When I lived in what is generally described as an unsavory neighborhood, I had a device installed which would ring my mobile phone if the alarm sounded. Technology has moved on a tad since then with home monitoring options like this one from Florida-based Stem Innovation. The company has developed an app-controlled video camera called the iZON Remote Room Monitor that streams live video and audio to your iOS device when movement or sound is detected at home. The system can even send the recording direct to a private YouTube account for safe-keeping or sharing.

Once the 3.14 x 7.63 x 2.16-inch (80 x 194 x 55mm) iZON Remote Room Monitor is positioned so that it can survey the room needing protection, it will begin recording a 30 second clip whenever its audio or movement sensors are triggered. The device will also send an alert via push notification to an iPod touch, iPhone or iPad running iOS 4.0 or later via the free Stem:Connect App - allowing users to live stream mono audio and video over Edge, 3G or Wi-Fi (if available) and see exactly what going on while they're elsewhere.

Users can set the system to manually trigger the camera at any time via the app's Live Camera View and have recordings automatically uploaded to a free, private YouTube account - to share with family and friends, or perhaps local law enforcers. The iZON supports 300 kbps bitstream QVGA video at 10 frames per second or up to 1.5 Mbps VGA video at 30 fps, and can detect audio levels from 35 dB to 95 dB and record mono audio at a sample rate of 16 kHz.

The iZON will need to be added to a user's local wireless network to securely encrypt and stream or upload captured audio and video. Multiple cameras can be set up on one home network or numerous devices in different locations can be included in a user's remote monitoring profile. It also requires a horizontal surface to sit on or can be ceiling-mounted, can be tilted and swiveled into position on its magnetic base - to make sure everything you need to keep an eye on is within the frame.

The iZON Remote Room Monitor is available direct from Stem Innovation for US$129.95, and will shortly be made available through Apple stores across the U.S. and Canada.

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