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Arlo today announced the availability of the Essential Indoor Camera, which was first unveiled at CES. Focused on privacy, the Essential Indoor Camera has an automated privacy shield that's designed to cover the lens when needed.

arlo-indoor-essential-camera.jpg

Camera owners can activate the privacy lens using the Arlo app, preventing it from recording when people are home. When in "disarm" mode, the Essential Camera is unable to record and motion and audio detection is disabled. The camera needs to be put into an active mode to turn off the privacy shield, which can be done by opening a livestream view or changing the camera to "arm" mode.

The Essential Indoor Camera is priced at $99.99 and offers 1080p HD video, a 130-degree field of view, motion and audio detection, night vision, support for two-way conversations, and a built-in siren for emergencies. The siren feature can be triggered automatically from motion or audio detection, or activated through the Arlo app to deter would-be intruders.

HomeKit integration is not available for the Essential Indoor Camera at this time. Arlo said that it is working to have HomeKit available on products, but there are no updates on the Essential Indoor Camera. With no HomeKit availability, the camera can be controlled through the Arlo app.

The Essential Indoor Camera can be purchased from the Arlo website or from Amazon for $99.99.

Article Link: Arlo Releases Privacy-Focused $99 Essential Indoor Camera
 

metabob

macrumors member
Nov 2, 2016
44
55
Finland
I don't know…. what's the use case here? I like my cameras to 100% reliably record everything in high detail (1080p barely cuts it), and just make damn sure the videos are not available to anyone but me. I'd hate to have my house robbed, but the cameras didn't record anything because somebody decided to disarm them for whatever reason. Someone "being home" is a very stupid reason to stop recording.
 

4jasontv

Suspended
Jul 31, 2011
4,987
5,926
Our new privacy-focused webcam lets you control when you record to our personal servers. And with our new API you will easily be able to enable or disable recording* with Alexa or OK Google. Forgot to share that special moment? No worries, our integrated Facebook ensures that an archived copy of all videos is attached to your Instagram account.

* recordings include all user-downloadable footage. When recording is disabled all video becomes the property of Arlo.
 

beanbaguk

macrumors 6502a
Mar 19, 2014
929
1,464
Europe
I get outdoor cameras. I have those.

I get a nursery camera to keep an eye on the baby. I have one of those too.

In a home where an elderly person lives and needs to be monitored for safety (my father in law with early dementia for example. We set one up in the kitchen, living room and all entrances to ensure his safety, but never in his bedroom or private areas).

But what is it with indoor cameras generically around the home. I used to have a couple and then I realised it stifles your privacy! I thought it would be a great way to keep an eye on the dog. But the dog doesn't give a damn about a camera and nor does it respond to my voice through the speaker.

And then those moments with your partner. (Don't tell me you've not had them). Knowing there is a camera staring at you. Do you want that?

Weird.
 
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icanhazmac

macrumors 6502a
Apr 11, 2018
975
2,988

Quite happy with this at $51.99 and Home Kit Secure Video compatible! No privacy screen but we only use it when going away for days at a time. Only downside is that for HKSV the resolution is cut to 1080.
 

btbeme

macrumors 6502
Jul 29, 2010
255
412

Quite happy with this at $51.99 and Home Kit Secure Video compatible! No privacy screen but we only use it when going away for days at a time. Only downside is that for HKSV the resolution is cut to 1080.
I have deployed several dozen Eufy Indoor cams, both the pan/tilt and the stationary, for folks who want to keep tabs on things. They are rock-solid, less than half the price of this new Arlo, and fully HomeKit capable. They are very simple to set up and so far I have zero complaint from anyone I have helped or recommended them to.

This last month, I used one running off a power bank to help some new neighbors who wanted to watch their house being built. I simply cut a window out of a box and put the cam in with the battery (for some minor weather protection), put the box outside where it had a view of the construction, and shared that particular cam with my new neighbors, and they were thrilled beyond measure.
 

adamdport

macrumors member
Mar 19, 2011
60
291
If someone is able to hack your camera I’m sure they can figure out good to open the lenses. This is pointless
I guess it's peace of mind seeing something physically cover the lens? I've always shared your sentiment regarding Apple's "recording" lights next to the lens—I feel like THAT could be bypassed with software, but a physical piece of plastic covering the lens can't.
 
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dmylrea

macrumors 68040
Sep 27, 2005
3,599
4,790
I don't know…. what's the use case here? I like my cameras to 100% reliably record everything in high detail (1080p barely cuts it), and just make damn sure the videos are not available to anyone but me. I'd hate to have my house robbed, but the cameras didn't record anything because somebody decided to disarm them for whatever reason. Someone "being home" is a very stupid reason to stop recording.
Actually, "being home" is a perfectly good reason to stop recording. I have 4 Eufy 2K Indoor cams ($35 each) and they are HomeKit enabled. Using my iPhone as the location reference, I don't have to turn on or off the "being home" functionality. When I leave, the cams that record indoors start recording and notifying. When I get back home, they turn off (stop streaming/recording and notifying). The cams that point outdoors are always on and recording.

