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Owlet vs Nanit Baby Monitor (2021): Which Smart Baby Monitor Should You Get?

For many parents, there’s no greater reassurance than knowing their baby is still breathing. But constantly checking on your little tot can sometimes only add to the anxiety. It’s a good thing that there are plenty of wearable technologies designed especially to monitor your baby for your peace of mind.

Owlet and Nanit are just two of the brands that come to mind. The latter is best known for its wall-mounted HD camera system that, when paired with its breathing wear, can track your baby’s breathing during sleep. Meanwhile, Owlet’s line of ankle wearables and HD cameras boast the added benefit of monitoring heart rate and oxygen saturation levels. But which is better? Read our comparison below to see the smart baby monitor that’s best suited for you and your baby.

Owlet vs Nanit Comparison Chart

ModelOwletNanit
Complete UnitOwlet Smart Baby Monitor Duo (Smart Sock + Camera)Nanit Complete Monitor System with Breathing Motion Plus Wall Mount + Multistand + Starter Set, one...
PriceCheck PriceCheck Price
IncludesOwlet Smart Sock 3, Smart Sock Base Station, Owlet Cam, Owlet wall mounting kitNanit Plus Camera & Wall Mount, Breathing Wear Starter Pack, Nanit Multi Stand
Mobile AppOwletNanit
App CompatibilityAndroid, iOSAndroid, iOS
Wearable TechOwlet Smart SockNanit Breathing Wear
Sleep MonitoringYesYes
Breathing TrackingYesYes
Breathing Rate HistoryYesNo
Oxygen Saturation Level MonitoringYesNo
Heart Rate MonitoringYesNo
Smart Home CompatibilityNoYes (Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant)
Humidity SensorNoYes
Camera Resolution1080p HD camera960p HD camera
Night VisionYesYes
Two-Way TalkYesYes
Warranty1 Year1 Year

Baby Monitoring System

Owlet’s core product is its Smart Sock while Nanit’s high-definition Plus camera is at the heart of the company’s monitoring system.

Here’s a look at the Owlet Duo Monitor (left) and Nanit Complete Monitoring System (right).

If you want to make the most out of baby monitors, you’ll probably be better off looking at the entire system. Owlet, for instance, is best known for its ankle wearable, the Owlet Smart Sock. The innovative garment features a sensor and comes with a base station that doubles as a charging area and notification system.

While the pair is at the core of Owlet’s products, the Owlet Monitor Duo combines sock and base station with the Owlet Cam. This HD baby monitor streams video and audio of your baby, so you can see and hear exactly how he or she is doing. All of this is done through WiFi and via the Owlet app.

Nanit’s core product, on the other hand, is the Nanit Plus. The HD camera gives users a live-view of their baby, including real-time motion and sound. Just like the Owlet Cam, the Nanit Plus offers two-way talk so you can coax your baby even from afar.

If you need to track your baby’s breathing, however, you’ll have to use the camera together with the Nanit Breathing Wear. The company does offer the complete baby monitoring system which includes the Plus, a breathing wear starting pack that includes a swaddle and band, along with a Nanit Plus wall mount and multi-stand.

Design and Installation

Owlet and Nanit’s baby monitoring systems include well-designed, premium looking components.

Owlet and Nanit’s system are well-designed and easy to install.

The Nanit Plus is a sleek and premium looking monitoring device. This is largely due to the simplicity of its form—a camera head that’s mounted to a flexible base. This makes it easy to adjust the viewing angle for the perfect top-down view of your baby. Users can also choose between a wall mount or floor stand as the base for the Plus camera.

If a top-down view isn’t your thing, you can pop out the Nanit Plus camera from its overhead mount and place it on the Nanit multi-stand instead. The product essentially works like a tripod, giving parents a wide-angle view of your baby’s room or simply doubling as a nanny cam.

Owlet’s baby monitoring camera doesn’t give you the flexibility of choosing a floor stand. However, the Monitor Duo package does include all the hardware you need for mounting the camera to the wall. The kit comes with a power adaptor as well as cable guards to hide the wires. Installation is fairly easy, too, since the Owlet Cam connects to the wall mount via a magnetic base.

Similar to Nanit, you can use the Owlet Cam as a nanny cam or security camera as well. The device also offers a nice 130° wide-angle view and 4x zoom.

In terms of the wearable components, Owlet’s smart sock sports a more low-profile design compared to the breathing wear offered by Nanit. The latest generation of the company’s innovative ankle wearable has greater size flexibility and an overlapping velcro strap to keep it firmly in place.

