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Nest camera or doorbell settings

You can change a variety of settings for your Google Nest cameras and doorbells: video quality, notifications, battery usage, the name of your device, and more.

Depending on which Nest camera or doorbell model you have, you can change its settings in the Home app, the Nest app, or both.

  • If you set up your camera or doorbell in the Home app, use the Home app to change its settings.
  • If you first set up your camera or doorbell in the Nest app, most of its settings are in the Nest app, but you can also change some settings in the Home app.
  • Camera settings that appear in both the Home app and Nest app (for example, turning the camera on or off) looks different. However, if you change one of these settings in one app, it is also reflected in the other app.

Home app settings

Here’s how to find your camera settings:

  1. Open the Home app Google Home app.
  2. On the home screen, tap your camera or doorbell.
  3. Tap Settings . From there, you can change its settings.

Find more information about different settings below.

Device information

This menu shows you basic information about your Nest camera or doorbell. You can also tap to change some of these settings.

  • The type of mount it uses (cameras only)
  • The name of your device, the home it’s in and the room it’s in
  • Spoken language for Quick responses (doorbells only)
  • Technical information like your camera’s serial number and software version

Notifications

Notifications let you know what your camera or doorbell detected. You can customize these by selecting the type of alerts you want and when you want them. 

To learn more about notifications, go to our Camera alerts article

Battery

Note: This setting is only available for the Nest Cam (battery) and Nest Doorbell (battery).

The ring at the top of the screen tells you how much charge is left (months, days, etc.). To check the charge in percent (90%, 52% etc.), swipe left on the ring. 

The automatic battery saver is especially useful if your device uses battery power only and you might be away for a long time.

Battery usage lets you quickly customize performance and battery life:

  • Default is a good choice for most people, but you can also opt for higher video quality and longer clips or try to preserve battery with lower settings.
  • Custom appears if you’ve changed settings in the Events and Video settings that affect battery life and are part of battery usage options.

For more information, go to our Nest camera battery savings article.

Events

Choose which events your camera or doorbell can detect and record (people, motion, package, etc.). From there, you and each member of your home can decide which of those events to get notifications for.

Note: If an event is turned off, you won’t get notifications for that kind of activity.

Event options can vary depending on your camera or doorbell model and whether you have a Nest Aware subscription.

You can also create custom Activity Zones that send specific alerts for activities seen within a selected area of your camera’s view.

Doorbell

Change different settings for your doorbell such as visitor announcements on a Google Assistant-enabled speaker or display or the indoor chime.

Doorbell visitor announcements on a speaker or display
Indoor chime settings

Doorbell theme

In addition to standard themes, seasonal doorbell themes are available around some holidays. You can change the theme or set a different chime sound in the app’s doorbell settings.

When you turn on a seasonal theme, a unique sound greets visitors when they ring the doorbell. If you use visitor announcements for your Google Nest or Home speaker or display, the sound plays on the doorbell and in your home.

After the holiday, your doorbell automatically goes back to the default tone, and the seasonal theme disappears in the app.

Video

Here you can change a broad range of settings for video history, video quality, night vision, and more. Find more information about the video topics below in our Help Center.

Video history in the Home app
Change Nest Camera video quality
Night vision
Internet speed and bandwidth requirements for Nest cameras

Audio

Audio settings let you turn the microphone on or off, or disable audio recording so you can hear people on the live video stream, but sound won’t be saved in video history. You can also change the volume for select cameras and doorbells.

Nest camera and doorbell audio settings

Delete video history

This option lets you delete all your camera’s video history and snapshots. Deleted video history and snapshots are unrecoverable. Saved clips won't be deleted.

Remove device

When you remove your camera or doorbell, it gets disconnected from your account. Once removed, it will no longer appear in the app, so you won’t be able to control it, watch its video stream or change settings. This also deletes everything from its video history in the app.

Nest app settings

Note: The Nest app is not compatible with the Nest Cam (wired), Nest Cam (battery), or Nest Doorbell (battery). Use the Home app to change settings for those devices instead.

Here’s how to find your Nest doorbell settings:

  1. Open the Nest app Nest app icon.
  2. Tap your doorbell on the Nest app home screen.
  3. Tap Settings Nest settings icon.

Find more information about different settings below.

Camera On/Off

This option lets you manually turn your camera on or off, regardless of your Home/Away Assist settings or schedule.

What happens when you turn the camera on or off

Indoor chime On/Off

You can turn off your doorbell chime so it won’t ring when someone presses the button. For example, Indoor chime On/Off can come in handy during sick days when you don’t want to be disturbed by a doorbell ring for an extended period of time.

