Capable of connecting seamlessly to your iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch from anywhere, the Withings Smart Baby Monitor is the most advanced and one of the most expensive monitors out there. Reviews say you get what you pay for. The Withings gets the fewest complaints about connectivity, image lag time or software glitches of any monitor in this report. Plus, it is loaded with extras.
The best connectivity reports we've seen. The Withings Smart Baby Monitor gets relatively few connectivity complaints compared to other monitors that stream and interface with iOS devices via an application. This in part, may be because the Withings offers more ways to connect -- from a home wireless network, from an Ethernet cable, via Bluetooth or via 3G/4G networks. Users and reviewers report that there is little lag time between image capture and stream and say that overall the image quality is solid. Reviewers do say that the night vision is not as bright as it could be.
Five minute setup and hassle free use. Other streaming monitors draw numerous complaints about the difficulty of achieving a secure and consistent connection. By contrast, people who test and use this model say that the monitor pairs quickly with a device via Bluetooth and that the Withings Smart Baby Monitor isn't plagued with software glitches.
Users and reviewers say the Withings interface is intuitive and easy to use. Parents can monitor continuously or run the monitor in the background while other applications/functions are being used. Push notifications and alerts can be set based on noise, movement, and temperature and humidity. Some users wish the camera could pan remotely, and they say that more active babies may crawl out of the view range of the monitor.
The Withings camera has a clamshell design with a stable, flat base, and a slant stand. However, users still say they have to tinker with positioning if they want the monitor above the crib, because the base can interfere with the camera image. The camera also comes with a clip to connect it to the crib rail; however, this is a risky setup. Adventuresome babies will grab for the monitor and could get entangled with the power cord. For safety purposes, keep power cords as far from baby's reach as possible.
Access your baby anywhere. The Withings Smart Baby Monitor allows users to access the monitor from anywhere via 3G/4G networks or by logging in on the Internet. Some users report that Withings charges for this service after a 15 minute limit is reached, but the Withings website states that this feature is unlimited and free of charge. The Withings monitor also allows three users to monitor the baby at the same time, handy for two parents and an additional caregiver.
Unlike other streaming monitors, the Withings does not require a local Wi-Fi channel. Users can take the monitor anywhere and connect to it via Bluetooth, making it a good travel monitor. The Withings also comes with a rechargeable battery for remote use. However battery life is limited to one hour with the video running.
In addition to its monitoring capabilities, the Withings offers nice extras, including a nightlight, a lullaby playback machine and a talk back to the baby intercom that allows users to talk to their baby from anywhere.
Withings responded to pay per view issues. The Withings Smart Baby Monitor carries a one-year warranty. There are no major complaints about Withings customer service, and the company paid attention to users and made monitor access free and unlimited.
1. Baby Bargains
Review Credibility: Excellent The Baby Bargains book and website offer buyer's guides and ratings on a comprehensive selection of baby gear. The authors say they conduct hands-on testing and interviews with parents, manufacturers and retailers before reaching conclusions. Parents posting to Amazon.com say this is the best baby-gear book available, with plenty of current info and lots of attitude, including sections aimed at steering consumers away from unnecessary features. Baby Bargains offers a roundup of top audio and video based baby monitors and provides coverage of specific baby monitors and overall brand performance.
Review: Chapter 7, Monitors, Denise and Alan Fields, Version 9.1, 2012
Review Credibility: Very Good Gizmodo.com says that the highly anticipated Withings Smart Baby Monitor offers the next-level of baby tracking with every conceivable base feature (temperature/humidity, night vision, audio, and video) all streamed into an iOS device. The reviewer clearly tested out the monitor and found that it worked as promised, running it through initial setup and use.
Review: Withings Smart Baby Monitor Review-Always Watching Always Judging, Mat Honan, April 4, 2012
Review Credibility: Very Good Matthew Panzarino, managing editor of TNW.com, pits four smartphone/Wi-Fi compatible baby monitoring options against each other in this article. He describes the Withings Smart Baby Monitor as the "feature packed gorilla" of the bunch. He notes features on the Withings monitor that aren't present on the others, including the talk back microphone, lullabies and temperature/humidity sensors. He also notes that the Withings monitor is more flexible, with a battery option and Bluetooth connectivity for use when traveling. In sum, he says that though it's expensive, the Withings offers many perks and good quality, minus some fixable issues with night vision.
Review: What Is the Best Tablet or Smartphone Compatible Baby Monitor: Withings, BabyPing, iZon or Foscam?, Matthew Panzarino, Sept. 4, 2012
Review Credibility: Very Good The Withings Smart Baby Monitor receives an overall rating of 3.5 out of 5 stars in more than 60 customer reviews. While many users love the features on the monitor and say that for a Wi-Fi connected monitor it works much better than others, there are still numerous connectivity issues reported. Parents are especially frustrated by this, due to the high cost of the monitor.
Review: Withings Smart Baby Monitor, white, Contributors to Amazon.com, As of December 2012
Review Credibility: Good This informative blog post runs through the Withings Smart Baby Monitor's capabilities without commenting on how they function. The writer describes how the Withings connects (via Ethernet, Wi-Fi hotspot, or Bluetooth); its monitoring functions including sound, movement, and temperature sensors; and the camera's basic setup features.
Review: Withings Smart Baby Monitor Lets Apple-users Be Baby-watchers, Ben Coxworth, March 1, 2012