Arlo vs. Ring—which home security system should you buy?

In this article, we're exploring a head-to-head battle of Arlo vs. Ring. These giant companies are renowned for creating some of the best-in-the-business smart home cameras to help you feel safer while you're at home and monitor your property while you're away. Let's explore some key considerations to make when deciding between the two.

Arlo vs. Ring—which home security system should you buy?
Arlo Vs. Ring home security systems

Looking for a new home surveillance system? The tech market is bursting with high-end cameras with integrated smart features that not only improve your home safety while you’re indoors and MIA but can make mundane tasks—like communicating with a delivery driver—much more suited to a busy lifestyle.

With such a plethora of home security systems to choose from, it’s hard to decipher what product or brand to invest your money and your family’s safety in. We’re here to break down the main features to consider during the buying process so you feel less overwhelmed. The two most notorious brands for smart features and optimal safety are Arlo and Ring, and we’ll be unraveling an in-depth comparison of the top factors for each of the brands’ extensive range of home security cameras.

Ring Floodlight Siren deterring robbers

Pricing and range—Winner: Ring

How much you pay upfront and monthly can be a determining factor into which brand you invest your time in. If you feel uneasy about being alone in your home or regularly leave your property unattended when you’re on vacation, forking out a large sum won’t be too hindering. Looking at the website for both brands, Ring’s cheapest security camera that’s compatible with outdoor use costs $99.99 (Stick Up Cam Battery). Alternatively, Arlo’s cheapest outdoor camera also costs $99.99 (Arlo Essential).

Taking into consideration both indoor and outdoor cameras, the range of devices can make a big difference for the Arlo vs. Ring debate. A wider choice of products to choose from can make a big difference if you have specific features in mind. Arlo’s website boasts six cameras whereas Ring offers more than six with multiple variations of security cameras, eg. Spotlight Cam Battery and Spotlight Cam Solar.

Subscription plans—Winner: Arlo

To experience the most benefits from your home security system, you might need a monthly subscription plan. Fortunately, both brands feature a free plan. But you’ll want to upgrade to get more storage as well as advanced features. For Arlo’s free plan, you’ll receive live video streaming, and notifications. On the other hand, Ring’s free plan is much more generous. It includes instant notifications, live video streaming, two-way talk, and lifetime theft protection.

Arlo vs. Ring—which home security system should you buy?
Arlo Essential Indoor Camera on a table

Plans available

For users who want more protection and features, Ring offers two additional plans: Basic ($3/month for one device) and Plus ($10/month for all devices). Note that Ring’s website doesn’t specify how many devices this Plus plan can hold, so it could be an unlimited amount but this is slightly ambiguous. Arlo also offers two addition plans: Premier ($2.99/month for one device) and Elite ($4.99/month for one camera or $14.99/month for five cameras).

At a glance, the subscription prices between the two brands aren’t much different. Although Arlo’s Elite plan has a vast difference between $4.99 and $14.99, leaving you in an awkward spot if you only want a monthly subscription plan for two cameras, for example.

Most importantly, what features do you get for your money for both brand’s most superior plans? Most of the specifications for both brands are the same, except a handful. One essential addition to a home security system is the storage plan. If you run out of memory, you simply can’t save important data, which could later pose some issues. Ring promises to save the footage for up to 60 days whereas Arlo offers half the Cloud storage.

But don’t dismiss Arlo’s Elite plan just yet, because for $4.99 for one single camera, you’ll get access to the brand’s e911 Emergency Call Service—an impressive feature where the brand knows to call responders closest to your home and can even provide your location before you tell the responder. This impressive feature can make a huge difference between life and death, which makes it beneficial to every person.

Arlo Essential Indoor Camera promotional video

Battery life—Winner: Ring

Arlo’s outdoor security camera range boasts a six-month battery life between charges. Alternatively, Ring claims that its wireless camera range offers up to 12 months’ battery life, though this can depend on the number of activations. Both brands feature solar versions for less frequent recharging.

App features and design—Winner: Arlo

With live monitoring and much more features from the apps, you’ll need a user-friendly design that’s not too confusing to navigate.

Via the app, Ring allows you to get crime alerts from neighbors. And the app is also where you’ll receive notifications when the camera senses motion—which could be in the specific zones that you set. Via the app, you can see and speak to visitors. Or choose to check in to monitor how the interior and exterior of your home is in real-time. Furthermore, Ring connects with Amazon Alexa, but it doesn’t integrate with Apple HomeKit.

On the other hand, Arlo provides rich notifications along with image previews and is compatible with HomeKit integration and the Apple Watch app. Arlo even lets you take immediate action with alerts without having to unlock your phone.

Choosing the best home security system for you boils down to several factors: price, battery life, app usability, smart features, image and video quality, and more. Don’t forget that both brands also offer a range of smart doorbells. These doorbells can accompany your cameras, and you can even leave prerecorded messages for delivery people or guests.

Arlo vs. Ring—which home security system should you buy?
Ring Indoor Cam facing forwards

Do you have any insight you’d like to share on the Arlo vs. Ring debate? Perhaps you’re an owner of one of the brands’ products. Let us know your favorites, or recommendations, in the comments.

Meet Amy Poole

Amy Poole is an Editor and Writer at Gadget Flow. When she's not indulged in everything gadget-related, she enjoys spending time with her dog, Rosie, and keeping fit.
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