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Arlo Security Camera Review

A simple yet effective security camera system that can be installed virtually anywhere.

Last Updated On: September 18, 2019
SecureScore™: 8.4 /10
See Comparison
8.4 SecureScore™
Customer Service
8.0
Value
7.5
Equipment
9.5
Features & Technology
8.2
Ease Of Use
7.8

Arlo Security Camera Ratings

Arlo is fast-becoming a top choice in the world of home security cameras. With simple installation, best-in-class hardware, no contracts, and a design you can mount virtually anywhere — it’s easy to see why team Arlo is gaining ground. Have a look at their popular cameras and packages…

PROS
  • Well-designed hardware
  • No contracts
  • Several distinct security camera options
  • Video baby monitor
  • Fully customizable security lights
  • Support for a large number of cameras
  • Third-party integration

CONS
  • Limited home automation features
  • Features lacking when compared to other home security systems
  • Large upfront payments

Getting to Know Arlo

Arlo is the type of home security system that you want to go with when you don’t really need a lot of bells and whistles. Their tagline “Every Angle Covered” is a nod towards the camera’s ability to be installed virtually anywhere on your property.

This bare basics security camera system has a number of models suitable for indoor and outdoor use. Arlo also offers a video baby monitor. They are all 100% wireless and designed with a DIY installation in mind. You don’t have to spend a lot of time getting the equipment up and running. Its simplicity is the biggest advantage and disadvantage of this system.

You may get frustrated with the lack of features that are commonplace with other home security and smart home systems, such as audio recording. It does, however, offer an all-in-one app for managing your hardware and reasonable prices.

Subscription plans add video recording and you automatically get the free Basic plan at no cost. You can have a full security camera system solely by paying the price for the equipment, without any contracts to worry about. Arlo Security does not offer any professional monitoring services.

The Lineup of Features and Tech

Support for Up to 60 Cameras

Arlo’s monthly subscription plans have support for up to 60 cameras, so you can cover as much or as little of your property as you like.

Infrared Night Vision

See exactly what’s going on at all times with high-quality night vision.

Motion Alerts

Arlo’s security cameras send you a mobile notification when motion gets detected.

Compatible with Alexa

You have voice control possibilities when you leverage Alexa’s technology alongside the Arlo.

Extensive Platform Support

You can access the Arlo’s management app via iOS, Android, web browser and even Apple TV. The app is easy to use, whether you’re using it to control 1 camera or 40.

Completely Wireless

Eliminate the possibility of an intruder cutting the wires to your security cameras with this completely wireless system.

Third Party Smart Home Compatibility

While Arlo security cameras are bare bones when it comes to offering their own home automation features, they play nicely with third-party solutions. Alexa and Google Assistant compatibility give you voice control over the system, and If This Then That support gives you the opportunity to connect your cameras to many other devices and platforms.

Other technologies that you can easily use alongside your home security cameras include Apple Homekit, SmartThings, Telguard, Stringify, and Wink.

Two-Way Talk

While you don’t get an audio recording with this system, you do have two-way talk capabilities. Greet delivery people, dissuade criminals by acknowledging them, and talk to guests even if you’re not near the house.

Is it Easy to Use?

The simplicity of the Arlo Security system really shines through here, as it takes less than 10 minutes to get set up. You don’t have to drill mounts into anything unless you want to use the optional accessories, and there are no wires to worry about.

The application is designed in a similar fashion. You have access to several useful features, but it’s not so loaded down that it’s hard to figure out or overwhelming.

The Customer Service Experience

Netgear has a reputation for good customer service, and that extends to their Arlo Security products. You have a few ways to get assistance if you have questions or problems with your home security equipment.

There’s an active community that answers many common questions and a full knowledge base. These work as great starting points when you’re setting up and using your cameras for the first time. FAQs and a resource section give you other options to pursue as well.

