Arlo security cameras are some of our favorite smart home security options because they work with more platforms than the competition. We explore what platforms Arlo works with, how to set integrations up, and some things to try once everything's ready.
Arlo Compatibility: Alexa, Google, HomeKit, and More
What works with Arlo?
Video: A Quick Look at the Arlo Pro 4 Wireless Security Camera
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Amazon Alexa is the most popular smart home option on the market, so it makes sense for Arlo to offer compatibility with Echo smart speakers and Echo Show smart displays. The best way to use Alexa with Arlo is through an Echo Show, which can play a live video feed from your Arlo Essential Spotlight Camera with a quick tap or voice command.
How to hook up Arlo to Alexa
The Arlo Skill links your Arlo account to Alexa and works with every Arlo device.
- Download the Alexa app for your smartphone.
- Select the More tab on the menu bar.
- Choose Skills & Games from the menu and search for Arlo.
- Tap Enable to use.
- Put in your Arlo account details.
- After linking your account, you can assign locations and names for your cameras, which you use to interact with the cameras using voice commands.
You can also access the camera settings from the Alexa app, but there isn't an option to watch videos. So the Arlo app is essential for viewing videos on your phone.
Alexa voice commands for Arlo
"Alexa . . ." phrase
|Arm or disarm camera||"Arm [base station name]" "Disarm [base station name]"|
|Activate two-way audio on camera||"Talk to [camera name/location]" "Answer [camera name/location]"|
|Stop two-way audio or video stream||"Stop"|
|Show live video stream||"Show [camera name/location]"|
|Show most recent motion video||"Show the last motion detected by [camera name/location]"|
|Stop video stream||"Hide [camera name/location]"|
|Activate lights||"Turn on [camera name/location] light"|
|Change light color*||"Set [camera name/location] to [color]"|
*None of Arlo's current products support changing the light color exclusive to the discontinued Arlo Security Light.
Disarming your Arlo cameras with Alexa requires a four-digit Assistant PIN that you set up in the Arlo app. This feature is unique to Alexa.
Check out our Alexa guide to learn more.
Apple HomeKit is the built-in smart home option for iOS. Just like Alexa, you can view videos on a supported streaming device—an Apple TV in this case. The biggest catch with Arlo's HomeKit compatibility is that you need an Arlo SmartHub base station, even with stand-alone cameras like the Arlo Pro 4. This adds a lot to the price, especially when Alexa and Google are already compatible with iOS devices.
Still, the Apple Home app is a slick way to integrate your devices in one place without downloading extra apps on your iPhone.
How to add Arlo cameras to Apple HomeKit
You use the Apple Home app to add your Arlo devices, but the process is a bit different than other brands since you need a HomeKit setup code:
- Launch the Apple Home app after setting up your Arlo cameras and base station in the Arlo app.
- Choose + and Add Accessory from the menu.
- Use your phone to scan the HomeKit code on your base station—it's also in the manual.
- If you can't find the setup code, you can also link your base station to HomeKit from the Arlo app.
- Follow the instructions to add the device to your home.
Siri voice commands for Arlo
Unlike Alexa and Google, Apple doesn't have a list of Siri commands online to help you know what works. Still, we managed to find a few commands in Arlo's support articles that you can use.
"Hey Siri . . ." phrase
|Show live video stream||"Show me [camera name/location]"|
|Stop video stream||"Stop"|
Check out our HomeKit guide to learn more.
How to connect an Arlo camera to Google Home
To link Arlo with Google Assistant, you'll need to download the Google Home app, but the process is similar to Alexa's:
- Download the Google Home app.
- Hit the + icon in the top left corner.
- Select Set up device from the list—it should be the first item.
- Choose the Works with Google option and search for Arlo.
- Enter your Arlo account details to authorize the integration.
- Assign cameras to rooms, and you're good to go.
You can have the Google Home app send notifications from your cameras, but you still need the Arlo app to view videos on your phone.
