I am not the one that point out this is good or bad, only want to point out why you need to connect to cloud?
first thing first, all device that can connect to your smart phone need to have ability to connect to your network via wifi or LAN. (and that’s more clear if you still can contact that devices when you weren’t in your house). if it’s switch it needs to send you that status of on – off – offline to you, if it’s dimmer; more complicated status, offline, off, on with status 1 – 100%, or some more complicate status. but in case of camera… many of the stream of picture (or audio in sometime) need to send to your mobile phone. you need some place to store your data; first choice local, or second choice cloud.
most ip camera have both option in some way and many have recommended that both in the same time. you can use sd card for store the data or use more advanced NVR for that, and in the end you still send all of that across network to internet anyway… except you limit your NVR to store locally (many non-NVR ip camera have no option for this) and send only alarm via SMS or other meant to you.
back to HAAS, have or have no HAAS, what the different?
in case you have no HAAS, you devices must have some places to store the statuses before send to your smartphone, and many of the devices cannot talk directly so many many places to store your statuses. it’s ok if you have only limited amount of devices, but in case you have everything smart…
30 smart switches, 20 smart plugs, 8 door detections, 4 air conditions, smart refrigerator, smart laundry: if you don’t have your own gateway then that meant everything in your house send your data through out internet all the time… it may sound not scary until you try to set the condition like when you open the door the light bulb will on, or when the temperature is over 32 c, turn on the air conditions; that’s the nightmare.
So you should have HAAS? answer, that’s depended. if you project the view of all smart house; you should. same as NVR if you are ok that your security cameras can be see wherever in internet via your “some” venders, then no NVR is ok.