Arlo vs. Nest Security Cameras Compared - Which Is Best for You?

Looking for a security camera to fit your needs? We offer a comprehensive guide of two of the best brands in the market, Arlo and Nest.
Arlo vs. Nest Security Cameras Compared - Which is Best for You
Updated: 31st Dec 2020
Published: 25th Nov 2020
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By SHN Team

We are the SMARTHOME news team, with over 30 years of combined experience in publishing, tech and no Read More...

Searching for something? Here's our table of contents:

1. Quick Comparison Table

2. Introduction to Arlo

3. Introduction to Nest

4. Overview of Arlo Devices

a) The Arlo Pro

b) The Arlo Pro 2

c) The Arlo Pro 3

d) The Arlo Ultra

5. Overview of Nest Devices

a) The Nest Outdoor

b) The Nest Outdoor IQ

6. Step by Step Comparison of Arlo and Nest

a) Design: Arlo vs. Nest

b) Features: Arlo vs. Nest

c) Emergency Response Times

d) Ease of Installation: Arlo vs. Nest

e) Monthly Subscription Packages Explored

f) List of All of the Wins, Ties and Losses

7. Frequently Asked Questions

8. Investing in Security

 

For those that are concerned with home security, getting the right camera for the job can make a big difference. Not only do security cameras often discourage criminal behavior, but they also provide evidence when it, unfortunately, does occur. It is the latter characteristic that makes the performance of your security camera important.

A good home protection system should be able to keep a clear record of any suspicious activity to help with any subsequent investigation. A blurry image won’t assist authorities in creating a positive ID of any culprits that your camera may catch. Below, we’ll compare two of the best security camera systems around, Arlo and Nest, and find out which is better.

Quick Comparison Table

<<<< Scroll to see full table>>>>

Features

Arlo

Nest

Arlo Pro

Arlo Pro 2

Arlo Pro 3

Arlo Ultra

Nest Outdoor

Nest Outdoor IQ

Alert

Types

Email,

Push Notifications,

IFTTT

Email,

Push Notifications,

IFTTT

Email,

Push Notifications,

IFTTT

Email,

Push Notifications,

IFTTT

Email,

Push Notifications,

IFTTT

Email,

Push Notifications,

IFTTT

Battery

Life

Approximately

Three to Six

Months

Approximately

Three to Six

Months

Approximately

Three to Six

Months

Approximately

Three to Six

Months

Not Applicable

Not Applicable

Cloud

Storage

Ability

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Connection

Type

Wi-Fi

Wi-Fi

Wi-Fi

Wi-Fi

Wi-Fi

Wi-Fi

Continuous

Recording

Not Available

Available Indoors Only

Available with Arlo Smart

Available with Arlo Smart

Available with Nest Aware

Available with Nest Aware

Digital

Zooming

Capability

8x Digital Zoom

8x Digital Zoom

12x Digital Zoom

12x Digital Auto Zoom

8x Digital Zoom

12x Digital Zoom

Field

of

View

130 degrees

130 degrees

160 degrees

180 degrees

130 degrees

130 degrees

Frames

per Second

24 Fps

24 Fps

30 Fps

30 Fps

30 Fps

30 Fps

Livestream

Capability

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Local

Storage

Ability

Yes, via the

USB or Micro

SD card slot

with the base

Yes, via the

USB or Micro

SD card slot

with the base

Yes, via the

USB or Micro

SD card slot

with the base

Yes, via the

USB or Micro

SD card slot

with the base

Unavailable

Unavailable

Mobile

App

Availability

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Monitoring

Type

Sound and Motion

Sound and Motion

Sound and Motion

Sound and Motion

Sound and Motion

Sound and Motion

Night

Vision

Ready

Night Vision Capable

Night Vision Capable

Night Vision Capable

Night Vision Capable

Night Vision Capable

Night Vision Capable

Power

Source

Rechargeable

Battery, Solar

Panels, or

Outdoor

Adapter

Rechargeable

Battery, Solar

Panels, or

Outdoor

Adapter

Rechargeable

Battery, Solar

Panels, or

Outdoor

Adapter

Rechargeable

Battery, Solar

Panels, or

Outdoor

Adapter

Outdoor

Adapter

Outdoor

Adapter

Price

(Rounded up)

From $202 to $499

From $200 to $530

From $400 to $650

From $325 to $1,095

From $189 to $296

From $400 to $700

Required

Upload

Speeds

1Mbps or Higher

1Mbps or Higher

2Mbps or Higher

3Mbps or Higher

At least

2Mbps

Upload for a

single

camera. At

least 5mbps

for two to

three.

At least

2Mbps

Upload for a

single

camera. At

least 5mbps

for two to

three.

