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Arlo Pro 4 Spotlight Turns In Ample Light Conditions

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bloodyrose
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About 1 week ago I purchased and installed 5 Arlo Pro 4 cameras to replace EOL Arlo cameras in my store. The cameras are all have Video Low Light Settings configured as follows:

 

  • Spotlight: On
  • Color: On
  • Behavior: Constant
  • Brightness: 100%
  • Night Vision: On

After installing the cameras they behaved as expected. When all the lights were turned on in the store the spotlight did not activate when motion was detected. When the lights were turned off or when they were dimmed to 50% or less the spotlights would activate when motion was detected.

 

On Weds, June 21, the behavior changed for 3 of 5 cameras. Now, when the lights are on the spotlight is activated when motion is detected for 3 of the 5 cameras. My customers and I are finding it considerably annoying having the lights turn on whenever they walk past the cameras.

 

Chat support gave me instructions to enable/disable the spotlight and to adjust the brightness. Neither of these address the issue of the spotlight turning on when motion is detected when all the lights are on in my store when it did not do so for almost a week prior under the same conditions.

 

A follow-up email from support asked me to update my case. After reading the case notes, the original chat support agent did not tell Arlo Level Two Support the correct details of my problem. I reported the problem to chat support as I described above. The chat support agent relayed the following INCORRECT information to Arlo Level Two Support:

 

( 1m 45s ) Visitor: Customer reporting that spotlight not working as expected. Customer would like it turned On in low light when the motion is detected.

 

Why would the behavior of the camera change all of a sudden? How do I make it so that the spotlight is only triggered in low light conditions instead of at all times - daylight, bright light and low light?

 

Also, I thought that one way to solve this was to set a rule so that the spotlight is only enabled when a certain Mode  is selected? Level one support told me that this was possible but I cannot find it.

 

Device Info (all 5 devices, including the problem devices):

Model: Arlo Pro 4

Hardware: H4

Firmware:  1.080.19.2_40_a462be1

 

8 REPLIES 8
StephenB
Guru Guru
Guru

Do you see "Library" on the main app screen?  Or do you see "Dashboard" and "Feed".  The two interfaces work a bit differently, so it is often important to know which one you have.

 

Unfortunately, the threshold for when the spotlight engages is not adjustable.  It's possible that a firmware update affected that threshold - I'm tagging the mods ( @JamesC and @ShayneS  ) to call their attention to your post.

 

If you haven't tried removing/reinserting the batteries of the cameras, then I suggest trying that next. While you are at it, make sure the face of the cameras is clean (so nothing is blocking the light sensor).  The light sensor is to the left of the lens (see this illustration: https://kb.arlo.com/000062322/Arlo-Pro-5S-Pro-4-and-Pro-3-Product-Tour )

 

I also suggest swapping one of the problem cameras with one that is working ok.  Then see if the problem moves with the camera, or stays with the position. If it stays with the position, then you might need to adjust the camera position so more light reaches that sensor.

 

If you don't actually need color recordings at night, then you could adjust the low light settings on the problem cameras to turn the spotlight off.

 

 

 

 

 

 

nikseb
Aspirant
Aspirant

Not sure why you would have multiple interfaces for a single iOS app. Attached is the Arlo app screen I see.

 

I took the batteries out of the 3 problem cameras and put them back in after about a minute. The problem is resolved on 1 camera. It was resolved on a second camera for a couple hours and now the problem is back.

 

I also installed a new SmartHub and re-added all the cameras and made new rules and the problem persists.

 

IMG_0017.PNG

StephenB
Guru Guru
Guru

@nikseb wrote:

Attached is the Arlo app screen I see.


Ok, so the older Library interface.

 

Did you try swapping cameras as I suggested?

 

You could also try a factory reset of one of the problem cameras, and see if that helps.


@nikseb wrote:

Not sure why you would have multiple interfaces for a single iOS app.

 


Arlo is slowly migrating to a new user interface, and at the moment the app supports both.  There is a switch in the Arlo cloud for the account which determines which of the two interfaces you get.

 

There have been a lot of issues reported here on the new UI, and Arlo is working on resolving them before they migrate everyone over to the new interface.

bloodyrose
Guide
Guide

Arlo chat support had me update to the newer interface. After I did that I had to create all new rules in the Routines for the Modes and THEN things got worse. Not only do the spotlights turn on when the 2 (now 3) cameras detect motion when all the lights are on, NOW I get alerts for cameras that have alerts disabled. It seems to me that the migration from the old system to the new, or EOL migration is failing. There are some artifacts or settings from before that are not being cleared.

I did extensive testing with the spotlights and wasted several hours with support and found several bugs with the new interface.

