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Fri, Oct 1, 2021 3:31 AM

Limits for Number of Outdoor and Indoor Cameras

SimpliSafe's advertising says that with their Interactive Monitoring plan, you can have up to 10 cameras. I want to get 6 SimpliSafe Wireless Outdoor Security Cameras, plus 4 SimpliCam indoor cameras, for a total of 10 cameras. However, on the SimpliSafe website, when you select the amount of Wireless Outdoor Security Cameras you want to purchase, the drop-down menu stops at "5." If you try to change the number to more than 5, you get the following error message...

"Max number of outdoor security cameras allowed per user is 5."

Similarly, when you select the amount of indoor SimpliCams you want to purchase, the drop-down menu stops at "20." I called SimpliSafe multiple times, and spoke to one tech support agent, one sales agent, one camera department agent, and one supervisor, but no one knew why this was happening. One of the camera department agents told the tech support agent that the reason the site was not letting me order more than 5 outdoor cameras, was because I had not signed up for a monitoring plan yet, and I was, therefore, self-monitoring, which only can use 5 cameras. But that was incorrect, because first of all, I had not signed into my SimpliSafe account while selecting the items, so it wouldn't know who I was, and second of all, I was still able to add 20 indoor cameras to the 5 outdoor cameras already on the order, so that debunks the 5-camera-limit theory.

Sales said that the camera limit was not due to low inventory, and they said I could order 6 outdoor cameras via them over the phone, or I could order 5 online, then order another one online as a separate order. But the problem is that if it was OK to run 6 outdoor cameras with one Base Station, then why would SimpliSafe limit purchases to 5-per-user, and display error messages, when trying to order more? My guess is that the SS3 Base station can only handle 5 outdoor cameras and a bunch more of the indoor cameras, but I cannot get anyone at the company to verify this. One agent was on a group chat for a really long time, while I was on the phone, before telling me that she would email me if someone respondeds. No email yet. Does anyone out there know why SimpliSafe is stating "Max number of outdoor security cameras allowed per user is 5" on their website? Any tips would be appreciated, but I'm waiting for an official answer from the company, so I can place my order.

Thanks!

Official Solution

Community Admin

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2.9K Messages

Il y a 10 m

Hi folks,

Yep, we just want to make sure that there's enough Outdoor Cameras for everyone. Y'all might have heard in the news about ongoing global supply issues, and we're affected as well.

So yes, we limit how many items you can buy at any one time. But the actual maximum number of cameras (of all types) that any given account can support is definitely still 10.

- Johnny M.
SimpliSafe Home Security

Captain

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4.6K Messages

Il y a 10 m

@davidlindsay1 there is a recommended minimum bandwidth for each camera, up and down, and of course the resolution is a key factor too. The 10 camera limit is there for what's in tncluded in the interactive plan, I believe, and not for the maximum # of cameras or type of cameras the system will support. No doubt the day moderator, Johnny M or Harriet C will see your post in the morning and get product management involeved and get you your answer.

Looking into the Help Center, given the article referenced, as far as it says you could have a 100 cameras if your bandwidth was large enoughl.  I am sure SS will clarify tomorrow morning.

https://support.simplisafe.com/hc/en-us/articles/4410169669261-How-many-devices-can-I-connect-to-the-Base-Station-

Advocate

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417 Messages

Il y a 10 m

then why would SimpliSafe limit purchases to 5-per-user, and display error messages, when trying to order more?


It's not at all uncommon for companies to limit the quantity of product that customers can buy, especially new product, to make sure that they can reach as many people as possible. I'm 99% certain someone from SS posted at one point that they limit sales of some items to help maintain stable inventory levels and Sales did not give you the correct answer. As Captain noted, Johnny or Harriet should be by to clear this up sooner rather than later.

My guess is that the SS3 Base station can only handle 5 outdoor cameras and a bunch more of the indoor cameras


Both of these cameras are 1080p cameras so the bandwidth they use should be roughly the same. Also I don't even know for sure that all network traffic from the cameras go through the base station. I kind of assumed they just uploaded footage directly to the internet. (Johnny, can you comment on this?)

Captain

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4.6K Messages

Il y a 10 m

Whew, glad I'm safely under the limit. 3 Simplicams, one doorbell pro and 2 outdoor cams.

Advocate

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417 Messages

Il y a 10 m

@Johnny M,

Do the camera transmit video directly (bypassing the base station) or do they transmit through the base station? And if it's different per camera, please let us know.

Community Admin

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2.9K Messages

Il y a 10 m

@Worthing, all cameras transmit video directly through WiFi (connecting directly to the router).

The Outdoor Camera specifically can also receive signals from the Base Station, to wake up for alarm events, as well as sound the siren.

- Johnny M.
SimpliSafe Home Security

1 Message

Il y a 4 m

Only able to order one outdoor camera? Has something changed?

Community Admin

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2.9K Messages

@mandy62679​ yes, following shortages due to supply chain issues, we've had to limit the Outdoor Camera further to just one per purchase.

(edited)

1 Message

Would I be allowed to just place a 2nd order right after the first? This is silly to have to pay shipping twice. 

Community Admin

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2.9K Messages

Technically yes, our system wouldn't stop you from doing that. But I would encourage you to give our Sales team a call at 800-548-9508 in case they had some alternative options!

(edited)

7 Messages

Il y a 3 m

I have 8 outdoor camera and 2 doorbells,

once the alarm is triggered, the camera’s start to record but the videos don’t get processed. So, when I go to the timeline to review, there are no video for me to review.

please confirm if the base station can handle 8 outdoor cameras.  

I have check the single strength and upload speed on each outdoor camera. 
getting results as good and good. Avg upload is 15.

What solution can be done?

This comment has been converted into a post

Community Admin

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2.9K Messages

@tarunpatel99​ to be clear, the Base Station doesn't handle video data. The Outdoor Camera connects to the Base Station for alarm signals, i.e. when to start recording.

Video data goes directly through your home's WiFi, and of course your home's internet service. 8 Outdoor Cameras could potentially take up ~16mbps of your upload bandwidth, when they're sending all at the same time.

Is your internet service able to accommodate that? If not, that could result in a bottleneck.

7 Messages

davey_d, Thank you for your reply. Our Internet upload speeds is 850mbps. We have a mesh system. Each camera has good signal strength and wifi bandwidth. 

Independently when a camera sends video work without issues. Going to test if I turn off WMM on the 2.4GHz and see if that helps. Will report back.

Community Admin

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2.9K Messages

@tarunpatel99 ah, good call! Yes, bandwidth-wise, you are well covered. But I have seen some compatibility issues specifically with mesh networks, and we haven't yet been able to pin it down. If it turns out to be WMM that's causing the trouble, let me know. Our engineering team would love to hear about it.

Advocate

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417 Messages

@tarunpatel99​ 

For what it's worth, I have Google WiFi at my house and I found that putting the cameras on the guest network:

a) Made adding them much easier. I've seen claims in various forums that some mesh networks prioritize the 2.4 band for guest networks for increased compatibility. I went from it being a hit or miss process when adding to the primary network (sometimes having to walk out to the street...) to working 100% of the time when using my guest network.

b) Reduced the number of weird drops and other issues like missing footage. Mind you, those issues didn't go away but they were reduced.

Your mileage may vary but figured I'd mention it.

7 Messages

Thanks, worthing 

I’ll try out using the guest network approach. Will report back if things improve. Main concern is when the processing upload when all the outdoor camera at once. Independently each camera works perfectly. Only problem is when all at once, video doesn’t upload or process.

thanks