Technologist - The FindLaw Legal Technology Blog

Upcycle Old Tech: Turn Old iPhones Into Office Security Cameras

When you get yourself new tech, your older tech can sometimes be rendered obsolete or just unused. But, if you didn't completely destroy your last device, it can often feel bad to just let it gather dust in a drawer. Fortunately, there's a solution, at least for your Apple and Android smartphones.

Since most smartphones, at least for the last few years, have a pretty good camera, as well as WiFi, as well as a decent enough processor to run as a dedicated security camera, an old iPhone or Android phone can easily be used as an additional measure of office security (or home security). Simply download the free Presence app (or another similar type of app) onto the retired device and your new one, and follow the setup instructions.

Making the Case

While there may be new plug and play IoT home and office security tech on the market that you can buy, there's something special about using the old tech you already have, especially since most smartphones are so capable. Also, smartphones, unlike most security cameras, were designed with an eye for beauty, so, to some people at least, they will look much nicer mounted on a wall than a boxy security camera.

However, as one might anticipate, one caveat to using an old smartphone as a security camera, particularly an iPhone, is the likelihood that it will be stolen along with whatever else thieves were after. Fortunately though, apps, like Presence (linked above) not only allow motion sensing recording as well as limited cloud storage for those recordings, it can send notifications to your new/current smartphone whenever motion is detected. Plus, smartphones are pretty small and easy to hide.

Note: FindLaw is not associated with the app Presence, and neither is this blogger. However, after personally testing several similar free apps, I selected Presence for my own personal use. I found it to be reliable and incredibly easy to operate, as well as offer the best price point for limited cloud storage (which is where most apps in this sector make their money): free! Other options are definitely available, and you can find quite a few write-ups with step by step instructions.

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