I received this product for free, as a NETGEAR ambassador, in exchange for my honest, unbiased opinion.
Over the past few years, I have tried several home security cameras and video monitoring systems. These are different than the full-service ones from your cable or phone company that take care of both the installation and monitoring part. I’ve never used one of those systems but I kind of like being able to do it myself and in full control of who is able to see it. Who wants to wait for the cable guy or have someone “accidentally” peek inside your house?
NETGEAR Arlo Smart Home Security Camera System
Arlo by NETGEAR is a smart home security camera system which you need to buy, install, and monitor everything yourself. The sound of having to install it might scare some people but there’s no need to worry about that. Other systems I’ve used make you go through crazy hoops just to establish a wireless connection to your Internet. At first I thought it was kind of old-fashioned that Arlo uses a wired connection but, actually, it ended up making it a whole lot easier to set up and gives added benefits.
The Arlo system comes standard with a base station and two cameras. I like the “You’re on Camera!” window sticker that comes with this to deter potential burglars. The base station is the device that needs a wired connection to either the gateway from your Internet provider or, as in my case, an Internet router. The benefits of a wired connection are that it’s more reliable and extremely easy to connect. It’s just a matter of plugging in the cable.
Uninterrupted Home Security
I am using a power supply with battery backup for my Internet modem and router. That’s because even if there’s a power outage, the Internet connection may still work. An additional benefit of having the Arlo base station so close to these devices is that it’s also connected to that same power supply. So to any bad guy or girl reading this article – even if you disconnect our power, our Arlo is still working and we will be able to see you! I might sound a bit paranoid, but hey, it’s pretty reassuring to have an uninterrupted security system, right?
The other DIY-systems I’ve worked with need to have a power supply for each camera. So, if I wanted to get uninterrupted security, I’d have to get a battery backup for each and every camera. The Arlo cameras are battery powered, so they don’t have that issue. Each camera holds two batteries, which seem to last pretty long. The size of the batteries are a bit odd, so you may want to get a few extras from Amazon because you probably won’t be able to find them at the local store AND you need four batteries for each camera.
Arlo Home Security Camera System Review
Monitoring can be done either through an Apple iOS or Android app, or through the NETGEAR Arlo website. Getting everything up and running was just a matter of following the clearly outlined instructions. After installing the Arlo app on my phone, it immediately started receiving alerts. I had to adjust my phone’s notification settings since I was getting way too many though. Now it just shows one notification and, if I want to see what’s going on, I just fire up the Arlo app and check the videos it took.
Videos are securely stored in the cloud, away from your house. That means it’s not possible for someone to simply delete any recorded material. I was surprised to find out that the system comes with one gigabyte of free data. Most other DYI-systems give this on a trial basis. That 1 GB has turned out to be plenty for us but you can pay for extra storage if needed.
Another pleasant surprise is the quality of the video. The high resolution almost looks HD, which means that faces can be easily recognized. Built-in infrared works well at night and, since the cameras are splash proof, they can also be mounted outside (hardware and instructions included).
NETGEAR Arlo is a featured packed, high quality, and cleverly designed camera-monitoring system. This smart home security system definitely is a keeper.