Wire-Free Security Camera
Following on from the original Arlo and Arlo Q offerings, the NETGEAR Arlo product has now reached its third generation with the Arlo Pro. For those not familiar with the Arlo family, this product range offers HD security camera facilities. In the case of the Arlo Pro, the product combines indoor / outdoor, 100% wire-free connectivity with 2-way audio capability.
I have had the opportunity to check out the basic VMS4130 model of the product. Central to the product is the wire-free HD camera which is decked out in Apple White. Providing the power to drive the camera is a rechargeable battery pack. This battery pack can be charged while in situ within the body of the camera. The actual connection for this is concealed behind a flap on the camera unit.
A second charging lead is provided for use with the base station module which links to the network router via a supplied Ethernet lead. Also included are a wall-mount, screws and a Quick Start Guide booklet. I was slightly disappointed to observe that, despite the attempt at an overall co-ordinated colour scheme for this home security system, the lead and connecting power plug for the base station was a matte black as opposed to the overall Apple White adopted by the other elements. While hardly a major fault, the mixed colour scheme it did offend my sensibilities a little.
The Apple White base station, with dimensions of 58.6 x 174.5 x 126.5 mm, can be positioned free-standing within reasonable reach of a power-source and a router connection. A series of connection options run along the rear of the station unit. Along with an on/off button, there are connections for mains power, Ethernet and two USB ports for adding local storage capacity. If necessary, formatting of these USB devices will be carried out. Three LED lights on the front of the base station provide colour feedback as to issues that might be affecting power, Internet and camera status.
As usual with such a device, you will need to download and install the relevant app to control the hardware while providing a window on to its view of the world. This app is basically the same one used by the earlier Arlo devices although it has been recently updated and will link to any previous Arlo account that you may have set up. The app, along with the Quick Start Guide booklet, will lead you through the different steps required to set up the kit.
While everything seemed to go smoothly, and I could switch between section in the app for Mode, Devices and Library plus make adjustments to various settings, I was unable to view content from the HD camera on my mobile device. This was despite content being captured. I knew that the content was being captured because my email inbox was being inundated with messages regarding numerous warnings as movement was being detected by the camera sitting in front of me.
Downloading a PDF version of the product’s User Manual confirmed that I should be able to view live content but did not really suggest a possible solution to my problem. It took at least three attempts to sync the camera with the base station and a firmware update before the Live view screen made an appearance on my mobile device.
The Live view of activity within the area under observation, which can be exactly positioned using a view delivered by the app, is overlaid with icons for activating certain tasks. You can capture still images or video clips plus make adjustments to the video, in either landscape or portrait mode with acceptable night vision, and two-way audio settings plus check out a motion detection test. You can also turn on remotely an ear-assaulting siren that delivers a 100+ decibel outburst of highly unpleasant audio blast that is bound to upset anybody, including innocent victims, in range. Captured video and still images can be stored and reviewed on the locally attached USB devices or by making use of the free seven days of CLOUD storage that forms part of the basic package.
Apart from the initial problems I encountered when trying to sync the HD camera with the base station, I was happy with the performance and quality of the content delivered by this kit. Pricewise it is not the cheapest offering but you do get the seven days of free CLOUD storage and the option for local storage. NETGEAR has also developed a range of add-ons including skins and additional cameras plus kits with multiple cameras. As reviewed this product is currently available from Amazon.co.uk priced at £299.99.
|HD Video||H.264 format|
|Field of View||130 degree|
|Audio||Speaker & microphone|
|Night vision||Up to 25 feet|
|Motion detection||Up to 23 feet|
|Warnings||Automatic email & push notification|
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