An extensive support center has videos and articles so you can learn the best ways to use your equipment. If you need one-on-one help, live chat is available for all customers. You get 90 days of free phone support following an Arlo purchase, but you would need to pay for phone support after that if you don’t subscribe to one of the video recording plans.

Stacking the Value

Arlo home security cameras are reasonably priced, but you are responsible for paying the cost of the equipment package upfront. They come with a one-year limited warranty. You don’t enter into a contract with any of the subscription plans, so you can opt to choose the one that works best for your needs.

Residential Plans

The basic plan costs nothing and covers five cameras and seven days of stored recordings, along with 90 days of phone-based support.

The premier plan is $9.99 per month or $99 per year. You get 30 days of video recordings, support for 10 cameras, 24/7 continuous video recording, and unlimited phone support.

The elite plan is $14.99 per month or $149 annual. You get 60 days of video recordings, support for 15 cameras, 24/7 continuous video recording and unlimited phone support.

Business Plans

The basic plan is identical for commercial customers, but the other options diverge significantly from the residential subscriptions. The focus is on supporting larger numbers of cameras. The advanced plan costs $12.99 per month or $129 per year. It includes 14 days of recordings with 16 cameras. The professional plan is $24.99 per month or $249 per year. You get 30 days of recordings for 24 cameras. Finally, the enterprise plan is $49.99 per month or $499 annually for 60 days of recordings and 40 cameras.

A La Carte Service

You can also buy continuous cloud recording as needed with Arlo’s a la carte services.

Get 14 days of recording for $9.99 per month or $99 per year per camera. Up that to 30 days with a payment of $19.99 per month or $199 per year per camera. When you buy multiple plans, you pay 50% less on additional services.

The upfront cost of the equipment can be substantial, especially for products that only come in packages with more than one camera and base station.

The Goods

None of the subscription plans come with equipment. You choose the configuration of Arlo Security devices based on your preferences.

Arlo Pro – $249.99

Arlo Pro

Includes 1 camera and base station. This indoor and outdoor camera has no wires. It’s an IP65 weather resistant home security camera with a rechargeable battery, audio and video streaming, motion detection, night vision, and two-way audio.

Arlo Pro 2 – $299.99

Arlo Pro 2

Includes 1 cameras and base station. You get a higher quality 1080p HD stream and recording with the Pro 2. It also allows you to set activity zones, which focuses motion and sound detection in these locations. It’s wireless with a rechargeable battery, has a 3-second look back whenever it detects an event, and is equipped with a 100-decibel smart siren.

Arlo Ultra – $399.99

 

The Arlo Ultra includes 1 cameras and base station. This is the latest and most powerful Arlo camera to date. Offers 4K UHD resolution and multiple smart home features.

Arlo Security Light – $149.99

 

Includes 1 light and base station. Arlo’s home security lights have a number of clever features that allow it to complement your cameras. You can set cameras to record whenever the light’s motion detector turns it on. Automation with If This Then That is also possible. A feature called Dusk to Dawn helps your batteries last longer by turning down the power saving feature when it’s bright out.

These lights are IP65 certified for indoor and outdoor use. They’re also completely customizable. You can set them to flash off and on, switch up the colors and adjust the width of the beam. You have 400 lumens of light to play with, along with Alexa compatibility.

Arlo Baby – $199.99

Arlo Baby

One area that many home automation and home security companies skip over is the baby monitor. Arlo uses its video technology as the base for a powerful baby monitor. You have a 1080p recording, live streaming video, advanced night vision, motion and sound alerts, air sensors and two-way talk. You can blend the baby monitor in with the rest of the room through cute skins that allow you to dress it up like an animal.

Arlo Q – $199.99

Arlo Q

The Q camera line does not need base stations to function properly. This 1080p HD camera handles the base station functionality itself. It’s AC powered, rather than wireless like the rest of Arlo’s products. It’s primarily intended for people that need 24/7 recording capability. It also has two-way audio.

Arlo Q Plus – $249.99

Arlo Q Plus

This version of the Arlo Q is designed around business needs. It has 1080p HD video, power over Ethernet connections, local storage compatibility, a 130-degree wide angle lens and 2-way audio.

