Arlo Without Subscription: Everything You Need to Know

Arlo security cameras known for their high-quality video and smart features, these cameras have gained a reputation for performance and ease of use. One common question among potential Arlo users is whether you can use Arlo without subscription?

Operating an Arlo camera without a subscription is possible, as all of Arlo’s cameras come with basic functionality. Users can still access live view, two-way audio, and receive push notifications from the Arlo app without a subscription plan. However, to get the most out of their security system, some may consider the optional Secure and Secure Plus plans, which offer additional features such as cloud storage for recordings.

In this article, we will explore the capabilities and limitations of using Arlo cameras without a subscription. Understanding these aspects can help potential users make informed decisions on whether to invest in a subscription plan or opt for the basic features available in a non-subscription setup.

Arlo Cameras without Subscription

Arlo Q and Arlo Q Plus

Both the Arlo Q and Arlo Q Plus are wired security cameras that do not require a subscription. These cameras offer 1080p HD video quality, two-way audio, and have settings for motion detection. They also include free 7-day cloud storage, and Arlo Q Plus has support for PoE (Power over Ethernet) and local SD card storage.

Arlo Baby Camera

The Arlo Baby Camera is a smart baby monitor designed for easy monitoring of your baby. It doesn’t require a subscription and offers HD video quality, two-way audio, lullaby player, and air quality sensor. It also provides night vision and supports local storage on a microSD card.

Arlo Pro 2

Arlo Pro 2 is a wireless security camera system that can function without a subscription. It provides 1080p HD video quality, two-way audio, and weather-resistant design. The Arlo Pro 2 comes with a base station for local storage, supporting USB drives or microSD cards. Please note, without a subscription, certain advanced features may not be available.

Arlo Pro 4

The Arlo Pro 4 camera offers a wireless connectivity setup without needing a subscription. It also supports local storage with a compatible base station (not included). This camera features 2K video resolution, color night vision, and a built-in spotlight for enhanced security.

Arlo Ultra

Arlo Ultra is a high-quality security camera offering 4K HDR video, color night vision, and advanced motion detection. Although it comes with 30 days of free cloud storage, it can be used without a subscription by utilizing local storage on a compatible base station.

Arlo Video Doorbell

The Arlo Video Doorbell is a wired security camera designed for your front door. It doesn’t require a subscription and features 1080p HD video quality, two-way audio, and motion detection. Utilizing a compatible base station will enable local storage for the Arlo Video Doorbell.

Features and Functionality

Motion Detection and Customizable Motion Zones

Arlo cameras come equipped with advanced motion detection capabilities, which allow the devices to detect any movement within their field of view. Users can also create customizable motion zones, specifying areas where they want the camera to focus its attention. This feature helps ensure that you receive relevant notifications and alerts, reducing false alarms.

Two-Way Audio and Siren

Arlo cameras offer two-way audio, which allows you to communicate with anyone near the camera directly from the Arlo app. This feature is particularly useful for communicating with visitors or warding off intruders. Additionally, some Arlo cameras come with a built-in siren that can be triggered remotely or automatically when motion is detected, providing an extra layer of security.

Video Resolution and Recording Options

Depending on the model, Arlo cameras offer various video resolutions, including 2K and 4K. High-resolution video ensures that you can clearly identify individuals and objects in recorded footage. Arlo cameras also support continuous video recording (CVR) and event-triggered recording, which provides flexibility in storing and reviewing footage.

Local Storage and Cloud Storage

You can use Arlo cameras without a subscription, as they offer both local storage options and limited cloud storage. Local storage can be achieved through an Arlo base station or directly on the camera with a microSD card (for certain models). While cloud storage is available with Arlo’s premium subscription plans, basic cloud storage can still be utilized for a limited period without a subscription.

Storage OptionSubscription needed?
Local StorageNo
Cloud StorageLimited

Battery Life and Charging Options

Arlo cameras are designed with long-lasting battery life in mind, ensuring that your security system remains functional for extended periods without the need for constant recharging. Some models come with rechargeable batteries, while others use disposable batteries. Arlo also offers a magnetic charging cable for easy and convenient charging of its rechargeable cameras.

In summary, Arlo cameras offer a wide range of features and functionality without the need for a subscription. These features include motion detection, two-way audio, multiple video resolution options, and a combination of local and cloud storage options. With long-lasting battery life and convenient charging options, Arlo cameras provide an effective and reliable security solution for home and business users alike.

Alternatives to Arlo without Subscription

Eufy Security Cameras

Eufy offers a range of security cameras that come with no monthly fees or subscription charges. They provide local storage and don’t require any additional costs for accessing recorded footage. Eufy’s security camera lineup includes:

  • EufyCam 2C: A battery-powered, weather-resistant camera with 180 days of battery life.
  • EufyCam 2 Pro: Offering 2K resolution, this camera also boasts night vision capabilities and has a 365-day battery life.
  • Eufy Indoor Cam 2K: A budget-friendly, plug-in indoor camera with AI-powered human and pet detection.

