Anyone who knows me knows that I’m obsessed with security cameras, and Arlo is one of my favorite brands. In the past, I’ve reviewed the Arlo Pro 2 and the Arlo Q, but I wanted to see if Arlo had a smart doorbell to go along with my cameras. That’s when I found the Arlo Audio Doorbell. You can either use it on its own, or pair it with the Arlo, Arlo Pro, or Arlo Pro 2 (unfortunately the Arlo Q does not pair with this audio doorbell). When I got the box in the mail, I was super excited to finally see how it all worked.
In this review of the Arlo Audio Doorbell, I’ll discuss its design and features, how well it works, how easy it was to install, and finally, the Arlo app. Then I’ll recap everything and help you decide if the Arlo Audio Doorbell is right for you. Let’s get started!
Design of the Arlo Audio Doorbell
The Arlo Audio Doorbell works in temperatures from four to 113 degrees Fahrenheit, which is hopefully enough of a range for you (and if it isn’t, then I’m sorry you live in a place with such extreme temperatures). You should only have to change the two AA batteries about once a year. The doorbell will record either when it detects motion or when someone presses it– it’s up to you.
Features of the Arlo Audio Doorbell
Let me make one thing clear- the Arlo Audio Doorbell does not come with a camera. You’ll only be able to speak to your visitors through two-way audio. However, I do recommend pairing either the Arlo, Arlo Pro, or Arlo Pro 2 with your audio doorbell for that added protection.
I’m going to talk about the Arlo Pro 2, one of my favorite indoor/ outdoor cameras, before focusing on the audio doorbell itself.
The Arlo Pro 2 has fantastic video quality- 1080p HD display, a field of view of 130 degrees, and the ability to zoom in eight times. If you do have an intrusion, you’re going to want clear footage of the perp (assuming he enters through your main door). The Arlo Pro 2’s video quality will be great help in identifying your guy, much better than the Arlo Audio Doorbell on its own.
Like the Arlo Audio Doorbell itself, the Arlo Pro 2 has two-way audio enabling you to speak to your visitor. Obviously, this is a redundancy, but it’s also no skin off your back either way.
The Arlo Pro 2 disappoints when it comes to night vision. Although it has infrared night vision, much preferred over a conspicuous bright white light, the LEDS are not strong enough to make a clear picture. While Arlo claims that the night vision works for up to 25 feet, I found that things got blurry at about five feet.
To store footage from both your Arlo Audio Doorbell and your Arlo Pro 2, you can use seven days of free cloud storage. Unfortunately, local storage is not available, so you won’t be able to backup your files to a hard drive.
Smart Home Platform
The Arlo Pro 2 integrates with Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, IFTTT, and Stringify, so you’ll be able to vocally command it. I love that the camera works with both Google and Amazon ecosystems- this is the solidarity we need in the world!
Unfortunately, the Arlo Pro 2 does not include any artificial intelligence features, but you can purchase person detection through Arlo Smart Home. Along with person detection, you’ll receive activity zones, a 911 button, better notifications, and an 100+ decibel siren, among others.
Person detection means that you won’t receive notifications from moving objects like animals, cars, or shadows- only people. It’ll only give you the notifications that matter, and will even show footage from your camera on your phone’s lock screen. This makes tracking your home’s security easier than ever.
In the same vein, activity zones allow you to mark specific areas of importance for the camera to focus on. It could be anything from a window to your mailbox, depending on what your camera captures. Activity zones lead to even more specific notifications, as you camera can tell you that a person is climbing through your front window (god forbid).
Finally, the 911 button in your Arlo app allows you to contact emergency services without having to make a phone call. It’s easy to see how this could come in handy in a hostage situation, or anytime you want to remain inconspicuous.
Arlo Smart Home starts at $2.99 per camera per month, or $9.99 for up to 10 cameras. They even offer a free one-month trial, so you can see for yourself if it’s worth it. Personally, I think the person detection alone makes it worth investing in.
Want to learn more? Read our full review of the Arlo Pro 2.
Okay, back to the Arlo Audio Doorbell. What happens if someone comes to your door when you’re not home? If you have a camera, they can leave a message. You can even set the camera up like an answering machine and use pre-recorded messages to greet your guests. Think of it as a voicemail within a doorbell.
If you prefer calls to mobile notifications, you’re in luck. You can receive calls when someone’s at your door, and you can even receive notifications when someone else accepts the call. You can also silence the doorbell if you prefer.
Installing the Arlo Audio Doorbell
To install your Arlo Audio Doorbell, you’ll need to have an Arlo base station at the least, along with iOS 10+ or Android 6+. You can install it yourself along with your camera, should you choose to purchase one.
The Arlo App
For the guy or gal on the go, there’s the Arlo app. This is where you can control your Arlo Audio Doorbell, along with any coordinating cameras. Let’s see what you can do on the app and how customers feel about it.
Through the Arlo app, you can monitor the settings of your devices, communicate with visitors through two-way audio, and turn devices on and off.
In general, customers like the Arlo app. It has a four star rating on the Google Play store and a 3.9 star rating on the Apple Store– not too shabby!
“Although there are some temporary glitches every several months which require in-person access to the system, it is very stable and reliable in-between the glitches. And, again, we would definitely recommend buying this system and using this app,”
wrote an Arlo customer in a three-star review.
Recap of the Arlo Audio Doorbell
Is the Arlo Audio Doorbell your perfect match? We’ll start with its positives, which include:
- Two-way audio
- Ability for visitors to leave messages to a pre-recorded voicemail
- Option to silence the doorbell
- Long battery life
- Cellular backup
- DIY installation
- App with great customer reviews
- Free cloud storage for up to seven days
However, the Arlo Audio doorbell is not without its negatives, such as:
- No video camera included
- Need to have an Arlo base station to install the Arlo Audio Doorbell
- Coordinating cameras have disappointing night vision
- No local storage
- No artificial intelligence features included with coordinating cameras
At only $59.99 on Amazon Prime, the Arlo Audio Doorbell is definitely one of the more affordable doorbells we’ve seen, but this is primarily because it doesn’t come with a camera. If a camera isn’t important to you or you already have the Arlo, Arlo Pro, or Arlo Pro 2, this is a great option. However, if you’re looking for a doorbell with a camera built-in, I would look elsewhere.
Hopefully this review helped you come to a buying decision. If you have any lingering questions or comments, please leave them below! We’re excited to hear form you.