Arlo Camera $119.99

Arlo Camera

This is the basic camera model that acts as an indoor or outdoor home security camera. It has video streaming and night vision capabilities available.

Arlo Base Station – $79.99

Most of the home security cameras, other than the baby monitor and the Q line, need a power station. It helps you connect the wireless cameras to the internet, and it also has a USB drive for handling your location storage needs. The base station also acts as a 100-decibel siren.

Arlo Go – $399 (plus data plan)

Arlo Go

Sometimes you need your security cameras to go beyond the confines of your Wi-Fi. Large yards, big properties and other locations may be difficult to get coverage for on a standard Wi-Fi setup. The Arlo Go uses a mobile data plan so you have 4G LTE available. You get a lot more flexibility over where you can put the cameras when you’re not worried about your connection. The Arlo Go is also IP65 weather resistant with a rechargeable battery, 2-way audio feature and SD card slot.

Arlo Audio Doorbell – $79.99

Arlo Doorbell

The Arlo doorbell integrates perfectly with Arlo security cameras and gives you the ability to view who is at your front door with a properly placed Arlo security camera.

Accessories

  • Arlo Baby Table / Wall Stand – $39.99
  • Tenergy Rechargeable CR123 Batteries & Charger – $49.99
  • Camera skins – $9.99 – $24.99
  • Outdoor Power Adapter for Pro, Pro 2 and Go $24.99
  • Indoor Power Cable and Adapter for Pro, Pro 2 and Security Light $14.99
  • Wall Mount 4-Pack – $14.99
  • Table and Ceiling Mount – $24.99
  • Outdoor Security Mount – $24.99
  • Solar Panel – $79.99
  • Charging station for Pro, Pro 2, and Go – $59.99

Arlo vs Arlo Pro

Two of the most common Arlo cameras are the original Arlo and the Arlo Pro camera. If you are considering purchasing an Arlo camera system, you may want to know the differences between these two. If so, you can check out our Arlo vs Arlo Pro comparison here.

The Last Word

Arlo security offers a simple but powerful home security camera solution, with a few smart features to help them really shine. This contract-free option works well for people who don’t want a lot of home automation features that they’re not going to use, or they’re renters looking for a 100% wireless system. Optional subscription plans provide video recording and storage. Arlo’s equipment is paid completely upfront and offers an excellent selection to choose from.

Questions to Ask When Considering Arlo

Does Arlo offer home automation?

Yes, Arlo works with a number of different smart home products. Arlo works with Google Home, Phillips Hue, Sonos, Yale, Dose, and other popular smart home brands. It can also work with Amazon Alexa if you download the skill to your Alexa device to do so.

Does Arlo require a monthly fee?

No, Arlo does not require a monthly subscription plan. Arlo does offer optional plans if you want to expand your coverage. The Arlo Smart plan is $2.99 per month, the Premier plan is $9.99 per month and the Elite plan is $14.99 per month

Is Arlo a wireless system?

Yes, Arlo offers wireless security cameras.

How long will Arlo batteries last?

The battery life on products such as the Arlo and Arlo Pro can last between four and six months with normal usage. Arlo states that normal usage is about five minutes of recording each day.

What devices can I connect to Arlo?

Arlo can connect to Amazon Alexa devices such as the Echo, Echo Show, and Fire TV. The Google Home Hub also works with Arlo. Additionally, you can connect to many other third part devices such as Bose, Sonos, Phillips Hue and other popular devices.

Does Arlo record sound and motion?

Yes, Arlo is designed to record both sound and motion.

Do Arlo products require Wi-Fi connectivity?

Yes, most Arlo products will require a Wi-Fi connection to work. Arlo Go does not require a Wi-Fi connection since it connects to a mobile network. Also, other Arlo products can be connected via Ethernet.

How far can the Arlo cameras be from the base station?

