Attractive Smart Home Security from Maximus Lighting
We have been experimenting with different security cameras over the years, both inside and outside and at our mom’s house. The cameras all have had pros and cons but for the most part work pretty well. But up until now we have not found one that was both useful and attractive like Maximus Lighting.
Outdoor security cameras are nothing new – people have been using them in their businesses and homes for years. Smart home technology and the Internet have just made them more accessible and easy to install and manage for the average consumer. The look of some of these new cameras has come to the attention of our homeowners’ association recently and they felt the need to reinforce the architectural guidelines for floodlights to all the residents in our area. Let’s face it – a big bright white spotlight just doesn’t look that great and when everything has motion-detection it draws a lot of attention.
Maximus Lighting combines a stylish, high-quality outdoor light with a built-in, subtle camera to add security to the outside of your home in an attractive package. We first learned about Maximus at CES (watch the video) and were really happy to get the opportunity to try out the lights at home.
We started with the Maximus Smart Security Light in oil-rubbed bronze, perfect to go with our home’s exterior. The installation was easy, we simply removed the existing light attached the new one in its place. The Kuna app, installed separately, provides the interface and the cloud storage for the Smart Security Light and other related products.
The Smart Security Light comes with built-in WiFi and Bluetooth and motion detection. The unit has a strong WiFi signal, even without a repeater we get good coverage. There is a light setting for motion, “Always, Never, Night,” that turns the light fixture on when motion is sensed.
Once we were happy with the Smart Security Light we decided to add two matching Companion Lights to our system. These lights connect via Bluetooth and mirror the lighting settings on the original light – if motion is detected, all the lights come on and all can be controlled from the application. This is great because it allows us to replace all our outdoor lights with new, attractive matching lights without the extra cost and management overheard of having a camera on each one. All the lights also met the exacting standards of our homeowners association.
The basic version of the Kuna app reports motion easily and displays well. We especially like the short summary videos to quickly find the event you are interested in within the app – and you don’t need to unlock your iPhone to see them. Basic includes 24/7 HD Video Live Feed, two-hour “look back” of motion incidents and three video downloads per month from the cloud. Kuna also integrates with Amazon Alexa, though we have not yet fully tested that feature.
The Kuna app offers paid subscription plans starting from 4.99 per month (billed annually) for one device, offering additional features such as the ability to ”Go back in time” to review, rewind, & download every event for seven days, “Smart detection” event capture – for instance, the alerts distinguish between a person and a car (we have tested this and it works very well), unlimited events, HD downloads, animated thumbnails and lifetime theft protection. For larger homes with multiple entries or additional devices, plans start at $9.99 per month (annually) for up to four devices and 14 days of storage and $19.99 per month (annually) for up to 8 devices and 30 days of storage.
Maximus has upgraded their Kuna support since we originally purchased our lights. Support is now available from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Pacific Time, but it could still be improved for better nationwide coverage. A test call got right to a person who was very nice, and was able to research our question quickly.
For us, the only real drawback to the Maximus lights is the camera resolution and lack of night vision. The camera resolution is 720P, which is absolutely fine for daytime use, but at night, with the only light available from the lights themselves, the resolution is not great compared to competitive solutions.
In summary, we are really happy with our Maximus lights and the Kuna app so far. The lights look great, match our home’s decor and our homeowners association’s requirements, and provide great outdoor security coverage to give us additional peace of mind, all at prices well in-line with other security camera solutions.