The Arlo Doorbell and Chime are sold separately but are meant to work together with the addition of an Arlo wire-free camera and the Arlo base station that comes with it. Everything ties into the free Arlo smartphone app. Setup is as easy as plugging them in and using the app to identify and connect them all together. If you already have an investment in Arlo cameras, the Doorbell and Chime make a handy addition that works well.
Price: Arlo Doorbell $129; Arlo Chime $99
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Doorbells that let you talk to and see your visitors are rapidly becoming a must-have feature of any DIY smart home. Arlo has come to the party with a doorbell and chime that work via smartphone app and also tie in with its wire-free cameras.
We tried out a Doorbell and Chime courtesy of Arlo with an existing wire-free camera.
Plug and play
Everything ties into the free Arlo smartphone app. If you have a camera in place, as we did, adding Arlo's smart doorbell ($129) and chime ($99) is as easy as plugging them in and using the app to identify and connect them all together. We found it only took around 15 minutes to set up, including replacing the existing battery doorbell.
As long as you have your smartphone with you, you can answer the door
As long as you have your smartphone with you, you can answer the door (at least by voice). It doesn't matter if you're in another room, upstairs, in the backyard, out shopping, at the office or even away on holidays.
If you're at home, the chime has good volume (80+ decibels), loud enough to easily be heard in a typical three- or four-bedroom home. A nice feature is that you can enable silent mode to disable sounds and alerts if required, such as when you want to take a nap.
The doorbell is powered by two AA-size batteries and attaches easily to a wall or door with a couple of screws and no wires needed. Arlo says the batteries should last up to a year.
The chime unit plugs into a wall socket inside the home. Both are then paired using the smartphone app, which can optionally add an Arlo camera as well.
The modular design allows you to place the Doorbell, Chime and camera independently of each other, anywhere you like.
Volume control and options for melodies can be adjusted via the free Arlo app. You can also wire up the Arlo Audio Doorbell to mechanical or electronic doorbells, if they operate on AC current at 8-24 volts.
You can talk to a visitor live via the doorbell or reply with a pre-recorded message if it's not not convenient for you to talk.
Arlo also has a new smart detection system called Arlo Smart, which can detect people and even packages left for you at your door. The subscription-based service is per-camera starting at $3.99 per month, or via annual subscription which can work out cheaper over time for multiple cameras.
As with most DIY home security setups, you'll get more out of the system if you stick with the one brand. If you haven't yet started your home monitoring kit, it's a good idea to look ahead at the range of options you can get with a particular system and the cost to maintain and expand it. If you already have an investment in Arlo cameras, the Doorbell and Chime are easy-to-use additions.
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