Firestick, Wyze Sideload, Alexa, TinyCam?

On the privacy issue with copying credentials into another app: I setup another wyze account, and using the wyze app on the main account, shared the individual camera feeds with the second “user”. The second user only has access to those cameras, can’t access onboard storage, can’t control pan.
I’m only getting started, but what I’ve done is only use this second user in tinycam.

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I just ran across this video about running tinyCam on a Firestick to view Wyze cams. It’s pretty recent - May 2020 - so could be fairly accurate?

He keeps mentioning “pro” but didn’t do anything in the video that I noticed that you can’t do on the free version. Also he mentions something about buying it for every device, which has not been my experience - you just buy it once for each Play Store account and use it on many devices. I can’t imagine that Firesticks are different?

When adding cams, using the “copy camera” function makes life way way easier because you don’t have to keep entering your login/pwd and 2FA info. Just do it on the first cam and copy from there - it automatically increments the Wyze channel number. All you have to do is edit the names if you wish.

Since I don’t have any Firesticks, you’ll have to let me know if the info in the video sounds solid… :slightly_smiling_face:

Thanks! He does make it sound crazy easy. The Firestick app section is a mess, but down under Apps, Utilities is an option for TinyCam PRO for $3.99. So that’s probably why that is the version he references in the video.

I expect I could sideload the free version BUT I don’t know whether it would suffer the same “but there’s no touchscreen or mouse” issue I had when sideloading the Wyze app itself.

One interesting thing I learned from the video was that TinyCam treats all the Wyze account devices as “channels”, whether cams or not, and apparently in the order they appear in the Wyze app. I noticed something similar with ancient versions of the Wyze app and how they are able to see new devices like the bulbs even though they don’t know how to control them. I wonder if the channel number changes if you reorder them in the native app…

Hmm, I just tried downloading the free version and got 403 errors from APKMirror. That never happened before. I’ll try again another time.

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You are on top of things today! :slightly_smiling_face:

First, yes, it is a lot easier than I had thought before trying it.

YES! Have you ever noticed how so many (but not all) YouTube videos will show you only the easy stuff, and of course only post the take where it works. Naturally I would do the same if I were to ever make a video, but still, you are left in the weeds the minute anything gets complex or departs from the norm.

(Still, I greatly appreciate all YouTube educational video attempts because they did all the work and I generally something from it.)

Makes sense!

This is what I’m really interested to find out - in the video it looked like he was just kind of "tab"ing about between fields? The complex part not shown was, can you pinch and zoom in on the video image? Or is there a keystroke combo on the remote that achieves this? But really you don’t need a mouse much in tinyCam.

Oh God yes! :weary:

You start reordering cams in the Wyze app and it plays havoc with your tinyCam layout. And when you add cams, Wyze puts them at the top and everything shifts.

That’s why I hinted that naming cams was optional - I gave up on that and just leave the channel numbers as the names. But I’m adding and subtracting cams at a rampant pace, grouping and ungrouping, trying out different things and accounts, etc.

Once you get everything set and a stable layout in the Wyze app, tinyCam is well behaved. And I really don’t know how a third party app developer could avoid this issue if they are directly reading the Wyze streams in that manner.

But, you may avoid this if using the RTSP firmware? Since that has relatively fixed addresses for each cam? Another detail that didn’t come up in the video.

Also, drag and drop reordering of cams in tinyCam - works perfect on devices, but not always the case on emulators, and I suspect Firesticks. So you have to manually edit the channel numbers to reorder the cam sequence.

Hmm… :thinking: No way to download it on something else and manually load it on the Firestick? I guess this is also the mouse problem - no USB access?

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Yeah no way other than self hosting it on your own site or something. Not a big deal; there are other repositories and I can always try another browser, although for some reason “Downloader” is the only app that by default lets you download anything onto a stick - the Firefox for Firestick is read-only, which is weird and disappointing.

Thanks for the feedback.

It’s been a long time since I updated this thread and I am completely enamored with TinyCam. It is the best $2 - $4 you’ll ever spend. (And you may not even need the paid Pro version at all.) I got it set up on a tweaked Fire HD tablet for full time monitoring of Wyze and other cameras. I later got the FireTV version on sale. TinyCam can do its own motion detection, person detection, and local recording, and it runs its own web server so you can view your cams from any browser. There are tons of amazing features hidden in plain site.