Resolution

720p

1080p

2K

4K

1080p

1080p

Third

Party

Integration

Ability

Connects to

Amazon

Alexa, Google

Assistant and

Siri

Connects to

Amazon

Alexa, Google

Assistant and

Siri

Connects to

Amazon

Alexa, Google

Assistant and

Siri

Connects to

Amazon

Alexa, Google

Assistant and

Siri

Connects to

Alexa,

Google

Assistant and

Siri

Connects to

Alexa,

Google

Assistant and

Siri

Two Way

Talk

Ability

Listen Only

Talk and Listen Capable

Talk and Listen Capable

Talk and Listen Capable

Talk and Listen Capable

Talk and Listen Capable

Warranty

Limited

1 Year

Warranty

Limited

1 Year

Warranty

Limited

1 Year

Warranty

Limited 1

Year

Warranty

Limited 2 Year Warranty

Limited 2 Year Warranty

Weatherproofing

IP65 Certified

IP65 Certified

IP65 Certified

IP65 Certified

IP65 Certified

IP66 Certified

Web

App

Availability

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Introduction to Arlo

Once a division of Netgear, a computer networking corporation, Arlo separated from its mother company in February 2018. Since then, it has become Arlo Technologies Inc, with Netgear still holding majority control. Even before its separation, the division that would eventually build up Arlo did work in security cameras, with the original Arlo brand Security Camera releasing during the last quarter of 2014. In proceeding years, it has continued with its development of top of the line home security systems that has been widely popular with consumers.

It is estimated that at least 88 million video streams are produced daily from over 11.7 million Arlo Pro devices, and it’s almost three million registered users. With the release of the latest model, the Arlo Ultra, the company is set to redefine the way personal home security is delivered. With the number of satisfied customers, they undoubtedly offer high quality products.

Introduction to Arlo
Credit: Arlo

Introduction to Nest

Before its acquisition by Google in 2014, Nest Labs was originally a small start-up co-founded in 2010 by two former Apple Engineers, Matt Rogers and Tony Fadell. Initially, they set out to create a smart thermostat after Fadell discovered that those available on the market didn’t meet his standards. Nest Labs would go on to produce several other smart products like smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.

After the acquisition, another start-up, Dropcam was acquired by Google and merged its camera products with Nest Labs’ own. This eventually led to the development of the Nest Security Cameras that are now widely available today.

Although Nest Labs initially operated independently from Google itself, it was merged into the Google Hardware division in February 2018. Since then, it has become a part of the Google Home Devices team, which it still remains to this day. With the backing of Google itself, Nest certainly produces products that will certainly meet the expectations of security conscious homeowners.

introduction-to-arlo

Overview of Arlo Devices

Arlo has a wide listing of security cameras in its roster, and we’ll feature a wide range of them here. The Arlo Pro and Arlo Ultra line are currently the best they have on offer. The different features, and the overview of each product is detailed below.

The Arlo Pro

The Arlo Pro

Although an older model when compared to the rest of Arlo’s rather significant line-up, the Arlo Pro is still one of the more popular products that the company has on offer. It touts itself as the world’s first fully wire-free security camera, delivering exemplary performance while being extremely easy to set up and use.

The Arlo Pro provides long-term, maintenance-free operation, as its rechargeable batteries offer from three to six months of power. The cable-free assembly using wall mounts make installation a breeze, and it’s quite simple to place them even in unusual locations. Its 130-degree field of view coupled with its advanced motion detection capabilities makes sure that it never misses any untoward activity. The rechargeable batteries offer from up to three to six months of operation depending on how often its sensors are triggered.

The Arlo Pro also comes with a 100-decibel siren with the Arlo base, for instances when you just want to drive intruders away. Although two-way communication isn’t available for the Arlo Pro, it’s still able to pick up audio from whatever it’s recording.

Getting the Arlo Pro also gives you free cloud storage worth seven full days of clips. As recordings are only triggered whenever the security camera detects motion or sound, even the free storage can suffice. Local storage is also available via the USB slot on the Arlo Base, though the USB drive itself isn’t included with the package.

The Arlo Pro records clips at 720p HD video at 24 Fps. Digital zoom goes up to 8x, and can clearly focus from two feet in front and beyond. You’ll need a Wi-Fi connection of at least 1Mbps upload in order to fully take advantage of the cloud saving feature, if multiple cameras will require more bandwidth. Also, the Arlo Pro doesn’t allow for continuous recording, as it only saves clips whenever the sensors get triggered.

The Arlo Pro is fully compatible with third-party smart devices like Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant and Apple’s Siri. Full remote functionality is also available via the mobile or web app.

