- Timelapse (1min to 2h), or SMS command to get new picture 24h a day.
- Photos 3G or wifi transmission or SD storage.
- Simple web camera remote setting.
- Smartphone: Sony Xperia Sensor 8 Mega Pixels Autofocus.
- Maximum res: 3264x2448 pixels (8mega).
- Flash usable for objects at 1 meter.
- Power Supply Solar Panel 2W.
- Batterie: lithium 1200mAh.
- Operating temperature: -5°C +40°C (Beyond battery have a reduced life +/- 12 months)
- Many SMS commands to control the SolarCam.
- Mode Timelapse Eco with photos on microSD + photo on request (Timelapses with a small 3G data)
- Input power supply 5 volts DC for connection on transformer.
- Automatic Program update with SD card.
- HD Live sequence, 10 to 60 seconds (option will be release soon)
- Hosting on SolarCam images from 0 days to 3 months.
- FTP on your private server, to keep all your photos at home.
- Access control by password.
- Interface configuration of the SolarCam.
- Timelapse Live.
- Compatible with any support (PC Tablet Smartphone), images are visible on all browsers (Chrome, Edge, Firefox ...).
- Solarcam is very tiny : 12x7x3cm, 290 grams;
- Solar Panel : 2W = 14x11cm, 3W = 15x15cm
• Price 2019 (excluding options):
Almost everywhere with a good 3G or wifi signal, see chapter 2.
-Out of Europe, thank you to check compatibility of your 3G operator here. or here.
You must find your operator, then check that one of these 2 standards is indicated:
UMTS 900 or UMTS 2100 (orange on the map).
wifi: everywhere and without limitation.
This is the challenge of Solarcam, the whole design has been designed to avoid breakdowns.
In 2019, some SolarCam in France have been in place for 3 years, without maintenance.
The "private mode" option makes it possible to secure access to your images with a password.
Your images can be saved directly to your FTP, without being visible on the SolarCam server.
The integration of images on a web page is possible (see 'Web')
Your SolarCam needs a good signal to express itself, without good upload speed, SolarCam cannot work correctly.
In 3G, do not trust the reception bars! Iwebcam needs a reliable connection, here is how to test it.
First of all, test this with your smartphone on the future location of the SolarCam (Iphone or Android)
You should already have displayed top right " 3G " or " H ", if you get an " E " ou " G " SolarCam will not work.
Then start this test engine: http://testmy.net
The procedure is explained below (screenshots on a white background).
2- How to test the download speed of your connection with your SolarCam:
The result determines the upload speed of your ex connection (+ speeds of 400 kbps is recommended).
Edge network (2G), iwebcam will work badly, some pictures will not be received.
Note : 3G signal is degraded in a house, a big wall, metal beams, wifi or even your microwave.
In mountain, Select 3G network of your phone before testing, result will be more precise. ( Android / Iphone)
Pixel racing is a marketing principle!
As a reminder a screen full HD is 1920x1080 (on the picture: FHD-1080).
SolarCam photo resolution: 3264x2448 pixels (8mega)
This sensor is already above the 4K (4K - UHD).
-With large sensor, important to have a quality optics.
-Bigger picture need long transmission and more power.
Conclusion: 8 MegaPixels are more than enough.
Download test photos
The larger the image, the higher the frequency, the stronger your data package.
You can decrease Solarcam's resolution .
Example 4 with an image resolutions:
Estimate the size of your monthly subscription:
A rechargeable battery, withstands negative or high temperatures badly.
In mountains during winter, your car has more trouble getting started, your phone is emptying quickly.
A lithium battery in theory should not be recharged by negative temperature, it can quickly deteriorate.
The battery is an important element, today the perfect and cheap battery does not exist.
In the mountains, you have to find the strategic location, use the sun to heat the box.
In the hot place, it is necessary to protect solarcam of the sun with the solar panel.
Battery will run more than 12 months, or much more.
Battery is a "consumable", it can be changed easily in case of failure.
SolarCam is dependent of weather, temperatures, quality of networks (3G wifi).
Insert your standard SIM card in the correct direction.
A- Remove the SIM password.
B- 3G Configuration:
Completing the Internet APN (Access Point Name), the MMS APN is useless.
ie in France :
-Orange Name: Orange Internet APN: orange Username: orange Password: orange
-SFR Name: Internet SFR APN: sl2sfr
-Free Name: Free APN: free
-Bouygues Name: Bouygues telecom APN: mmsbouygtel.com
-Syma Nom: Syma APN: symamobile.com
Important, if everything is in order, you should see the 3G logo and the time displayed at the top of the screen:
B- Wifi configuration:
Setting up your account on mysolarcam.
- When testing, charge the phone with its USB cable via a PC or USB charger.
In solar the charge indicator of the phone does not work, a voltage is visible on the image, around 4.2v indicates that the battery is charged (3.8v is low).
- Use Filezilla to access your Ftp.
- Between 2 photos wifi or 3G are cut to save energy.
All the following SMS commands are available to those who know the phone number of the SolarCam .
There is no special formating, ie Hello can be HELLO or hello
• "Hello" to see if all is ok.
• "Photo", "Smile" with flash, will take a picture in HD.
• "Tests" will take a picture in VGA (low quality) not broadcast on the Internet, only a link by SMS. Useful to test and adjust the webcam.
This command will also reload the configuration set up in the "Config" page.
• "Freq=xx" allows you to change the frequency of the webcam for the current day.
Remember, more photo you take, more energy you need.
• "Break" to stop iwebcam ("Photo" to restart it).
• "Reboot" to restart the smarphone.
• "Offxx" to switch off the solarcam (xx = the last 2 digits of imei)
• "IdCam" ask imei (from V57)
• Do not go directly to install your solarcam at the end of the world without having tried, quietly at home.
