PhotoSpring Smart Digital Photo Frame- Photo Frames brought into the 21st Century

What we love…

Easy to set up and use. Auto update feature allows it to automatically upload and display new photos without any effort

What we’d love to see…

Ability to create own albums and tag and search photos (planned in future updates)


PhotoSpring Smart Digital Photo Frame is an effortless way to bring  family photos off phones and computers and into everyday lives.  It provides an easy way to enjoy and share  photos and memories with family and friends near and far.


As children my siblings and I loved seeing the new pictures every time we got a roll of film back from the developers, and we loved reminiscing as we looked through them together. We had albums of family photos lying around that we loved to look through whenever family or friends visited. With my own children most of our family photos have been taken on digital cameras and, more recently, on cellphones.  We take way more pictures now, but we never see most of them – they stay trapped in a digital graveyard on our computers and phones. I really that feel we, as a family, are missing out by not looking at family photos together and enjoying the memories they bring, but any solutions I’ve tried have just been too time consuming, and end up getting dropped after a few months.

I recently started using the PhotoSpring Smart Digital Photo Frame and I love how it has brought our family photos off our phones and back into our everyday lives.  When I heard “digital photo frame” my first thought was of a frame we had years ago that required downloading photos onto an SD card, which was then inserted in it to view the pictures. This was OK the first time we did it, but we rarely got around to creating new cards for it so the same pictures stayed on for years. Comparing the PhotoSpring to that is similar to comparing a Prius to a Model-T – they are both digital photo frames but otherwise have little in common. The PhotoSpring is so easy to use, and once set up it can keep adding new photos as I take them, without any effort on my behalf.

Our PhotoSpring is on a bookshelf in the living room and I’ve set it to automatically switch on in the mornings and off around our usual bedtime. It has a nice sharp display screen and a wide angle of view so you can see the pictures from where ever you are in the room. It is currently rotating through around 1,600 photos taken on my iPhone 7 and my husband’s iPhone 6 over the last year. I love that we are now seeing these pictures and that the kids will often comment about pictures they see and reminisce about the times they were taken.


If a particular photo catches our eye we can take the PhotoSpring off it’s stand and use it as a digital photo album to look through the photos surrounding it at our own pace. It is easy to mark favorite pictures to make then easy to find later or to delete or hide photos we don’t want on display.

My favorite feature is that with it set on auto-update all the new pictures I take on my camera automatically appear on the PhotoSpring without me needing to do anything. As a busy mum of 3 I always have good intentions about making photo albums, printing photos etc but never quite find time to get it done. With PhotoSpring I no longer have to feel guilty about not being more organized with our family photos -PhotoSpring gets our family photos out and on display for without any effort on my part and that is priceless!



In the box is the photo frame, charger and stand. The PhotoSpring looks similar to a 10 inch iPad or Android tablet, but slightly thicker. It has a clean look with no buttons on the front and a white border around the screen. The stand works in either portrait or landscape mode. The charger can be connected to the stand to charge whilst displayed, or directly to the PhotoSpring. It has a nice long cord so I had no problem reaching an outlet.



Set Up

Set up for the PhotoSpring is very quick and easy.  I had mine up and running in about 5 minutes.
1) Connect PhotoSpring to power and wait for it to turn on.
2) Connect PhotoSpring  to your home WiFi network. PhotoSpring will then download the most current version of it’s software.
3) Name your device (e’g Mary’s living room PhotoSpring) then enter your name and email address to get a PhotoSpring account invitation.
4) Respond to the email to create a free PhotoSpring account.
5) Download the PhotoSpring companion apps for iPhone, Android, Mac or Windows to start uploading photos to your PhotoSpring.

You can connect your account to more than one PhotoSpring and invite multiple friends and family to connect to your PhotoSpring. This is great for keep family connected. You can have PhotoSprings at home and work to easily access your photos in both locations. It makes a great gift for Grandparents or other family members because even if they live a long way away you can easily share photos across the miles.

The PhotoSpring comes preloaded with a slideshow that runs you through the features of the frame and how to use it, as well as some art from the Metropolitan Museum of Art.