Costs at Time of Review

As of the time of writing, the one camera kit costs $245.00. Two cameras go for $349.00. Three cameras for $325.48, and five cameras for $599.99

What’s in the Box?

  • Arlo Pro Security Camera. The standard kits can range from one to four cameras.
  • Rechargeable Batteries, one for each camera included.
  • The Arlo Base Station.
  • One Power Adapter.
  • One Power Cable.
  • Wall mounts, one for each camera included.
  • One Ethernet Cable
  • One Wall mount screw set for one or two cameras. Two screw sets, for three to four cameras.
  • One window decal for one to two cameras. Two widow decals for three to four cameras.
  • One Quick Start Guide.
  • Outdoor security mount for the four-camera kit.
  • Outdoor security mount screw set for the four-camera kit.

The Arlo Pro 2

The Arlo Pro 2

A step up from the original Arlo Pro, the Arlo Pro 2 offers a lot of the features of its predecessor, but with a great deal of improvements. Although still essentially wireless and powered through rechargeable batteries, the Arlo Pro 2 has additional features available when it’s plugged in and used indoors.

The first big upgrade is the ability to keep continuous recordings of any area. The original Arlo Pro only saved clips whenever its sensors were triggered. Although the option to keep motion or sound activated recordings are still available, being able to get non-stop camera footage is still a step up. Using this feature does require the camera to be plugged in though, as it would quickly drain the battery otherwise.

As with the original Arlo Pro, the rechargeable batteries can offer from three to six months of power, depending on the amount of activity that it records. Unlike its predecessor, the Arlo Pro 2 has the two-way communication feature that allows users to talk to the person on the other side of the camera. This is quite useful if you want to call the attention of anyone that’s being recorded at the time.

Similar to the Arlo Pro, getting the Arlo Pro 2 entitles users to free cloud storage of up to seven days-worth of continuous recording. Local storage options are still available via USB slot located in the Arlo base. But like the Arlo Pro, the USB drive itself doesn’t come with the package.

An advantage of having the Arlo Pro 2 plugged in is that it gives users a ‘three second look back’ to events that happened before the sensors were triggered. This gives the owner a lot more details of how and why their security cameras were activated.

Although the Arlo Pro 2 has the same 130-degree field of view at 24 Fps like its predecessor, it can record videos at a higher 1080p quality. Its digital zoom function is the same as the original at 8x magnification. A siren is also built into the Arlo base, enabling users to drive away suspicious individuals, or call attention to untoward activity.

Like the Arlo Pro, your Wi-Fi will require at least 1Mbps upload speed to be able to fully take advantage of the cloud storage options. Higher bandwidth may be necessary if you get a package with more cameras though.

You can use the mobile or web app to control your Arlo Pro 2 remotely, and the system does work well with either Amazon’s Alexa, the Google Assistant, or Apple’s Siri.

Costs at Time of Review

At the time of writing, the Arlo Pro 2 is available for $127.94 for the single camera kit. The Two camera kit normally costs $419.00 but is currently on sale for $399.99. The three-camera kit is at $599.99

What’s in the Box

  • Arlo Pro 2 Security Camera. The standard kits are available from one to three cameras.
  • Rechargeable Batteries, one for each camera included.
  • The Arlo Base Station.
  • One Power Adapter.
  • One Power Cable.
  • Wall mounts, one for each camera included.
  • One Ethernet Cable
  • One Wall mount screw set for one or two cameras. Two screw sets, for three to four cameras.
  • One window decal for one to two cameras. Two widow decals for three cameras.
  • One Quick Start Guide.

The Arlo Pro 3

The Arlo Pro 3

Although not the latest offering from Arlo, the Arlo Pro 3 is still considered as one of the best security cameras out there. There is no doubt that the features that it offers are top of the line quality, and will surely satisfy those who want more in their home security systems. The improvements that Arlo Pro 3 brings to the table are rather impressive, and it’s a big upgrade from the previous iteration.

Continuous recording is still available, if it needs to be plugged in as it’ll certainly be quite a drain on the batteries otherwise. Triggered recordings are still an option though, and is the best setting if you want to use the unit outdoors. The batteries still offer from three to six months of operation before you need to recharge them, but this can change depending on how often activity is triggered.

The Arlo Pro 3 also offers colored night vision capabilities that allow you to see full color videos even at night instead of the traditional green or black and white.

The Arlo Pro 3 has a wider field of view, at 160 degrees, and records clips at about 30fps. It offers around 12x digital magnification, and can be set to video qualities of up to 2K. It’s a big leap forward from the previous generation which offered only up to 1080p. Unlike the earlier cameras, the siren is now built in to the camera itself, giving users the ability to give warnings at the camera’s actual location.

