Amazon is discontinuing support for its Cloud Cam security camera and replacing it with a free Blink Mini. The move was first reported by MacRumors late last week, and we got a copy of an email issued to users notifying the change. Cloud Cam owners will be allowed to use their cameras and download video until December 2nd, at which point all recordings will be erased and the gear will no longer function. Customers with the Cloud Cam Key Edition will also lose the ability to link to smart locks, however, they can replace the capability with a free fourth-generation Echo.
“As the number of Alexa smart home devices grows, we are concentrating our efforts on Ring, Blink, and other technologies that make your home smarter and ease your daily activities.” As a result, we have decided to discontinue support for Amazon Cloud Cam and its partner apps,” Amazon stated in an email that was also shared on Reddit.
“We will continue to offer innovative smart home security solutions for our customers through Amazon’s Ring and Blink brands,” Amazon noted. It also stated that it will provide Blink Mini cameras to users who are “still actively utilizing their Cloud Cam,” though it’s unclear whether this is a formal requirement for receiving the free replacement.
Before the December 2nd deadline, Cloud Cam owners will get an email with instructions for redeeming their free Blink Mini and (for Key Edition owners) Echo. The Blink Mini will include a one-year subscription to Blink Subscription Plus, which is normally $10 per month or $100 per year. Many Blink features, such as instant access to movies and motion-activated recording, need a subscription — either to Plus or the $3 per month single-camera Basic plan. Cloud Cam similarly required a paid subscription for advanced functionality, however, it did offer some free options on the Blink Mini.
The Cloud Cam series debuted in 2017 and was phased out in late 2019 after Amazon acquired security camera manufacturers Blink and Ring. Amazon is now following a well-known trend of firms bricking smart home products because they no longer wish to support its ecosystem. Customers will not be complete without recourse as a result of the change, but they will still end up with some obsolete hardware that they may have purchased only a few years ago.