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8 Reasons I Would Buy an Arlo Essential Camera

High technology security monitoring system CCTV camera for office building, shopping mall, house, traffic and outdoor.

8 Reasons I Would Buy an Arlo Essential Camera

In the world of security cameras, Arlo is a brand working overtime to have the same name recognition as Ring. With a product lineup that includes video doorbells, flood lights, and indoor/outdoor security cameras, Arlo is establishing a reputation as a great choice for customers. If you have been looking for a competitor to Ring that doesn’t force a subscription, Arlo may very well be the right security camera for you. 

With its video doorbells, Arlo is helping you see who is there morning and night. The same goes for its outdoor cameras as it provides your home with 360 degrees of protection. In an increasingly crowded space like this one, Arlo’s subscription plans leave a little to be desired on the price front but still offer a deep feature set. 

Let’s take a look at some of the reasons I think Arlo is worth considering in the home security space.

Smart Home Integration

the delivery man rings the doorbell on the monitor of the security camera
Arlo’s Essential camera lineup all easily add to a smart home ecosystem like Apple HomeKit.

Undoubtedly one of my favorite reasons to pick up Arlo’s Essential Camera lineup is its smart home integration. While many smart home products focus mainly on Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant, I like knowing that Apple HomeKit is also available. 

As a dedicated Apple product user, HomeKit would be my smart home format of choice, which can be a limiting factor in some cases. Knowing that Arlo’s product lineup supports this integration helps it jump right to the top of my consideration list for new cameras. 

While I know I need a subscription to take advantage of these features, it’s still comforting to know I have 3 solid options available. Even if you don’t prefer Apple HomeKit like I do, having the ability to use both Alexa and Google continues to make the Arlo a solid contender in the camera space.

Full Product Lineup

Close Up Of Male Courier Delivering Package To House Ringing Front Doorbell
Arlo’s Essential lineup includes a full suite of home security cameras.

Another big factor in my decision to consider purchasing Arlo Essential cameras is its strong product lineup. The knowledge that I can add a video doorbell, an exterior floodlight camera, indoor cameras, and a whole home security system yet again makes Arlo an easy consideration. When I shopped for Ring products for my own home, the biggest factor was that Ring was a one-stop shop. I was able to purchase a full security system including sensors for doors and windows as well as cameras all around the house. 

The reason why this is so great is because it becomes one cost and one installation. During a time when subscription fatigue is real, having just one subscription for all of your cameras is a real benefit. I think I can speak for a lot of people when I say it would get frustrating trying to mix and match brands. Just imagine the difficulty with choosing a eufy Video Doorbell with a Ring security system. This means two apps, two subscriptions, and two headaches.

Easy Installation

Couple adult caucasian man and woman at home connecting setup and install cctv security video surveillance camera monitoring system
One of the best reasons to purchase from Arlo is the easy installation process.

Like others in this space, the Arlo Essential camera lineup is all about easy installation. There is no longer any excuse in my book for these systems to be difficult to install. Instead, installation should be something I can do spur of the moment without any planning. I shouldn’t have to worry about complex wiring or YouTube videos to make sure I don’t trip a breaker. 

What I should be doing is using the Arlo app to guide me through the process step-by-step. By all accounts, this is exactly what the Arlo app does and it streamlines everything for you. Even if you are installing a full home security system, this is a project that shouldn’t take a full day. It likely shouldn’t even take more than an hour at most from start to finish.

Video Quality

Man looking at home security cameras on tablet computer
Whether you go with 2K or 1080p video quality, you will have no problem with video quality.

Ultimately, with any product that focuses on video, video quality has to be top-notch. I know a few Arlo Essential camera owners and they all have great things. Of course, video quality is going to depend on which device you choose, but this is to be expected. For example, Arlo offers a regular video doorbell with 1080p or an Essential product with better than 1080p. Both are good, but it’s no surprise the Essential product is crisper and offers a more detailed picture. 

Across Arlo’s Essential outdoor cameras, you can choose from both 2K and 1080p resolution and I think they are both good. What makes video quality an easy recommendation for Arlo Essential is that the entire lineup offers both 2K and HD options. This means you can choose to save a little with 1080p or spend a little more for 2K. I think security cameras are an investment so 2K is worth the additional cost.

Wireless Design

security-camera
Not having to worry about complex wiring, wireless security cameras are a great choice.

As I hinted at above with an easy installation, I appreciate having a wireless design with Arlo Essential camera products. While this does mean you will need to be attentive to battery life after years of use, you don’t have to worry about a wired setup. Of course, you need a strong wireless Wi-Fi signal for your home to work well but assuming you have this, the wireless design is great.

