How Do I Set Up My Cellular Trail Camera?

Last Updated on August 30, 2022 by Thomas S. Tucci

With the rise and availability of Wi-Fi everywhere, a camera that uses cellular data to transmit photos to your phone may seem a little redundant. Now, picture yourself in the middle of the woods wanting to take some pictures of exotic wildlife without having to stand for hours waiting for the perfect click.

With all the technological advancements, cellular trail cameras are the most affordable they have ever been, so if you are wanted to get into the game, now is the time.

That is where cellular trail cameras come into the picture. But, are you wondering how I set up my cellular trail camera? Do not worry! We have your back in this case.

Ways of Setting Up the Cellular Trail Camera – Step by Step Guide

Down below, we have put together a guide that you can follow to set up most cellular trail cameras you can find in the market.

Cellular trail cameras essentially let you take pictures using your smartphone or tablet regardless of your location or time. They utilize the cell tower to take pictures and send them directly. Follow the steps down below to have your camera up and running in no time.

Step 1: Find the Right Spot

Firstly, we would recommend you set up your camera in a spot that doesn’t have any natural obstruction or obstacle behind the camera. This will make it more likely for an animal to stop in front of your camera’s view and block the images.

The last thing anyone would want is to miss a prize shot just because they set up the camera in a not-so-great position.

Step 2: Make Sure a Strong Signal is Available

The cameras use cellular data to take pictures and send them to your smartphone. Therefore, if your network is weak, the trail camera might be slow to take photos or worse, or might not take pictures at all.

You can counteract this by improving your phone’s signal. Most smartphones have an external antenna that you can use to improve the network. Just make sure to find a strong signal.

Step 3: Download and Install the App on Your Smartphone

Most of the cellular trail cameras come with an app that you can download onto your device to view the images. Some cameras can even send the picture directly into your email, eliminating the need to install an app on your phone.

We recommend you use the app to view the images as the number of images sent can quickly get out of hand, and you might risk using up your allotted storage space provided by your email.

Step 4: Install the Batteries, SIM Card, and SD Card

Like most other cameras, cellular trail cameras work on batteries. Some even have a port for you to plug in a solar panel. The solar panel can keep your batteries charged for a good amount of time.

With the proper setup and sufficient sunlight, we can expect you have your camera run for a couple of years without having to replace the batteries. We suggest you use lithium batteries if you’re planning to install the camera in cold temperatures and are not planning to use a solar panel.

Cellular trail cameras generally come with a SIM card that contains its information. You will have to remove the battery chamber to install the SIM card. However, it should slide in quite easily.

Step 5: Choose a Data Plan

Taking the pictures and sending them to your phone requires cellular data. The service provider has many plans for you to pick from. You can either purchase pre-paid data or put an auto-renewal plan into place.

We recommend, if you do not have a tight budget, go for an unlimited data plan so you can click as many pictures as you want. Keep in mind that some cameras come with a free data period (typically 30 days) for you to enjoy.

Step 6: Set the Camera to Your Liking

Now that you are done with all the busy work, it is time for you to tweak some settings. Let’s start with the transmitting delay. This will control how quickly you receive the pictures on your phone after being taken by the camera.

Selecting allow transmission delay will drain your battery life quicker than having the pictures sent to you in batches at time periods you choose. Another important setting you should look out for is the detection delay on the camera. This will control the time for the trigger to be set off and the picture to be taken.

Refer to the instruction manuals for more detailed and precise setup instructions as they will vary from company to company.

Final Words

We hope now you know all your answers to how do I set up my cellular trail camera.

Now that you have your trail camera set up done, it is time for you to put it to work! We hope we have given you a better understanding of how they work and how to get started.

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