Sending Photos

There are 2 ways to send photos to your PhotoSpring:

1) Manually: To send photos you open up the PhotoSpring app on your device, select the photos you want to send, and choose which PhotoSpring(s) connected to your account to send them to.

2) Automatically: choose “auto-update” and the PhotoSpring app will automatically upload new photos from your phone (and thus to your PhotoSpring) whenever you have the app open. You can choose to do this only via WiFi or via WiFi and cellular. For iOS you do need to also give permission for PhotoSpring to use location services for this to work.

The photos get sent to PhotoSpring cloud server and from there they are downloaded onto your PhotoSpring for local storage. This does take a little time, it only takes a minute or two for one picture, but large numbers of pictures can take a while to appear.

I send my photos via the auto-update feature as it means I don’t even have to think about uploading my pictures they just appear, my husband prefers to send his manually.



In Use

Once the photos appear on the PhotoSpring they are automatically sorted and duplicate pictures are removed. It will place the pictures in smart albums based on the place they were taken, if they are geo-tagged and location service permission was granted. If you have multiple people connected to your PhotoSpring it will also create albums based on the person taking them.

When playing a slide show you can display either: a) all the photos on the PhotoSpring,  or b) all of a particular album or c) or you can apply one of these 3 filters:

1) Favorite photos- you can mark these by taping on a heart symbol.

2) People- PhotoSpring automatically detects pictures with people in.

3) Best quality- PhotoSpring assesses the picture quality and marks with a lightning symbol those that it considers the best quality.

The PhotoSpring is available with 16GB, 32GB or 80 GB of memory. How many photos it will hold depends on the size/ quality of your images, mine is a 16GB currently has 1,600 photos on it that were taken in an iPhone 7 and is about 25 % full.

The PhotoSpring is a also a touchscreen device, it has a 4 hour battery life so you can remove it from the stand to look through your photo albums and remove, hide or favorite pictures. You can select individual photos or whole albums when hiding, deleting or marking as favorite. When looking at an album the pictures are organized in date order of when they were taken, and you can choose to see them newest first or oldest first. On the side there is a timeline arrow that you can move up or down to easily find photos from a specific date.

In the evenings I like to sit and look through my photo albums – it is a great way to really enjoy the pictures but also lets me easily weed out pictures I don’t want on display and to highlight favorites that I might want to print or create a photo book from later. I would love a way to easily create my own albums as I do this so, that I could create separate slideshows with a theme e.g. vacations, kid’s art work, Scout trips; I am told that the company has plans to add this feature in the future, along with the ability to tag and search.

Currently PhotoSpring only supports digital photos, but video support is due to be added in the next few weeks. The PhotoSpring has built-in speakers ready for video support. When the company updates the software to add new features it automatically updates via WiFi so you don’t need to check for updates to access the new features.


I love our PhotoSpring – it makes it so easy to enjoy and share our family photos with very little time or effort on my part. The auto-update feature makes it effortless to constantly update the frame with new pictures. My whole family is enjoying  it. We all get to enjoy our family photos and gives us many opportunities to easily took through photos and share memories together. It makes a great gift for moms and dads as an easy way to view family photos at home or in the office. It is also is a great gift idea for grandparents, as long as they have a WiFi connection, many different family members can connect to their PhotoSpring and easily keep them updated with family pictures even if they live a long way away or even in a different country. Highly recommended !

PhotoSpring Smart Digital Photo Frame is available from with 16, 32 or 80GB storage from $149


NOTE: A product was supplied by the company for review purposes, no other form of compensation was received, all opinions stated in the review are those of the author and have been offered honestly.The links in this post may contain affiliate links where The iMums will receive a small commission if you make a purchase after clicking on our link, this helps to support the costs of running this site and we appreciate your support.



Review of the Arlo Q Security Camera with Audio from NETGEAR

arlo-q-lifestyle-bookcase-1-mediumDisclaimer: I am a NETGEAR Ambassador and I received this product in exchange for my honest, unbiased opinion and review.

What we love…

2 way audio, high definition video, night vision, a long cord, easy camera angle adjustment, zoom capability, sound and motion detection and free cloud storage.