Better yet, Arlo claims that its newest Essential cameras have up to 4 times better battery life than previous products. This makes it even easier to go wireless and not worry about battery life.

Object Detection

doorbell camera man stealing package
The Arlo Essential camera system easily detects between people and animals.

My first jump into the smart home world was with a video doorbell camera, something I still own today. However, I fully admit my Ring Video Doorbell 2 is somewhat lacking in the feature department. When I compare it against the Arlo Essential video doorbell, having object detection sounds awesome. This isn’t to say that my Ring can’t tell the difference between an animal and a person, but sometimes I wonder if it does. 

In the case of the Arlo Essential video doorbell, one of its biggest selling points is object detection. This means it can quickly tell the difference between a person, package, vehicle, or animal. With rare exceptions, I’m not super worried about animal notifications, but the other three categories are great to have. Even though I could reduce unwanted notifications based on Arlo’s activity zones, I still like to know what, if anything, is approaching my door.

Subscription Options

Arlo Essential Camera
While not the least expensive subscription, Arlo offers three great choices for its customers.

I’m fortunate to be grandfathered into my plan for Ring, which is relatively inexpensive for a full-home security system. However, I’m interested in the subscription plan Arlo has to offer. Between its three different plans, Arlo has something for everyone. Each plan offers a full set of features with the next most expensive offering more. 

Arlo considers its mid-tier plan, Secure Plus, to be its best option with an annual cost breaking down to $14.99 a month. With this plan, you get just about everything you need for use with home security cameras. Unless you want the full home security system with sensors for windows and doors, this plan works well. 

You can jump up to $20.83 a month to add in 24/7 professional monitoring. While it is approximately $50 more per year than Ring, you do get some additional features. Safety checks like Family Check-Ins and Family Safety Monitoring are well worth the additional yearly cost.

Smartphone App

Man monitoring modern cameras on smartphone indoors, closeup. Home security system
The Arlo Essentials smartphone app is incredibly easy to use with great camera views.

I can unequivocally say that I do not know the last time I touched my alarm’s physical number pad. Instead, I do everything on the smartphone app. Fortunately, Arlo has an arguably better app than Ring that combines all of your Essential cameras into one app. 

With just one tap, you can see all of your cameras instantly, sound an alarm, alert emergency services, and more. I love the ability to monitor my home when I’m down the block or when I’m out of the country. I’ve definitely looked up my home while I’m on a cruise or 7 states away. 

It’s so great to have this option and it works even better when you have a strong app available. I’ve experienced too many camera apps that are not nearly as intuitive as Ring or Arlo.

Reasons I Would Buy an Arlo Essential Camera Summary

RankReasonDescription
#1Smart Home Integration One of the best reasons to buy Arlo Essential cameras is smart home integration. 
#2Full Product LineupArlo has a great lineup of indoor and outdoor cameras plus video doorbells. 
#3Easy InstallationBeing able to install the Arlo Essential camera system in minutes is a big positive. 
#4Video QualityWith an option between 2K or 1080p quality, you can choose between quality or savings. 
#5Wireless DesignHaving a fully wireless system means not worrying about complex cable setups. 
#6Object DetectionObject detection helps Arlo Essential cameras tell the difference between people and animals. 
#7Subscription OptionsThree subscription options help make it easy to keep monthly pricing under control. 
#8Smartphone AppArlo’s smartphone app is very intuitive and easy to use. 
Best for Smart Home Integration
Arlo Essential Indoor 2K Security Camera
$59.99
  • Also use as a baby or pet monitor
  • Simple DIY setup
  • 2K Video
  • Receive notifications on your phone
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
03/10/2024 10:41 am GMT

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the number one reason to buy an Arlo Essential Camera?

The number one reason to buy an Arlo Essential camera is how well it integrates with Apple HomeKit, Alexa, Google Assistant, and Samsung SmartThings. 

Does Arlo make Essential cameras for both indoor and outdoor use?

Yes, Arlo makes its Essential cameras for both indoor and outdoor use. 

How does the Arlo subscription compare to Ring?

Arlo’s subscription is a bit more expensive than that of Ring, but with its various family services, Arlo can justify the cost. 

What is the Family Check-In System with Arlo?

This service as part of the Arlo subscription allows you to immediately locate any family members included in the smartphone app. 

Does Arlo provide a whole home security system?

Yes, you can purchase a whole home security system for Arlo including sensors for doors and windows. 

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