I’ve reviewed a lot of security cameras over the years, but I’ve never gotten my hands on an Arlo. When the company offered the Arlo Go 2 for a review, I jumped at the chance. After all, Arlo comes with a stellar reputation and a lot of awesome features, and the Go 2 sets itself apart even further by working off an LTE network instead of just Wi-Fi. That, combined with impressive battery life, makes it ideal for monitoring areas of the home that might not have the greatest connection to the router — a gap that few current cameras address.
That’s its main draw, but the Arlo Go 2 does a lot of other things right. I’ve had it for a few weeks now, and I’m quite impressed with this little camera.
The Arlo Go 2 has a whopping 13,000mAh battery. Arlo says the battery should provide eight months of life if used on Wi-Fi, or about two and a half over LTE. The good news is that it also comes with a charging cable, and it’s easy to snap the camera out of its socket and charge it.
Beyond that, it streams in 1080p, has 12x digital zoom, and has a bright LED spotlight that can illuminate up to 25 feet in the dark. The motion sensors detect movement up to 23 feet away, but motion zones help narrow down those areas.
This is an outdoor camera, after all, so it’s quite weather-resistant through its IP65 rating. With a safe operating range from -4 to 113 Fahrenheit, it’s a tough little camera that will work well in most environments.
A load of features
Something else I noticed about the Arlo Go 2 is that it’s one of the most feature-rich smart cameras I’ve ever used. Not only does it allow me to change the flicker adjustment between 50 and 60Hz (or leave it on Auto), but I can even adjust the LEDs that display on the exterior of the camera. If you’re trying to hide the Arlo from sight, turning off the LEDs will go a long way.
This is good, because it’s not exactly the most nondescript camera; the white oval shape stands out, and the mounting device causes the Arlo to stick out a good way from whatever it’s attached to. A few additional features to help keep it hidden are appreciated.
The real surprise of the Arlo Go 2 is GPS tracking.
There are also built-in utilities to help you best position the camera, as well as a Motion Detection Test that lets you check the range and sensitivity of the sensor. You can adjust the sensitivity during the test to fine-tune your home security.
But the real surprise? GPS location. There’s an option in the Arlo Go 2’s setting menu to turn on GPS tracking for the camera. You can use this to find the camera should it disappear from its mount, or to help you remember where you placed it if the camera is monitoring something in the forest. I didn’t expect to come across this feature, but it’s a welcome addition to the camera that points to the thoughtfulness of the overall design.
Setting customization galore
Another plus for the Arlo Go 2 is just how customizable it is. I can go into the video settings menu and adjust the brightness of the camera display, rotate the image 180 degrees, tweak the low light settings (basically turning the spotlight on or off), and choose how to best utilize the battery life.
I can also adjust the camera’s speaker volume, disable the microphone or speaker, and more. The Arlo Go 2 supports local storage through an onboard SD card, so if you’re worried about cloud privacy concerns, it’s a great way to go.
Of course, you can also set up activity zones to reduce the number of motion alerts and focus them on a specific area.
Combine all of that with an Arlo Secure subscription, and the camera becomes even more powerful. Arlo Secure enables a lot of other features like Smart Notifications, Package Detection, Emergency Response, and Call a Friend.
Smart Notifications are more intelligent motion alerts that allow you to respond easily and quickly to a situation. Package Detection is exactly what it sounds like; the camera will recognize the shape of a delivery and alert you that one has been dropped off.
The Emergency Response feature makes it easy to dispatch fire, police, or medical responders to the user’s location, and the Call a Friend feature lets you dial a friend from the Arlo app — preferably a close friend that lives nearby and can check on your home for you.
Of course, it comes at a cost. Arlo Secure is $10 per month for unlimited cameras or $3 for a single camera. Secure Plus is $15 per month for unlimited cameras, and Safe and Secure Pro is $20 per month. Still, if you’re looking for the best possible security, the Safe and Secure Pro plan comes with a slew of features that make the cost worthwhile.
The Arlo Go 2 is a fantastic security camera, and I can’t help but be impressed with its ability to work over LTE. The ability to place it at the end of a long driveway that’s far out of Wi-Fi range is truly useful. At $250 per camera, it’s not inexpensive — but those that want high-end security cameras could do a lot worse than this.