Arlo is one of the biggest names when it comes to wireless security cameras. Adding to its strong repertoire of such home automation products, the California-based company has now launched a video doorbell. Aptly named Arlo Video Doorbell, it is the company's first such offering.
Arlo Video Doorbell
Arlo may have been a little late to the video doorbell party, but the wait seems to be worthwhile. The new video doorbell in the town offers quite a few features that aren't found elsewhere. The most notable of them all is probably its ability to capture footages in a square 1:1 aspect ratio, made possible by 180-degree diagonal field-of-view. It allows users to see their visitors from head to toe, which the existing crop of video doorbells fail to do. You can even see packages lying low on the ground. The camera is capable of capturing HD videos in 1536 x 1536 resolution and has night vision.
The Arlo Video Doorbell's field-of-view is even taller than that of the Google Nest Hello, which captures footages at 160-degree diagonal field-of-view in a 4:3 aspect ratio. And talking about the Nest Hello, Arlo's product doesn't look too different from it. The Arlo Video Doorbell has a similar long, slender profile with the camera at the top and the doorbell button towards the bottom.
Another interesting thing about the Arlo Video Doorbell is the way it streams video when a visitor arrives. As soon as someone presses the button, the doorbell starts streaming video directly to your phone. And instead of a standard camera notification, you'll get a call from the doorbell. You then have the option to respond with pre-recorded messages such as "I'll be right there". You can also start a two-way audio conversation.
Arlo has also equipped its video doorbell with a siren that goes off automatically if someone tries to pull it off the wall. The siren can be triggered manually as well. Other standard features include 12x digital zoom and motion detection with activity zones, alerts and recordings. The doorbell is weather resistant.
Price and availability
The Arlo Video Doorbell is priced at $149.99 and is now available for pre-order at Arlo, Best Buy, and other authorized resellers. The doorbell requires a wired electrical connection to your home's existing mechanical or digital chime. And while it's user-installable, it's always better to take help from an expert, unless you yourself are one.
Despite all these good things, the Arlo Video Doorbell still seems to be missing one key thing. Earlier, Arlo products used to offer seven days of free event-based cloud storage. If the camera detects some activity, it would capture the footage and store it in the cloud for a week before deleting it automatically. Now just when Arlo devices are getting better at their activity detection capabilities, Arlo has stopped offering this service.
Instead, the company is offering a three-month free trial of the Arlo Smart, a premium service that gives you access to 30 days of recording history and offers features such as advanced motion detection and activity zones. Post the free trial period, you'll need to pay $2.99 per month to continue using the service.
There's also a $9.99 per month Arlo Smart Premier plan that includes the e911 service. This feature makes it possible to call the closest emergency services directly from the Arlo app, even if you're away from home. You can also opt for the $14.99 plan that offers all these features plus 60 days of video recording history.