Because of the high video quality that Arlo Pro 3 is able to save, it requires higher bandwidth to match. A single camera will need a Wi-Fi upload speed of at least 2Mbps, and will certainly need higher speeds the most cameras you have. You’ll need to take important note of this if you want to take full advantage of the cloud recording capabilities of the Arlo Pro 3.

Similar to this brand’s other units, Arlo offers free cloud storage worth up to seven days of continuous recording. Local storage is still available via the Arlo Smart Hub, though the USB drive needed to store the files isn’t included with the kit.

As with the other cameras in the line, it can be controlled and configured remotely using the mobile or web app. The Arlo Pro 3 also works really well with third-party devices like Siri, Alexa, and the Google Assistant.

Costs at Time of Review

At the time of writing, the two-camera kit which normally goes for $499.99 is on sale for $299.99. The three-camera kit which normally retails at $649.99 is on sale for $449.99, and the four-camera kit which normally is at $799.99 is on sale for $591.28.

What’s in the Box

  • Arlo Pro 3 Security Camera. The standard kits can number from two to four cameras. Single cameras are available as an extra add on, but without the Smart Hub.
  • Rechargeable Batteries, one for each camera included.
  • The Arlo Smart Hub.
  • One Power Adapter.
  • One Magnetic Charging Cable.
  • Wall mounts, one for each camera included.
  • One Ethernet Cable
  • One Wall mount screw set for each camera included.
  • One video monitoring decal.
  • One Quick Start Guide.

The Arlo Ultra

The Arlo Ultra

The latest offering of the Arlo security system line, the Arlo Ultra series is definitely one of the best on the market. Offering a lot of improvements from the already impressive Arlo Pro 3, along with other rather notable features, this is certainly the brand to beat.

Like the previous generation, continuous recording is available, if it still needs to be plugged in to do so. Other power options won’t be able to provide the energy needed for the task, and if it depended on batteries, it would probably drain them quickly. Motion and sound triggered recordings are always an option, and the unit still boasts from three to six months of operation before needing a recharge.

Like the Arlo Pro 3, Arlo Ultra offers colored night vision capabilities, giving users a clearer view when compared to the black and white recordings of earlier models. It also has the widest field of view available from the brand at 180 degrees. It can record video clips at 30 Fps and can save them on a quality of up to 4K resolution. Its 12x auto zoom function also ensures that any activity that triggers the camera is clearly captured.

The built-in camera siren along with the speaker and microphone allows users to communicate or warn anyone on the other side of the lens. The smart siren can be set to trigger automatically, or give you an alert on your mobile phone to let you do so manually.

With the high video quality capabilities, it does come with a downside. It currently has the highest Wi-Fi upload speed requirements for the brand, needing at least 3Mbps for one camera, and higher speeds for multiple cameras. A kit still comes with the free cloud storage equal to seven days-worth of recording. This time though, local storage is available via a Micro SD card and not a USB, but the card still isn’t included with the kit.

Like the other Arlo cameras, the Arlo Ultra can be controlled remotely via the mobile or web app. Third party devices work well with the Arlo Ultra like Amazon Alexa, the Google Assistant, and Apple’s Siri. This compatibility extends its flexibility even further.

Costs at Time of Review

At the time of writing, the Arlo Ultra one camera kit which normally costs $338.99 is on sale for $319.00. The two-camera kit which normally retails for $599.99 is on sale for $556.32. The three-camera kit is on sale for $589 and the four-camera kit normally retails for $1,094.76.

What’s in the Box

  • Arlo Ultra Camera. The standard kit can range from one to three cameras.
  • Rechargeable Batteries, one for each camera included.
  • The Arlo Ultra Smart Hub.
  • One Power Adapter.
  • One Magnetic Charging Cable.
  • One magnetic mount for the one and two-camera kit. Two magnetic mounts for the three-camera kit.
  • One wall mount screw kit for each camera included.
  • One Ethernet Cable
  • One quarter twenty mount
  • One video monitoring decal.
  • One Quick Start Guide.

Overview of Nest Devices

Nest has two outdoor security cameras that it offers to its customers, the Nest Outdoor, and the Nest Outdoor IQ. Although both cameras do have rather similar features, the differences of each are detailed in the product overviews below.

The Nest Outdoor

the-nest-outdoor

The first of Nest’s security camera offerings, the Nest Outdoor certainly boasts features that make it a contender for one of the best on the market. If you’re looking for a top-notch security camera at a lower initial price rate, then the Nest Outdoor line may be for you.