It's totally annoying to be notified every time an indoor cam senses motion or person so having them OFF when home makes perfect sense.

I would rather have location awareness over some software enabled "privacy shield". There's no tricking the camera that I am home. Only my iPhone's location can do that.
 
Last edited:

munpip214

macrumors 6502
Feb 21, 2011
429
1,126
+1 for Eufy indoor 2k. Only thing missing is 2-way audio, but $40 (or less on sale) is pretty hard to beat. Also, ecobee cam, also HSV compatible is now only $100 (maybe still on sale for $80)
 

foobarbaz

macrumors 6502a
Nov 29, 2007
652
1,001
I don't know…. what's the use case here? I like my cameras to 100% reliably record everything in high detail (1080p barely cuts it), and just make damn sure the videos are not available to anyone but me. I'd hate to have my house robbed, but the cameras didn't record anything because somebody decided to disarm them for whatever reason. Someone "being home" is a very stupid reason to stop recording.
The use case is knowing whether you're being recorded or not.

Imagine renting a remote guest house and the owner (obviously) having cameras to check on the property. Would you feel good about the cameras pointing at you for the entire vacation? :)

The physical cover makes it very clear your actions stay private and the owner can still check for damage when you leave.

Or when you're visiting friends, wouldn't you feel uneasy having a security camera pointing right at you, even if you assume it's turned off?
 

metabob

macrumors member
Nov 2, 2016
44
55
Finland
Privacy focused but without HomeKit secure video? Lol well the price point is attractive
Actually, "being home" is a perfectly good reason to stop recording. I have 4 Eufy 2K Indoor cams ($35 each) and they are HomeKit enabled. Using my iPhone as the location reference, I don't have to turn on or off the "being home" functionality. When I leave, the cams that record indoors start recording and notifying. When I get back home, they turn off (stop streaming/recording and notifying). The cams that point outdoors are always on and recording.

It's totally annoying to be notified every time an indoor cam senses motion or person so having them OFF when home makes perfect sense.

I would rather have location awareness over some software enabled "privacy shield". There's no tricking the camera that I am home. Only my iPhone's location can do that.
Sure, don’t send notifications when someone is home. But don’t disable recording.
 

Marli

macrumors 6502
Apr 9, 2011
359
252
I have a heap of Arlo product. Its rubbish, and their cloud service is even more rubbish.. I also have Ring products side by side.. a far better thought out product. faster, cheaper, more reliable.
 

josebus

macrumors newbie
Apr 11, 2019
16
33
18.404162,-66.055404
I have a heap of Arlo product. Its rubbish, and their cloud service is even more rubbish.. I also have Ring products side by side.. a far better thought out product. faster, cheaper, more reliable.
I agree with you, I am extremely dissatisfied with my Arlo cameras and Doorbell. Their cloud service is a joke. If I'm out of the house and someone rings the doorbell, video always fails to load. It is very slow.

Looking to replace them with the new Logitech doorbell and cameras that have full HKSV support.
 

BenTrovato

macrumors 68030
Jun 29, 2012
2,975
2,079
Canada
I get outdoor cameras. I have those.

I get a nursery camera to keep an eye on the baby. I have one of those too.

In a home where an elderly person lives and needs to be monitored for safety (my father in law with early dementia for example. We set one up in the kitchen, living room and all entrances to ensure his safety, but never in his bedroom or private areas).

But what is it with indoor cameras generically around the home. I used to have a couple and then I realised it stifles your privacy! I thought it would be a great way to keep an eye on the dog. But the dog doesn't give a damn about a camera and nor does it respond to my voice through the speaker.

And then those moments with your partner. (Don't tell me you've not had them). Knowing there is a camera staring at you. Do you want that?

Weird.

I think it comes down to what privacy means to every individual and that needle continues to move. The very headline "Privacy focused camera" .. it's an oxymoron.
 
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hagar

macrumors 65816
Jan 19, 2008
1,233
2,684
I will never buy anything from Arlo. Our Arlo Baby cam is a horribly frustrating product. Huge delays when opening the video stream, non-stop push notifications telling the baby cries or makes a sound, unreliable wifi connection, non-existent support, temperature and air quality sensors produce incorrect readings, etc.
 

alexandr

macrumors 68040
Nov 11, 2005
3,110
5,129
11201-121099
I don't know…. what's the use case here? I like my cameras to 100% reliably record everything in high detail (1080p barely cuts it), and just make damn sure the videos are not available to anyone but me. I'd hate to have my house robbed, but the cameras didn't record anything because somebody decided to disarm them for whatever reason. Someone "being home" is a very stupid reason to stop recording.
what's the big deal? you just tell the burglar(s) — "hold on one sec, i need to turn my security cameras back on."
problem solved and you are welcome!
 
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