Arlo Video Doorbell Review: The Best Video Doorbell 2020

Last year Arlo released a smart doorbell that came with mixed feelings because it didn’t come with an on-board camera. It was meant to work with the Arlo cameras around your home.

But a lot of people didn’t enjoy the experience or get that smart home doorbell experience with it since it didn’t come with a camera. So Arlo decided to release a proper smart home doorbell called the Arlo video doorbell.

The Arlo video doorbell is a sleek well-designed doorbell that comes with a lot of useful features that are sure to help keep you, your family, and property safe.

It supports HD videos with motion detection, night vision, video calls, and two-way talk. It also comes with an ultra-wide 180 degrees field of view with a 1:1 aspect ratio.

With a price of $150, the Arlo video doorbell is below its competition yet still offers the same quality or even more in some areas.

What’s In The Box:

  • Arlo Video Doorbell
  • Flat Mounting Plate
  • Angled Mounting Plate
  • Power Kit
  • Screw Kit
  • Security Latch Release Pin
  • Wire Extensions
  • Quick Start Guide

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Camera:

The camera of this device produces clear and clean videos.The max resolution of this device is 1536×1536. you have the option to set it at 1080p or 720p in the settings if you wish.

For my review, images looked well-detailed. Colors wear not the most accurate but where vivid. Face recognition with this camera is not an issue. It also comes with HDR support, which should help in outdoor lighting conditions.

Arlo video doorbell

The camera has a 108° wide field of view, with a 1.1 aspect ratio, which should cover a large area, both horizontally and vertically.

With this, you get to see whoever is at your at from head to toe. It comes in handy if you received a package, and it’s dropped at your door.

The Arlo video doorbell also supports 12x digital zoom. The zoom tries to retain as much detail as possible, but after a certain level, the image begins to lose quality. The zooming experience itself is quite smooth.

I got to say the camera of this device is one of the vital stand-out points of the Arlo video doorbell.

Design:

Arlo video doorbell

The Arlo video doorbell has a sleek and modern design. It has a pill shape with black face and white trimmings around. The design is appealing to look at when placed at the door or wall.

The Doorbell has a small size if we were to compare it with Ring doorbell Pro and nest hello. The Arlo video doorbell takes a little less space than the Ring video doorbell pro. Thanks to its curved design.

The Arlo video doorbell and the nest hello have almost the same design. With the nest hello having a black face and white trimming around. The nest hello is significantly smaller than the Arlo anyway.

The camera is located at the top of the device, and it is quite visible from any angle. It should discourage any intruder from breaking into your home.

Right below the camera, you have the IR led and the light sensor. The motion sensor is located in the middle while the doorbell button is at the bottom of the device.

Build quality is solid and durable. It has a plastic build, but that shouldn’t be a deal-breaker.

Due to its small size, the Arlo camera does not come with an in-built battery, so you will need to hardwire it. The overall design of the Arlo video doorbell is modern, sleek, and appealing.

Motion detection and Night vision:

The motion detection sensor of the Arlo video doorbell works excellently. During testing, the motion detection fast and accurate, with only a few false positives. Not too much to get worried about, though.

The Arlo video doorbell gives you the ability to map out your desired detection zone. You get to map out 3 locations from the screen, which is fantastic. The only issue is that it is not a 3D mapping.

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One of the features I like about Arlo is the advanced detection it offers. With this, Arlo uses AI to detect people, pets, packages, and cars around your building.

You can then choose which one you want to get notifications about. For you to access this feature, you will need to have an active Arlo smart plan, though.

The night vision on this device is also excellent. The Arlo video doorbell gives out clean and clear images. Faces and objects are recognizable with the night vision active.

Membership/Storage:

The Arlo video doorbell does not come with dedicated local storage. Instead, all your videos are stored on the cloud.

When you buy the Arlo doorbell, you get 3 months free trial of Arlo smart.

With Arlo Smart, you get some useful features. Like advanced detection, which uses AI to distinguish between people, animals, delivery, and cars around your home.

arlo app
Credit: Amazon

This feature will come in handy on different scenarios. Let’s say you are someone who owns a pet, and you don’t want to get a notification every time your pet triggers the motion sensor.

You also get 30 days of video storage. That means that all video recorded will be kept for you to watch and share for 30 days after that it gets removed from the cloud.