Monitoring Features

Nanit uses contactless technology to monitor sleep and breathing, while Owlet utilizes a pulse oximeter sensor to get information like heartbeat and oxygen levels.

The Smart Sock is at the center of Owlet’s monitoring system. In contrast, Nanit relies on its HD Nanit Plus camera.

Owlet and Nanit take quite different approaches to measure your baby’s vitals. Whereas Owlet largely depends on sensors found in the smart sock to monitor your baby, most of Nanit’s monitoring tech is incorporated in the Plus camera. Unlike the Owlet Smart Sock, Nanit’s breathing wear does not contain any electronics.

Instead, Nanit’s unique swaddle and band are custom-designed with special patterns that help the Plus camera monitor a baby’s breathing motion. On its own, the Plus will only monitor a baby’s sleep and wake patterns through a combination of computer vision technology and heat sensors.

Now if you need to measure heartbeat and oxygen levels, then the Owlet Smart Sock is the better option. The wearable’s sensor uses pulse oximeter technology to track a baby’s vitals. Moreover, Owlet’s monitoring system provides sleep trends, including sleep quality and duration.

Although like Nanit the Owlet Smart Sock comes with an app where health insights are recorded and displayed, most of the notifications are transmitted to the accompanying Base Station. This integral component of the smart sock system uses different colored lights for various statuses and notifications. It also doubles as a wireless charging pad for the sock’s sensors.

Safety and Other Features

Nanit and Owlet are safe and easy to use, with both brands ensuring adequate data encryption as well as compatibility across several mobile devices.

Both monitoring systems allow you to check on your baby remotely through mobile apps.

Since Nanit utilizes the camera as its primary monitoring tool, parents who are worried about having any electronic device near their baby will find Nanit’s breathing wear reassuring. The Nanit Swaddle itself has also been recognized as “hip-healthy”, meaning it encourages healthy hip development when used to wrap a baby.

Meanwhile, concerns over the Owlet Smart Sock’s use of a sensor has also already been addressed by the company. The third-generation wearables now feature a smaller sensor to reduce pressure-related marks on the baby’s foot. The redesigned sock also allows for improved size flexibility, fitting babies from 5 lbs to 30 lbs.

The wall mounting mechanism of both the Owlet Cam and Nanit Plus include cable management features, so wires are tucked away and far from the reach your little tots. If privacy is a concern, both companies have emphasized that video and audio streaming are encrypted. Nanit shares its monitoring system uses an AES 256-bit encryption standard, higher than Owlet’s AES 128-bit.

Nanit also supports 2.4 and 5 GHz WiFi whereas Owlet still connects only to a 2.4 GHz wireless network. Both company’s mobile app is compatible with Android and iPhones, as well as Android tablets and Apple iPad devices.

Verdict

Owlet is recommended for parents who need to track their baby’s oxygen levels and heartbeat. Nanit, on the other hand, works as a great sleep monitoring tool.

Owlet and Nanit’s baby monitors are some of the best-selling and the best-in-class. But if you’re simply looking to gain sleep insights, the Nanit complete monitoring system should be enough. Parents who are particular about any electronic component being worn by their baby will also be greatly reassured by the electronic-free Nanit breathing wear.

For those who need more accurate readings of a baby’s vital, the Owlet’s pulse oximeter technology is something you should consider. Thanks to a redesigned sock, the wearable not only fits better but provides more reliable data. In addition to sleep patterns and oxygen saturation levels, Owlet also gives data about your baby’s heart rate. If these vitals are critical in how you care for your baby, then you should get Owlet’s monitoring system instead.

FAQs

📌 Are the Nanit Plus and Owlet Smart Sock medical devices?

Both the Nanit Plus and Owlet Smart Socks are not regulated by the FDA and are not considered medical devices. These tools do not prevent, treat, or cure Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).

📌 Does the Nanit Plus offer a wide angle view?

When mounted on the multi-stand, the Nanit Plus automatically switches to a 130-degree wide-angle view.

📌 Does the Owlet Cam and Nanit Plus operate on battery?

Both the Owlet Cam and Nanit Plus require a power cord and is not battery operated.

📌 What is the main difference between the Owlet and Nanit baby monitoring systems?

Owlet’s monitoring system makes use of an ankle wearable that incorporates a pulse oximeter sensor. Meanwhile, Nanit makes use of a powerful HD camera—the Nanit Plus—for contactless monitoring of a baby’s sleep and breathing.

Last update on 2021-07-19 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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Mari Bassig

Senior Editor, writer and researcher passionate about gadgets, social media, and music.