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"Owlet sock" as a baby monitor? Here are our top baby monitor picks.

Updated: Aug 9, 2023

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Why could this article help you?


When I first began looking for baby monitors, I was amazed by the wide range of choices available on Amazon. Not only that, but the prices also varied a lot. It seemed like a challenging task to find the right one without spending a lot of time reading countless reviews. That's why I decided to write this article—it will introduce you to the different types of baby monitors and recommend some of the top-selling ones on Amazon.

Different types of baby monitors


I was first taken aback by the different prices I found. Some of the popular ones were about $50, while others were way more expensive, going over $200. I wondered why there was such a huge gap. After doing my research, I found out that the price difference mostly comes from the type of baby monitor you choose. Basically, there are two main categories: local monitors and Wi-Fi-enabled monitors.

Local monitors


These are the systems where the camera sends a direct feed from the baby's room to a monitor that parents can hear or see. The connection is made locally within a specific range, and there's no need for Wi-Fi.


Local monitors are usually quite affordable. For example, the audio-only VTech DM111 monitor (rated 4.5 stars with 36,000 reviews) costs around $20 as of July 2023. If you're looking for a local monitor with video feed, like the VTech VM819 (rated 4.6 stars with 5,800 reviews), it would typically fall within the price range of $50 to $100.


Top-selling local monitors on Amazon

Photo

Name

Description

Amazon ratings (July 2023)

Price range (July 2023)


VTech DM111 Upgraded Audio Baby Monitor

8-hour battery in parent unit

4.5/5.0 stars

(36,000 reviews)

$20


VTech VM819 Video Baby Monitor

19-hour video battery; 2.8" 480p display, night vision, 2-way audio, temperature and lullabies

4.6/5.0 stars

(5,800 reviews)

$50-60


​HelloBaby HB6550pro

16-hour video battery; 5" 720p display, pan-tilt-zoom video, night vision, 2-way audio, temperature and lullabies

4.2/5.0 stars

(4,600 reviews)

$80


​Infant Optics DXR-8 PRO

5" 720p display, pan-tilt-zoom video, noise reduction, night vision, 2-way audio, temperature

4.7/5.0 stars

(5,200 reviews)

$200

There's another brand called eufy Baby that used to offer two highly popular local monitors: SpaceView and SpaceView Pro. However, it appears that they have transitioned to a newer version, the Wi-Fi-enabled eufy Baby Baby Monitor 2. However, this product is still relatively new and hasn't gained enough popularity to become a best seller yet.

Wi-Fi-enabled monitors


These are the systems where the camera sends a video feed to your app using Wi-Fi at home. You can access the feed on your phone from anywhere with an internet connection. Wi-Fi-enabled monitors are useful for parents who want to check on their baby and communicate with the caregiver when they are away from home due to work or travel. Although Wi-Fi-enabled monitors provide great convenience for parents, there are some concerns regarding the security of the data sent to the phone.

Wi-Fi-enabled monitors are generally pricier than local monitors because they involve more complex technology and require additional costs for product development and maintenance. These monitors usually cost over $100 and can often exceed $200.

Top-selling Wi-Fi-enabled monitors on Amazon

Photo

Name

Description

Amazon ratings (July 2023)

Price range (July 2023)


VTech Upgraded Smart WiFi Baby Monitor VM901

5" 720p display, 1080p camera, HD night vision, pan-tilt-zoom camera, 2-way audio, free iOS and Android app

​4.1/5.0 stars

(5,100 reviews)

$150


​Nanit Pro Smart Baby Monitor & Wall Mount

1080p HD camera (cannot remotely pan and tilt the camera), sleep coach and breathing motion tracker, 2-way audio, sound and motion alerts, nightlight and night vision, temperature and humidity sensors, including breathing band and 1-year Insights Basic subscription plan

​4.6/5.0 stars

(2,000 reviews)

$300


Nanit Pro Smart Baby Monitor & Floor Stand

Floor stand version of the Nanit Pro Wall Mount monitor above

​4.6/5.0 stars

(1,000 reviews)

$400


​Cubo Ai Plus Smart Baby Monitor and 3-Stand Set

1080p HD camera (cannot remotely pan and tilt the camera), night vision, A.I. baby safety alerts, sleep analytics, two-way audio, including 1-year Care Premium to help save every moment

​4.5/5.0 stars

(1,400 reviews)

$300


Owlet Dream Duo Smart Baby Monitor

​1080p HD camera (cannot remotely pan and tilt the camera), the Owlet Dream Sock to track heart rate & average oxygen as sleep quality indicators

More on the Owlet sock


There has been a lot of debate surrounding Owlet, a baby monitor, regarding whether it should be considered a "medical device" that tracks a baby's vital signs and helps prevent sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).


The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has actually advised against using baby monitors to prevent SIDS. Dr. Christopher Bonafide shared a case in his 2017 article where a perfectly healthy baby was taken to the emergency room due to a false alarm caused by a baby monitor. He also expressed concerns that Owlet was suggesting its sock could help prevent SIDS, and he urged the FDA to thoroughly review and assess the Owlet sock as a medical device.

Interestingly, in June 2023, the Owlet company made an announcement that the Owlet sock has received FDA clearance. This is a significant development for the company in response to the public controversy and represents progress in terms of regulatory approval.

Even though the Owlet company has made progress, and other technology companies are working on fancy technologies to monitor a baby's movements, sounds, and vitals, I believe that parents should use these monitors only for getting information. It's important to rely on the advice from the AAP and consult with pediatricians before using these monitors.


Bottom line


Parents say they use baby monitors for peace of mind. With the wide range of options available, there are a few important factors parents should consider when deciding what to purchase:

  1. Budget: Think about how much you are willing to spend on a baby monitor.

  2. Must-haves and nice-to-haves: Determine the features that are essential for you, as well as those that would be nice to have.

  3. Ease of setup and maintenance: Consider how easy or difficult it may be to set up and maintain the technology.

We plan to publish more product review articles in the future, focusing on specific issues like the stability of Wi-Fi connections and the setup process of the best-selling products mentioned earlier. Stay tuned for more information!

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