I consider myself lucky to have become a new mom in this day and age, where high-tech products like the Infanttech Always in View baby monitor are available to lend a helping hand (or extra eyes).
The savvy product allows driving parents to keep an eye on their petite passenger in the backseat via a video monitor system. A high-definition camera placed in a plush animal transmits real-time video to a color monitor conveniently located on the dashboard. (Or wherever you would like to place it—you can use it at home, too.) The arms of the stuffed animal wrap around a headrest in the car (or wherever) to secure it in place, giving your darling something sweet to look at while you get a sneak peek at her.
As most parents can relate, it is awful driving while your little one is wailing, and it’s hard to focus on the road while trying to remedy the problem. I have attempted using the rearview mirror + baby mirror trick, but trying to get a good look at why my daughter is fussing becomes difficult and dangerous, so I love the innovative thinking that led to the creation of the Always in View. Being able to quickly glance a crisp, clean image of my little darling and being able to assess if an emergency stop is necessary is an absolute lifesaver.
I was very excited to have received the giraffe model, and I was comforted by the fact that my daughter was monitored under the watchful eye of a loveable zoo character versus a clunky or intimidating piece of equipment. It’s adorable! This nifty device is made for on the go, in the car or in your home. The monitor and camera have separate cords that can plug into the USB adapter available in most vehicles. The set comes with a plug that goes into the car slot, and there are spots for two USB connections (one for each device).
- Day/Night Vision camera
- Bendi-neck technology for easy camera positioning o Super velcro fasteners for easy, secure attachment
- Wireless 2.4GHz Technology
- USB home charger
- Monitor bracket
- Monitor charging cable
- 3.5′ color LCD monitor
- Anti-glare video screen
- Infrared night vision
- 1 rechargeable 1000 mAh lithium ion battery (included)
An additional monitor is sold separately to use the split screen option. The Always in View is the only product in its category that passed a crash test based on FMVSS213 (Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard), which means it will not become a projectile in the event of an accident.
The Always in View came with a thin instruction manual with a couple different languages. It makes it simple to understand how to set up and use the product. The illustrations provided a not-so-tech-savvy person—ahem, me—an easy way to follow how the monitor would operate. I also loved the fact that it provided a quick reference page for those who get overwhelmed by any instruction booklet or have a question regarding product use but do not have time to search for their answer. After a quick briefing and watching a video demonstration on the company’s website and YouTube channel, I was ready to put the Always in View baby monitor to use.
Set up was easy-breezy and entailed placing the giraffe around the headrest of the back seat and attaching the monitor to my dashboard. During our initial test drive (pun intended), I found the giraffe moved around quite a bit as the car turned, causing my daughter to sway in an out of view. After a bit of experimenting with placement and some finagling, I managed to secure the giraffe, so he stay put, which resulted in far more effective monitoring.
During daytime, the quality is satisfactory with vivid colors and image and sound clarity. I have a compact car, so the distance between our headrest (where the camera was attached) and the car seat was close enough to receive a clean image on the screen. I cannot speak to the quality of the picture in larger vehicles. The image quality does deteriorate a bit at night.
If you do quite a bit of driving, I recommend relying on the USB connectors for power, as the batteries have a fairly life short lifespan (about two hours, tops). Bear in mind that the monitor and camera have no way to communicate their power status, so it’s easy to turn off the monitor and forget the camera is still on and run down the battery. I did this several times. (Darn mom brain!) Thankfully I’d kept my infant mirror around for backup.
If you are looking for something portable and cute, the Always in View may be for you—just be sure the camera is securely in place and remember to turn off the camera and monitor when not in use (or have the chargers readily available!).
To buy: infanttech.com