How to use Vivint camera without service

When you sign up for Vivint, you can get a variety of cameras for your outdoor and indoor security, which offer great features like smart home integration, night vision, and two-way talk. However, you may wonder if it is worth holding on to Vivint equipment like their cameras when you do not have an active subscription.

Unfortunately, you cannot use Vivint cameras without paying for their services, as it needs you to sign up for their Smart Home Video Monitoring plan. On this plan, you can use a maximum of four cameras although you will pay an additional cost for the third and fourth cameras.

The smart video monitoring services also has additional features other than video recording, and selecting a financing option allows you to add the service plan cost to your monthly payment for the equipment. Knowing the details of what happens when you fail to renew the Vivint subscription will help you understand why you cannot use the cameras in this case.

What are Vivint contract terms?

The company offers users three subscription plans, all which you can renew monthly and have professional monitoring services; however, the most expensive plan covers both video doorbells and the Vivint cameras. While you can add a maximum of 4 cameras in one plan, the first two cameras are covered in your subscription fee, while the extra two cameras each cost $5 monthly.

Each Vivint video monitoring service offers these benefits:

  • All Vivint devices have 24/7 professional monitoring
  • Vivint Smart drive that includes video storage
  • Video recordings through Vivint doorbells and smart cameras
  • Vivint app to allow you remote access to your Vivint devices
  • Technical support on a 24/7 basis

What happens when you cancel Vivint?

If you decide to join Vivint, you will sign a 5-year contract regardless of the device you use it on. Additionally, the monthly payments specified in your subscription fee will include equipment costs and the monitoring plan.

For you to cancel the contract early, you must pay the cost in full. If you cancel within the first year, the cancellation fee is $300, and you also pay the complete contract price. If you decide to cancel in the second year, your cancellation fee is $150.

There are some reasons that can allow you to break the terms of your contract before it ends, and they are when you are discharged from the military on medical basis, moving into living homes due to old age, bankruptcy, death, or when you are deployed for military service.

Even in the case that you have an active Vivint subscription, you cannot use the camera without service unless you are in your house, and you cannot monitor the camera footage without signing up to their service. Failing to join their subscription will also deny you access to their customer service, as well as lower security benefits.

It is worth noting that you can cancel your Vivint subscription without a penalty if your contract has month-to-month terms. Additionally, you can keep the Vivint devices, since you have paid for them in full.

Vivint cameras available

There are three cameras the service offers when you join their subscription – a Vivint Ping indoor camera, a Vivint Outdoor Camera Pro, and the Vivint doorbell camera.

  • The Ping Indoor camera allows you to monitor the interior of your home, especially when you are on the higher-tier subscriptions.
  • The Vivint outdoor camera is more of a surveillance option, thanks to its night vision, sentry mode, and unique AI functionality. It will recognize different threats and alert you before they can damage your property.
  • The doorbell camera will alert you of any suspicious activities in front of your home, as well as any visitors and delivered packages. It also allows you to communicate with people in real time.

Vivint camera costs

The costs of the camera will depend on the plan you choose, as well as the style and model. Additionally, you will pay for the surveillance plan and the rest of the equipment separately. An example would be a doorbell camera costs $249.99, but you will also add the cost of your plan, which can range between $44.99 and $49.99 monthly.

This principle applies to the other camera types as well, with the Vivint indoor camera costing $199.99 and the outdoor camera costing $399.99. Regardless of your choice, the exact price you will pay is unique for each customer, so always call the company to confirm what you should pay for your subscription fee, as well as activation and installation costs.

Can you purchase a Vivint camera without paying for a subscription?

You can buy a Vivint camera without buying the service plan, but this will sacrifice getting free activation or installation deals. When signing up for the surveillance service, you know that some product like a camera is included in the fee; and you can get the camera for free when you decide to sign up for a service plan and camera.

Pros of using a Vivint camera without service

  • Lower costs: Since Vivint has among the highest-priced plans in the surveillance industry, you will save plenty of money in renewal fees.
  • No contracts: You will not need to sign a contract when you do not join the subscription plan.
  • The camera is usually enough: Simply having a surveillance camera is enough to deter suspicious people who want to break into your home, depending on where you live.

Cons of using Vivint camera without service

  • Lack of remote access: Unless you are home, you cannot turn the cameras off or on, cannot view footage in real time, and cannot adjust them. The only way you can do so is through a hard drive or a similar local method.
  • Limited levels of protection: While you can monitor your home when you are within your house, you cannot do so when you are away. This makes the option dangerous if you live in a high-risk area.
  • Limited customer service access: When you are not signed to a plan, your connectivity and access to support resources is limited.


Vivint is quite a convenient service, but it will not allow you to access the full benefits of its camera surveillance without signing up and paying for a premium plan.

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Robinson Wright is a home automation specialist and has helped many modern home developers pick the right gadgets for home automation. According to Wright, most people struggle with particular areas in their home, some would want improved security especially when away from home for a couple of days and others will want to improve power consumption. Homeowner's needs can be fulfilled by investing in smart home gadgets but most importantly is that one must know the functionality that they desire to achieve and then choose a product and technology that would fulfill the need. Robinson Wright runs an appliance enterprise and when not in the field working with his clients, he loves spending time in his workshop testing out the new technologies.

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