The Arlo Go 2 ($249) and the Eufy 4G Starlight ($229) are two new 4G LTE sensible safety cameras that stream or ship footage over a mobile knowledge connection. They’re among the many few options for monitoring locations the place Wi-Fi could also be unreliable or unavailable: an off-grid cabin within the woods; the far finish of your yard; a development website; or a storage facility.
They will also be used to keep watch over your RV, camper van, or tent website while you’re tenting or watch over your boat whereas docked. A mobile safety camera can also be choice should you’d like a camera at your property that you understand will keep up even when the Wi-Fi and energy are down. Or maybe you journey lots and wish to surveil your Airbnb or lodge room while you’re out and about and never depend on public Wi-Fi.
Overpriced path cams was the one choice for a very wi-fi camera setup like this, and it’s thrilling to see extra choices tailor-made to safety reasonably than simply recognizing animals (though they nonetheless do an amazing job of that). The Arlo and Eufy fashions look and work the identical means their firm’s customary outside sensible house safety cameras do — simply with larger batteries and a mobile radio on board. This means they don’t want a Wi-Fi connection to report or stream video, however you will have to pay for mobile knowledge to make use of the camera, which could be an costly add-on.
I put these two LTE-connected cameras to the check in numerous areas: the Eufy at my in-laws’ off-grid cabin in Alaska and the Arlo on the backside of my backyard in South Carolina, the place there’s not a whiff of Wi-Fi available. Both did what they mentioned on the field, working reliably and impressively on just one to 2 bars of mobile service. But there are some vital variations between the 2.
Most notably, the Eufy doesn’t want a cloud subscription to view or save recorded video, whereas the Arlo does. The Eufy makes use of edge computing to course of the information fully on the camera; all of the footage lives on the camera’s 8GB of native storage. When you view video within the app, you might be connecting on to the camera. But should you run out of information or your camera is destroyed, you gained’t have entry to any footage.
In distinction, the Arlo shops its recordings within the cloud, and also you’ll must pay for its Arlo Secure service ($3 a month) to view motion-activated recordings within the Arlo app. (There’s the choice of a microSD card, however that may solely be accessed regionally.) The Arlo is the second-gen of the Arlo Go, and it provides Wi-Fi, which the Eufy doesn’t have, plus it helps a wider vary of sensible alerts.
Eufy 4G Starlight versus Arlo Go 2: specs and setup
The cameras each observe the design language of their respective non-cellular sensible safety cameras, with modern white rectangular our bodies and stark black faces. The Arlo has the choice of a black casing, which might be extra discreet in an out of doors setting. Eufy says it has plans to promote a camouflage pores and skin.
Both cameras are totally weatherproof: the Eufy Starlight is rated to IP67, and the Arlo Go 2 is barely decrease at IP65. This means the Eufy may survive underwater for a bit and in opposition to larger strain water jets, however each will stand as much as heavy rain and thunderstorms. Both additionally work all the way down to detrimental 4 levels Fahrenheit; the Arlo Go 2 is rated for as much as 113 levels Fahrenheit and the Starlight for a blistering 131 levels Fahrenheit.
The customary safety camera options are supplied on each: two-way audio; spotlights and sirens to scare away any potential bother; and coloration night time imaginative and prescient. (The Eufy has a starlight sensor for improved night time imaginative and prescient in low gentle, because the title signifies, whereas the Arlo doesn’t). Both even have built-in GPS that will help you find the camera do you have to overlook the place you set it.
The Arlo can report and livestream in as much as 1080p HD video, whereas Eufy is able to 2K. The Arlo has 12x digital zoom for getting a greater take a look at any motion in comparison with Eufy’s 4x, however with the upper decision of the Eufy, this distinction isn’t as massive in apply as on paper. The Eufy is barely smaller and lighter, however they each have the identical huge 13,000mAh battery capability, and each have optionally available photo voltaic panels to maintain the batteries topped up.
The Arlo additionally features a Wi-Fi radio, that means it might probably double as a normal safety camera if and when you could have entry to Wi-Fi and don’t wish to pay for mobile knowledge. This can also be useful as a fail-safe choice in a house safety camera setup, that means you’ll nonetheless have at the least one camera you possibly can entry remotely in a Wi-Fi or energy outage. The Eufy solely works on mobile.
