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Turn Old Phones Into Security Cameras Using The Best Free Security Camera Apps of 2024

How many old phones are lying around your house right now? 

Follow our simple 5 step guide to turn old phones into security cameras, or check out the top 5 security camera apps of 2024.

AlfredCamera is the most popular app to turn old phones into security cameras on the App Store and Google Play—with good reason.

– Featured in WIRED, Tom’s Guide, USA Today, CNET, and more.
– Free to use, no hardware purchase required. 
– Affordable Premium service for superior home security.
– User insights spearhead product development and research.

Head below to find out how to set it up!

Turn Old Phones Into Free Security Cameras In Just 5 Steps

With more than 70 million downloads, AlfredCamera is the best security camera app for old phones.

It’s also a breeze to set up. Here’s how…

1. Prepare two phones

Charge two devices—phones and tablets are suitable. One device is the ‘Camera’ device that monitors the surroundings, the other is the ‘Viewer’ device, used to view the feed.

Use your current phone as the Viewer device—this is where you’ll receive push notifications when motion is detected.

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 appears on the Viewer device, which needs to be held up to the Camera device to scan.

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

The devices are now paired and Alfred’s ready to go!

5. Test and mount the camera device

On the Viewer device, tap to view the camera’s live feed to make sure it’s working properly. Then, experiment with placement before mounting.

5 Best Apps to Turn Old Phones Into Security Cameras

With a growing number of security camera apps available, it’s hard to tell which is the best free security camera app for Android and iOS phones and tablets. 

Discover the top 5 security camera apps of 2024 below to find out which security camera apps are best for you.

1. AlfredCamera


Monitor anywhere with 24/7 live feeds, instant push notifications, and super reliable motion detection. The 5 minute setup makes AlfredCamera a smartphone security camera app that not only packs a punch, but is easy to use.

Just got started with Alfred? Here’s the features to know:

· Motion Detection – records and sends a push notification to the user only when motion occurs, significantly reducing unnecessary footage
· Continuous Recording – records constantly in an 8-hour playback loop, so you never miss a critical moment
· Low-Light Filter – provides greater visibility in low-light by applying software filters, so you can capture every detail even in darkness
· Two-Way Talk – allows users to talk with whoever is on the other side of the camera device
· Siren – produces a loud siren sound to ward off intruders or draw attention

Learn more about the features of AlfredCamera

RatingPriceDownloadsReviewsRecently Updated? 
4.8 (App Store)
4.7 (Google Play)
Free, with the option for Premium from $2.4970M+ 701K (Google Play)
93.9K (App Store)

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 ???? 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.

2.6 (App Store)
4 (Google Play)
Free5M+ (Google Play)49K (Google Play)
>200 (App Store)

3. BabyCam

Available on the App Store and Google Play.

Parents and parents-to-be will appreciate this app, which sets itself apart by emphasizing baby monitoring features.

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

BabyCam’s 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’s time to wake up. 

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

4.1 (Google Play)
4.5 (App Store)
Free, with option for Premium for $9.991M+ (Google Play)25.9K (Google Play)
>200 (App Store)

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.

3.7 (Google Play)Free, with option for Premium from $0.991M+ (Google Play)16.2K (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, and low-light filters.

Uniquely, there’s also cloud storage via Google Drive or Dropbox.

3.4 (App Store)
3.5 (Google Play)
Free, with option for Premium from $5.9910M+ (Google Play)42 (App Store)
63.5K (Google Play)

Placement Pro Tips: How to Place a Cell Phone Security Camera Properly

To get the most out of security camera devices, placement is everything. The same applies to old phones turned into security cameras.

Here’s how to optimize your phone security camera placement.

  1. Maximize visibility by using corners and other dark spaces. Light needs to be on the subject, not the camera.
  2. If using Wi-Fi, 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 reduce blindspots. Tilt security cameras down toward their subject from several meters high.
  4. Try recording while charging. While you don’t need to have the phone plugged in constantly to use it as a security camera,  it is possible to power it 24/7 while recording via an outlet.
  5. Experiment with device mounting using sticky tape. An advantage of using phones as security cameras is that there’s great flexibility in where it can go.
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.
  • Experiencing the aftermath of a break in or burglary.
  • Suspicions are raised and security is needed, fast.


Is there a free security camera app?

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

Do I need Wi-Fi to use AlfredCamera?

A Wi-Fi connection isn’t needed to use AlfredCamera on old phones or tablets, meaning you can turn an old phone into a security camera without internet.

AlfredCamera on phones and tablets can use mobile data (4G, 5G) instead of Wi-Fi, providing greater choice in device placement.


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

Turn an old phone or tablet into a security camera using AlfredCamera to access a conspicuous, functional alternative to more expensive security systems, and give your old devices new lives outside dusty drawers.