Arlo Technologies today announced its new Arlo Ultra 4K wire-free HDR security camera and Arlo Security System, the latter of which is being billed as a comprehensive security solution for the home or business.
The HomeKit-compatible Arlo Ultra 4K HDR video camera features both color and black and white night vision via an LED integrated spotlight, a 180-degree panoramic field-of-view lens, and two-way audio with advanced noise cancelation.
The Arlo Ultra ships with the Arlo SmartHub, which will also become Zigbee and Z-Wave compatible in the second half of 2019, allowing users to control a wide range of "Works with Arlo" certified third-party smart home devices via the Arlo app.
As part of the Arlo ecosystem, the SmartHub will also support the newly announced Arlo Security System, which consists of the Arlo Multi-Sensor, Arlo Siren and Arlo Remote, to form a comprehensive security solution.
The Arlo Multi-Sensor detects windows and doors opening and closing, motion, smoke and carbon monoxide alarms, water leaks, temperature changes and more.
The battery-operated Arlo Siren features a loud siren accompanied by a red strobe light to deter intruders. Users can also enable presence simulation to emit audio sounds, such as dog barking or TV audio. In addition, a built-in melody can be activated to notify users of specific events, such as the Multi-Sensor detecting a door opening.
Meanwhile, the Arlo Remote lets owners arm and disarm the system without using the Arlo mobile app. It also features two customizable buttons that can be programed to perform specific actions, such as turning on compatible third-party lights or activating the Arlo Siren in a panic situation.
Pricing starts at $399.99 for the Arlo Ultra single-camera system, which is available now and includes a one-year subscription to Arlo's Smart Premier 30-day video history cloud storage plan. The Arlo Security System will be available in the second half of 2019.
Arlo says that support for Apple HomeKit will be available as an automatic firmware update for Arlo Ultra and Pro 2 camera systems later this quarter.
Top Rated Comments
It’s funny, yesterday I had a pissing match with a dude on 9to5mac over the newly announced Netatmo doorbell compatible with HomeKit. That device doesn’t offer any cloud storage for video; instead it can save video to either Dropbox or FTP server. So, the dude was all pissy about it and basically had your attitude in reverse. No way in hell unless there’s a paid-for cloud-storage option.
To me, the optimal solution would be to have the Dropbox, FTP, and paid-for cloud offering. There are plusses and minuses of each, but why not have all these options? Additionally, if the camera becomes HomeKit compatible, why doesn't Apple allow us to use our paid-for iCloud storage subscription (I pay for 2 TB of iCloud storage but use only about 500 GB) for storing video footage?
I like the idea of the 4K HDR camera with two-way audio that provides the 180-degree field of view because it can serve close-by images directly from outside the front door as well as the images from farther away at the road in front of the house. That’s where the 4K resolution comes in handy.
The Netatmo doorbell will be useful for the close-up images from outside the front door, as the 1080p resolution is not high enough to see the detail of car license plates or people’s facial features while they pass in front of the house along the road.
Do the math: Most of these wifi cameras have 130deg field of view. At 1920 pixels horizontally, it is .067deg/pixel of view. US license plates are 12in wide. Let's get out our handy-dandy trig and solve some triangles:
At 10ft away, 1 pixel will cover ~1/8in. A license plate will be ~96 pixels wide on the image.
At 20ft away, 1 pixel will cover ~1/4in. A license plate will be ~48 pixels wide on the image.
At 30ft away, 1 pixel will cover almost 1/2in. A license plate will be ~24 pixels wide on the image.
At ~70ft away, 1 pixel will cover 1in. A license plate will be ~12 pixels wide on the image.
Just looking at those numbers, I'm not surprised license plates are illegible and faces are too blurry. This is why everything always looks tiny and far away on a these security cameras - the field of view is so wide that as soon as you get even a little bit of distance from the camera an entire person fits into a teeny-tiny portion of the screen.
We can up the resolution, but that in my opinion is not very efficient. It increases bandwidth use, and increases cost (more expensive sensor, requires more powerful microprocessor for encoding, etc.).
Merely changing the lense would really improve those numbers though as well:
A 90deg field of view lense, at 1920 pixels horizontally, would yield 0.045deg/pixel.
[INDENT]At 30ft away, 1 pixel would cover ~1/4in - a big improvement to the above.
A 70deg field of view lense, at 1920 horizontal, would yield 0.036def/pixel.
At 30ft away, 1 pixel would cover .2" - an even better improvement to the above.[/INDENT]
It would be far easier to give users replaceable cameras. Hallways, driveways, cameras facing an entryway are examples of cameras that don't need to be wide angle. A 90deg field of view in the corner of a room is enough to cover that room - there really isn't anything better about seeing wider. The super wide views are really only good for covering wide outdoor areas like an entire front yard with one camera.
Some video baby monitors come with 3 lense options - a standard 90deg view, a 130deg wide angle view, and a zoomed 70deg angle view. Arlo should do the same.
I wish I could tell you - I don't use any features other than manually turning it on to go see the weather conditions at a vacation house. Honestly, I use it as little as possible as the batteries only seem to last a few months in the cold winter.
I'd love to upgrade to a built in rechargeable, but again, am totally turned off by the pricing.
Mine have been sort of flaky overall - IR filter gets stuck all the time (has for years) and video in daylight is usually "pink"...
Also sometimes they just lose connection with the base station. They come back after a while, but I've never been able to figure out why they sometimes just won't connect. I've tested even when there and it's all local - not an Internet issue or anything. Weird. At least it "fixes itself" though.
My setup "works"...but I think they charge way too much for what one is getting.