NEW YORK (CBS) - Baby monitors these days let parents do much more than just listen for the baby's cries. New monitors on the market keep watch on the baby from across the house or across the world.
The baby monitor was designed as a walkie-talkie that let parents hear their baby when he or she woke up. Early designs use analog frequencies much like a radio station.
Analog monitors' sound can be distorted and the signal is also not secure. Anyone with a receiver on the same frequency can listen in. They also don't work from far distances, but are less expensive than their digital counterparts.
A digital monitor operates on a secure system so others can't listen in. These are more costly, but this could be worth the investment if parents live in a crowded apartment building.
Another newer option is an IP cam. This is something that uses home Wi-Fi networks, so parents can log in to the camera anywhere they have a connected computer or mobile device.
The IP cams cost around $200, but if either parent works or travels a lot, it can be a fun investment to keep an eye on the little one.