Blink vs. Arlo Security Cameras

We've tested Arlo and Blink cameras—now it's time for a head-to-head comparison.
Best video quality
  • pro
    2K and 4K video available
  • pro
    Excellent cloud storage
  • pro
    Large camera selection
Best for budgets
  • con
    1080p video on all models
  • pro
    Affordable cloud storage
  • con
    Small camera selection

It's hard to find two security camera philosophies that are more different than Arlo and Blink. Arlo's pursuit of technical excellence is a huge departure from the minimalist approach that makes Blink's cameras so affordable. Arlo can easily claim victory for best features, but Blink's affordability and strength in numbers help even the odds.

There's no right answer when the differences are so clear, so your personal preferences and budget can tip the scales to either contender. Find out if Arlo or Blink is the better bet.



Compare Blink vs. Arlo cameras

Product
Camera type
Price
Video resolution
Field of view
Standout feature
Learn more
Indoor1080p110ºLow price
Indoor1080p130ºPrivacy shield
Outdoor1080p110ºLong battery life
Outdoor1440p (2K)160ºSmart home compatibility
Floodlight1080p110ºAdjustable floodlights
Floodlight1440p (2K)160ºWire-free floodlight
Doorbell1080p135ºLow price
Doorbell1536p180ºUltra-wide field of view

Amazon.com price as of post date. Read full disclaimer.

Blink vs. Arlo cameras similarities

Most modern security cameras share the same DNA when it comes to basic features, video storage, and installation, so there's bound to be some overlap between Arlo and Blink. Here's a quick rundown of their similar features:

  • Mobile app: Although Arlo cameras have more features than Blink, both mobile apps offer easy settings, navigation, and live video viewing.
  • Cloud storage: The cloud video storage plans of Blink and Arlo each start at $3 a month for a base plan that covers a single camera and $10 a month for unlimited cameras. While Blink offers 60 days of video storage compared to Arlo's 30 days, we don't think it makes much difference since most folks will download important or interesting videos within a few days. Arlo sells a third plan for $15 a month, but this is mainly for 4K video and e911 services, which Blink doesn't offer.
  • Local storage: Arlo and Blink both have the option for local video storage if you buy a camera that uses a base station. While some cameras come with base stations, like the Blink Outdoor and Arlo Ultra 2, you need to purchase one separately to add local storage to standalone cameras. The base stations cost as much as the Blink Mini and Arlo Pro 4—around $35 and $200, respectively.
  • Installation: Most Blink and Arlo cameras use batteries, so installation is essentially the same: install your mounting hardware before attaching the camera. The main difference is that Arlo sells multiple options to mount the camera with a screw or magnetically.

Blink vs. Arlo cameras differences

Beyond the basics, there's a wide canyon between Blink and Arlo's pricing, paid features, and smart home compatibility. While their video quality has some stark technical differences, both brands capture footage well enough for everyday security. Let's dig in to see how they stack up:

  • Camera pricing: Blink's most expensive camera costs as much as Arlo's cheapest. We didn't include the Blink Floodlight Camera because it's basically an accessory for the Blink Outdoor. Still, most Blink cameras cost less than half as much as their Arlo equivalents.
  • Video quality: We have nothing against Blink's 1080p video resolution, but it's nice that Arlo offers more quality with 2K and 4K cameras. Arlo's video looks better, but Blink's is sufficient for most people.
  • Paid features: Paying for a subscription nets you different benefits with Blink than with Arlo. Arlo has a clear advantage, with its Arlo Secure plans adding smart motion detection, interactive notifications with an animated preview of your video, and the option to call for help on every notification. Blink strikes gold in one area: it includes a lifetime warranty for all cameras on the Blink Plus Plan. Arlo's warranty lasts one year—even with a paid subscription.
  • Smart home: Blink is only compatible with Amazon Alexa and IFTTT, a far cry from Arlo's support of every major smart home platform.

Arlo: Best video quality

Arlo security cameras produce some of the best video quality on the market—it was one of the first brands to sell cameras with 2K and 4K resolutions. Our testing experiences with the Arlo Pro 4 and Arlo Pro 3 Floodlight yielded excellent video clarity that outperforms Blink.

Once you factor in Arlo's stellar smart motion detection and smart home compatibility, it's hard for Blink to keep up. Still, you'll pay a pretty penny for Arlo, so your home security camera budget might be the top factor.

Arlo cameras pros and cons

pro
Pros
pro 2K and 4K video available
pro Best smart home integration in a security camera
pro Larger camera selection than Blink
pro Easy to install
pro Tons of battery-powered options
con
Cons
con Pricey local video storage upgrade
con Pricey 4K models
con Required base station for some models

Compare Arlo Secure plans

Arlo plan
Price
Number of cameras
Cloud storage
Basic features
Advanced features
e911 emergency calls
Learn more
5None
Icon Yes  LightYes
None
Icon No  LightNo
130 days
Icon Yes  LightYes
All
Icon No  LightNo
Unlimited30 days
Icon Yes  LightYes
All
Icon No  LightNo
Unlimited30 days
Icon Yes  LightYes
All
Icon Yes  LightYes

Info current as of post date. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

Bell
Arlo's e911 service

E911 gives you access to the dispatcher closest to your home instead of calling the one near your location. This is convenient for vacations but isn't a substitute for professional security monitoring. While Arlo's E911 service is a definite advantage over Blink, the high monthly fees aren't for everyone.