To function at their best, Arlo cameras should remain at a maximum of 300 feet from the SmartHub system or the base station you are using.

Do Arlo cameras have night vision?

Yes, Arlo cameras offer night vision.

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23 Comments

  1. Mark Williams says:

    Arlo has a gigantic drawback that you fail to mention. You can only have 5 cameras before you have to have a contract and a monthly fee. That is a big drawback, especially since you are paying big money upfront for the equipment. I had a 3 pack of cameras and thought that having the 5 pack to use in a different place would be a great idea. It was until I went to register the cameras with the new base station and only 2 will work because I hit my limit. I do not want the extra recording features but I did want 8 cameras in 2 different locations in 2 different WiFi networks. Can’t do it so the new equipment is going back to the store.

  2. Levi says:

    I’ve had 5 cameras for over a year. I will be throwing them away and installing a proper surveillance program. These cameras do not properly pick up motion if you walk directly toward or away from them. I filed a complaint almost a year ago and followed all instructions and it never got better. I told them i can walk by the camera and enter the house and i’ll i get is a recording of the door closing without seeing anyone. Last night my car was broken into and the person had to walk directly in front of the camera coming and going. It only recorded the sound of his feet crunching the gravel as he passed on the way out. Customer service is abysmal.

    1. Unhappy customer says:

      Same issue. When we first bought the Arlo cameras all was good. But, about 3 months later, the lag time on the video recording was horrible

  3. lewis j flanagan says:

    This Arlo camera system is a piece of garbage my truck was robbed 25 feet in front of the arlo camera and it never turned on or recorded anything and we are not talking going through my truck. the thief stole 5 extension ladders 25 feet in front of the camera and it never turned on.we are talking multiple people tons of movement but the cameras failed to record

  4. Toyota Charlie says:

    It works to detect motion and film, but geofencing does not work (or at least, not when you have more than one person in the house), so we end up having to manually arm/disarm, which leads to us forgetting to disarm and setting off the alarm.
    This wouldn’t be so bad, but unlike previous versions of the app there is no “Turn off Alarm” button so I have to use the button on the hub, which is very hard on the ears.
    So, after 2 frustrating years of trying to get the geofencing to work, I’m admitting defeat. You will find my Arlo setup on Kijiji and a much discounted cost.

  5. Andrew says:

    I purchased 4 Arlo Q cameras and every one of them has failed in one way or the other. Two of them refuse to update their firmware and continually shutdown. Then they need to be restarted (unplugged from power and rebooted) for them to come back online. Obviously that doesn’t work very well when you are away. One has its picture turn purple and then, on reboot, it gets okay again, but then goes purple again after a while. One failed entirely and just won’t come back.

    The basic idea of Arlo is good — especially the cloud recording. But the hardware is awful. In addition, I find the motion detection either too sensitive or it doesn’t work at all. I wanted to have an Arlo looking at my backyard but leaf movement in the trees causes the unit to record constantly.

    All told, I would NOT recommend this system.

  6. Vinson D Naegeli says:

    Same issues as above. Can’t adjust the sensitivity correctly. It’s either recording everything (eating up the batteries $$$$)or very little. On all four cameras. Not dependable at all.

  7. Joanne says:

    This camera has a good resolution but the System SUCK because they DON’T HAVE A BACK UP BATTERY. In other words if you lose power your cameras will NOT record! They should have an internal memory so it can keep recording.

    1. Melissa says:

      Plug your base into a battery backup …like for your computer

  8. Dean Pinelli says:

    I bought Arlo system & 1 year later it will not keep a charge. I plug in will shows it plugged in & will not charge. I like the system but if it doesn’t even last a little over a year not worth it. What do u do with this problem. Bought at Best Buy but idk who I call or if it’s out of warranty then I’m screwed.

    1. Safe Home says:

      Hi Dean,
      Arlo comes with a one-year limited warranty. We’d suggest calling customer service and asking about your options.

