- Video & Voice
- Ease of Use
- Design & Quality
Arlo stepped up their game with the new Arlo Q indoor camera. 1080p HD live streaming video lets you view your house with crystal clear clarity. Optional continuous video recording is also available via the cloud. Smart alerts and night vision work impressively. Overall, the Arlo Q security camera outperforms most other home security cameras and really competes with the infamous Nest Cam.
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In this review we will give you everything you need to know about Netgear’s Arlo Q smart camera including specs, unboxing pictures, and a full hands-on test.
Netgear took the home security industry by storm with the Arlo Smart Home Security system – the first 100% wire-free security camera. In fact, we reviewed the Arlo camera earlier this year and it’s currently rated as one of our best pet cameras. So let’s see how the Arlo Q camera compares.
Netgear Arlo Q Review
The biggest question you’re probably asking is: what’s different from the original Arlo camera? At first glance it may look like they only upgraded the resolution from 720p to 1080p (hey, we’ll take that) and changed the design – however there’s quite a bit more. There are two major new enhancements to the Arlo Q that sets it apart from the original Arlo, and in the same realm of Nest and Dropcam: continuous recording and two-way audio. We’ll get into both of these in detail in addition to the design and overall functionality of the camera.
Design and Unboxing
Netgear’s take on an indoor security camera certainly pleases the eye. The square (or diamond?) head swivels on the base of the camera, which can either act as a stand or wall mount. The white color definitely shimmers and looks elegant; however, sometimes you want cameras to remain hidden. A single LED light is on the front of the camera, below the lens, to let you know the connection status. On the back, you will find a micro USB power adapter and a Sync button.
That’s right, no more relying on motion activity. Since the Arlo Q uses an AC power supply instead of batteries, it’s able to use continuous video recording right to the cloud. Arlo does include free cloud recording (up to 7 days history) however there is a cap on it. So if you were to use 5 of these Arlo Q cameras (the max the system allows), then you wouldn’t be able to use continuous recording without paying for a larger cloud storage plan. This can get pricey, and is the one and only downfall of this camera. However, if you plan on using one camera for continuous recording, or if you planned on using more cameras but only use the motion activity recording, then the free cloud storage should suffice. I’ve been using two Arlo cameras with motion activity recording and don’t even come close to the limit of my free plan.
Two Way Audio
Similar to the Nest and other top of the line cameras, Arlo Q now supports two-way voice communication. In other words, now you can check in on your dog while you’re at the office and yell at him when he’s chewing the couch. Technology!
In addition to speaking into the camera while you’re away, the Arlo Q will actually notify you if sound is detected. Obvious reasons this is ideal: robbery, fire alarm, child sneaking out at night, etc.
Video Quality and Resolution
As we stated earlier, the Arlo Q received a much necessary upgrade to 1080p HD live video streaming, easily one of the most important factors when shopping for a new camera. Because of the increase in video quality, the night vision is also more impressive. Check out the short video below to see the quality while connected to Wi-Fi.
Activity Zones and Motion Detection
Netgear upgraded the motion detection system to include “activity zones”. You can basically target specific areas within the camera’s viewpoint to monitor motion. This is a pretty cool feature for increasing the performance of motion detection.
Netgear recently announced Arlo’s integration with IFTTT (If This Then That). IFTTT is a free cloud-based service that helps you connect smart home devices to one another to make them…even smarter. After reviewing the original Arlo earlier in the year, we were immediately fans. However now, with IFTTT integration, we can honestly say Arlo is our top pick for overall home security solutions. There is so much flexibility and countless combinations of devices to integrate with. Here is my current setup for testing out Arlo’s IFTTT functionality:
- Arlo Smart Camera (wire-free) – Outside, back door and front door
- Arlo Q – Indoors, pointed at living room and main entry way
- Phillips Hue Smart Lights
- Chamberlain MyQ Garage Door Opener
So, you’re probably wondering how some of these can work together. I’ll dive into each piece in detail – it seems complex, but setting it up really wasn’t too bad.
My indoor lights (Phillips Hue) will automatically turn on if the Arlo Smart Camera (outside) detects motion after 9pm. Why is this good? If someone were trying to break in from our backdoor, the lights inside would immediately turn on, likely deterring a robber. In addition, the Arlo Q will begin recording whenever the outdoor Arlo detects motion. If someone were to make their way in, the camera would already be recording their actions.
I also have an Arlo Smart Camera pointed at out front door. In the past, whenever I entered or left the driveway, the Arlo camera would be triggered and start recording. However, I now synced my Chamerlain MyQ Garage Door Opener to Arlo so it will not record when the garage door opens. Now, when I leave the house, the garage door will tell Arlo not to record for a set amount of time (30 seconds in this case). This prevents using up cloud storage and false motion detection notifications when you do not want them.
Arlo Q App
The Arlo Q smartphone app is available for both iOS and Android devices. The great thing about Arlo’s app is that you can use both Arlo camera models with the same app. Meaning, you can have Arlo Smart Cameras outdoors and use the Arlo Q indoors while seeing everything from the same app.
Within the app, you can do everything from viewing live video, recording video, taking snapshots, viewing cloud recordings, and more.
Netgear Arlo Q Technical Specs
A lot of the specs on the Arlo Q were upgraded from the original Arlo Smart Cam, including video resolution and two way communication. With the improvements of the new design, the Arlo Q is a true competitor to Nest and Dropcam. In my opinion, we may see the Arlo Q as the next leader in residential HD security cameras and pet cams.
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|AC Powered (no batteries)
Netgear Arlo Q Release Date
The Arlo Q release date was January 29, 2016 and is currently available for sale on Amazon.
Overall, Netgear really stepped up their security camera game with the Arlo Q security system and created a top competitor to Nest. We strongly recommend both the Arlo Smart Camera (for outdoor use) and the Arlo Q camera (for indoor use). Simple setups and reliable performance make this one of our best pet cameras.