Google voice commands for Arlo
"Hey Google . . ." phrase
|Arm or disarm camera||"Turn on [camera name/location] camera" "Turn off [camera name/location] camera"|
|Show live video stream||"Show [camera name/location] camera on [display]" "What's on [camera name/location]"|
|Stop video stream||"Stop [display]"|
|Activate lights||"Turn on [camera name/location] light"|
Check out our Google Assistant guide to learn more.
IFTTT is a hidden gem for maximizing smart home compatibility—it's an online automation service you can link with hundreds of other products, including Arlo. Most of these services aren't officially compatible with Arlo under normal circumstances, but IFTTT's specialty is bringing products together in surprising ways:
- Turn on lights: Turn on your Philips Hue smart lighting when your Arlo starts recording or detects motion if you want to deter intruders or light a path at night.
- Log data: Create a Google Docs spreadsheet to automatically log Arlo's battery life or motion events to help you plan when to charge or schedule your camera.
- Anticipate visitors: Automatically pause Spotify music streaming when Arlo spots movement, so you know when someone's coming up the front steps.
- Remember meetings: Activate Arlo Pro 4's spotlight when you have a Zoom meeting to attend because we all have days when we need an extra reminder.
Here's everything Arlo can do in an IFTTT applet.
Screenshot: John Carlsen, SafeWise
The biggest issue with IFTTT is that you can't create more than five custom applets (routines) without paying a monthly fee for IFTTT Pro or Pro+. This means free users need to scour the library of published applets in hopes of finding one that works perfectly.
Honestly, it's way easier to create a custom applet, but the limitations on the free plan aren't for everyone. IFTTT Pro+ is powerful but more useful for diehard hobbyists than the average user.
Check out our IFTTT guide to learn more.
Samsung SmartThings links your Arlo camera to other SmartThings-compatible devices in much the same way as IFTTT does. Unfortunately, SmartThings requires an Arlo base station to work, so we don't recommend it for stand-alone cameras like the Arlo Pro 4 unless you want to pay a premium.
Still, it's a great option for folks with an Arlo hub and SmartThings gear to add some cameras into the mix. We like the idea of linking Arlo cameras with contact sensors to record whenever someone opens the front door. Or you could try a siren for something more startling.
Once you link your Arlo account to SmartThings, you can use every Arlo device (except the Arlo Audio Doorbell and Arlo Go) in smart home routines via the SmartThings app. We recommend following Arlo's instructions for linking to SmartThings for the smoothest transition.
This integration has some quirks—you control almost everything through the SmartThings app while the Arlo app stays in SmartThings Mode. The only Arlo setting you can't change in SmartThings is the motion sensitivity of your cameras, and you'll need the Arlo app for full access to your library of recordings.
As with many smart home integrations, using Arlo with SmartThings isn't always foolproof. We came across multiple reports of cameras not working correctly but haven't had a chance to test Arlo with SmartThings yet. We think SmartThings has more potential than other smart home platforms, so it's worth trying out if you want richer options than viewing a smart security camera on an Echo or Nest Hub.
Check out our SmartThings review to learn more.
Can Alexa arm Arlo?
Yes, but you have to set up the Assistant PIN feature first.
Will Arlo Pro 4 work with an old base station?
All wireless Arlo cameras (including Arlo Pro 4) are compatible with the following base station models:
The VMB3000 and VMB3500 base stations aren't compatible with newer Arlo cameras.
How do I connect my Arlo camera without a base station?
Newer Arlo cameras (except the Arlo Ultra 2) connect directly to Wi-Fi and don't require a base station unless you want local video storage, improved battery life, and compatibility with Apple HomeKit and Samsung SmartThings. Older cameras still need a base station and usually include it in a starter kit.
Does Arlo work with Matter
While Arlo is part of the Matter smart home standard, it doesn't have specific compatibility yet.
Does Arlo make a home security system?
Arlo just announced a security system at CES 2022 that uses all-in-one sensors to detect motion, open windows, light, temperature, and smoke alarm sirens. There's no specific release date yet.
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