The Nest Outdoor records videos at 1080p at 30fps. Its 130-degree field of view allows it to see a wide area of activity. The camera also comes with an 8x magnification feature that gives you the ability to zoom in on points of interest. The Nest Outdoor also monitors for both movement and sound, alerting you of any suspicious activity.

One drawback of the Nest camera systems in comparison to Arlo would be that Nest security cameras need to be plugged into an outlet. Still, the Nest Outdoor comes with all the necessary peripherals in order for it to be installed easily. Set up can be rather complicated if you wish to place the camera in an out-of-the-way area of your property.

As the camera itself is constantly plugged in, continuous recording is available right out of the box. The video is uploaded to the cloud though, as local storage options aren’t available on the Nest Outdoor. This may be an issue as without a Nest Aware subscription, you can only get up to three hours-worth of saved footage. However, subscriptions bumps that number to up to thirty days-worth of recordings.

Two-way communication is available with the Nest Outdoor, allowing users to talk to anyone on the other side of the lens. The mobile and web apps also enable you to control the camera functions remotely, and it does support Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and Apple’s Siri.

You’ll need at least 2Mbps Wi-Fi upload speeds in order to efficiently use the Nest Outdoor cam, but that’s with only a single camera. Two to three cameras need at least 5Mbps upload speeds, and even higher speeds are required if you have more units.

Costs at Time of Review

At the time of writing, the one-camera pack Google Nest Outdoor which normally retails at $199 is on sale for $188.80. The two-pack kit retails for $296.00.

What’s in the Box

  • The Nest Cam Outdoor Camera unit. Standard kits can come in units of one or two.
  • An outdoor mounting magnet for each cam included.
  • A camera wall plate for each camera in the kit.
  • One Power Adapter.
  • One Adapter wall plate.
  • Screws kits for the Nest cameras.
  • Wall anchor kits.
  • Cable clips
  • One Welcome Guide
  • An Installation Guide

The Nest Outdoor IQ

The Nest Outdoor IQ

An update to the Google Nest Outdoor, the Google Nest Outdoor IQ comes with a lot of features from the last generation, along with several improvements. If you’re looking for a top-of-the-line security camera then the Nest Outdoor IQ is certainly something to take note of.

Like its predecessor, the Nest Outdoor IQ records videos at 30Fps and 1080p video quality. It also has the same 130-degree field of view that allows it to easily detect unusual activity. It has an improved zoom that goes up to 12x magnification, giving you a clearer view of events that the Nest Outdoor IQ may capture. As with the former model, it also monitors for both sound and movement.

The Nest Outdoor IQ also requires it to be plugged into an outlet in order to function. Although installation is rather simple, it can be a challenge if you want to place it in an area without a nearby outlet available. But the kit does come with all the necessary items that you’ll need in order to set it up properly.

Like the Nest Outdoor, local storage isn’t available in the Outdoor IQ, and the three-hour free cloud storage fills up quite quickly. The subscription that bumps the storage up to 30 days is recommended, especially if you want to take advantage of the continuous recording feature.

The Nest Outdoor IQ is also capable of two-way communication, allowing you to speak with people on the other side of the camera. Remote feature controls are available via either the mobile app, or the web app if you don’t want to download things to your phone.

As with the older model, you’ll need a minimum of 2Mbps of upload speeds in order to take advantage of cloud storage. If you have more than one camera, you’ll need at least 5Mbps or more, otherwise expect staggered video feeds.

Costs at Time of Review

At the time of writing, the Google Nest Outdoor IQ one-camera kit retails at $399.99, and the two-camera kit retails for $699.99.

What’s in the Box

  • The Nest Cam IQ Outdoor Security Camera. Available in standard kits of one or two cameras.
  • A wall plate for each camera included in the kit.
  • One outdoor power cable.
  • One Hex Key.
  • A set of screw kits.
  • A set of Wall anchors.
  • A set of Cable Clips.
  • One Installation Guide.

Step by Step Comparison of Arlo and Nest

Design: Arlo vs. Nest

Design: Arlo vs. Nest

When it comes to the design, the Arlo brand certainly comes out on top of the competition. Although the Nest cameras do offer easy installation, the fact that Arlo is entirely wireless gives it an obvious advantage. All it takes to set up an Arlo security camera is a magnetic wall mount, and then you’re golden. The Nest cam requires you to have a power outlet close by, or otherwise use unwieldy extension cords in order to operate.

Not that the wireless nature of Arlo is a full-on positive though. Because the camera itself is attached by magnets, if admittedly strong ones, they can be susceptible to theft if someone is determined enough to do so. It would be wise to take advantage of Arlo’s wireless nature to put it in hidden or otherwise hard to reach areas just in case.