Eufy security cameras offer several useful features such as:

  • Customizable motion detection zones
  • 2-way audio communication
  • Integration with Alexa, Google Assistant, and Apple HomeKit

Ring Cameras

Ring is another alternative to Arlo security cameras without a subscription. The company offers various camera options, both wired and battery-powered, that can function without a monthly subscription. Ring camera models include:

  • Ring Stick Up Cam: A versatile camera that can be placed indoors or outdoors, available in both battery and wired versions.
  • Ring Spotlight Cam: An outdoor security camera with built-in LED spotlights, equipped with motion detection, and available in battery, wired, and solar options.
  • Ring Indoor Cam: A compact, plug-in indoor camera that offers 1080p HD video and two-way communication.

Ring’s security cameras come with the following features:

  • Live video streaming
  • Motion-activated notifications
  • Two-way talk functionality

Although Ring offers a subscription plan called Ring Protect, users can still enjoy several features without it, including real-time notifications and live video streaming. However, without a subscription, video history storage and sharing are not available.

Setting Up and Managing Arlo without Subscription

Arlo Base Station and Port Forwarding

The Arlo Base Station plays an essential role in using Arlo cameras without a subscription. The Base Station allows for local storage of video recordings, removing the need for cloud services that come with a subscription. Connecting an external USB drive or microSD card to the Base Station enables you to store your camera footage.

To have remote access to your recordings and ensure proper communication between the Arlo cameras and your mobile device, you might need to set up port forwarding on your network router. This process allows your Arlo system to send video feeds and notifications to your smartphone without a subscription. The steps to configure port forwarding may vary depending on your router’s manufacturer, but they generally involve:

  1. Accessing your router’s settings
  2. Locating the port forwarding section
  3. Adding the appropriate ports for Arlo cameras
  4. Assigning a static IP address to your Arlo Base Station

Arlo App and Device Settings

The Arlo app is available for both iOS and Android devices, and it serves as the primary tool for managing your Arlo cameras without a subscription. After setting up the Arlo Base Station and configuring port forwarding, you can use the Arlo app to:

  • Stream live video from your cameras
  • Configure camera settings and preferences
  • Enable or disable motion and audio detection
  • View and manage locally stored recordings on the Base Station

Keep in mind that without a subscription, certain cloud-based features such as advanced object detection and extensive video history may be unavailable. Nonetheless, the Arlo app facilitates an easy-to-navigate interface for managing your cameras and ensuring their optimal performance without requiring a subscription.

Considerations When Choosing a Subscription Plan

Arlo Secure Subscription Plan

The Arlo Secure Subscription Plan is a popular choice among users looking for advanced security features. The plan costs $2.99 per month for a single camera and $9.99 per month for up to five cameras. Some key features of this plan include:

  • 30 days of cloud storage for video footage
  • Push notifications for detected events
  • Customizable activity zones
  • Person, vehicle, and animal detection
  • 2K video resolution support**

Arlo Secure Plus Plan

The Arlo Secure Plus Plan offers additional perks compared to the regular Arlo Secure Subscription. It comes at a cost of $4.99 per month for a single camera and $14.99 per month for up to five cameras. The main differences between the two plans include:

  • 4K video resolution support**
  • Potentially additional advanced features in the future as they are released

(**Note: Video resolution support depends on the capabilities of your specific Arlo camera model.)

Free Plan and Premium Subscriptions

Arlo offers a short, 3-month free trial of Arlo Secure with new cameras, after which users must decide if they want to continue with a paid subscription or proceed without one. Although Arlo is functional without subscription, certain features are only available through their premium plans:

  • Cloud storage for video footage
  • Customizable activity zones
  • Person, vehicle, and animal detection
  • Push notifications for detected events
  • Higher video resolution support

Continuous Video Recording (CVR)

Continuous Video Recording (CVR) is an optional feature available with certain Arlo cameras and requires a separate monthly subscription, enabling 24/7 video recording. Existing Arlo Secure subscribers can add this feature to their plan, providing a more comprehensive security solution.

Push Notifications

Push notifications are an important aspect of Arlo’s security system, as they alert users to potential threats or incidents detected by the cameras. Without an Arlo Secure subscription, users will not receive automatic push notifications and will have limited access to video recordings. Subscribing to one of the premium plans ensures users receive timely updates and can respond to events as they happen.

Arlo’s Additional Offerings and Updates

Emergency Contact and Priority Support

Arlo offers Emergency Contact and Priority Support features as part of their premium subscription plans. These features provide users with quicker access to help and support when they face any issues with their security cameras. These plans also offer additional benefits, such as cloud storage of video recordings, which can be useful for users looking to get the most out of their Arlo system.

Arlo Parks and Soft Machine Album

Though unrelated to the security camera brand, Arlo Parks is a talented singer-songwriter who released the album “Soft Machine” in 2021. This album showcases her unique blend of indie, pop, and R&B. While this information might not be directly relevant to Arlo security cameras, it’s worth mentioning as a coincidence involving the Arlo name.

Auto Zoom and Tracking

Arlo security cameras offer an Auto Zoom and Tracking feature, which automatically follows the movement of people, vehicles, and other objects within the camera’s field of view. This feature allows users to closely monitor any suspicious activity or movement on their property. Auto Zoom and Tracking can be especially helpful in situations when you need to gather detailed visual evidence of a particular incident or trespassing.

In summary, Arlo provides several additional features and updates that aim to enhance their security camera systems’ overall user experience. Including emergency contact and priority support features, coincidental connections to popular culture, and the useful Auto Zoom and Tracking capability, Arlo continues to develop their offerings to meet consumers’ needs and expectations.