Setup for each cameras was easy. It’s precisely like putting in any of their Wi-Fi counterparts, simply with the additional step of inserting a SIM card. However, neither of them works with their respective model’s hub (which additionally means no HomePackage compatibility for both). They do each work with Amazon Alexa and Google Home ecosystems, and you may livestream footage to a sensible show. Arlo additionally works with IFTTT.
You’ll want a knowledge SIM card and a knowledge plan to get the cameras up and working on a mobile community. Arlo gives the choice of shopping for the camera direct from suitable carriers via its web site. It works with Verizon ($20 / month for “unlimited” 15GB), US Cellular ($15 / month for 1GB knowledge), or T-Mobile ($20 / month for 5GB). If you go this route, the camera will include a SIM card, and you may also select to unfold the price of the system out over two to a few years. The Arlo additionally works with European carriers.
Eufy says it consists of an IoT-specific Eiotclub SIM with its camera (in my testing, I used an AT&T SIM). This is a digital operator that makes use of the AT&T and T-Mobile networks and gives a $10 / month plan with 2GB of information. You may use an AT&T SIM; a pill / hotspot plan begins at $25 month-to-month for 20GB. Eufy recommends the pay as you go $35 for 15GB AT&T knowledge plan. (You can’t use a T-Mobile SIM card within the Starlight cam, although it helps T-Mobile’s 4G bands.) The Eufy additionally works with these carriers within the UK. For any of those plans for both camera, you may get a reduction all the way down to as little as $5 should you’re an present buyer of the provider.
Eufy says the Starlight will use 60MB of mobile knowledge to stream 5 minutes of dwell, 2K video or roughly 500MB / month should you entry the dwell view 10 occasions each day for 10 seconds every and report 25 occasions for 10 seconds every. Arlo says the Go 2 will use between 700MB to 2GB month-to-month relying on the variety of movement triggers and size of recordings. The massive distinction right here is as a result of the Arlo uploads routinely to the cloud, whereas the Eufy solely makes use of knowledge while you entry the camera.
Eufy 4G Starlight versus Arlo Go 2: efficiency and options
The Eufy 4G Starlight captures a younger bull moose at a cabin in Alaska.
The Arlo Go 2’s daytime footage from the underside of the backyard in South Carolina.
The key function of any safety camera is video high quality. The Eufy edges the Arlo right here, delivering a clearer, crisper picture in daylight, with extra element within the background than the Arlo, which loses some readability additional out. The Eufy did an amazing job catching a younger bull moose in all his glory on the Alaska cabin, and the Arlo confirmed my 70-pound canine prowling across the yard clearly, though the rooster coop behind him was barely blown out.
Both cameras have coloration night time imaginative and prescient, and the Eufy has starlight night time imaginative and prescient, utilizing a starlight sensor to select up extra element within the darkness (which may embody coloration). The Arlo depends on activating the highlight for any coloration night time imaginative and prescient. The Eufy will also be set to activate the highlight at night time based mostly on movement, and each supply infrared black and white night time imaginative and prescient.
Unless you should see what coloration T-shirt an intruder has on, I discover the infrared night time imaginative and prescient, which each cameras have, to be higher for catching element at night time. In my testing, each cameras carried out superb at night time within the two comparable modes, with the Eufy being higher at capturing extra element and respectable distance, aided by its starlight sensor. I did have bother testing the Eufy’s starlight-only night time imaginative and prescient choice; on this mode (with no infrared LEDs or highlight), the image was very darkish and under no circumstances clear. However, there is no such thing as a full darkness in Alaska in summer time, and in my earlier expertise with starlight night time imaginative and prescient, it labored finest in true darkness.
Both report in 1080p HD, with the Eufy able to going as much as 2K, however you possibly can go for decrease within the app. If you’re on a restricted knowledge plan, you may wish to follow 1080p. Arlo has a extra spectacular digital zoom at 12 occasions, however it will get very pixelated in a short time, making that much less helpful than on Arlo’s 4K Wi-Fi cameras. Arlo has a barely wider discipline of view at 130 levels in comparison with Eufy’s 120, however this distinction isn’t very noticeable in apply.
