Roku is seriously expanding. The company is best known for building the Roku smart TV operating system and a number of inexpensive streaming devices that run it. But it seems that Roku wants to expand out of the living room and into the rest of the home — and has launched a series of new smart home devices that work with the Roku Smart Home app, and come at a relatively low price. The most expensive of these new devices is the Roku Indoor Camera SE.
While it’s the most expensive of Roku’s new devices, the Roku Indoor Camera SE is far from expensive. At $50, it’s a low-cost way to get a basic security camera in your home, and while others have more and better features, not everyone needs or wants those features.
But the device is also Roku’s first security camera, and one of its first smart home devices. How does Roku do in its first attempt? I’ve been using the Roku Indoor Camera SE for a while now to find out.
Rating: 3.5 Stars
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- Very inexpensive
- Solid video
- App works well
- Design is a little flimsy
Roku Indoor Camera SE design
The first thing you’ll notice about the Roku Indoor Camera SE is its design, and it’s a little basic-looking. That’s not a huge deal — it’s not an ugly device by any means. But don’t expect the camera to stand out as a piece of modern tech in your home.
The device is cube-shaped, with a foot on the bottom, and a small MicroUSB connector cable on the back. I wish Roku chose to go with USB-C here — it’s 2022 and no company should be building new devices with MicroUSB.
The foot is a nice way to position the camera wherever you want it. You can swivel the camera, and raise or lower it, which is nice. Unfortunately, the positioning isn’t super secure, and you might find that it lowers itself because of that.
Generally, I find the design of the Roku Indoor Camera SE to be fine. It’s not that pretty, but it’s not overly ugly either.
Roku Indoor Camera SE features
The Roku Indoor Camera SE may be a budget security product, but it still offers some great features that should help ensure that it’s useful to those who buy it.
All the basic features are here, for example. You’ll get two-way audio, so you can talk to those on the other end. And, you’ll get support for Google Assistant and Alexa, so you can integrate the device with your Amazon or Google-based smart home. HomeKit support would have been nice though, and there’s no word on whether or not the devices will support Matter.
As you would expect, the camera does work with your other Roku devices. Namely, you can see a feed of the camera on your Roku TV, which is a feature I didn’t find myself using, but could be useful for others. You can even set the camera to record to an SD card, which is always a nice touch.
Within the app, you get a number of options too. For example, the app lets you set motion sensitivity settings, and set alarm settings in case the camera is triggered. And, with other Roku smart home devices, you can create automations, called “Rules.” These can include shortcuts that can be triggered straight from the Roku app home screen.
Sure, the camera isn’t the most advanced out there, but in this price range it gets all the basics, plus a few extra features. You can also plug it into the Roku Indoor Smart Plug SE.
Roku Indoor Camera SE video quality
The Roku Indoor Camera SE offers a 1080p resolution, with support for night mode, which can be set to turn on and off automatically, or manually. I found the video quality to be pretty good, especially for a camera in this price range. Colors were more accurate and vibrant than many more expensive cameras, and while it wasn’t as detailed as a higher-resolution camera, not everyone needs a super high resolution.
If you’re looking for a super high-quality video feed, then you’ll need to look elsewhere. But at this price, the Roku Indoor Camera SE can’t really be beat.
The Roku Indoor Camera SE is an excellent option for those who want a great security camera on a budget. I am a little intrigued by Roku’s move to create an ecosystem of products in Roku’s app, and not everyone will want that. But with Alexa and Google Assistant integration, there is a large audience for a cheap security camera that does all the basics pretty well.
Perhaps the biggest competition in this space comes from Blink. The Blink Mini is a very inexpensive indoor camera that better integrates with Amazon’s ecosystem — and if you’re an Alexa user, I recommend going for the Blink Mini. That said, if you simply want a solid security camera on a budget, the Roku Indoor Camera SE is a great option.
Should I buy the Roku Indoor Camera SE?
Yes. It’s a great camera at a very low price.
Related coverage: See our Roku Smart Bulb SE review.