 

First, the spotlight problem:

Each of the 3 Pro 4 cameras is in a lighted room with 2 light sources 1 meter to the left and right, and additional lights 2 and 3 meters away. There is additional sunlight from the windows.

  • Each camera in my system has Light Settings > Spotlight = Enabled, Brightness 100%, Behavior = Constant.
  • In Arm Home, I deleted the camera rules and removed the cameras from any cross-trigger rules.
  • I added new rules for the cameras WHEN motion THEN Record. That is all.
  • I set Arm Home
  • I walk past each of the cameras and the spotlight turns on for 3 of the cameras when my motion is detected.
  • I set Standby
  • I swap the Pro 4 with an Essential XL Spotlight.
  • I set Arm Home
  • I walk past the Essential XL Spotlight camera that was swapped in the Pro 4 location, and the spotlight DOES NOT turn on when my motion is detected.

ADDITIONAL ISSUES: USER GETS STUCK IN FEED

In the new interface, there is no way to get out of the Feed section when you select an event. (iOS)

  • Open Arlo Secure
  • Tap on Feed
  • Tap on an event to view.
  • The video plays.
  • Tap on the video.
  • When you tap on the video, the camera name, timestamp, a trash can, a gear icon the enlarge/shrink arrows, and the videos controls are displayed.
  • Swipe left or right and the next event is played. Swipe up or down, nothing happens.
  • There is no way to navigate back to Home, or Dashboard or Feed or anywhere.
  • To get back home you have to quit the app and open it again.

ADDITIONAL ISSUES: NOTIFICATIONS CANNOT BE DISABLED

When you enable notifications to a device rule, you cannot disable device notifications.

  • Go to Routines >Any Mode > Add Device Rules
  • Select a Camera
  • Tap Save
  • When you are returned to the list of rules, tap the camera you just added to edit the rules
  • Tap Add an Action
  • Tap Send Notification and then Next
    • Push Notification > Notify Everyone and Email > default email address are enabled by default.
  • Under Push Notification toggle Notify Everyone to off
  • Tap Save to return to the Edit Device Rules page.
  • Tap Back
  • When you are returned to the list of rules, tap the camera you just edited
  • Tap Send Notification and then Next
  • Under Email toggle the Enable Action for the default email address to off
  • The Save button becomes disabled and the change to Send Notification cannot be made.
  • Tap Edit Device Rules
  • Tap Back
  • When you are returned to the list of rules, tap the camera you just edited
  • Tap Send Notification and then Next
  • The Email notification is still set.
  • Under Push Notification toggle Notify Everyone to ON
  • Under Email toggle the Enable Action for the default email address to OFF
  • Tap Save to return to the Edit Device Rules page.
  • Tap Back
  • When you are returned to the list of rules, tap the camera you just edited
  • Tap Send Notification and then Next
    • Push Notifications are now set to ON
  • Under Push Notification toggle Notify Everyone to OFF
  • The save button does not become enabled to save the change.
  • Notifications cannot be disabled once they are enabled.

 

bloodyrose
Guide
Guide

Oh... right. I also removed the battery from each of the Pro 4 cameras before doing all the steps I listed

bloodyrose
Guide
Guide

Also... I am pretty tired of chat and email support. They keep sending me instructions to turn off the spotlight. One chat support agent told me to simply edit the rule to turn off the spotlight in the Arm Home Mode and turn the spotlight on in Arm Away Mode, which is not even a feature. It's something that would be cool, but not a thing you can do.

StephenB
Guru Guru
Guru

@bloodyrose wrote:

 One chat support agent told me to simply edit the rule to turn off the spotlight in the Arm Home Mode and turn the spotlight on in Arm Away Mode, which is not even a feature. It's something that would be cool, but not a thing you can do.


He was probably thinking of the Pro 3 floodlight, which does have that feature. I agree it would be useful to have it on all the cameras with spotlights.

 

I suspect support could switch you back to the old user interface (not sure).  If they can, they would likely need some convincing.

bloodyrose
Guide
Guide

Noooooooo! Do NOT have me switched back to the old interface. I finally got all my rules configured.

So, as a software tester of over 20 years, and UI/UX designer of over 10 years, this and ALL the other problems I am having and reading that other people are having, is that it all comes down to EOL migration and poor software development practices.

 

Since the half-assed adoption of Agile over the past 10 years, testing has been pushed off to the users, which has resulted in some seriously **bleep**ty user experience. Sure, the companies are saving money on software testing, but they are allowing sloppy development practices. "We'll fix it if the customer finds it" has been the mantra of virtually every developer I've worked with or know. As a test I'll gladly make sure things work as designed and write up bug reports as needed. But, as a user of the system, I am getting tired of finding the bugs and reporting them AND having them ignored, when you could have a testing team do the work before production release, OR have the developers actually test their own work.

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