Arlo smart motion detection

Smart motion detection is one of the best security camera features, and we think Arlo's among the best—second only to Google Nest cameras. Arlo's cameras can distinguish between people, animals, packages, and vehicles, which helps you know what the camera sees without opening the app.

While smart detection isn't 100% accurate on any camera, it saves time—it helps keep the dog from triggering a notification when you let them out into the yard—provided you turn off animal notifications. In contrast, Blink doesn't have any ability to identify what's on video and sends a motion alert every time.

The only drawback of Arlo's smart detection is that you must pay a monthly fee to use it, which is why Nest's lighter restrictions ultimately take the top spot.

Arlo smart home compatibility

Arlo's smart home compatibility is on another level compared to rival security cameras—including Blink. It supports no less than five platforms compared to Blink's two:

While none of Arlo's cameras supports all of these platforms out of the box, smart hubs, and smart speakers—at least without a base station—we're glad that the company caters to all sorts of people instead of locking itself into a single ecosystem.

Arlo camera selection

While Arlo doesn't boast the 20 models of Blink's bigger sibling, Ring, its current lineup clocks in at eight models—nearly twice as many as Blink. Let's uncover how each Arlo camera compares to its Blink rival.

Arlo security cameras with direct Blink competition

Arlo Essential Indoor

Arlo Essential Indoor (about $100) might be the bottom rung on Arlo's pricing ladder, but it costs $20 more than the Blink Indoor and almost three times as much as the Blink Mini. This is a wired security camera like the Blink Mini, but it comes with a clever privacy shield. The shield hides the lens when the camera's off and only opens using a password.

Arlo Essential Spotlight XL

Arlo Essential Spotlight (about $130) is fairly close to the Blink Outdoor in specs and price but includes a wider field of view and a bright spotlight for color night vision. Still, its battery life isn't as good as Blink's, even if you spring for the XL version (about $150), which lasts up to a year.

Arlo Pro 4

Arlo Pro 4 (about $200) is our favorite Arlo security camera because it offers higher video resolution without costing too much, like the excessive Arlo Ultra 2. Plus, Arlo Pro 4's 160º field of view excels outdoors by covering more area than Arlo's cheaper cameras and any of Blink's cameras.

Arlo Pro 3 Floodlight

Arlo Pro 3 Floodlight Camera (about $250) is our favorite floodlight camera and is surprisingly similar to Blink's. Both cameras run on batteries, which gives them weaker lighting than wired models, but Arlo's the brighter option. It also works with an optional power cord or solar panel, which you won't find on Blink.

Arlo security cameras without Blink counterparts

If you want an Arlo camera with unique features that Blink doesn't have, the Go 2 and Ultra 2 are good examples.

Arlo Go 2 LTE camera

Arlo Go 2 (about $250) uses Wi-Fi and an LTE cellular radio to connect to the internet. This means you can install it anywhere with a strong enough cellular signal. It even works with Arlo's solar panel, so it's great for off-grid living without continuous electricity. Still, it has higher ongoing costs than other Arlo cameras because you must pay for cellular service and an Arlo Secure plan for the best results.

Arlo Ultra 2 camera

Arlo Ultra 2 (about $600) proves that the world isn't quite ready for 4K wireless security cameras. It's overly expensive and is the only Arlo camera that requires Arlo's $15 monthly plan since other Alro plans don't support 4K video. We're perfectly happy with Arlo Pro 4 until the company can figure out a more affordable 4K option.

If you want to learn more, we dig deeper in our Arlo camera reviews.

Arlo video doorbells

Arlo Essential Wired Video Doorbell

Arlo Essential Wired Doorbell (about $150) costs three times as much as the Blink Video Doorbell but doesn't have a battery-powered option. Still, its 180º field of view is excellent for eliminating blind spots on the sides of the camera. Plus, you can live view video without a base station—Blink struggles if you don't spend the extra $35 on a Sync Module.

Arlo Essential Wireless Video Doorbell

Arlo Essential Wireless Doorbell (about $200) builds on the wired version by adding a battery power option, which matches the Blink Video Doorbell. It lags behind Blink on local video storage options since the required Arlo Smart Hub costs as much as the doorbell.

Learn more in our Arlo doorbell review.

Video: A Quick Look at the Arlo Pro 4

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Read our full Arlo Pro 4 review.

Blink: Best for budgets

Blink's affordability has always been its biggest strength. For example, the Blink Mini is a great option for most folks because it doesn't feel cheap, even if it lacks features like smart motion detection and broad smart home compatibility. Even Blink's cloud storage holds up to pricier brands like Arlo and Ring. Overall, it's a great way to save a ton of cash when buying multiple security cameras for your home.

