Australian technology news, reviews, and guides to help you
Australian technology news, reviews, and guides to help you

Arlo’s next video doorbell has a battery for renters

Arlo’s first video doorbell needed to be wired in to a home. That’s not great for all, but its next one is more useful for everyone.

Whether you own your home or are just renting, there’s a chance you’ve eyed the video doorbell world and wondered whether you could try it out.

It’s been a thing for a few years now, and the idea is sound: not only can you see who’s at your door while you’re there, but video doorbells can be a great form of security to check out your visitors when you’re not. Whether you’re sitting in your living room or are out and about, a simple alert can tell your who’s in front of your door, logging in to check the video feed, and even talking to them through the camera.

Ring was first on the scene with its video doorbell back in 2016, and while Arlo’s style of security has long been about other parts of the home, it joined doorbells recently, as well.

But there was a catch: to integrate Arlo’s video doorbell in your home, you needed to wire it in. That was understandably a problem for renters, and even for home owners who didn’t necessarily want to hire an electrician to try out a video doorbell.

But there’s something new this week, as Arlo adds an option for folks who don’t have a sparky on call, and who might not have the ability to wire a video doorbell right into their system. Set for arrival in December, Australians will find an Arlo video doorbell that doesn’t need to be plugged into the wall, or even the door frame.

It’s arriving in the Arlo Essential Wire-Free Video Doorbell, an apt name indicative of what it is: a video doorbell with a battery. There’s a 180 degree square video camera here, technically set for a max of HD video, with 720×720 or 1080×1080 supported, though it can do a rather specific 1536×1536 if you fancy the most resolution.

While you’re unlikely to do some Instagramming with a video doorbell feed’s square image, it’s not made for that, using a motion sensor to pick up on movement in front of your door, recording like a security camera when motion is triggered, and when someone presses the doorbell. When that happens, Arlo will send a message to connected phones and tablets, and a speaker and microphone in the Video Doorbell Wire-Free will mean you can chat to folks who are there. Folks who can’t find you can even leave you a message if you’re not there.

In short, it’s basically Arlo’s take on the video doorbell, and one that retains the weather resistance common to the category, with this model including a rechargeable battery for people to install and recharge at their convenience. You’ll still be able to wire the Wire-Free Video Doorbell in if you want, despite the name, potentially making it a doorbell you can grow with. For instance, if you’re renting and yearn to buy, you should be able to take it with you, either keeping the battery for when you buy, or hiring that sparky to wire it in.

You will need to wait before you can try it out, though, with Arlo sending it to stores near the end of the year, arriving at electrical retailers by the middle of December 2020 for a recommended retail price of $329.

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