In this article, you will find a detailed Arlo Pro review to help you decide if this home security camera is the right choice. Keep reading...
Let's face that not all of us are professionals security camera installers that know how to install dozens of cameras. So let's focus on devices with an easy setup.
Most of us want to feel safe and know what is happening in our home even when we are far away. Security cameras such as the Arlo Pro are meant for this type of scenario and they are easy to install, even for people with no technical skills.
==> Make sure you keep reading to the end since there are important things you must know before deciding to buy this camera.
The Arlo Pro camera is for regular consumers
Now you can have this type of security cameras. They are made for consumers like you. They are easier to manage and have what you are looking for.
So what makes this camera so appealing to consumers like you? All the feature that it brings will be better to you then fancy cameras you do not understand about.
Let's start with a list of the features this camera brings and then we will discuss each one of them.
Arlo Pro Features
- Night vision
- Indoor and outdoor installation
- Motion detection
- Live and record HD videos
- Rechargeable battery
- Two-way audio
- Free cloud storage
- Arlo app
- Base station
- Beautiful design
Arlo Pro security camera with Rechargeable Battery, Night vision, 720p, HD Video, 2-Way Audio for Indoor/Outdoor installation. Free 7-days Cloud Storage Included.
You may not understand all these listed terms but do not worry we are going to go over them one by one.
That means you don't need to use wires at all to install and setup the Arlo Pro camera since it comes with a rechargeable battery and connects directly to your Internet Wi-Fi router for video transmission.
The night vision is very useful when you need to install your camera in an area where there's no much light available. The Arlo Pro automatically turns on the IR (infrared) LEDs when it's necessary to record in low light conditions.
By using night vision, the camera can record everything in the complete dark.
This camera does have night vision that reaches 25 feet.
Indoor and outdoor installation
The Arlo Pro camera is IP65-certified which means it can be installed indoors or outdoors since it's weather-resistant. However, I don't recommend you to install it in an area where the camera is hit directly by the rain.
A security camera that is IP66-certified is better for direct rain and that's not the case for this camera, so is better to keep the camera under a roof for example.
Some users reported that they had problems with their cameras after raining.
It's possible to get some moisture inside the camera which damages the electronic board or batteries, so it's better to avoid direct rain on the camera.
Remember, the Arlo Pro camera is weather-resistant and NOT weather-proof.
This feature is very important to detect people, cars, animals or other objects that are moving in front of the camera to trigger an event for recording.
The idea is to have the camera installed in an area where people could get into, such as in front of a garage door, main property entrance, front door, etc.
As long as the camera can detect some movements it can start recording based on such event and that makes easy for you to get an alert or review the footage.
According to the Arlo Pro camera's manual, the motion sensor is more sensitive to side-to-side movements that movement towards the camera. The motion can be detected from 5 feet to 20 feet (1.5 to 6 meters) from the camera position.
You can customize the Arlo Pro camera settings to record the way you prefer.
If you want to record the footage after a motion detection and get an alert at the same time, you can edit the default modes and create your custom mode.
This is very helpful since you don't get stuck only with the default modes.
The camera can send you push-notification and email alerts when an event is detected, so if somebody gets in front of your front door, the camera will let you know immediately by sending you such notifications, that's cool, huh ?
With the Geofencing feature, you can setup your Arlo Pro camera to detect when something or someone enters or exits a specific zone triggers a schedule.
It's basically a virtual fence that detects when your mobile device is in or out of such a zone, which is helpful to alert when people or cars approach an area.
Live and record HD videos
The Arlo Pro camera records video with 720p HD (High Definition) quality, which means you can have a crisp image from people, cars, and animals that are at a certain distance from the camera and see some of the details.
That's something very interesting in a security camera, as long as you can use batteries, you don't depend on a power supply and is safe from a power outage.
The Arlo Pro camera comes with a rechargeable battery that allows you to keep it running for 4 to 6 months with normal usage (close to the base station and installed in a lit area that does not need the night vision).
The number of days the camera can work with battery also varies according to the local temperature, and recording setup (motion detection saves battery life).
You can talk to people that are close to the camera straight from your smartphone.
As long as they are close to the camera, they can hear you and talk back since the camera has a speaker and a microphone, that's a cool feature, isn't it ?