  9. Jim Call says:

    I would not recommend.
    First off installation.
    These cameras were part of a system bought monitored by Brinks security systems. Took four hours to install. Signed a three-year contract. Which was a big mistake. In the first year they’ve been out six times.
    They seem to always blame the app . They update the cameras and blame the app for not being able to monitor the cameras properly.
    We got the high-end outdoor version. That was available at that time in 2017.
    We were lucky if the batteries lasted more than 10 days. Call the tech out again. Adjusted the camera to the lowest resolution and the lowest sensitivity. Batteries would last about 13 days.
    there of been several times where Arlo said they would be out to do repairs. And they would never show up.
    We live in Idaho. We were reassured several times that the batteries would last a month in cold weather. That was a lie.
    Having four cameras with four batteries each. A 12 pack of batteries cost in our area $24.99.
    We spend over $750 a year on batteries alone!
    The other problem is, adjusting the cameras for the view you want. For some reason our cameras always Re-adjust back out for a wide and Far view. After adjusting them for the view we want.
    Since we purchased the cameras with the system. We went through Zenith security solutions LLC, they tell us to call Brinks, brinks tells us to call Arlo, Arlo tells us to call Brinks.
    Everybody passes the buck and nothing gets done.
    In conclusion, the maintenance cost is phenomenal, support is minimal, using only minimal sensitivity, The customer is not able to use the cameras to their potential.

  10. Annie says:

    I have the arlo baby, it worked really well as a babycam until my son learned to roll then I realized the non continuous recording has an issue. Each time it record a video max at 5 min but it will not pick up another recording soon enough so there would be a gap in between two recordings. I’m not certain how long the gap usually is but there were some critical movement I wish it would have recorded. I was hoping the security cam can do a better job but now I’m having 2nd thought after seeing the comments.

  11. Annie says:

    However, all security cam without cloud subscription seems to only record clips only. I would say Arlo baby is still prob one of the best options in the market.

  12. DBraun says:

    I have 2 Arlo Pro’s,, 1 is the Pro 2. Although they are very convenient to install and set up I do think they are WAY TOO expensive for what they do. The video quality is shocking at night, for this price at $300 for one camera the consumer should be getting far better for their money. I had cheap $70-80 ip low res cameras before and they had much better night vision than these Arlo’s. WHY can’t Netgear get this better if they expect us to pay out,,,,NOT HAPPY!!!!

  13. Dominique says:

    So I went on YouTube and google searched all these different reviews before buying this system and everything said it was great. That is not so much the case. The cameras only pick up from a certain distance. I have a long driveway and doesn’t pick up until I get to the middle of it but if a UPS truck goes by at the very end it picks it up. The cameras are good until u need to look at the license plate or zoom in to see something better because it’s too pixelated. As much as u pay not worth it.

  14. Paul says:

    I have two Arlo Q plus cameras. When they work I am satisfied, but often times they fail for unknown reasons and need to be reinstalled in the app. Then one may work for hours or days and then not! I suspect that the software is not robust and well tested. It can drive you crazy!

  15. Shaun says:

    You got to reconnect your camera to the base station every time you change the battery. I would not recommend

  16. Mandy says:

    We now have to pay for the basic’s after the update. My camera’s have been off-line all day while i was at work. Can’t reset unless you’re home. Getting a different security camera. Will not recommend to anyone.

  17. Marie says:

    I purchased the Arlo for my workplace. Does really well. My question is though,can I turn the cameras back on without the other person that works there knowing. We both have them on our phones.

  18. Patty Latimer says:

    We have four Arlo Pro at our 2nd home. They detect movement at further distance than expected. They work perfectly. We live half the year in Florida and can now watch the snow flakes fly and deer and moose pass through at our happy place when not there. For us, it is more than security.

  19. Ken Weber says:

    My cameras are not recording now and can’t figure out what’s going on with them do I have to have a subscription

    1. Editor says:

      Hi Ken,
      No, the basic plan covers seven days of recording for free, so you don’t need a subscription. If you can’t get them to record, we’d suggest calling customer service.

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