Consumers are taking an increasing interest in smart home products, and how they can be an asset to their home in automating and controlling systems for comfort, security and entertainment. Today, home security is a serious concern, and one of the most frequently searched-for and bought devices is the smart security camera.
There are many manufacturers selling smart security cameras, all claiming that their product is top-notch and reliable. Sadly, the majority are advertising and promoting products that don't live up to the hype of the advertisements.
On the bright side, we have a few manufacturers that create exciting and quality security cameras. Arlo is one of those trusted manufacturers that has released several winning, best-selling and quality products.
Right now, Arlo is the most successful and innovative security camera manufacturer, and they've already had some significant breakthroughs in the market.
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Two of the most notable security cameras Arlo has released are Arlo and Arlo Pro. Arlo is the first generation security camera, and Arlo Pro is the newest release that has caught everyone's attention. Arlo Pro is the complete security camera that has the most innovative qualities.
In this comparison article, we need to find out how Arlo and Arlo Pro differ and if it's worth upgrading or purchasing the newest model. To do so, we'll evaluate, compare and rate the most important aspects of these security cameras.
Table of Contents
Arlo vs Arlo Pro: Pros & Cons and Verdict
Firstly, both of these security cameras are top-notch. Arlo and Arlo Pro have thousands of customers and positive reviews. I've rarely come across an Arlo owner who is dissatisfied with the purchase.
These two models offer great features, but there are some significant differences. Arlo Pro provides unique features and comfort. There's a noticeable price difference too.
Arlo and Arlo Pro are the smartest DIY cameras on the market, and they stand out from the competitors. Let's find out how these two compare in other important aspects.
Both Arlo and Arlo Pro are very easy to install. The process is quite simple and requires no professional knowledge. It's so intuitive that it can be completed even by a novice user.
If you've never had an Arlo security camera before, I'll explain how to activate it. I won't write a step-by-step guide since I'll be wasting your time. Instead, I'll link a fantastic video uploaded by Arlo Smart Home. It perfectly explains how to setup and install your security cameras.
This video is applicable to both the first generation Arlo and the Arlo Pro. So you don't need anything else besides watching the vid for 2-3 minutes. Simply put, it's a piece-of-cake process that takes a few minutes to complete.
If you somehow get stuck during the installation process, just check the user's manual for further guidance. Besides, you can reach out to Arlo's support team, and they'll gladly assist with anything you think is relevant.
In today's world, it's crucial to purchase functional smart home products that are both effective and visually attractive. Today, every consumer aims to purchase smart gadgets that'll improve their home's functionality and enhance the visual aspects (for example, making your house look more smart and modern).
So it's vital for our Arlo security cameras to look attractive because, otherwise, no one will be buying these products. Since Arlo and Arlo Pro are almost identical in terms of appearance, we can assume that the current design is successful. I've posted the photo below so you can see for yourself how stylish the Arlo looks.
And, speaking from my own experience with these security cameras, I can say for sure that they're one of the most attractive products on the market. Compared to other models like Dropcam Pro and Nest Cam, Arlo & Arlo Pro stand out with their neat design.
I've seen Arlo in action, and every owner and visitor was impressed with the security camera and mentioned how good-looking Arlo was. In brief, if you want a stylish, modern, functional and attractive security camera, Arlo security camera is the best option out there.
In order to find out what a security camera is capable of, it's essential to know its features. Otherwise, we can't know what to expect from a particular device.
So we need to know what features these devices offer and if there are any meaningful differences between Arlo and Arlo Pro. Sometimes people rush ahead to buy without taking the time to analyse what a security camera is offering/not offering and then feel stumped if it doesn't match their expectations. So to avoid such a scenario, we've created a detailed chart that shows the features of both security cameras.
Judging from the chart above, it's evident that both of these Arlo models have top-notch features. But there are also noticeable differences between them where Arlo Pro takes the top spot with its innovative, modern and enhanced features.
For instance, the 2-way audio and the live streaming allows the homeowner to talk directly with visitors or scare away unwanted people. Rechargeable batteries are another breakthrough for the Arlo Pro model and make it more future-oriented. To date, no other security camera can boast this facility.
As for the first-generation Arlo, it has some excellent features and can easily compete with other devices on the market.
Another interesting topic we need to write about is the performances of Arlo and Arlo Pro. We need to find out how well these two security cameras perform and how they compare with others in the market.
If the first generation Arlo and Arlo Pro fail to meet the minimum requirements of the buyer, it would be wise to look for alternatives. So let's not waste more time and discuss how well these two can perform.
Arlo Security Camera
The first-generation Arlo security camera requires batteries to function. Unlike the Pro version, the first-generation Arlo's batteries aren't rechargeable, and when the battery is dead, you'll have to purchase a new set.