What we’d love to see…

I would love to see integration with other connected home accessories and the ability to view from multiple devices simultaneously.


The Arlo Q is a great addition to the Arlo family, it is a very versatile indoor video camera.  It is very quick and easy to set up and needs no hub. It adds an Arlo option that has 2 way audio and needs no batteries. With no monthly fee for the basic storage plan this is a considerable saving over other systems that require a monthly fee.

Our Rating


I first reviewed the Arlo home security camera system from NETGEAR in March 2015, and I still use it on a daily basis. I love the versatility of the wireless cameras, the free online storage and the ingenious magnetic mounting system. For the cameras I use really frequently it would be nice to have a wired option to cut down on battery usage. NETGEAR has just launched the Arlo Q, which makes that option a reality. Arlo Q is a wired camera, so no more batteries, and includes 2 way audio. It can be used as an add-on to an existing Arlo system or it can be used independently. I have been testing out Arlo Q with my existing Arlo system and it is a great addition to the Arlo family!

Set Up

Set up is very easy. If you already have an Arlo system you can add Arlo Q as an additional camera via the app. If you don’t already own an Arlo system, Arlo Q can be used as a standalone, to start simply download the Arlo App and set up a free account. Arlo Q connects directly to your home WiFi network and does not need a hub.

Connect the included micro USB cable and wall charger to the Arlo Q, and plug in. The cable for Arlo Q is almost 10 feet long, much longer than the cables on other cameras I have tested. I really appreciated this as I’ve experienced how short cables can limit installation options. I could put Arlo Q on top of a high shelf and still reach an electric outlet.

Follow the instructions in the app to connect Arlo Q to your home WiFi network. The camera scans a QR code in the app to complete set up so you don’t even have to type in serial numbers, it took me about 3 minutes to have it up and running. I have the Arlo app installed on all our family’s smartphones and when I added the camera on one phone it automatically appeared in all the others linked to our account.



Unlike the wireless Arlo cameras Arlo Q is permanently attached to its base. The base can sit on a shelf or other flat surface or be mounted on a wall using the included bracket, the base is also magnetized so it will stick to a metal surface. One of the things I love about the wireless Arlo is how its magnetic ball and socket style mount allows easy adjustment of the viewing angle, Arlo-Q has a totally different mount but still includes a ball and socket joint making it easy to adjust the angle on this camera too.


From the Arlo app you can arm or disarm the camera and set up recording to be triggered by either motion or sound or both. You can also set a weekly schedule so that the camera is only armed during certain times and the schedule can vary on different days. You can also view the camera live stream at any time.  You can choose to record still images or video and you can opt for push notifications or email alerts when the camera is triggered.

You can adjust the sensitivity level for both sound and motion detection and can set up separate motion detection zones (by zooming in on different parts of the room.) For video recording you can choose to record clips from 10-120 seconds long.

There are a variety of storage plans available, the basic plan is free and allows free cloud storage of a week’s worth of video clips (maximum 1GB.) For my families needs the free basic plan is as much storage as we need, but there are also paid upgrade options available including the option to have continual video recording from your Arlo Q.  You can easily download or share video clips from your online library.

iPad Screenshot 2

In Use


iPhone Screenshot 1
The Arlo Wireless cameras are weatherproof and designed to be used inside and out, but the Arlo Q is strictly indoor only. Arlo Q is ideal for situations where you want to be able to view a live video feed or make frequent recordings without worrying about batteries. I find it very useful for keeping an eye on my pet dog and cat when I am away from home. With the 130° camera angle I can watch pretty much the whole living room on live feed, and I can set up motion detection recording to keep an eye on their food and water bowls to make sure they are eating. It is also great for keeping an eye on my teenager to make sure he is getting his homework done when I am out of the room or even out of the house. I love that the 2- way audio means that I can gently remind my son to get back to work and that if he wants my attention he can just speak and I’ll get sent an alert. I do notice a slight lag in the video and audio feed- for me the live feed is about 10 seconds behind real life. For most situations this doesn’t matter but if you are having a 2 way conversation you need to remember to allow time for the other person to respond. I have noticed similar lags with other live feed cameras in my home.

