HomeSecurity Camera GuidesHow To Turn Old Phones Into Security Cameras | Best Free Security Camera Apps 2023

How To Turn Old Phones Into Security Cameras | Best Free Security Camera Apps 2023

How many old phones are currently lying around your house? 

Yet there are great ways to revive an old smartphone, like using an old phone as a security camera. 

Find out how to use old phones as security cameras with our top 5 security camera apps for 2023. Or, check out our easy step-by-step guide to getting started with AlfredCamera.

5 Best Apps to Turn Old Phones Into Security Cameras

With a growing number of security camera apps, it can be hard to know which is the best free security camera app for Android and iOS phones and tablets. 

Check out our list of the top 5 security camera apps for 2023 below to get an idea of which security camera apps are best for you.

1. AlfredCamera

Available on the App Store and Google Play.

Alfredcamera_home

24/7 live feeds that can be monitored anywhere, instant push notifications, and a super fast setup make AlfredCamera a smartphone security camera app that packs a punch.

RatingPriceDownloadsReviewRecently Updated? 
4.8 (App Store)
4.8 (Google Play)
Free, with the option for Premium from $2.4970M+ 650K (Google Play)
86.7K (App Store)
鉁旓笍

I use 6 of my old smartphones to keep an eye on my home. One for my disabled wife, one for our exotic birds, one in a window to watch our cars, one in the kitchen to monitor the back door, one in the french doors to monitor our patio and one in the bathroom(it doesn’t see the entire room mostly the ceiling) my wife uses in case she needs help. I’ve used Alfred for over six years. It has worked very well for my needs.

The absolute easiest security app ever to set up super simple super easy. When you’re a single mom it doesn’t get any better than that. Had an old phone laying around downloaded the app on both and Bam 馃憡 that’s it literally that’s it. I can make sure my house is okay as well as my kids are safe.

Credit: How To Do It All

2. AtHome Camera

Available on the App Store and Google Play.

Building a loyal user-base over the last decade, AtHome Camera combines traditional motion sensing with advanced AI deep learning technology. 

This helps it to be less prone to false alarms and only send push notifications when necessary.

AtHome Camera promo image featuring two children playing without adult supervision and being recorded by a device.

Users can enjoy cloud storage, 24/7 live streaming, two-way talk, and time-lapse recordings, which cuts 24 hours of footage into a couple of minutes.

RatingPriceDownloadsReviewUpdated?
3.2 (App Store)
3.7 (Google Play)
Free5M+ (Google Play)49K (Google Play)
>200 (App Store)

3. BabyCam

Available on Google Play.

Parents and parents-to-be will adore this app, which sets itself apart by emphasizing features designed specifically with baby monitoring in mind. 

Set up an old smart device in the baby鈥檚 room, and rest assured with 24/7 virtual monitoring. 

BabyCam鈥檚 simple in-app home screen.

Aside from your phone, you can keep an eye on babies using a PC by linking it to the assigned recording device. Keep them relaxed by choosing lullabies to play for them, before activating the flash when it鈥檚 time to wake up. 

Of course, all of the apps on the list are more than apt for use as baby monitors.

RatingPriceDownloadsReviewUpdated?
4.4 (Google Play)Free, with option for Premium for $21M+ (Google Play)21.9K (Google Play)鉁旓笍

4. SeeCiTV

Available on Google Play .

SeeCiTV claims to make old phones into free security cameras. The big selling point here is bi-directional streaming. 

In other words, it makes use of both front and back cameras as security cameras, which can be useful for monitoring larger spaces or pets that move around a lot. Users can rely on Google Drive for storage.

SeeCiTV promo image, featuring a baby playing with toys being recorded live by a smartphone.

RatingPriceDownloadsReviewUpdated?
4.3 (Google Play)Free, with option for Premium from $0.991M+ (Google Play)15.6K (Google Play)

5. WardenCam

Available on the App Store and Google Play.

WardenCam is another app that turns old phones and tablets into security cameras. Expect motion detection, push notifications, low-light filters, and cloud storage via Google Drive or Dropbox.

RatingPriceDownloadsReviewUpdated?
3.5 (App Store)
4.1 (Google Play)
Free, with option for Premium from $5.9910M+ (Google Play)42 (App Store)
63K (Google Play)

Transform Smartphones into Security Cameras with AlfredCamera (For Free)

AlfredCamera sets itself apart as a robust, all-in-one security solution with an easy-to-use interface. 

1. Prepare two phones

Get started by charging two devices鈥攑hones, tablets, and computer webcams are all suitable. One will be the 鈥楥amera鈥 device that monitors the surroundings, the other will be the 鈥榁iewer鈥 device. 

We recommend using your current phone as the Viewer device, since this is where you鈥檒l receive push notifications when motion is detected.

a bunch of old phones

2. Install the app

Signing up simply requires a valid email address and password.

3. Add a Camera

The fifth step of AlfredCamera APP onboarding process, selecting a device to be used as a camera
Choose the right device type as your camera

4. Pair devices

A QR code will appear on the Viewer device, which needs to be held up to the camera device to be scanned. 

The seventh step of AlfredCamera APP onboarding process, scan the qrcode

This automatically pairs the devices. A few moments later, Alfred鈥檚 ready to go.

5. Test and mount the camera device

On the Viewer device, tap to view the camera鈥檚 live feed to make sure it鈥檚 working well. Then, experiment with locations to place it before mounting. 

The most important consideration when mounting a phone security camera is to have the camera in a place where it is able to be charged constantly.

Placement Pro Tips: How Do You Discreetly Place a Camera?

To get the most out of security camera devices, placement is everything. 

Particularly for cameras in windows, staying subtle is an important way to protect the device. It also minimizes disruption to the look of a space. 

Keep things discreet with the following pro tips:

  1. Maximize visibility and keep cameras subtle by using corners and other dark spaces. Light needs to be on the subject rather than the camera.
  2. Maintain a through-line between the camera device and the Wi-Fi router to keep the connection stable. Stay as close to the router as possible.
  3. Use vertical space to improve visibility and reduce blindspots. Tilt security cameras down toward their subject from several meters high rather than tilting up from below.
  4. Keep the body of the device out of sight at windows and elsewhere. Remember that only the lens on a phone or tablet is actually doing the monitoring.
  5. Experiment with device mounting using sticky tape. An advantage of using phones as security cameras is that there鈥檚 greater flexibility in where it can go than with a true CCTV camera.
AlfredCamera being set up in a variety of ways to turn an old phone into a security camera, including being taped to the wall and conspicuously concealed within an old mug.
Various ways to pose a device with AlfredCamera.

When to Use Old Phones Turned Into Security Cameras

  • Staying in a hotel or unfamiliar place.
  • Pet sitting for a friend.
  • Immediately after a break in or burglary.
  • When suspicions are raised and security is needed, fast.

FAQ

Is there a free security camera app?

How can I use my Android phone as a CCTV camera?

Can I use my old phone as a security camera without Internet?

Conclusion

While we continue to go through smartphones and tablets at an alarming rate, there are increasingly inventive ways to save them from landfill. 

By turning an old phone or tablet into a security camera, you have access to a conspicuous, functional alternative to more expensive systems.