Like the Pro version, the first-generation Arlo records vids and stores them in 720p HD quality. What I like about Arlo is the FREE cloud storage – a rare advantage amongst its competitors in the security camera market.
Arlo is a weatherproof security camera that can withstand seriously harsh environments. Still, there were some problems when we placed Arlo cameras in the below-freezing weather. The battery life was regularly changing, and it seems the cold weather was messing up the battery percentage.
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Arlo security camera records good vids by day, and the night vision is pretty good too (the image is crystal clear). On top of this, Arlo security camera sends email notifications where the recorded vids are available for download (in MP4 format).
If you're interested how well can Arlo security camera record, check out the picture posted below that shows the streams on a mobile device.
Unlike the Arlo Pro, the first generation model doesn't have a built-in microphone and a speaker. In other words, it's impossible for you to have a one-to-one conversation with your visitors.
We need to mention that the mobile application sometimes lags and there could be delays when you request a feed. Arlo and Arlo Pro use the same mobile applications, so both of these security cameras have some problems loading the feed on time.
Recording-wise, the only drawback of the first generation Arlo is that it has some issues detecting movement and the working range is noticeably smaller compared to the Pro version.
Arlo Pro Security Camera
Let's start with the basics. Unlike the Nest Cam, Arlo Pro isn't always in the recording mode. Unless you request the live stream or any motion is detected, Arlo Pro will not record the activity in its field of view.
There might be a small lag (maximum 1-2 seconds) when you request a live stream. It takes a few seconds for the system to react when you hit the Live button and for the live feed to be displayed. There's a similar issue with the first generation Arlo, but the lag might last longer.
The video and audio qualities of Arlo Pro are stunning. It doesn't record in 1080p due to the low-power wireless connectivity, but the 720p is as sharp as it can get. You might think that it's a bad sign that Arlo Pro doesn't record in 1080p but if you think about it more, the upshot is that Arlo Pro consumes less cloud storage than other security cameras.
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The video quality was fantastic and very detailed. Arlo Pro provides identically good live feeds and recorded videos. You even receive mobile and email notifications when Arlo Pro detects activity in its field of view.
If you're interested in how well can Arlo Pro record its vids, check out the sample posted below:
What you need to know is that Arlo Pro has sensitivity levels and it's important to adjust them. At first, when I got my hands on the Arlo Pro, it regularly sent false alerts since the place where I live is a bit windy and the motion sensor was falsely triggered.
As soon as I changed the sensitivity levels, I didn't receive any more false alerts or notifications. So with the right setting, you won't be disturbed by false alarms.
The potential purchaser will also be interested in Arlo's night vision capability. A lot of top-notch security cameras boast having outstanding night vision. Can Arlo Pro match or exceed what other security cameras have to offer?
With a 130-degree viewing angle, Arlo Pro has a slightly narrower field of view than other cameras. As expected, the black-and-white night vision of Arlo Pro came out pretty sharp and detailed. It has a range of 25 feet and shows an excellent image.
The two-way audio is another excellent feature of Arlo Pro that attracts attention. With this newly added feature, you can have full conversations with the person standing next to your door or in front of your camera. Your voice will sound a bit robotic (due to the wireless aspect and power saving), but you'll get used to it quite soon.
Lastly, the Arlo Pro did an excellent job helping to extend the security camera's Wi-Fi range. If anyone is considering installing the Arlo Pro beyond 200 feet, you can rest assured; as we tested, it works fine within a range of 220 feet.
Note: Wi-Fi range may vary, depending on the router you're currently using and the power/quality of your internet connection.
5. Mobile Application
Arlo and Arlo Pro use the same mobile application. Arlo mobile application has a simple design and interface. It's easy to navigate, and there's zero chance of getting lost.
But there are some bugs that a lot of buyers have noted, and, I must admit, Arlo's mobile application isn't my favourite security camera app. The notifications are a bit complicated to setup, and sometimes the app refuses to load and frequently crashes.
Luckily, the latest update has solved the main bugs that were noted by the buyers, and I haven't noticed the Arlo app crashing lately.
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The two-way audio feature is now available for the Arlo Pro model, but sometimes the audio button doesn't function (since it's new). I've also seen a few cases when the app shows the security cameras offline, but after restarting, they magically turn green again.
So, yes, Arlo's mobile application has some issues. Nothing major but it might get a bit annoying. Luckily, Arlo has a fantastic team, and they're continually working on improving their devices, website and mobile application.
If you want to know about the interface of the Arlo mobile application, I've added a great screenshot that shows the most critical aspects of the app.
So as you see from the screenshots, Arlo's mobile application is pretty easy to navigate. We have three sections called:
I'll explain below what these three words mean and what they do/why we need them.