Free cloud storage
The camera can record the footage directly into the cloud for 7 days at no cost.
As soon as you buy and register your Arlo Pro camera, you have the right to use the 7-days free cloud recording plan and update to a paid subscription if you want to.
The app is very easy to use and you can have access to the Arlo Pro camera from your home, office or any other place through the Internet.
The Arlo Pro cameras work with a base station, which means you can connect your cameras to this device which connects to the Internet router.
If you buy more cameras, you need to sync them to the base station and everything start working like magic, it's pretty simple and fast.
With the basic plan (free) you have up to 5 cameras connected to a base station.
The Arlo Pro camera was designed to be discrete and beautiful, I like the way it looks and its appearance it's very modern and clean.
Usually, people don't notice that a security camera is installed in the place.
When talking about camera quality, there a lot of different factors that should be considered. You don't need to be a security camera expert to buy your camera, but you might at least understand a little bit which are those factors.
First of all, the camera footage must give you the ability to look at objects or people and see as many details as possible depending on how far they are located.
Let's start off with a term you might recognize but do not understand completely.
The Arlo Pro camera has 720p resolution, but do you know if this is good or bad and what is used for? Let's understand a little bit more.
You have probably heard this word before. Whether it was from buying a phone, computer or by reading the Arlo Pro specs. But you may not know what it means.
What is resolution?
Resolution defines how good the camera is to show you the image details. The higher the resolution the better the picture, especially when you want to zoom in to take a closer look at something you see, such as a license plate or someone's face.
How is it measured?
Resolution is measured in pixels, and most of the consumer security cameras now offer the 1080p resolution. also known as Full HD or 2MP.
The 1080p resolution means the camera can generate 1920x1080 pixels, horizontal and vertically respectively and that translated to 2,073,600 pixels (multiplying the number of pixels). So around 2 million pixels = 2MP.
But the Arlo camera is NOT 1080p. If you look at the specs you will realize that the camera is 720p, which means it generates 1280x720 pixels which are 921,600 and I think you already guessed that this camera has a total of 0,9MP.
==> To wrap it up.....The Arlo Pro Camera resolution is less than 1MP.
Why is it important?
High resolution means that the image can be stretched in a big monitor without losing quality. You can see a bigger image without too much pixelation.
The main use of high resolution is to be able to zoom in without losing quality, having good details, and being able to see things clearly.
That is called digital zoom, and can be very useful to see license plates, recognize a face or see anything else in which you need details.
Now that you understand what resolution is and why you need it for, you probably guessed that the Arlo Pro can't give so many details as other competitor's camera considering something or someone at the same distance from the camera.
There are other factors that can affect how far a security camera can see, but if the other variables are the same, the one with higher resolution wins the competition.
Now let's move on to talk about the features and what this camera brings to the table.
The Arlo Pro was made for both inside and outside usage, however, it can only handle a range of temperatures.
It is also weather-resistant, meaning that a little indirect rain will not damage the camera whatsoever. But temperature-wise it can get damaged.
According to the Arlo Pro specifications, the camera can work at a temperature that ranges from -4F to 113F (-20° C to 45° C).
Now keep in mind that inside your house it would be difficult to reach those temperatures. But in some places, it can get colder or hotter than what the camera can take. Usually, consumer devices fail if you install them at such temperatures.
>> I know the information it's on the specs, but be careful with that <<
Arlo Pro Live View and Notification
The Arlo uses remote view, meaning that you have access to live video through your phone, wherever you are as long as you have WiFi.
Apart from being able to have 2-way communication and talk through the camera. The Arlo also sends you a notification.
Whether it detects motion, or you configure certain areas to send you a notification, it keeps you alert on what is going on.
The motion detection is great if you want to be alerted every time there is someone in the front door for example.
That way you can avoid answering that neighbor that borrows everything and never gives it back.
You can also use the area detector to alert you if someone goes to an area. This can be used to know who is walking through the door for example.
So you can have one camera outside, detecting movement, and one inside that alerts you when there is movement in the door area.
There is also the fact that the camera does not need wires, meaning there is no hassle of installing everything and hiding the cables.
It is a WiFi camera, meaning it only needs a connection and a base station, then it is all ready to send you live videos.
These videos can be accessed in the Arlo app live and show you everything that is happening as it happens.