Your doorbell still sends notifications to your phone when someone rings the doorbell. The visitor should then hear a tone when they press the button, but your indoor chime won't sound and you won't get visitor announcements from your Google Assistant.

If you only want to temporarily mute your doorbell chime, you can select Quiet Time Quiet time icon instead.

Important: If your indoor chime doesn't sound after Quiet Time has ended, check your settings. Make sure the Indoor chime On/Off setting is on.

Change your Google Nest camera’s microphone, speaker and audio settings

Tip: If your doorbell loses its Wi-Fi connection, the indoor chime automatically turns back on regardless of its setting in the Nest app. That way, your chime still works while you’re troubleshooting Wi-Fi and connection issues

Home/Away Assist

When Home/Away Assist is on, your camera can automatically turn itself on when you’re away and turn back off when you get home.

How your camera works with Home/Away Assist

Schedule

If you want to have your Nest doorbell’s camera turn on and off at specific times, you can set a schedule.

Schedule your camera to turn on and off at specific times

Notifications

When your camera notices activity, you can have it send an alert to your phone, send an email, or both. You can choose what types of activity your camera looks for and whether to get notifications all the time or only when you’re away.

Camera alerts and how to change settings

Visitor announcements

If you have a Google Assistant-enabled speaker or display, you can have it announce when a visitor rings your Nest doorbell. It can even announce them by name if you have a Nest Aware subscription and you’ve saved your visitor’s name in your familiar faces. You can set this up in the Google Home app.

Get Nest doorbell visitor announcements on a Google Assistant-enabled speaker or display

Quality and bandwidth

If your internet connection is slow or if your internet service provider limits how much data you can use in a month, change this setting to have your camera use less data.

Change your camera's video quality

Night Vision

Night Vision lets your camera look for activity when there’s little or no light.

How Nest camera see in daylight and darkness

Camera sharing 

This option lets you check whether you’ve chosen to share your camera’s video stream with others.

Share your camera's video stream or make it private

Activity history

If you don’t have a Nest Aware subscription, the Nest app displays snapshots of activity spotted by your camera over the last few hours.

If you choose to turn off activity history, your camera won't capture snapshots and all your existing snapshots will be deleted.

Opt-out of free Sightline snapshots and free activity history

Status light

Nest doorbell includes a small status light that turns on whenever your camera captures video or when someone watches the live feed. This option lets you adjust the brightness of the light.

In addition, Nest doorbell’s status light and light ring always turns on for certain activities.

What camera lights and sounds mean

Chime duration

This option lets you adjust how long your doorbell rings when someone presses the button on Nest doorbell.

Note: This option is only available if you have an electric chime. It won’t work for mechanical chimes.

Microphone

You can turn Nest doorbell’s microphone on or off. If the microphone is off, it won’t pick up sounds and you won’t be able to hear what people are doing at your door.

Note: Before you turn on the microphone or audio recording, make sure that doing so complies with all applicable privacy laws.

Change Nest camera’s microphone, speaker, and audio settings

Spoken language

Whenever someone rings the doorbell, you can tell Nest doorbell to reply with a pre-recorded Quick Response in the language of your choice.

Use Quick Responses

Doorbell themes

Seasonal doorbell themes are available for your doorbell around some holidays. The app lets you know when a seasonal doorbell theme is available. You can change the theme or set a different chime sound in the app’s doorbell settings.

When you turn on a seasonal theme, a unique sound greets visitors when they ring the doorbell. If you use visitor announcements for your Google Nest or Home speaker or display, the sound plays on the doorbell and in your home.

After the holiday, your doorbell automatically goes back to the default tone, and the seasonal theme disappears in the app.

Wi-Fi connection

This option lets you choose a different Wi-Fi network for your camera.

Note: Don’t change this option unless you need to. For example, you might need to change this option if you’ve updated your Wi-Fi password, gotten a new router, or given your Wi-Fi network a new name.

Change your Wi-Fi password or replace your router

Where

This lets you name your Nest doorbell with its location, for example, “Porch.” You can choose the location from a list during initial setup, but you can change it or add a custom label.

Change the name of your Nest doorbell

Delete history

If you want, you can permanently delete your camera’s entire video history, including any snapshots your camera recorded. However, this will not delete any clips saved to your account.

Important: When you delete your camera’s video history, everything captured up to this point will be erased. Once your video history and snapshots are deleted, they’re gone forever. They cannot be recovered. We do not keep backups.

Delete camera’s video history and snapshots

Remove camera

If you need to, you can remove your Nest doorbell from your account and start over again.

Remove a product from your account in the Nest app

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