- Mode – We have three main modes for the Arlo security camera. They are Armed, Disarmed and Geofencing (it's in beta mode). For example, let's take the ‘Armed Mode'. It works like this: When the Arlo security camera detects motion, it'll automatically record five seconds of the activity and will notify you via email or mobile notifications.
- Devices – This one is pretty easy. This section shows how many devices you own, how many are connected and their current status.
- Library – This section shows all the recorded clips. You can review them later or delete the ones you don't need.
Before we move to the next section, you need to know what the Geofencing means. It's fascinating and innovative since it makes the whole automation process a lot easier. Geofencing relies on your mobile's GPS, and when you leave home, Arlo will automatically turn on the motion/sound detection so that it won't miss any unusual or suspicious activity.
Arlo's mobile app offers a lot more. It's just hard to discuss all of it in a single article. To give you a better idea about the capabilities of Arlo, I'll say that it allows the owner to create custom modes that'll let you customise your security camera's operations.
These modes mostly help to reduce instances of false alerts and generally increase the reliability, comfort and quality of the Arlo security camera. You can further regulate the sensitivity of motion alerts; this is a valuable feature, which means you won't be needlessly alerted as a result of, say, windy weather triggering the motion sensor if it's set too high.
6. Advantages and Disadvantages
Besides all of the things we've talked about, it's essential to know the particular advantages and disadvantages of these security cameras.
Hence we've created two handy charts that show the pros and cons of Arlo and Arlo Pro.
Arlo Security Camera
|Flexible Mobile Application||Batteries are not Rechargeable|
|Sharp Night Vision||No Audio Capabilities|
|720p HD Recording||Narrow Field of View|
|Email Alerts||Mobile App Lag & Bugs|
|110° Field of View|
|Works Well Hundreds of Feet Away|
|FREE Cloud Storage||Purchase Arlo|
Arlo Pro Security Camera
|Two-Way Audio||Mobile Application Lag & Bugs|
|720p HD Video||Costly|
|130° Field of View|
|Flexible Mobile Application|
|Email & Mobile Notifications|
|Sharp Night Vision|
|Works Well Over 200 Feet Distance||Purchase Arlo Pro|
So both of these security cameras have some interesting pros and a few disadvantages that aren't a big deal. I can easily say that Arlo and Arlo Pro are top-notch products on the market and they boast being the most innovative ones.
The only serious drawback of Arlo is the mobile application since a lot of buyers have reported it being buggy and messy. Luckily, there aren't any serious issues. There are a few easy-to-solve problems that might take an update or two to get it fixed.
It's vital for a company like Arlo to have a superb support team since security camera owners often have questions about their devices. When they fail to resolve queries by themselves, the next port of call will be Arlo's customer care.
Luckily, Arlo has an outstanding support team, and they always provide professional answers and tips. There are several ways to contact them:
- Live Chat – You might need to wait 5-10 minutes to talk with someone
- Phone – You'll get an answer in a minute or two
- EMail – Sometimes takes up to 1 business day to get a reply
- Community – Option to communicate with other Arlo owners to find solutions
I've reached out to the Arlo support team a few times and asked both tough and easy questions. As expected, responses were always professional and full of insights. So, all I can say is that Arlo has an outstanding team.
8. Comparison Chart: Arlo vs Arlo Pro
Before we conclude our article, let's directly compare these two security cameras. In order to do so, we've created a detailed chart that compares the most important aspects of Arlo and Arlo Pro.
By using the chart below, potential buyers and owners who are considering an upgrade can know the differences between these models.
On the surface, Arlo and Arlo Pro seem quite similar regarding looks, features and capabilities. Some might even say that Arlo Pro isn't worth the upgrade since it can't offer anything special or unique.
Despite that potential perception, Arlo Pro is one of the most successful releases, and people often call it the complete security camera on the market. It exceeds its competitors in many aspects, and Arlo Pro is an entirely wire-free security camera.
Compared to its predecessor, Arlo Pro offers two-way audio, works on a longer distance, has better connectivity, batteries are rechargeable (with a single charge they last up to six months), and has local storage.
As for the third-party integrations, Arlo happily integrates with the IFTTT, SmartThings, Xfinity, etc.
The Bottom Line
The first generation Arlo and Arlo Pro are two of the most popular security cameras on the market. Today, these two models have thousands of owners, and more than 95% of the buyers are happy with their purchase. Arlo and Arlo Pro are best-selling security cameras on Amazon and are two of the most highly rated.
If you plan on purchasing either of these two devices or currently own the original Arlo, you should purchase/upgrade to the newest model. The Pro version offers more flexibility, security and comfort.
Arlo Pro is one of the most advanced security cameras on the market and with its innovative features and capabilities, and will meet the customers' high expectations.
To sum up, if you're looking for a top-notch security camera to protect your house indoors and outdoors, don't look further, Arlo Pro is the best product you'll find.