For families with younger children it can make a great baby monitor – you can watch your child to see they are settling down to sleep and then set an alert to send you a notification if there is any sound or movement. I wish it had been available when my kids were younger. When my twins were babies I had a video monitor but the video quality was poor, I could only see one crib at a time, and unless I constantly watched the small fuzzy screen I couldn’t tell if they were awake but quiet, or sleeping. Arlo Q works so much better- good quality video streaming, wide enough angle to get both cribs in view and push notifications if the child moves or makes a sound. It would also work well for elder care with families being able to watch and speak to elderly relatives from afar.

Arlo App

In Camera you can view live feeds of video from all your Arlo cameras,and add new devices.

In Library you can look at your stored video clips and download or share any clips you wish to save.

In Mode you can also set up or change your schedule, create new “modes” and customize their rules and switch between modes. For each mode you can customize what triggers it – sound, motion or both; what action to take- record video, take snapshot or do nothing and how you wish to be notified if it is triggered- email, push notification, both or neither. You can also choose the length of video recording from 10-120 seconds. You can have different schedules for your Arlo Q and Arlo wireless cameras.

In Settings you can choose from 5 different video resolution options varying from 240p up to 1080p, switch the microphone on/ off, switch the speaker on/ off and adjust the speaker volume. You can also set up different zones within the camera field of view by zooming into certain areas. You can have up to 3 zones for each camera.

You can access the Arlo app on both Android and iOS devices as well as on your desktop. Currently you can only be logged in on one device at a time- so if you are viewing your cameras on your phone and your spouse also decides to view on their laptop or phone you will get kicked out. The newest log-in gets priority. In a future updates I would like to see the ability to view from multiple devices at once and integration with other connected home accessories.

Overall, I think the Arlo Q is a great addition to the Arlo family. I think it is a very versatile indoor video camera, it is very quick and easy to set up and needs no hub. It adds an Arlo option that has 2 way audio and needs no batteries. With no monthly fee for the basic storage plan this is a considerable saving over other systems that require a monthly fee. I love the 2-way audio, high definition video, night vision, long cord, easy camera angle adjustment, zoom capability, sound and motion detection and free cloud storage.


Arlo Q is available from Best Buy, Amazon, Wal-Mart and other retailers RRP $219.99

Arlo App

Arlo Arlo by NETGEAR

Price: $FREE

Arlo is the worldwide leader in Smart Home Security, and the creator of the world’s first ever 100% wire-free, weatherproof HD security camera.

Arlo cameras make it easy to keep tabs on all the.


NOTE: A product was supplied by the company for review purposes, no other form of compensation was received, all opinions stated in the review are those of the author and have been offered honestly.


Review of the Piper NV Smart Home Security System

Piper nv - Black - Front-1


180° camera, motion sensing, night vision, 2-way audio, loud alarm, environmental sensors, no video storage fees. Links with door/ window sensors, smart plugs, light bulbs.


Doesn’t currently link with Nest or other smart thermostat, not all z-wave accessories are supported, can’t change the length of video clip recorded, can get quite pricey when setting up multiple camera system.


Overall, if you want a DIY home security system without any monthly fees Piper NV is a great option, with video recording, motion sensing, 2 -way audio, a loud alarm and ability to connect to a variety of accessories including door/ window sensors  it has a lot of great features.


Do you want a security system for your home but don’t want to deal with recurring monthly fees from a security company? Then the Piper NV Home Smart Security System may be what you are looking for. It is a DIY home security solution without any monthly fees.

The heart of the system is a 180° camera with day and night vision, 2-way audio, and motion detection, but is is much more than just a security camera. The Piper NV has a built-in 105 db alarm, environmental sensors that monitor your home and can connect to z-wave accessories such as door/ window sensors, smart plugs and smart bulbs.