Design: Arlo vs. Nest

 
 
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Features: Arlo vs. Nest

Alert Types – When it comes to alert types, both the Arlo and Nest cameras perform similarly. They both have push notifications, email alerts, and can readily be programmed on IFTTT. On this category they end up in a tie.

Features: Arlo vs. Nest

 
 
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Battery Life – This is an obvious win for Arlo. Along with the rechargeable battery, the power options available include solar power cells, and an adapter. Nest Cameras need to be plugged in, and don’t have a mobile power option. Not necessarily a deal breaker, but it does pale in comparison to the Arlo. The batteries boast from three to six months of operation before requiring recharging.

Battery Life: Arlo vs. Nest

 
 
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Cloud Storage Ability – A tie for both units. They each have the capability of being able to access the cloud in order to upload clips, no matter the model of camera in the line. The upload speed requirements may differ, but at least they are available.

Cloud Storage Ability: Arlo vs. Nest

 
 
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Connection Type – Another tie. Both security cameras require a Wi-Fi connection to function. Arlo requires it because its wireless nature demands a wireless network to connect to. The Nest camera, though wired, doesn’t have a local storage option and needs to connect online in order to record video.

Connection Type

Connection Type: Arlo vs. Nest

 
 
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Continuous Recording – Nest cameras take this category handily. Because they’re designed to be constantly plugged in, continuous recording is available out of the box. Arlo cameras don’t necessarily have the same options. The Arlo Pro isn’t even capable of doing continuous recording, and the other models need to be plugged in in order to do so. This may be a bit off-putting for people who bought an Arlo camera for its wireless nature.

Continuous Recording: Arlo vs. Nest

 
 
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Digital Zooming – A close tie. Although the Arlo Ultra has 12x Auto zoom, the Nest Outdoor IQ comes with the 12x magnification feature as well. Both the Arlo Pro and Pro 2 have 8x magnification capabilities, similar to the Nest Outdoor.

Digital Zooming: Arlo vs. Nest

 
 
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Field of View – This is a hands down win for Arlo. Even its older model, the Arlo Pro which has 130 degrees of view matches both the Nest Outdoor and the Nest Outdoor IQ. Later models like the Arlo Pro 3 and Arlo Ultra have a whopping 160 degrees and 180 degrees field of view respectively. Not only does this give users a clearer perspective of the monitored area, it gives the camera a wider range to detect motion as it happens.

Field of View

Field of View: Arlo vs. Nest

 
 
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Frames per Second – A close Nest win. Although the higher end Arlo models come with the same 30Fps as both Nest cameras, previous models only have 24Fps. This doesn’t really change the quality of recording too much, but having the 30Fps option even in the lower end model is always a good thing.

Frames per Second: Arlo vs. Nest

 
 
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Livestream Capability – A tie. Both the Arlo and Nest camera models are able to livestream whatever it is they’re currently recording either through the mobile app, or their respective websites. The ability of both to do so makes them equal in this regard.

Livestream Capability

Livestream Capability: Arlo vs. Nest

 
 
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Local Storage Ability – A hands down win for Arlo, simply because this feature isn’t available in the Nest model cameras. The Arlo Pro, Arlo Pro 2, and Arlo Pro 3 have a USB slot in the Arlo Base or Smart Hub where you can insert a USB drive to keep a record of your security footage. The Arlo Ultra has a Micro SD slot instead.

Although this would have been scored higher for Arlo if they actually included a USB drive or Micro SD card in the kit, being able to keep a local copy is nevertheless an advantage.

Local Storage Ability: Arlo vs. Nest

 
 
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Mobile App Availability – A tie for both units. Nest and Arlo each have their own mobile app that is available for download either in the Google Play or the Apple App store. This allows users to easily control their security options remotely and conveniently.

Mobile App Availability: Arlo vs. Nest

 
 
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Monitoring Type – Another tie. All models of either the Nest or Arlo cameras monitor for both sound and motion, and will give users alerts for each.

Monitoring Type: Arlo vs. Nest

 
 
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Night Vision Capability – A close win for Arlo. Although all models of security cameras, both under Nest and Arlo are capable of Night Vision, the Arlo Pro 3 and Arlo Ultra can record night scenes in color. This advantage gives Arlo enough points to win in this category.

Night Vision Capability: Arlo vs. Nest

 
 
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Power Source – A clear win by Arlo. The Nest Outdoor and Outdoor IQ requires an electric outlet in order to work. Arlo cameras give users the option to either use the rechargeable batteries, a solar panel charger, or the included adapter. This wide array of choices gives Arlo cameras the advantage in this category.

