to view, u have to eject & read in pc. As for recordings in the cam itself, you “download” the clips via the app, then view or as u mentioned, eject & read on pc.

Thanks again, that is a reasoned explanation. Not sure whether most customers will be happy with those tradeoffs - witness llau’s questions for one - but I suppose the market will speak one way or the other.

One other way to look at it is this: if you could directly access the SD card in the camera, what would that gain you that you don’t have already?

  1. Event videos are already in the cloud, not on the SD card.
  2. Scheduled and time-lapse videos can be downloaded through the app.

There are no other types of videos stored on the SD card, so you’re able to access everything the WCO is capable of recording already.

On a V2, the SD card stored 3 things that are not available anywhere but the SD card:

  1. full 1-minute motion clips
  2. continuous recording footage
  3. time-lapse videos

So on a V2 you absolutely need some way to read the contents of the SD card, but on a WCO you don’t (by design).

Does that help or is that more confusing? I haven’t really delved into the Travel Mode uses which I suppose add another element to the SD card, but again those videos are accessible through the app.

Can a sense device trigger a 12 second video in the WCO ? Would the X-minute cool down still apply?

yes, sense will trigger video from WCO…and it should record again as soon as sense can trigger

Thanks thequietman44… Perhaps I didn’t mention that I do not currently subscribe to the cloud services from Wyze, or use anything other than the Wyze iOs app to view recordings…

I use Wyze as a home security cam, so the main use for me has been like this example:

  • I come home to see door left ajar
  • cats missing
  • launch Wyze app, check V2 footage that’s on SD card by clicking on “View Playback”
  • see that my daughter forgot to close door
  • see that cats walked out the door

(BTW the above didn’t happen - just an example scenario)

So when I heard that "Wyze had an outdoor cam, I jumped on the idea by watching a review video or two. And got in line on launch day to buy two of them.

The issue I have is that WCO doesn’t allow me to use it as I would like in the case above, since there is no method for me to view remotely anything from it, either from the SD card on the camera, or the SD card on the base station…

I am assuming that in the example above - if I come home to find the cats gone, I’d have to remove the SD card from the WCO, plug it into my laptop, and view each clip to do what I currently do with V2 Cams?

So in this case I suppose I have the confirmation that WCO is really meant as a ‘fun’ camera for me to mount in my back yard to record 365 days of sunset from 6:00-7:00pm every night? What are other people using WCO for? From the published videos from the marketing pieces I see mostly they’re timelapse stuff. On Wyze’s site it does mention that I can use WCO to “See who’s coming and going.” with something called PIR but this is saved somewhere in the cloud…?

Am I missing something? Is my use scenario is not working because of me not subscribing to Wyze’s cloud monthly service? If that is the case then I may be opening another can of worms, as certain cameras inside my house I do not want to store any clips ‘to the cloud’ (example my children’s room)…

Thanks again.

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