Meraki Fisheye Security Camera Review
David Hasfurter | Senior Systems Engineer
Meraki has been continuing to develop its security product line with both software and hardware improvements. The latest hardware release is the Fisheye (MV32) camera.
This is Meraki’s first camera with a 180-degree view. Meraki has talked about not being in the pan-tilt-zoom (PTZ) business. So to make up for not having PTZ it has made its digital zoom and cameras more capable.
The Fisheye camera does this with a unique software feature. The camera has a “globe” look downward, but when you access the camera you can also pull up a “standard” view. Check out the images below for more detail.
Top 180-degree view:
Standard image when you click into the camera from the portal:
As you can see from these visual examples, the MV32 allows you to access the camera to get both that “normal” view as well as a look around the whole viewing area. This is unique to Meraki and shows the level of research and development they are putting into the security line.
The specs on this camera offer 256 GB on-board storage with an 8.4MP sensor with 802.11ac wireless capability. The Meraki dashboard and its storage offering are unique.
It works by giving you a total number of days of storage. Then you can adjust the quality of the recording. If you turn up the quality, the number of total days of storage adjusts down. You can also extend it by having it record just during business hours instead of 24 hours. The portal is very easy to use and is very clear on the number of days it will be able to keep the recording.
The camera includes a PoE adapter and a few mounting options. Even if you don’t have a PoE switch you can still supply power to this camera. The device’s several mounting arms ensure you can get the camera into the best possible location.
Meraki has also quietly released a new software feature within there camera line (more than just to the MV32) where it analyzes which way someone is walking. This is useful if you’re looking at the camera and want to know which way the person in view is moving.
From a retail view this could help to see which way people move after looking at a product. Or for recovery purposes seeing which way they moved after shoplifting. This feature is illustrated in the image below:
As you can see, when viewing a recording or still image it will show a snippet of what direction people are walking. This feature is an addition to all the previous features Meraki includes, such as heat mapping, native lookup (4pm on Tuesday), and people count per day/hour.
Because Meraki is all cloud it is able to push features to the cameras and dashboard pretty quickly. With Meraki licensing you get hardware support along with software updates automatically.
And even though it is cloud-based Meraki is using public signed certificates to help keep them as secure as possible. This is not a standard offering on the cheaper cameras you’ll find on the market. This is one reason Meraki is making a serious charge in the security space.