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wileypeet
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Message 1 of 11

BT Home cam -- recently imposed short time-out

It seems impossible to get any sense out of BT customer service so Im trying the forum.

 

I'm not, nor have I been for many years, in any way satisfied with any part of BT's service. Just thought I'd throw that in at the start!

 

I can't go to any other telecom provider because apparently our local exchange is a BT only stronghold! In other words, they say its' not set up for alternative providers. So all in my village are stuck with BT whether we like it or not, (I don't like it). 

 

Anyway this topic is only about one small aspect of the overall shoddy BT service.

 

I purchased a BT home cam last year in order to monitor my house when I'm away. From my work place, until yesterday I was able to get a persistent connection, albeit a very poor quality pixelated stream. 

 

The camera had been dropping it's video stream all day, so I spent a bit of time trying to resolve it. In the end it seemed strange so I resorted to the BT help page only to find this apparent new restriction, imposed by BT on the people who purchased this item in good faith.

 

This is the new restriction as noted on the bt help page>

How long can I view the Home Cam live video?

On the home network there is no limit on the live video time out. Outside of the home network the limit is 15 minutes.

 

That's stupid isnt it, why would I need tomonitor my house whan Im actually there? I need to monitor when im not there!

 

As I say, this as a brand new restriction which was forced by BT with zero notification or explanation. Of course, other brands of web cam do not time out after only 15 minutes. RIDICULOUS!

 

Please will someone from BT explain.

 

The two BT cameras I purchased from BT at a cost of over £200 are suddenly useless to me. Will  bt be reimbursing customers based on the misleading capability's this bandwidth restriction has recently imposed?  This does seem to be a blatant case of mis-selling.

 

What is BT's reason for this imposition?

 

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Message 2 of 11

Re: BT Home cam -- recently imposed short time-out

At a guess, I would say that BT are trying to avoid people exceeding their broadband allowance, as uploads also count as usage.

 

By forcing a disconnect every 15 minutes, they are avoiding the chance that someone may accidentally leave the stream connected, and run up a massive surcharge for over usage.

 

I expect you can simply re-connect again after 15 minutes, or use different software if you are using a home PC, to monitor the stream, provided you have an unlimited broadband package.

 

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Message 3 of 11

Re: BT Home cam -- recently imposed short time-out

You are not forced to use BT as your ISP. You can use any ISP you like regardless of if the exchange is 'set up for alternative providers'.
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wileypeet
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Message 4 of 11

Re: BT Home cam -- recently imposed short time-out

Thanks for the replies, much appreciated.

 

Yes, I do have unlimited which is parlty why I cant fathom why this timeout restriction has recenlty been imposed in a generic method.

 

Surely this shoud be the choice of the consumer? Surely BT should have notified? Instead of just making people troubleshoot the issue?

 

As far as chioce of isp goes, I have to admit I havent checked for a while but last time, for example, if I go to another SP's website (Sky for one)to enquire about moving from BT and type in my postcode as part of the usual process, computer says no!

 

"Your local exchange is not yet enabled for Sky broadband"...something along those lines. Must be over a year ago I tried, I'll give it another go, Im completely done with BT! Want them out of my life :O)

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Message 5 of 11

Re: BT Home cam -- recently imposed short time-out


@wileypeet wrote:

Thanks for the replies, much appreciated.

 

Yes, I do have unlimited which is parlty why I cant fathom why this timeout restriction has recenlty been imposed in a generic method.

 

Surely this shoud be the choice of the consumer? Surely BT should have notified? Instead of just making people troubleshoot the issue?

 



What sort of application are you using to monitor your cameras?

 

I am surprised that BT could alter the firmware of the camera, unless you did a manual update?

 

 

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wileypeet
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Message 6 of 11

Re: BT Home cam -- recently imposed short time-out

I use the BT web based homecam customer portal, sometimes on a PC, sometimes a mac. As I say there was no 15 min time out until very recently, it started happening just a few days ago. I'm not certain if the ios app times out in the same way but I'd guess it does. 

 

What I don't get is, why the sudden timing imposition on the portal, its not a firmware thing or anything to do with the camera. When connected to the cam locally, it doesn't time out. BT has imposed this for remote viewing bandwidth saving only. BUT as many others with a homecam app I have unlimited bandwidth! So why? The remote view aspect is why 99% of users have purchased it. Most don't need to have a persistent connection whilst in the same location as the cam, you don't need to monitor your property if you are actually in there do you. So this is baffling to me.  

 

I wonder if someone from BT could shed light here?

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Distinguished Sage
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Message 7 of 11

Re: BT Home cam -- recently imposed short time-out

Why do you need to use a special portal? Most IP cameras can be accessed directly using their inbuilt web server. The portal may be more convenient, but not if there is a time restriction.

 

To be honest, the cheaper Foscam cameras which I use cost about £45, and can be viewed with a free app, or by a simple web interface. They have the normal pan and tilt options, and the resolution if good enough for most applications.

 

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wileypeet
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Message 8 of 11

Re: BT Home cam -- recently imposed short time-out

Cheers for the suggestion. I did not know the bt homecam could be connected directly without using the app or the cams web portal.

 

All I need to do now then, is find some instructions on how to acheive that. If indeed as you say, it's even possible without having some kind of IT boffin in the house.

 

BTW just to relpy to an earlier post on the thread, I just checked again using skys online checker where you put in postcode and existing provider phone number,,,,,and nope, there are no other options other than BT in my local exchange. Only if i take a very cut down limited use offer from Sky. This is not a direction I can take, I need unlimited and I'd be happy to pay for it if I had the option. The word is, the exchange is not capeable of unlimited unless it's provded by...guess who? Yep, BT.

 

Begs the question....what century is this BT? I suppose there is no rush in upgrading these antiquated exchanges is there, based on this, you'd lose many unhappy customers so why upgrade them right? Yep I get it. Choose BT or have nowt. Great customer choice there. NOT! Wheres oftel!

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Distinguished Sage
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Message 9 of 11

Re: BT Home cam -- recently imposed short time-out

there are many more ISP's than sky who offer unlimited packages who you could use
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Message 10 of 11

Re: BT Home cam -- recently imposed short time-out


@wileypeet wrote:

Cheers for the suggestion. I did not know the bt homecam could be connected directly without using the app or the cams web portal.

 

All I need to do now then, is find some instructions on how to acheive that. If indeed as you say, it's even possible without having some kind of IT boffin in the house.

 



I would have thought that its possible, but it would need a bit of networking knowledge. The camera would be assigned an IP address on your LAN, and would probably mapped to port 80, so should be acessable with a web browser pointing to its IP address.