The Camera app's splash screen logo on Windows 10.

Network cameras have existed since before the Wyze Cam and Nest Cam. They send their data over your local network rather than relying on a cloud service. Now, Insider builds of Windows 10 20H1 have built-in support for these cameras.

These are also known as IP-based cameras, as they send video data over your local area network (LAN) using the Internet Protocol (IP.) Traditionally, you had to use a third-party software package or access a web server running on the camera to access these cameras. Now, get ready for built-in support.

One catch: For now, at least, Windows 10 only supports network cameras that are compliant with ONVIF Profile S. As Microsoft’s Varsha Parthasarathy puts it in a Microsoft blog post announcing the feature, these “are standards-compliant network cameras optimized for real-time streaming video capture.”

If you have a camera that works with Windows 10, you’ll be able to go to Settings > Devices > Bluetooth & other devices > Add Bluetooth or other device. Windows will automatically scan your local network for supported network cameras. Click it to add it to your system.

Once the camera is added, you can use the built-in Camera app on Windows to capture photos, stream live video, or record videos. It will be available to other camera apps on Windows, too.

This feature is only available in Windows 10 Insider build 18995 or newer. This is a 20H1 build, so this feature will likely debut for everyone in Windows 10’s 20H1 update. Microsoft will likely release a stable version of 20H1 around April 2020.

RELATED: What's New in Windows 10's May 2020 Update, Available Now


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Chris Hoffman is Editor-in-Chief of How-To Geek. He's written about technology for over a decade and was a PCWorld columnist for two years. Chris has written for The New York Times and Reader's Digest, been interviewed as a technology expert on TV stations like Miami's NBC 6, and had his work covered by news outlets like the BBC. Since 2011, Chris has written over 2,000 articles that have been read more than one billion times---and that's just here at How-To Geek.
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