I have a Fire HD tablet tweaked to do full time display of all cameras on a small easel. I alternate with the Wyze app but usually run TinyCam Pro or Free. It happens to sit next to an indoor Wyze V2.

Today a family member asked why we needed both - we only really need room monitoring when we’re not there, so what’s the point of the tablet monitoring the camera right next to it. Doesn’t the Fire tablet have a camera?

So next was a brief rabbit hole with Alexa. The Alexa app can certainly “drop in” and get video from the Fire tablet… But ONLY when that tablet is in “Show Mode”. And the only way I see to switch it to Show Mode is while you can touch or talk to it - the Alexa app is incapable of switching it remotely.

What’s next? Another remote control app for the tablet? Hey wait, why not use one of those apps that can use the tablet’s camera as a webcam and funnel that back to TinyCam? I checked out Alfred and IPCam and some others, but all were adware. How can I easily use the Android tablet’s camera?

Hey wait. Did I forget something? TinyCam, Manage Cameras, Add, Android camera. No way, it can’t be this easy - a feature built right into TinyCam itself. The stream starts right up and I’m looking behind the tablet. I didn’t even realize the FireHD had a rear camera! I flip the view to front camera and I’m looking at myself.

One problem - the view has a greenish tinge. I switch the camera setting from H.265 to JPG and the color is normal, but the frame rate is poor. Try different encoder settings, no change. I start looking up “white balance” and “green” and don’t see any fix for TinyCam. :frowning:

Finally I’m noodling in the settings and get to the Developer section. In the middle is an “experimental” feature that is intended if you have a green view on Android cameras! I flip that bit and lo and behold it’s fixed.

TinyCam is just a great app. I hope Alexey ports it to other platforms. (Linux would be cool for running on other low power devices.)

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Nice. I have a Fire tablet but haven’t tried to use it with TCP or as a camera yet… But you also have me another idea…

I do have 3 echo show devices. They are nice to drop in and communicate like a video intercom system. I was disappointed that none of them can store video, so I thought they are useless as cams and so I put Wyze cams to cover the areas they’re basically already covering because they can’t save video. Now I am thinking I might be able to find a way to get Tiny Cam to use them and save the video, have person detection, etc.

Not sure if it is possible, but I might just have to try now.

Only downside is TinyCam seems to go in and out on connectivity/fps (I’m sure it’s more of Wyze’s fault since the same thing still happens when using their app directly, but still annoying.

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I don’t think there is any way for Echo Shows, sorry. You can’t even install the app on it, let alone commandeer its camera. That is one reason I went with the Fire as a console. It’s mostly an Android tablet with an option to run in Show Mode. I did get a couple of Shows as clock radio replacements.

You might be able to engineer something where your Android phone’s Alexa app drops in on the Show (that does work) but I don’t know how you’d get the video back to TinyCam.

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Holy mackerel, every time I think I’ve reached the limit of what it can do, TinyCam surprises me again.

So the FireTV version doesn’t seem to allow adding an “Android camera”. How to get that tablet cam feed in another instance of TinyCam on a TV?

If only one instance of TinyCam could pull a particular camera feed from the web server of the first TinyCam instance. No way, right?

Guess again. And it works!

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tinyCam is a great app and Alexy is very fast to respond to questions and fix problems.
I currently run the Pro server version on an Android TV box with 8 Wyze cams and an old D-link 720 cam.
I used to use the server to view my cameras on a browser at work.
Now that I am working at home I have tinyCam running on a Fire Stick connected to a 24" monitor with audio.

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That’s a great idea. I have an extra monitor I don’t use. I could just have it dedicated as a security monitor run by a cheap Fire Stick, and even be the “server” to be able to see cams from anywhere. I might just do that. Thanks for sharing.

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pairing a bluetooth mouse with a firestick doesn’t solve the pointer issue ?

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Good point, thanks. It might have, but I was looking to use only the stock Fire remote. I have since purchased TinyCam Pro on both Fire and regular Android so it’s mostly moot for me.