• Do not install in bad weather.
• Protect the housing from the sun, if possible use solar panel as an umbrella. Lithium batteries do not like cold or hot temperature.
• Solar panel should be oriented as far south as possible, in a clear place (not under a tree), perpendicular to the sun's rays in winter.
• After installation, the battery level should remain close to 4v.
If the level drops to 3.8v, this is a sign that the solar panel does not produce enough energy.
Express installation, with PVC clip.
These three logos inform you of a problem on your solarcam:
Your camera is disconnected for more than 12h, here are points to check:
-Did you pay for your operator's telecom subscription?
-After has a thunderstorm a relay antenna may break down.
-The message "Low bat" is displayed on the last pictures, battery can not recharge, it will be necessary to check the SolarCam.
If the battery looks good (above 4v), send the command 'Reboot' and wait for answer.
If no answer, the phone is definitely off, you will have to go on-site check the installation.
There's probably a problem with 3G :
- Decreasing the size of images, a large image is more difficult to transmit than a small one.
- Check that your data envelope is not exceeded.
- There may be a 3G antenna breakdown of your operator.
- Test manually your 3G network in iwebcam menu: iwebcam / config / Test Upload Connection
A speed of + 500 kbps is recommended.
Your 12-month private subscription must be renewed:
If the subscription is not renewed, your camera will go in public mode.
Please check this page to renew your subscription .
Note: A technical report is available by clicking in the corner at the top left of your last image.
- If strange behavior of the SolarCam after a long time, do a iwebcam reset.
Follow this process:
1: parameters/applications/iwebcam/clear data.
2: launch iwebcam press CONFIG, and run "Test upload connection", and check results.
3: if speed ok, launch iwebcam press START.
- Make a program update, with a microSD.
- If water in the case => leave the phone in the sun 2h without battery.
- If voltage <3.8v, recharge the battery, a good battery must remain above 4v.
- If the voltage drops quickly, it may be time to change it.
SolarCam's battery is permanently loaded, the cold and warm temperatures shorten the service life.
After 1 year, in case of doubt, it is easy to test the capacity of the battery:
A battery, if charged regularly, should work 2-3 years.
You can test the battery of your solarcam simply:
For this you must
-Open your case,
-Disconnect the panel,
-Recharge the battery at most,
-Have configured the Wifi.
In the configuration page, check the "Test Bat"
-Press "START" in iwebcam to start the test.
Wait (2 to 6 hours):
This test will take one picture per minute, and will stop when the battery will be at 3.75 Volts.
View your webcam, to see the test evolve
The plot of your battery should be close to the reference plot.
If it is largely underneath your battery needs to be changed.
Note: Batteries are charged via microUSB cable by PC or a phone charger (about 2h).
-How does Automatic Timelapse work?
-You can stop timelapse at any time :
Press or click << or >> on both sides of your screen.
You can scroll image by image by a swipe.
-Zoom by clicking on "full resolution".
Thank you for watching this video for more detail :
- Can I use another smartphone?
No, the SolarCam is sold complete, the smartphone delivered is specially modified.
- Can it work at night?
Yes, but without lighting, the image will be black.
- Is there a presence detector or PIR ?
- Can images be sent to my server?
Yes by FTP.
- Can images be sent directly to my server?
No, all images are received first by SolarCam and then redirected to your server.
- How long are the images stored?
After receipt, images can be deleted directly from the server, or stored up to 30 days
(unless FTP activation or public camera, in these cases images will be stored 3 days max).
- Can images be transferred to a cloud Dropbox, iCloud?
At the moment no, a future option will be proposed to store the photos on Google Drive.
- My network is bad, what to do?
The program will try to send the photo for 1 minute, no more, if the image is not transmitted, it will be lost.
However, pictures can be stored on the phone's SD.
SMS commands let you see if the camera works.
- Can we make Video?
Only video clips, no live broadcast.
- Is there a zoom, wide angle, motors?
- Can we use GPS?
At the moment not.
- Is there a way to connect several boxes via a HotSpot Wifi?
This option will be available soon, but the range will be low (20m).
- Is the SIM card supplied?
No, there is higher in the doc a form to estimate your data subscription.
- What happens if the battery is empty?
Autoboot will restart the smartphone, once the battery full (green light) This can be quick if there is sun on the panel.
The program is smart, and constantly checks the battery level, and will adjust the frequency of pictures in case of low battery.
- How to do a test before?
Go to the place of installation, take a picture with your smartphone.
This is the best way to get a feel for the rendering.
Then check the network (there is a test, see higher in this documentation).
The SolarCam can be installed in a tree, a pole, a wall easily,
the panel has a meter of cable, for an optimal installation to the south.
- Is there a way to create a Timelapse video?
Quite possible, but this requires to establish a preliminary scenario, to draw up a quote.
- Is there a way to provide a storage place?
I can provide FTP.
- Is there a way to remove the SOLARCAM logo, and put mine in the place
Yes, this is an option.
- Is it difficult to implement?
Most of my clients are builders and do not have great computer skills.
- Is this reliable?
Yes it is reliable, that's all the challenge, Solarcam has a simple design to avoid breakdowns, the phone is Sony quality.
Some Solarcams have been in operation for 3 years without intervention.
- Delivery time:
1 week, anywhere in the world by UPS.
Payment is possible by PayPal, check or bank transfer.
Invoices are available on the shop or by mail.
--But SolarCam who are you ?
Me, independent French engineer since 2013, who uses all the means at his disposal to design innovative products.
An incredible time that allows with a simple PC to design a product.
Here, there is no sales team, this site tries to answer all your questions, in case of doubt contact me on KickStarter.
Feel free to submit an idea to improve the product.
Thanks to my customers, after 6 years, there are SolarCams in more than 10 countries,