The Arlo has significantly better two-way audio, utilizing full-duplex audio, which is like having a cellphone dialog, whereas the Eufy is barely half-duplex, which is like utilizing a walkie-talkie. This could be irritating should you’re making an attempt to have a dialog via the camera. Both had loud and clear audio whereas speaking or listening.
Both cameras suffered from a typical drawback with motion-activated, battery-powered cameras; they picked up movement late. The battery has to get up the camera as soon as the movement sensor is triggered. This meant quite a lot of my check movies have been of the again of my head as I walked away.
But they each delivered alerts of movement promptly, with wealthy notifications (I examined with iOS) that included a snapshot. On the Arlo, you possibly can long-press the notification and see a preview of the recording in addition to entry a shortcut to activate the siren or name 911. Eufy doesn’t supply this. But you solely get these options should you pay for the Arlo Secure subscription (for $3 a month with a three-month trial while you purchase the camera).
With an Arlo Secure subscription, you possibly can tailor your alerts to inform you solely about folks, animals, and / or automobiles reasonably than all movement. You may add exercise zones to focus the camera on particular areas. Eufy has folks detection and exercise zones without spending a dime however no animal or car alerts. Arlo Secure additionally provides a sensible e911 function (US-only) in order that in case you are calling from one other location, you’ll be related to emergency dispatch at your camera’s location — not yours. (You can solely have one tackle per subscription, so should you arrange the LTE camera someplace aside from your property, you’ll must pay for a second Arlo Secure subscription for this function.)
Eufy doesn’t supply any cloud storage service for the Starlight, and it doesn’t cost any charges for entry to its options. Instead, the app accesses footage straight from the camera. Eufy says its 8GB native storage can retailer as much as six months of occasions (based mostly on 15 “movement events” per day with every “event” lasting 15 seconds). I examined the camera for a month, and all of the movies have been nonetheless viewable within the app. I used to be additionally impressed with the pace of notifications for the camera and the benefit of pulling up the dwell view; there was little to no lag.
Arlo Secure allows you to retailer as much as 30 days’ value of movies within the cloud. Arlo makes use of AES encryption to safe recordings in transit to and from the Arlo camera, and the app requires two-factor authentication. The Go 2 does have a slot for a microSD card for native storage, so you possibly can report movies with out paying for Arlo Secure. But that footage can solely be considered by inserting the SD card into a pc, not within the Arlo app, that means you need to bodily be on the camera to see any footage it’s captured.
The drawback of no choice of any cloud storage is that if the Eufy camera have been destroyed to the purpose it may now not obtain an LTE connection, you wouldn’t be capable to view any earlier footage except you had already manually downloaded it to your cellphone’s camera roll from the Eufy app. At one level throughout testing, all of the clips disappeared from the Eufy app as a result of the preinstalled SIM had run out of information. When I topped up the information and the Starlight camera reconnected to the web, they reappeared.
Battery life was about the identical. Both cameras have 13,000mAh batteries on board. In three weeks of use, the Eufy was at 65 % — about 11 % every week and on observe for two-ish months. Eufy estimates it’ll final three months, however the camera was in a poor service space, which the app warned would scale back battery life. In my one week of testing, the Arlo was at 89 %, additionally 11 % every week. Arlo claims its camera has 4 months of battery life on 4G, however that didn’t maintain up in my exams.
The Arlo has a detachable battery, so you possibly can have a spare readily available (extras price $59.99). But, in case you are taking a look at putting in a mobile camera someplace distant, you’ll want to pair it with a photo voltaic panel to maintain it charged. Both firms promote suitable ones for $59.99. (The Eufy is usually on sale in a bundle for $249.99).
I examined the Eufy photo voltaic panel, which was easy to put in and comes with a weatherproof connector for the USB-C charging port, and it was capable of hold the camera near 100%. The Eufy camera costs utilizing a USB-C cable, whereas the Arlo makes use of the proprietary magnetic cable that its higher-end cameras use. You should buy an out of doors charging cable and energy adaptor for the Arlo for $49.99, however it makes use of the identical connection because the photo voltaic panel, so you possibly can’t use each directly.
For a camera chances are you’ll miss within the woods, some anti-theft options are necessary. Both have built-in GPS to trace the camera. The Eufy additionally has an Anti-Theft Detection Mode that can sound the alarm if the camera is moved, though that’s simply going to present the thief a headache. Arlo has a Theft Replacement Program that can exchange the camera if it’s stolen so long as you obtain the camera new, have an Arlo Secure plan, and file a police report.
