Dropcam HD is a tiny, Web-connected camera that monitors your home or business while you’re there or away.
Today, the company announced a new $30 million Series C fundraising round led by Institutional Venture Partners (IVP) along with existing investors Accel Partners and Menlo Ventures, and new investor Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers. This brings the total amount of fundraising to $47.8 million.
What’s interesting though is that Dropcam wasn’t looking to raise money right now. A week ago, CEO Greg Duffy would have said that his company was doing fine and it didn’t need more funds but “investors came knocking on our door. They said, what would it take and what size of a round was needed to accelerate Dropcam’s strategic plans?” Duffy told Business Insider in an interview.
Apparently, it took $30 million.
Dropcam says that it plans to use the new funds to expand its engineering and design teams, as well as its product line, and distribution channels. One day in the near future we could see Dropcam available in places like Best Buy, Walmart, and Target.
Dropcam is currently sold through the company’s website and on Amazon. There are two options to choose from, the Dropcam HD, which costs $149 and the Dropcam HD & DVR bundle, which retails for $248 for the first one and $198 for each additional bundle.
The Dropcam HD by itself streams 720p HD video, has night vision, two-way audio, audio and motion detection, and live viewing via the web, iOS, and Android. The DVR bundle includes all of that and 12 months of 7-day DVR service.
If you want to access past footage, the company has two optional cloud video recording plans that store your clips online. The first plan gets you 7-days of video recording for $9.95 per month or $99 per year. The second plan gets you 30-days of recording for $29.95 per month or $299 per year.
Dropcam has become popular because it’s easy to set up and use, even for tech novices.
“I fell like Dropcam has latched onto the right approach for something that is general and has a wide approach,” said Sameer Gandhi, of Accel Partners. “I was impressed by how Dropcam is fundamentally solving the user experience problem. They are doing something to make it really easy for consumers to set up and record moments while also doing complicated and sophisticated things behind the scene.”
Other investors are finally approaching Dropcam proactively because they are seeing the company’s vision materialise.
Dropcam isn’t billing itself as hardware company, something that investors have been distancing themselves from recently.
“Since the beginning, we’ve looked at Dropcam as a services first company,” Duffy said. “We’re very different from the average hardware company because they just want you to keep buying more hardware.”
Dropcam users have caught burglars who even stole the device itself, capture children’s first steps, and even other things like figuring out which neighbour’s dog is using the bathroom in your backyard.
“The use case for the device is pretty much left up to the user’s imagination,” Duffy said.
Going forward, the company hopes to continue to grow it’s “extremely high user base” and get more cloud services customers.
“My goal is to keep upping the ante in what it means to be a cloud services company in this space,” Duffy said. “I want to increase artificial intelligence and make the cameras smarter to help you spend less time watching video you don’t care about.”
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