Jut like at night, the camera reaches 25 feet range for recording, and can be mounted on the wall for a higher look.
Arlo Pro Recording
To be able to get uninterrupted recording the batteries do need to be charged. Luckily they are rechargeable and will most likely come with the camera when purchased.
When you go to work you cannot just sit there and watch your cameras all day long. So, those recordings have to go somewhere.
That's where the cloud comes in. That is where all the videos go so you can watch them later. How amazing is that?
USB device Recording
Another great feature is the USB connectivity. This is used to store video in the USB locally. This is said to be a great new feature that the company added in.
One of the best things about the Arlo Pro is that you do NOT have to pay a monthly subscription to save your recordings to the cloud.
7-Days Free Cloud Recording
Arlo gives you 7 days of cloud recording. Meaning as one day passes the recording from 7 days ago gets deleted.
Every 7 days you start over and have new recordings. This way you can see all that the camera recorded during the seven previous days.
The Arlo Pro camera is compatible with multiple operating systems. Such as Apple IOS, Android, Mac, and Windows. Meaning you can monitor from your computer.
Apart from that, the camera is also compatible with devices like Amazon's Alexa, Google, Ario, Smart Things, and Wink. Which can be helpful if you have them in your house and like to play with automation.
Arlo Pro definitively went all out to make sure they are compatible with a lot of devices and that their app can be used with various devices.
With connection and compatibility with these devices, you have voice controls that can be used to do various things. But that will vary from device to device
This is a great feature that the company included as no matter where you are or what device you have, you will be able to watch live video.
What comes with the camera?
There are a lot of different things you can purchase fro Arlo. So, I am going to talk about what comes in the full package. As well as something you can purchase separately.
The Arlo Pro System sells a lot of different systems and combinations for different prices. They usually come with a set number of cameras, the base station and a few other things you might want.
You can purchase individual cameras, 2 cameras, 3 cameras, 4 cameras, black camera skins, spare batteries and charger, wall mountings and other full systems that mix and match the products Arlo has.
The company also sells other equipment such as compatible solar systems and even doorbells. So that might interest you as well.
The camera measures 2.8 inches in height, 3.1 inches in width and 1.9 inches in depth. It is also very lightweight as it comes in at 0.3 pounds.
Is the camera easy to use?
The app is pretty self-explanatory, however, you do have to create an account. The company gives you monitoring up to 5 cameras for 7 days at a time.
However, you can purchase a Premier service which gives you 30 days of recording at a time and can support 10 cameras at once.
The Elite service gives you 60 days of recording and supports 15 cameras. But this would be more for a business than a house. But just know it is an option.
How difficult is it to set up?
The set up is pretty easy. You first start by plugging in the base station that is needed to use the cameras and then connect it to an open port on your router.
Once the base is on and connected to the internet, you will know as the LED lights will turn green. Then tap the "add" button in the app.
Then select your base station which should be instantly recognized. You will then need to name your base, and then move on to syncing the camera to the base.
Place the camera you want to sync three feet from the base and press the sync button that is located on the camera. A blue LED will blink to tell you that the syncing was completely.
Repeat the syncing process as many times as needed to sync as many cameras as you need. Then install them where you want to and you can start playing around with the app.
The set up is fairly easy and simple to be done, just make sure you don't set up the cameras before you sync them. But the rest of the set up is quick.
Overall, the Arlo Pro has a lot to offer. From great features that you are sure to love, to a quick and easy set up. This is definitively an amazing product that you could use, however, it's not perfect and needs to be aware of this fact.
There is a bunch of possibilities of places you can set these up in and monitor movement or just certain areas. But be sure to check them out and see if they work for you.
Some users are complaining about the camera stopped working after heavy rain due to the moisture inside, so again I don't recommend to install it on direct rain.
The battery can last less than expected if the camera uses too much of the infrared or if it's installed too far away from the base station.
The resolution is also a concern if you expect to see people and details further away, but if you just want to see who's in front of your door it's OK.
This is an honest review, I recommend to buy this product if you need a few cameras and DIY quick installation, but just make sure you aware of those minor issues.
Claudemir Martins is a former Samsung Engineer with 15+ experience in the surveillance industry. He has been traveling around 17 different countries to teach people how to design, and install CCTV systems.