Blink cameras pros and cons

pro
Pros
pro Inexpensive cameras
pro Long battery life in wire-free models
pro Motion alerts
pro Local video storage
pro Affordable cloud storage
con
Cons
con Limited camera selection
con Fewer wired power options
con Limited smart motion detection features
con Local storage requires Sync Module 2

Compare Blink Subscription plans

Blink plan
Price
Number of cameras
Cloud storage
Motion alerts
Extended warranty
Learn more
UnlimitedNone
Icon Yes  LightYes
1 yr.
160 days
Icon Yes  LightYes
1 yr.
Unlimited60 days
Icon Yes  LightYes
Lifetime

Amazon.com price as of post date. Read full disclaimer.

Blink battery life

When it comes to battery life, Blink is the top performer among security cameras: an astounding two years. While no security camera can reach its lab-rated battery life during everyday use, Blink's still ahead of the competition.

It achieves such a long battery life by cutting out a lot of features. The cameras record only when there's motion and if you manually turn them on during a live view. You'll also see shorter video clips in general. Lastly, Blink's wireless cameras come with a base station that handles the internet connection to save even more juice.

Blink also stands out because it doesn't use expensive proprietary battery packs—just standard AA batteries. These batteries are cheap—even the rechargeable versions.

Blink camera selection

Blink's camera selection may be smaller than Arlo's, but it still covers all the basics: indoor, outdoor, wired, wireless, doorbell, and floodlight cameras. Here's a quick overview:

Blink security cameras

Blink Mini indoor security camera

Blink Mini (about $35) is one of the most affordable security cameras on the market and costs around $65 less than the Arlo Essential Indoor. While both cameras sport 1080p video resolution, Blink's 110º field of view is narrower, so it's not as useful in large rooms as Arlo.

Blink Indoor product image

Blink Indoor (about $80) is one of the few wire-free indoor cameras available. We like that you can install it anywhere inside your home without a restrictive power cord or buying a wireless outdoor camera.

Blink Outdoor security camera

Blink Outdoor (about $100) has two advantages over Arlo's battery-powered cameras: battery life and local storage. The Blink Outdoor's batteries last up to two years—twice as long as Arlo's best battery life. We love that this camera comes with a Sync Module 2, so you can store video on a USB stick. Still, it lacks the smart detection and spotlights of Arlo's wire-free security cameras.

Blink Floodlight Camera

Blink Floodlight Camera (about $140) is a Blink Outdoor attached to two LED floodlights. It's almost half the price of the Arlo floodlight camera, but its light maxes out at 700 lumens compared to Arlo's 2,000 lumens. It doesn't work with a power cord, so you'll need to swap out the batteries when they die.

Blink video doorbell

Blink Video Doorbell (about $50) is the cheapest video doorbell around, but that comes with some heavy restrictions. While the battery-only mode is usable, we found it didn't allow for live viewing. We highly recommend using Blink Video Doorbell with a wired power source or Sync Module to unlock its best features. But that price makes you reconsider spending three or four times as much for Arlo's doorbells.

Learn more about these budget cameras in our full Blink cameras review.

Winner: Arlo bests Blink in almost every way

It doesn't take an archaeologist to uncover the best features of Arlo and Blink, but your motivation might come down to how much money's in your royal treasury bank account. Arlo's technological prowess is undeniable, but there's nothing wrong with buying six Blink Minis instead of a single Arlo Pro 4.

Arlo Pro 4: Excellent 2K video quality with smart motion detection to keep notification spam at bay

Blink Mini: Budget indoor security camera with great video quality and a cheap local storage option

How we decided: Blink vs. Arlo security cameras

Blink Mini and pill bottle

Image: SafeWise. 

Although we haven't exhaustively tested every camera from Arlo and Blink, we have enough hands-on experience to compare both brands on their merits. We supplemented our testing by researching customer reviews, customer support, and product listings for hidden nuggets.

We highlight the most relevant security cameras and video doorbells so you can get a general idea of how everything compares on pricing, performance, and features. Learn more about how we test and review products in our full methodology.

Related articles on SafeWise


Disclaimer

Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on Amazon at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product. Safewise.com utilizes paid Amazon links.

Certain content that appears on this site comes from Amazon. This content is provided "as is" and is subject to change or removal at any time.

†Google, Google Nest, Google Assistant, and other related marks are trademarks of Google LLC.

John Carlsen
Written by
John Carlsen
John is a technology journalist specializing in smart home devices, security cameras, and home security systems. He has over nine years of experience researching, testing, and reviewing the latest tech—he was the Smart Home Editor for Top Ten Reviews and wrote for ASecureLife before joining SafeWise as a Staff Writer in 2020. John holds a Bachelor's degree in Communications, Journalism emphasis from Utah Valley University. In his spare time, he enjoys hiking, photography, cooking, and starting countless DIY projects he has yet to complete.

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