Another necessary level of comparability is the apps. Here, Arlo’s expertise edges Eufy’s, primarily as a result of the Eufy app has one too many pop-up adverts, plus a complete tab dedicated to promoting you extra merchandise. The Arlo expertise is far cleaner. However, each work superb for viewing a livestream from the camera or recorded video. They each pull up the feed promptly after tapping on a notification, with the Eufy being barely sooner — because it doesn’t must undergo the cloud. Both even have a helpful Event (Eufy) / Library (Arlo) view the place you possibly can filter recordings by the kind of movement and the date of the recording.
Both apps even have good choices for fine-tuning movement detection and occasion recording lengths, plus choices for tweaking settings to avoid wasting battery life. An choice on each cameras allows you to schedule it to activate or off at a set time or based mostly on geo-locating your cellphone.
Eufy 4G Starlight versus Arlo Go 2: which do you have to purchase?
These are each superb cameras, and the liberty from hanging on to a weak Wi-Fi connection was liberating. I beloved lastly having the ability to get a dependable digital eye on the rooster coop on the backside of my backyard so I may be careful for the various issues that wish to eat my chickens. My in-laws have been very impressed with the standard of the Eufy camera, particularly in comparison with the mobile path cam they use to maintain tabs on their cabin, which has a slender discipline of view and low decision. If you could have a necessity for a non-Wi-Fi-dependent safety camera, both of those cameras can be a superb selection.
The Eufy 4G Starlight is cheaper to purchase and run (mobile knowledge plans apart). There can also be no month-to-month payment for cloud storage, sensible alerts, or exercise zones — Arlo costs $3 a month for these. The Eufy additionally has the next video high quality, higher night time imaginative and prescient, native storage, and on-device processing. So, you want this camera in case you are leery about storing your video on another person’s server. But it comes with the tradeoff that if the camera is destroyed or loses its knowledge connection, you possibly can’t entry any footage you haven’t manually downloaded. If that’s a situation that worries you — say you’re monitoring a cabin in an space with a wildfire threat — the Eufy’s local-only storage might provide you with pause.
The Wi-Fi radio within the Arlo additionally provides you extra flexibility than the Eufy’s cellular-only choice and means you should use LTE as a fallback. Arlo’s sensible alerts and interactive notifications present a greater monitoring expertise with fewer false alerts to verify, and e911 help could possibly be essential relying on the place you intend to make use of the camera. Arlo’s digital zoom can also be higher, and its two-way audio is far simpler to make use of.
Options outdoors of Eufy and Arlo are restricted. Reolink has a few mobile fashions, together with one which pans and tilts. But I haven’t examined any Reolink cameras, whereas I’ve spent just a few years testing each Arlo and Eufy’s cameras and ecosystems and am snug recommending each.
If you might be already invested in both camera safety ecosystem, I’d positively go along with the street already traveled. Bear in thoughts chances are you’ll must get a second Arlo Secure subscription for the Go 2 should you’re placing it in a unique location. If you aren’t including this to an present system and aren’t postpone by the subscription plan or cloud storage, the Arlo Go 2 is a wonderful selection. If these are deal-breakers for you, the Eufy 4G Starlight will match the invoice very nicely — simply keep in mind to maintain that mobile knowledge topped up.
Arlo Go 2 and Eufy 4G Starlight specs comparability
|Category||Eufy 4G Starlight||Arlo Go 2|
|Category||Eufy 4G Starlight||Arlo Go 2|
|Price with photo voltaic panel||$289.98||$309.98|
|Subscription payment||no||sure (from $3 / month)|
|Connectivity||4G LTE||4G LTE and 2.4GHz Wi-Fi|
|Highest decision||2K||1080p HD|
|Smart alerts||folks||folks / animals / automobiles ($)|
|Siren / highlight||sure||sure|
|Two-way audio||sure, half-duplex||sure, full-duplex|
|Weather score||IP67, -4 to 131 F||IP65, -4 to 113 F|
|Works with||Google Home / Amazon Alexa||Google Home / Amazon Alexa / IFTTT|
|*requires microSD card|
Created by Jennifer Pattison Tuohy
Photography by Jennifer Pattison Tuohy / The Verge