Still would be interesting to see how far that would let me get with the sideloaded Wyze app.

i love that people are working with various ways to use these neet little Wyze platforms. :slight_smile:
Does anyone know if V2 can, after initial setup/config, both stream rtsp and continuous record to SD from a cold boot and no internet ?

Well, Wyze cams don’t stream RTSP at all without either special semi-unsupported Wyze firmware or 3rd party firmware. TinyCam is very cool because it can also talk to the Wyze cameras with normal Wyze credentials and Wyze stream format and no RTSP at all.

After a boot with no Internet the Wyze firmware isn’t supposed to be able to do much, but one person has reported that their cameras do continue to record to SD. I’m not sure how reliable or replicable that experience is.

I just did an experiment.
I blocked my V2 RTSP cam’s Mac address in my router. Then rebooted the camera.
RTSP worked fine through VLC, I knew that would work.
I have that camera set up to record Events to SD. It worked without an Internet connection.
I verified that the camera was not connecting to the Internet by disconnecting Wifi on my phone. I could connect to all of my cameras except the one I blocked in the router.
This camera is using Wyze RTSP firmware.

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So, continuing my TinyCam saga, I’ve posted here a few hundred times about how great it is.

It does a fine job even though I am running it on a minimally powered Fire HD tablet, 24/7, with a 4 up display (and more on a 2nd page), several cameras, running the tablet’s front camera as an Android camera within TinyCam, running TinyCam’s web server exposed to the Internet, accessing its feeds via additional TinyCam instances on phones, and using its DVR features to record events to the tablet’s internal storage. The tablet is still responsive to touch and still responds to Alexa commands too. It’s quite a feat, really.

Tip - to keep things from closing use Android’s features to turn off all battery optimization relevant to TinyCam.

I more recently started trying TinyCam’s AI / person / object detection features and it’s not bad.

Even more fun, there’s a little switch for “Sound on motion” that rings a loud bell - it sounds exactly like a bell on a shop door.

In my initial testing / usage, the bell sounds within 2-3 seconds of a human appearing - my Wyze Alexa person announcements (which I love) are still taking about 22 seconds.

To exaggerate just a bit, that single little checkbox has now turned my old V2 into a touchless automatic doorbell.

I know I’ve pushed TinyCam more than is reasonable (for this tablet anyway) and it’s held up so well. The IPcam buffs don’t take it all that seriously but I really wonder if I should just keep using it - even as I integrate higher resolution cameras - instead of moving to the likes of Blue Iris and Frigate and ZoneMinder and HomeAssistant. I should probably use better hardware though.

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I have been very happy with tinyCam running on an older Minix Neo U1 Android TV box. Like your setup it works great.
My only complaint about the Minix is that it doesn’t start up after a power failure. I have to physically push the power button. So, if the power fluctuates while I am away I lose the tinyCam server.

I have tinyCam on my phone but usually just use direct URL’s in a browser to view individual server cameras. This is useful on iOS devices that don’t support tinyCam. You can also use and software that supports URL’s.

Edit: After years of owning this thing, I just discovered that there is a setting to have it boot when power is restored. Now I have no complaints… about the Minix box… there are still many other things than annoy me, mostly people.

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Yep that’s another advantage of the tablet - built in battery backup! (Yes the battery may overcharge over time.)

Oh I’m with you there. :slight_smile:

If I were to use a back end Android box (the expensive NVidia Shield seems popular but I’d like to keep it under $100) I wonder how well the existing tablet could serve as a front end to it. TinyCam can work in a distributed fashion but it doesn’t seem that straightforward. (Even right now, I’d like my "console* tablet to be able to generate notifications on my phone, but without having a TinyCam instance on the phone that has to be accessing the same cameras all the time.)

If the great Alexey Vasilyev had better documentation and publicity / marketing, TinyCam would be a much bigger success. He puts so much effort into terrific features and compatibility but they are sometimes hard to discover. I find bits and pieces in stray Reddit posts and the like. The web site info seems pretty out of date versus the current feature set too.

I agree, if he documented some of this stuff better it would attract more users. I found the URL info accidentally.

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