Power Source

Power Source: Arlo vs. Nest

 
 
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Price – A clear win to Nest Cameras. It’s no surprise that Arlo cameras come at a very steep price. Even when they’re on sale, the Ultra Pro still costs more than the Nest Outdoor on retail. If you’re looking for a good security camera, but are limited in terms of budget, then Nest security cameras may be the ones to take note of.

Price: Arlo vs. Nest

 
 
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Required Upload Speeds – A close win for Arlo. Depending on the model, you’ll need from 1Mbps to 3Mbps in order to take advantage of the online cloud storage for Arlo. Even the Nest Outdoor requires 2Mbps, and that’s just for one camera. Two or more spikes that requirement up to at least 5Mbps upload speeds. It’s also important to note that the Nest cameras don’t have local storage available, so unless you have the required Wi-Fi speeds, you may not be able to record anything.

Required Upload Speeds: Arlo vs. Nest

 
 
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Resolution – A clear win by Arlo. Although both the Nest Outdoor and Outdoor IQ have 1080p quality, they’re only able to beat the Arlo Pro, and are on par with the Arlo Pro 2. The Arlo Pro 3 and Arlo Ultra offer an astounding 2K and 4K resolution respectively, giving users a clear view of any recorded activity. Clearer video quality is always an advantage if you’re trying to get a positive ID on suspicious individuals.

Resolution: Arlo vs. Nest

 
 
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Third Party Integration – A close win for Arlo. Although both Nest and Arlo are capable of connecting with Amazon’s Alexa, the Google Assistant, or Apple’s Siri, Arlo can connect with Siri out of the box. A recent software update made it easier for Arlo devices to use Apple’s Home Kit in order to take advantage of their remote features. The Nest Cam needs another third-party device in order to do the same.

Third Party Integration: Arlo vs. Nest

 
 
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Two-Way Talk Ability – Close win by Nest. All models, except for the Arlo Pro, are capable of two-way communication between the user and people on the other side of the camera. This is why the Nest takes this category as both of its models come equipped with the feature.

Two-Way Talk Ability: Arlo vs. Nest

 
 
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Warranty – Clear win for Nest cameras. Arlo products only offer a one-year limited warranty on their devices. Nest gives users a full two-year limited warranty for theirs. Although a full warranty may have been better, at least Nest offers twice the period coverage of Arlo.

Warranty: Arlo vs. Nest

 
 
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Weatherproofing – close win by Nest. All cameras, except for the Nest Outdoor IQ has IP65 certification against weather. The Outdoor IQ has IP66 which gives the brand a win for this category.

Weatherproofing

Weatherproofing: Arlo vs. Nest

 
 
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Web App Availability – A tie for both brands. Arlo and Nest each have their own web apps available for those that want to control their cameras remotely but without using their phones. All they need to do is visit the particular brand website to avail of the application.

Web App Availability: Arlo vs. Nest

 
 
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Emergency Response Times

Both Arlo and Nest offers self and professional monitoring for users who sign up for the service. The difference between both is that Nest, through their partner, Brink’s Home Security, will alert you of any suspicious activity if and when it happens. Arlo’s E911 service on the other hand will only dial emergency services if you actually need help. Because of Nest’s more comprehensive option, they take this category rather easily.

Emergency Response Times: Arlo vs. Nest

 
 
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Ease of Installation: Arlo vs. Nest

Ease of Installation: Arlo vs. Nest

This is an easy win for Arlo. Although installation for the Nest Outdoor and Outdoor IQ is simple in itself, the fact that you need to fiddle with cables adds a layer of complexity that the Arlo camera doesn’t have. If you’re using an Arlo camera, just find a location, screw in the magnetic wall mount, and you’re done. You can even install cameras in the ceiling.

With a Nest Outdoor or Outdoor IQ, you’ll need to worry about where an electric outlet is located before even deciding to install the camera. The installation of a Nest camera itself is simple, but Arlo wins this category hands down.

Ease of Installation: Arlo vs. Nest

 
 
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Monthly Subscription Packages Explored

Although both Arlo and Nest offer free cloud storage packages, to be able to fully take advantage of the camera’s features, purchasing a subscription may be necessary. Here are the packages offered by each brand:

Monthly Subscription Packages Explored

For Arlo – There are two tiers of the subscription plan, the Smart Premier and the Smart Elite, each divided into single, and multi-camera categories.

The Smart Premier offers 2K HD quality, 30 days rolling continuous recording storage, along with animal and package detection, smoke alarm detection, cloud activity zones, and push notifications. The E911 service is also available on the premier, but only for multi camera subscriptions. Multi camera accounts supports up to five cameras.

The Smart Elite package comes with all the features listed above, but allows recording in 4K HD quality. Also, the E911 system is also unavailable for the single camera subscription.

