Arlo Go 2 Wireless Home Security Camera Review
This article was first published on thebit.nz.
The Arlo Go 2 is Arlo’s second attempt at an LTE (mobile data, not Wi-Fi) home security camera, bringing some welcome improvements over the original Arlo Go.
The Go 2 has a more functional design and more features you want, like two-way talk, a built-in spotlight, siren, and 1080p recording. More importantly, it doesn’t rely solely on a cellular connection. It is also compatible with wi-fi.
At $489, it’s a reasonable price; however, you’ll need an Arlo Secure subscription to actually use the Go 2. Arlo’s free tier lacks crucial features, which makes the Go 2 an expensive purchase. If you’re looking for a home security camera for an area without Wi-Fi, you can’t beat the Arlo Go 2 when it comes to performance. Expect to pay for it. Each month.
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- Wi-Fi and LTE connectivity
- Easy to configure
- Long battery life
- Built-in projector/color vision
- To get the most out of it, you’ll need an Arlo Secure subscription.
The Arlo Go 2 costs $489. This is a competitive price for a cellular compatible security camera.
The Reolink Go costs $448.
The Arlo Go 2 adopted a similar design to other Arlo cameras like the Ultra or the Pro. Instead of the pyramid shape of its predecessor, the Go 2 has a more expansive cylindrical design that makes it much easier to position.
It’s big, though. About 3cm longer than the Arlo Ultra 2, it’s not quite as subtle. This is due to the large replaceable battery inside, so I was ok with that.
Unlike the newer Arlo cameras, there’s no magnetic mount here. The Go 2 comes with a mount that screws onto the back of the camera. I preferred that. I found it easier to position, especially on hard angles. Additionally, the screw system makes it harder for a villain to quickly remove the camera from the mount as they could with the magnetic connection.
This is a wireless security camera, but to charge it you will need to connect via the magnetic port on the bottom of the camera. This port also connects accessories like a solar charger ($166).
The Go 2 is weatherproof, so you don’t have to worry about it being outside. It comes with a built-in spotlight and built-in GPS. Like “find my phone”, you will be able to “find your camera” if someone takes the device. You will, however, need an Arlo Secure subscription for this feature (more on this below).
The most interesting feature of the Go 2 is its compatibility with LTE networks. This is ideal if you are looking to place the camera in an area without wi-fi.
It’s the same as the original Arlo Go; However, the Go 2 is now also Wi-Fi compatible. It will prioritize a Wi-Fi connection over 4G and seamlessly switch between the two. If you have the Go 2 on your motorhome and you’re parked at home, it will use your home Wi-Fi. But if you are traveling, it will switch to LTE network. It works well.
It’s worth remembering that 4G does cost though. You will need to activate a SIM card with your chosen telecom provider to set up the LTE connection. To do this, you will need to install it on your phone, activate it, and then insert it into the camera.
Data prices vary depending on your provider and you will need to top up the SIM card with data to use 4G connectivity. For me it was easy. I could recharge with the 2Degrees app without having to put the SIM card back in my phone. I imagine the process will be similar with other telecom providers.
The Go 2 records in Full HD 1080p definition. It’s not quite the 4K capabilities of high-end home security cameras, but it gets the job done. It also supports color night vision. This will brighten up video recording in low light situations, and together with the built-in spotlight, the Go 2 is a solid nighttime security camera.
The Go 2 supports two-way talk functionality, so you can talk to someone through the camera, and it also has a built-in siren for those situations where you want to scare off intruders.
Setup and application
Setting up the Arlo Go 2 is simple. The app will tell you everything you need to know.
Using the app is also simple. You can watch a live stream of the camera feed, access notifications, check your camera’s battery, and more. Everything works as it should.
To unlock the app’s advanced features, however, you’ll need an Arlo Secure subscription.
There are three Arlo subscription tiers: “No Plan,” which is free, “Arlo Secure,” which costs $5 per month for a single camera, or $15 per month for unlimited cameras. And “Arlo Secure Plus,” which costs $24 per month for unlimited cameras.
You need at least an Arlo Secure subscription to get the most out of the Arlo Go 2. Compared to other home security cameras, like the Google NestArlo’s free tier is lacking.
It only comes with two features: watching your camera’s live feed and receiving motion notifications. There are no event records here. This means that if you capture footage of an intruder or incident, you will not have access to the footage. Google’s free tier comes with a 3 hour video history where you have three hours to download and save the footage. It’s a much better deal.
The Go 2 comes with a MicroSD slot for local storage; however, local storage alone cannot be used as a substitute for cloud recording. Basically, it’s there in case the camera loses connection to the cloud. It’s disappointing. This requires you to purchase an Arlo subscription.
With Arlo Secure, you get essential features like Activity Zones, which you can configure so the camera alerts you where it detects motion. Advanced object detection where the camera differentiates between a car, human, animal or package and most importantly, 30 days of video history in up to 2K resolution, which is stored on the cloud, to which you can access.
The only difference between Arlo Secure and Arlo Secure Plus is that the latter lets you watch your recorded videos in up to 4K. This is only relevant if you have an Arlo camera that can record in 4K, so it’s kind of useless for the Arlo Go 2.
The Arlo Go 2 battery varies depending on the amount of recording or its activity. You can expect 2-3 months of battery life with average usage, where average means around five minutes recording per day. Anything more than that and battery life will decrease.
We found that the battery was also affected by mobile signal strength. If the signal was bad, the battery wouldn’t last as long. It was still a decent amount, just a little less than Arlo claimed.
I was ok with the 2-3 month battery. I received a notification when the battery was low, which allowed me to take the camera home and charge it. This posed a problem, however, because while I was charging the camera, I had no longer set it to record. However, it only took 2-3 hours to charge, which is fair trade for its 2-3 month lifespan.
The Arlo Go 2 is the best 4G LTE home security camera on the market.
Installing a security camera in an area without Wi-Fi access is extremely beneficial. And even better, the Go 2 is this time compatible with wi-fi connections.
It will seamlessly switch between an LTE connection and a WiFi connection, so you don’t have to spend money on data when the camera is at home.
The Go 2 comes with all the features you need in a home security camera. It records at 1080p, has a built-in projector, is easy to set up and has a long battery life. Unfortunately, you’ll need to subscribe to Arlo Secure if you want to get the most out of the device.
Arlo’s free subscription tier is still lacking, it doesn’t offer as much as the competition, and most importantly, it doesn’t have event history storage. $489 for the Arlo Go 2 is a fair price; however, an extra $5 per month or $15 per month (depending on how many cameras you have) to get meaningful camera usage adds up quickly.
The Arlo Go 2 is a very good cellular home security camera, but Arlo’s subscription model lets it down.