Arlo Ultra 4K Pulled from Stores After Performance Issues

After a few performance issues, the Arlo Ultra 4K camera is no longer available from Best Buy or Amazon. In early January 2019, the Arlo Ultra was named as an honoree at CES 2019’s Innovation Awards before it was released to the public later that month. However, after numerous customer complaints, Arlo was forced to release several firmware updates before completely removing the camera from public sale. 

arlo-ultra-4k-camera-review
Arlo Ultra 4K Camera

One of the Arlo Ultra’s main draws, its 4K resolution, did not work for many customers. 4K means that the image will have twice as many pixels as it would in 1080p HD, the industry standard. However, most smartphones do not support 4K resolution, which takes 3840 by 1920 pixels. The iPhone XR, Apple’s most recent iteration of their flagship smartphone, can only handle 1792 by 828 pixels, so users are unlikely to see a major difference. On 4K-capable devices, many found that their footage was not shot in 4K, even when it was on the proper setting. Moreover, many customers complained that the Arlo Ultra drained their batteries.

James C., an Arlo Community manager, wrote on the Arlo website’s Support section:

Our product team as well as Best Buy decided to take the product offline to limit the sales to their physical retail channel to take advantage of the expertise of the Best Buy in-store associates as we issued several firmware updates to address some of the unique issues in certain environments,”

On Best Buy, the Arlo Ultra is available for pre-order, but there is no release date announced. On Amazon, a four-camera Arlo Ultra kit is available from Netgear, but Arlo itself has completely removed the Ultra from its offerings.

Before Arlo pulled its product from Best Buy and Amazon, they had performed four firmware updates on the Ultra, dating January 16, 21st, 30, and 31. The updates had addressed issues like video corruption, image quality, camera timeout issues, charge voltage, and audio improvements for library clips. It remains to be seen when the Arlo Ultra will be available for an extended period.

This is not the first time that Arlo has experienced performance issues on its devices. In May 2018, the Arlo app faced a DNS issue, causing the app to crash . Last December, Netgear had to recall some of their Arlo camera power adapters after they were deemed a fire hazard. More on this story as it develops.

Aliza Vigderman

Aliza Vigderman

Aliza is a journalist living in Brooklyn, New York. Throughout her career, her work has spanned many intersections within the tech industry. At SquareFoot, a New York-based real estate technology company, she wrote about the ways in which technology has changed the real estate industry, as well as the challenges that business owners face when they want to invest in property. At Degreed.com, an education technology website, Aliza created digital content for lifelong learners, exploring the ways in which technology has democratized education. Additionally, she has written articles for The Huffington Post as well as her own content on Medium, the online publishing platform. Aliza’s love of journalism and research stems from the excellent Journalism program at Brandeis University. At Brandeis, Aliza interned as a research assistant at the Schuster Institute for Investigative Journalism, a non-profit “news room without walls”. There, Aliza was paired with an investigative journalist and used academic databases to obtain data on everything from the suicide rates in Bhutan to local Boston court cases. Her last position was as an account executive at Yelp, educating business owners on the power of technology to increase revenue. Throughout, however, her heart remained with tech journalism, and she’s thrilled to be writing for Security Baron. When she’s not keeping afloat of the latest tech trends, Aliza likes to cook, read, and write. A former high school “Class Clown,” Aliza has completed two feature-length screenplays, a pilot, and countless comedic sketches. On her days off you can find her relaxing in Prospect Park, trying the latest flavors at Ample Hills Ice Cream, and spending time with friends and family.

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