If you wish to extend it to 60 days, you can subscribe to a higher Arlo smart plan. But I feel the 30 days should be sufficient enough for anyone to review or report cases.

With the Arlo smart, you can set up e911, which alerts the police when an intruder threatens you.

Arlo App
Credit: Amazon

The Arlo smart plan starts at $3 / month or $36 per year. The pricing is quite similar to that for Ring protection plan price. But with Arlo, you get 3 months free trial while Ring gives you a month free.

Without the smart plan, you can still live stream your doorbell as well as get motion detection notifications. But You can’t access stored videos, though. Quite disappointing if you think of it.

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But I feel the monthly/ yearly fee is priced reasonably and I would recommend you go for it.

Installation:

The installation process for the Arlo doorbell requires basic DIY skills to complete. Installation took nothing more than 10 mins.

If you already have existing doorbell wiring that is in good shape, then the installation should be straightforward. But if this is your first doorbell and you don’t have wiring, then I will advise you contact a professional to help you make the wiring.

But let’s just say you already have existing wiring. To install the doorbell, you will need to fasten the mount to the wall. The mount has only two holes at the top and the bottom. Once you have secured the mount and have pulled out the wire.

Then you should connect the wire to the two terminals at the back of the device ( don’t worry about which wire is positive or negative. Just connect it.)

When you are done with the wiring. Just snap the doorbell into the mount, and you are done with the first step.

Now it’s time to connect the chime. If you already have a chime, then all you will need is to install a tiny power adapter that comes in the box to your existing chime. If not, I would recommend professional help with this.

Now that you have all the hardware installation done. You should go to the app store or play store to download the Arlo app.

Link your doorbell to the app. Enter your WiFi password and scan the QR code that will be generated for you and boom you are now a professional engineer.

App:

The Arlo app is where you get all notifications, lives streams, and where you access all your recorded videos. Your new Arlo video doorbell should appear in the app’s device listings alongside other Arlo cams( If you have them).

From the app, you can control different settings like the Audio, HDR, and night-vision options.

When someone visits you and presses the doorbell button, you will instantly receive a phone call. You can then decide to pick the call and have a two-way chat, or you can click the Arlo button to switch to video call.

Arlo video doorbell and app
Credit: Amazon

This feature will come in useful when you want to tell the deliveryman where to keep your package or dismiss someone you don’t to see( keep it nice though).

If you decide to ignore the call, the doorbell will then prompt the visitor to leave a message for you.

On testing the sound quality is loud and clear. Though sounds from the doorbell its self might seem a little glitchy for some people. Your visitor will hear you loud and clear.

If you are dealing with a case of someone trying to break into your house or Tamper with your doorbell. You will get an instant notification.

You can then decide to activate the inbuilt siren that should send anyone intruder running away. Or better still send them a voice message that you are watching them.

Price:

The Arlo is priced at $150. Comparing it with Ring doorbell pro at $249 and the nest hello at $230, the Arlo is the cheapest among the three.

The Arlo still offers excellent functionalities that make the price worth it. The only drawback is that you will have to keep paying a fee for the Arlo smart plan to have access to some features. But apart from that, the Arlo doorbell deserves to be your new doorbell.

Pros and cons

Pros:

1: sleek and modern design
2: relatively low price
3: HD video quality
4: weather resistance build
5: advanced motion detection

Cons:

1: you need a subscription plan to get full access
2: it does not work with the Google assistant or apple home kit
3: No local storage
4: No battery

Smart home integration:

The Arlo doorbell does only works with Alexa at this moment. You can watch or live stream videos from compatible fire TV and echo devices.

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Both Google Assistant and apple home kit are not supported. If you already own any of them. Then I don’t think the Arlo video doorbell is for you.

Conclusion:

The Arlo doorbell is a beautiful video doorbell to get if you are looking for a stylish, functional smart doorbell. At $150, this doorbell is one of the cheapest video doorbells in the market that still provide topnotch features to its customers.

When you buy you the Arlo video doorbell, you get one year of warranty. You also get three months free trial to Arlo smart plan.

The camera on the doorbell produces HD videos. The camera also has a 180° field of view with a 1:1 aspect ratio for wide videos( you should be able to see everything around). You also get some extras like advanced motion detection, e911, and an inbuilt siren.

There is still room for improvement. But all in all, this is an excellent doorbell. With a competitive price that can be compared with the bigger models In the market. You can get it at Amazon

Resources: Arlo, Amazon

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