Arlo Ultra review: This very expensive security camera delivers super-sharp 4k video

    After producing a string of profitable safety cameras—together with a few of our prime picks—Netgear spun Arlo Technologies off as an unbiased, publicly traded firm in 2018. But Arlo’s new flagship product—the indoor/out of doors 4K Arlo Ultra—had a tough launch. The firm pulled the high-res security camera from Best Buy cabinets for a time and delayed its common launch after a sequence of firmware updates did not resolve a raft of buyer complaints.

    Based on my time with the Arlo Ultra, it will appear that Arlo has resolved essentially the most generally registered issues: inconsistent wi-fi connectivity, quick battery life, and an lack of ability to stream 4K video. None of these points surfaced whereas I used to be evaluating the digicam. As such, the Arlo Ultra is one other sturdy safety digicam from a model that has topped itself with every new product introduction.

    For this assessment, Arlo despatched a $400 package with one Arlo Ultra and the required Arlo SmartHub. Each extra Arlo Ultra prices $300 (you should buy the digicam by itself as an add-on, nevertheless it gained’t perform if it might’t connect with the SmartHub). If you already know you need a couple of digicam from the get-go, it can save you slightly money by shopping for a multi-camera package: A two-camera package deal with the hub is priced at $600, the three-camera bundle goes for $800, and there’s a four-camera pack with hub for $1,000.

    Arlo Ultra design and have set

    The Arlo Ultra streamlines the pod design that goes all the best way again to the Arlo HD we reviewed in late 2015. The white, branded physique and black digicam face are nonetheless the primary design cues, however the Ultra feels considerably heftier than the Arlo HD or the Arlo Pro and Arlo Pro 2.


    The weather-resistant Ultra attaches to a magnetic mount for simple set up.

    The Arlo Ultra gives a bunch of first-time options for the Arlo digicam line: 4K video with HDR is essentially the most notable, however this digicam additionally encompasses a 180-degree subject of view, shade night time imaginative and prescient, computerized zooming and monitoring, and an built-in 100-lumen LED highlight. There’s additionally a pair of noise-cancelling microphones and a siren constructed into the digicam. On different Arlo cameras (apart from the Arlo Go, which connects to an LTE community and doesn’t require a base station) the siren is constructed into the bottom station. Finally, the digicam’s mount has been redesigned, and there’s a brand new magnetic charging cable that allows 24/7 steady recording.

    The Arlo Ultra comes with a complimentary one-year subscription to Arlo’s Smart Premier cloud-storage plan—in any other case priced at $10 a month—which helps you to to retailer video from as much as 10 Arlo cameras for 30 days at a stretch. If you continue to need cloud storage when that plan expires, you’ll be able to go for the essential Arlo Smart plan, which offers 30 days of video historical past for a single digicam for $3 per thirty days, or the Arlo Smart Elite plan, which supplies you a 60-day historical past for as much as 20 cameras for $15 per thirty days. The Arlo Ultra may host a microSD reminiscence card (however you’ll want to offer your individual).

    arlo feed full Michael Ansaldo/IDG

    The Arlo Ultra offered a pointy, detailed view of my driveway to watch for late-night “visitors.”

    Arlo Ultra setup and utilization

    Once you join the bottom station to your router with an ethernet cable and swap it on, simply comply with the prompts on the Arlo companion app to finish the setup. The base station does many of the lifting, mechanically discovering and connecting to the digicam. All you’ll must do is insert the battery into the digicam, and title the digicam and base station.

    Once the digicam is linked, you should discover a location with a superb vantage level and a powerful wi-fi sign, after which connect the digicam’s mount with the offered hardware. A single screw is all that’s wanted to affix the mount to a fence or exterior siding, and the digicam attaches magnetically to the mount, so it is a pretty low-labor course of as properly. If you’re not utilizing the continuous-charging cable, Arlo says you’ll be able to anticipate three to 6 months of battery life per cost.

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