To use Piper NV you need to install a free app on your iOS or Android phone/ tablet and wirelessly connect the Piper to your home WiFi network.

iPhone Screenshot 2

You can set 4 modes -stay, away, vacation and notification only and decide how Piper should react to movement, loud noises, or temperature changes. You can choose to be notified of alerts by text, email, phone, push notifications or all of them. When triggered the Piper will record 30 second video clips with audio which are stored in the cloud, there is no storage fee. From the Piper app on your cellphone you can view stored clips or watch live video. One feature I really like is that when watching the video you can pan around the field of view and zoom in to see details. You can also watch in a quadrant view where you have 4 copies of the video feed in a rectangle, within each copy you can pan to a different angle or zoom in so you can really explore a video clip in depth.

iPhone Screenshot 1

When using Piper NV for home security you can also add door and window sensors. I tested this out by attaching a Piper sensor to my front door. It was really easy to set up and install- and only took a couple of minutes. It comes with both screws and 3M adhesive mounts. I used the adhesive mounts which worked well. I was concerned that it would be tricky to install correctly as I have a decorative moulding around the doorframe, but it was no problem. Once it is set up whenever the door opens or closes you can be notified and you can choose to have it automatically record and/ or sound the alarm. I found the notifications were fast and accurate. The alarm is REALLY LOUD! (105db) and would be a good deterrent for anyone making an unauthorized entry. I would recommend working out how to switch it off (by tapping the alert home icon in the Piper app) before testing it as it can be hard to think with the alarm blaring!

When you are watching the video feed live you can not only hear audio but also have a 2-way conversation via the Piper – great for when you are checking up on pets (or teenagers!) left alone.

Another feature that I really like and that you don’t see on most home video cameras is that Piper NV also records and displays environmental data – so you can check on your home to see how the indoor and outdoor temperatures, humidity, light level, sound and activity level have been over the last 48 hours.

iPhone Screenshot 4

I’ve been using the Piper NV in my home for the last month, at first I thought it was just another WiFi video camera system but as I have discovered all its different features I have been very impressed with all that it can do.  As a busy mum I use the camera in several different ways – to check on my dog and cat when I’m not home, to check on my teen to ensure he got home safely from school if I need to go out, and to monitor my home when I’m out for the day or on vacation. I love that the 2-way audio lets me talk to my son, dog and cat. If I’m away from home the weather warnings and environmental sensors are useful to let me know of weather changes happening. I love that when I’m away I can have it record if I have unexpected motion, loud noises, or doors/windows opened and that it also has a very loud alarm that may help scare intruders away. It also has backup batteries so if the power is out or the unit unplugged it will continue to operate.

Whenever Piper is triggered it sends an alert and records a 30 second video clip, it then stops recording, however, the app has a very useful feature – automatic re-arming. If you switch this on it will automatically reset and record again if there is any further motion.

Piper also sells smart plugs and light bulbs that integrate with the Piper NV system. It would be nice to see it integrate with other companies #connectedhome accessories too, so that of you already own a nest, smart plugs or smart lights from other companies you could use them with the system. You can monitor up to 5 Piper’s from your cellphone app so that you can cover a large area of your home. There are bundles available including multiple Piper NVs plus accessories but getting multiple cameras can still add up quickly.

Overall, if you want a DIY home security system without any monthly fees Piper NV is a great option, with video recording, motion sensing, 2 -way audio, a loud alarm and ability to connect to a variety of accessories including door/ window sensors  it has a lot of great features.


Available from:  GetPiper.comAmazon and other retailers, single camera $279.


NOTE: A product was supplied by the company for review purposes, no other form of compensation was received, all opinions stated in the review are those of the author and have been offered honestly.

iPhone Screenshot 5


Bevy Smart Photo System by Lineage Labs – Review & Giveaway


What we love…

easy to set up and use, perfect gift for grandparents or people who have a lot of photos. Affordable, easy to use photo storage solution with fantastic customer service

What we’d love to see…

including HDMI cable and clearer instructions on which internet option to choose


Hands down, simple easy to use photo system that takes photos from various locations and puts them all into one spot.  I loved the security of knowing my photos were backed up and how easy it was to set up

Our Rating



Bevy Smart Photo System by Lineage Labs is an amazing device that allows you to “sync” your photos from a variety of different locations and put them all in one spot where they are backed up! I love to take photos of my friends and family using my iPhone, movies with my iPad and even my digital camera.  Unfortunately too often, these items get “stuck” on my device or simply filed away never to see daylight.  I also have a number of old family photos that I’ve been scanning and trying to find a digital solution for.  I have created an album of these family photos and plan to do a slideshow during the upcoming holidays to share them with family.

