Arlo has the first smart-home security camera to capture and stream footage in 4K and TechHive got a chance to check it out at CES in Las Vegas. At four times the resolution of existing high-definition cameras, the new Arlo Ultra 4K holds the potential to see additional information in captured footage, such as a car license plate or a clearer look at someone who's on your property but shouldn't be. It has several new features, in addition to the 4K image sensor, such as an integrated spotlight and dual microphones for better audio, but like the current model it still runs on a battery and installation is as easy as snapping it onto a magnetic mount. Arlo said the battery life for the Ultra 4K will be equivalent to its current outdoor camera, which in TechHive tests easily lasted several months between recharges. The spotlight enables color nightvision and the camera also features HDR (high dynamic range), which should help even out the image so that dark areas appear a bit brighter and bright areas are darker.
If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives. For years, they've been watching you and recording your every move at shops, movie theaters, and public parks. But home security cameras have come a long way in the past few years, including those designed to be installed outdoors. Like many other electronic devices, today's outdoor security cameras are smarter than their ancestors.
The Arlo Pro 4 Spotlight camera performed beautifully in all of our tests. Touting a 160-degree viewing angle and 2K video with high-def resolution, Arlo's Pro 4 offers a wider range of view and higher video quality than the Nest Cam Outdoor, our previous No. 1 pick, and is our new recommendation for the best outdoor smart security camera. Arlo's video quality is just as clear at night as it is during the day thanks to the camera's color night vision output. It also has a built-in spotlight that illuminates when motion is detected and a smart siren that can be triggered remotely or automatically. We found the installation process to be fairly uncomplicated, though a 2.4 GHz WiFi connection is required for setup. There are no wires to fiddle with, as this camera includes a mount that can easily be screwed in on the exterior of your home. Before you place it, we suggest giving it a good charge right out of the box using the included magnetic charging cable.
Smart home company Nest unveiled Thursday an Internet-connected security camera designed for outdoor use, the firm's first hardware release since the departure of its high-profile chief executive. The 199 Nest Cam Outdoor, available for preorder immediately and on sale this fall, comes after founder and former CEO Tony Fadell left the company in June. Nest, which is owned by Google parent company Alphabet, says it has seen significant demand for an outdoor product, with 30% of users pointing their indoor cameras outside. The Nest Cam Outdoor's camera and power adapter are weatherproof, helping to protect against the elements. While other outdoor surveillance cameras can withstand adverse weather, Nest claims its device is one of few that include a similarly resilient adapter.
Our favorite outdoor security camera, the Nest Cam Outdoor, also works with Alexa and the new Amazon Echo Show. And while the camera itself is good, we really love this camera due to the Nest Aware subscription service. In the words of our reviewer, "Nest Aware totally makes this camera." The service is pricey at $100 to $300 per year, but it offers a 24/7 video backup (backing up the entirety of the footage, not just clips), notifications for people and pets, and customizable activity zones to block out areas with frequent, unimportant motion. Unfortunately, you also need the service to save and download clips, something some other cameras let you do for free.