The Smart Premier costs $2.99 monthly for the single camera, and $9.99 for the multi-camera option.

The Smart Elite costs $4.99 monthly for a single camera, and $$14.99 for the multi camera option.

For Nest – Nest offers two tiers of subscriptions, the Nest Aware and the Nest Aware plus. These subscriptions cover all Nest devices you have. Nest Aware gives users 30 days-worth of recording storage, while Nest Aware plus gives you 60 days.

Nest Aware costs $6 a month, but an annual subscription is available for only $60. The Nest Aware Plus package comes at $12 a month, and also offers a $120 annual package.

The winner of this category is Nest, as it offers a multi-camera subscription option at a lower price than Arlo.

Monthly Subscription Packages Explored: Arlo vs. Nest

 
 
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List of All of the Wins, Ties and Losses

Design – Arlo

Features Overall - Arlo

    • Alert Types – Tie
    • Battery Life – Arlo
    • Cloud Storage Ability – Tie
    • Connection Type – Tie
    • Continuous Recording – Nest
    • Digital Zooming – Tie
    • Field of View – Arlo
    • Frames per Second – Nest
    • Livestream Capability – Tie
    • Local Storage Ability – Arlo
    • Mobile App Availability – Tie
    • Monitoring Type – Tie
    • Night Vision Capability – Arlo
    • Power Source – Arlo
    • Price – Nest
    • Required Upload Speed – Arlo
    • Resolution – Arlo
    • Third-Party Integration – Arlo
    • Two-Way Talk Ability – Nest
    • Warranty – Nest
    • Weatherproofing – Nest
    • Web App Availability – Tie
    • Ease of Installation – Arlo
    • Monthly Subscription Package - Nest

 

Verdict: Arlo or Nest?

Verdict: Arlo or Nest?

The winner for the best overall security camera between Nest and Arlo is Arlo. The number of features, it’s unique wireless capability, and the ease of installation clearly gives it an advantage over its competitor. Not that this means that the Nest Outdoor and Outdoor IQ are bad cameras, it’s just that the flexibility of the Arlo line is more impressive. The only clear downside is that Arlo cameras cost more, but if you’re looking for the best protection available, choosing the more feature laden choice may be the better option.

Overall Verdict: Arlo vs. Nest Cameras

 
 
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Frequently Asked Questions

Interesting IFTTT recipes for Arlo

If you want to use IFTTT to enhance the capabilities of your Arlo security camera, then these links may interest you:

Interesting IFTTT recipes for Nest

If you’re using Google Nest Outdoor or Outdoor IQ, then these IFTTT recipes may be of use to you:

Can Arlo be stolen?

Because the Arlo camera normally uses magnetic wall mounts in order to secure the unit, a determined thief could make off with your camera. It’s always better to place cameras in locations that aren’t readily accessible. Keeping them hidden is also ideal, as their wireless nature makes this easy to do.

If you’re the unfortunate victim of camera security theft however, worry not. Arlo provides a theft replacement program for those unlucky enough to experience it. See if you can qualify for the program by heading to their theft replacement webpage.

Can Nest be stolen?

The Nest Outdoor camera is mounted by screws, so stealing them would be a rather difficult enterprise. The Outdoor IQ is another story. It can come with a magnetic wall mount that a single-minded criminal will no doubt take an interest in.

Nest’s Theft replacement program only covers the Hello doorbell, and not the Nest Outdoor or Outdoor IQ. It would be better for you to firmly secure your nest cam with screws rather than the magnetic mounts in order to prevent theft of the device.

Does Arlo need Wi-Fi?

Yes. The wireless nature of the Arlo cameras requires you to have a Wi-Fi network in order for it to function.

Does Nest need Wi-Fi?

Yes. Because the Nest Outdoor and Outdoor IQ doesn’t have local storage capabilities, you will need an online connection in order to save your recorded security footage.

How often do I need to charge Arlo?

The rechargeable batteries are rated to operate from a period of three to six months. Depending on the amount of activity that your camera records, it may be slightly higher or lower than the average. A safe bet is to schedule a recharge every five months to be sure, or set an IFTTT alert to give you a notification whenever the battery is running out.

How often do I need to charge Nest?

Nest needs to be constantly plugged in and doesn’t have an alternative power source. There’s no need to charge it as there’s nothing to charge.

Investing in Security

With this comprehensive guide to the security cameras, choosing which is best for your needs should be rather easy. Investing in the security of your home always pays off in the long-term. Whether you choose the feature rich Arlo cameras, or the simple and more comparatively more affordable Nest cameras is up to you.

Do you have questions or clarifications about any of the products mentioned here? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.

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