Adding photos from my device was as simple as dropping them into a folder from my computer, putting my SD card into one of the ports of the Bevy or selecting my photos on the app.

Once photos are uploaded, Bevy organizes them in one of three ways.  They can be seen by (activity) chronological date, timeline where photos are shown based on time and date it was taken (note if you have a digital camera that doesn’t have a time stamp they are put in a “no date” section), the third which I used was creating albums and marking my own favorites.  This made it easy to sort photos and upload them such as when I was scanning photos of a family member I could easily mark them.

I love that all of my photos are in once place.  Setup was straightforward and simple.  I plugged in Bevy, downloaded the app to my iPhone, connected it to wireless and my pictures started making their way to the Bevy.  It was simple and if I had to leave the house while they were uploading, they simply continued when I got back.  I also loved that I could set the privacy levels of who could upload and download items to our Bevy and who could access it.  Right now, I’ve got fairly tight controls on it, but can loosen them if I wish to.  I also like that my photos are stored at my house on an easy to hold device.  I know it is likely that I will still backup my photos but I like the reassurance that they are safely stored.  I also found that by pulling off a few hundred photos from my iPhone meant that my phone worked much faster!  That’s a huge win!

iPhone Screenshot 2I had a hard drive crash last year, which meant that I lost some of my favorite photos which were stored on my desktop computer.  That caused me to try to figure out how I could “solve” the problem and never lose photos again.  I’m happy to say that Bevy is an easy to use tech solution that will allow you and family members access to your photos in an easy to access way.  I also love that you can load photos into albums on Bevy and then show them on a television screen, tablet or smartphone with a simple touch of the device.  I wish I had this earlier this year when I was struggling to make a DVD movie with photos, Bevy could have saved me hours of frustration!  I also loved that it was small and portable which meant I could put it up on a shelf or out of sight – even though it was perfectly cute if I didn’t want countertop clutter.  If you need more storage, you can add in an external drive which functions with Bevy.  I also loved that you can access photos outside of the home as well using the app.

In terms of enhancements, I would suggest including an HDMI cable in the box of the Bevy.  Many want to connect their Bevy and may not have the cable readily accessible.  I would also suggest that it is clearer in the instructions that people should choose the fastest wireless internet they have – available at their location.  I knew I should use my 5G network, but my husband said that was confusing to him.  The faster the wireless, the more seamlessly the photos will upload into the system for use and be stored.  I do look forward to having a way to back my photos up securely to the cloud as well just in case my Bevy should sometime malfunction so I don’t need to worry that my photos will be lost forever as some of mine were during a recent hard drive crash. I also wish there was an easier way to configure the “out of home” access – this was a challenge as my Bevy didn’t want to work externally, but customer service was very helpful in setting it up

Overall, Bevy is a simple easy to use tech solution for all of your photos.  It gathers them in one place, backs them up and allows you to easily sort through them as well as display them in photo albums for your tablet, smartphone or on your large screen television. This could be an awesome holiday gift for those on your list! Be sure to check out our holiday gift guides for more great suggestions! RRP is USD $299. You can also read our interview with Nancy from Bevy to learn more.


Requirements: Compatible with
Size: 0 MB


Tech Specs
Size   4.6 x 4.4 x 2.0 Inches

Hardware Intel 2.16 GHz dual-core Celeron Processor 2GB RAM 1TB or 2TB Hard Drive

Connectivity WiFi 802.11 b/g/n/ac (2.4 GHz and 5 GHz) Bluetooth 4.0 Built-in SD Card slot 4 USB 3.0 Ports 10/100/1000 Mbps Ethernet

Mobile Support

iOS 8 and higher (on iPhone 4s and higher, or iPad 3 and higher) Android 4.3 (Jelly Bean) and higher

Computer Support

Windows 7 and higher Mac OS X 10.9.5 (Mavericks) and higher Adobe Lightroom Plug-in

NOTE: A product was supplied by the company for review purposes, no other form of compensation was received, all opinions stated in the review are those of the author and have been offered honestly.



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