Arlo|Smart Home Security|Wireless HD Security Cameras

Ultra lost 4K recording capability with new subscription plan

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Tutor
Tutor

Hi all

 

I purchased 4x Arlo Ultra cameras  with hub last year, and my initial 1 year subscription has just expired.

 

I renewed on the 2K Cloud recording plan, knowing that I would be able to access 4K recordings locally, still.

 

However, to my annoyance, my whole setup (including local streaming and recording) has now been reduced to 2K.

 

I have downloaded the locally stored files from the SSD directly to confirm that they are indeed only recording at 2K.

 

Please can someone from Arlo respond to this?  I'm, hoping this is just a technical issue and not a commercial strategy.

 

Thanks for any assistance you can give.

 

Oli

Model: VMC5040 | Arlo Ultra Wire-Free Camera
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Prodigy
Prodigy

It's intentional on the SD.  I went through it 4 times with support who finally sent me a e-mail saying this is the way it is if you don't purchase Elite.  They even said they would speak with the moderators saying this wasn't the case.  The 2K live started with this last firmware update and the 4K toggle even disappeared from the updated app and was replaced with a 2K toggle.  JamesC opened a case for me about this but I'm betting it to was intentional.

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Tutor
Tutor
Thanks for sharing your experience. Might someone from Arlo be able to provide comment, I wonder? If Arlo are limiting my device because of this then I’ll look forward to escalating the issue. Would you be interested in joining in any action? And are there others you’re aware of in the same position? I’ve been prepared to put up with the temperamental nature of their ‘smart’ features over the last year, but limiting the capability of my hardware isn’t something that seems right at all.
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Prodigy
Prodigy

It probably won't be until Mon that I hear if JamesC has heard anything.  If there was anything that can be done about taking away 4K to my SD I'd love to.  Our AG office will look into the practices but it's a slow process that is even slower right now.  I get the impression they think they are fine with what they are doing to us.  If I hadn't purchased the extended 2 year coverage I would have already replaced them.  Once they start breaking down they will be replaced by a new system.

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Apprentice
Apprentice

@Osussat 

 

If JamesC confirms that this is the case going forward, I'll be a part of any action. Essentially they are crippling the 4K Ultra model even though you're paying Arlo more money for a subscription. It really doesn't make any sense.

 

It may not be noticeable to the naked eye, but an Arlo Pro3 with a 2K sensor and a 160 deg view will have a better image than an Ultra with a 4k sensor and 180 deg view running at 2K.

 

I wonder if they are trying to move away from Ultra model.

Model: VMB5000 | Arlo Ultra SmartHub
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Prodigy
Prodigy

Interesting that you mention turning away from the Ultra,  we have four BestBuy stores in our area and they have all stopped carrying much as far as Ultra but have plenty of the pro 3.  When you stop by that area even the sales people are pushing the Pro 3 and don't even mention Ultra unless you ask.

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Tutor
Tutor
Evening! Did you hear anything from JamesC, by chance?
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Prodigy
Prodigy

No haven't heard from JamesC or back from Arlo support either one.

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Aspirant
Aspirant

Same here this is unacceptable to cripple the product like this.

Model: VMC5040 | Arlo Ultra Wire-Free Camera
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Tutor
Tutor

Hi all

 

I heard back from Robert at Arlo Support, today.

 

Robert says  the following, which sounds hopeful this is all just a bug.

 


Thank you for contacting us.

That is our known issue at the moment, if you want to help us resolve it sooner I can escalate your case to higher levels of support.
If you want the case escalated then:

I will require the following information:
Version of your Arlo App,
Your application logs, to download them, tap the version of the app 3 times (for iOs) or 5 times (for Android), email them to yourself and then attach it in reply to this email.
Version of your phone's operating system,
model of your phone,
As the same quality issue is happening on the web portal, can you provide with the version of the browsers you were trying to access your cameras from?
Model of your router,
Network topology of your connection,
Please send me a screenshot of the issue.

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Prodigy
Prodigy

Not sure where Robert is coming from with known bug and working on it.  Mine has been this way since Jan 19th, I had four tickets opened on it and got a e-mail from upper level support saying this is the way it is.  Does the left know what the right is doing.

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Tutor
Tutor
Have provided all the information asked for by Arlo Support and have asked several times for my plan to be upgraded to the 4K plan whilst they resolve the issue but no reply to that request. Any other info out there on this?
Model: VMB5000 | Arlo Ultra SmartHub
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Tutor
Tutor
Hi guys
Anyone with updates to report?
I find it absolutely shameful that Arlo aren’t getting back and so am ready to take things further.
Anyone have details of their legal department or a corporate head office?
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Aspirant
Aspirant
Even when my cameras say they are streaming and recording in 4K, they do not appear to be. The image quality is no where near the same as my separate 4K wired system (a cheap Lorex System 1/2 the price of this Arlo System).

In a 5 camera Ultra System, I have 2 cameras that will not record or stream at all, and one that will not stream or record audio. Support has been a complete and utter waste of time. They promised to replace 2 of my cameras approx. one month ago and said someone would call to get my shipping info. They still have not contacted me. Quite simply, they’ve lied to me and done nothing but obfuscate. PM to JamesC asking for his help remains unanswered. This is appalling.
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Star
Star

Same here.  I was recently downgraded from Local 4K to Local 2K.

 

As I see it, Arlo has intentionally crippled the camera system that was marketed & purchased with Local 4K regardless of subscription.  

 

This can't end well.   Unless of course, this is just a BUG that is resolved quickly (6-48 months). 

Model: VMB5000 | Arlo Ultra SmartHub
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Star
Star

In case anyone needs a quick link to a live Arlo support articles on how 4K Local works on Ultra regardless of subscription, please visit: 

 

Viewing 4K Local streaming:

https://kb.arlo.com/000062127/How-do-I-stream-in-4K-with-my-Arlo-Ultra-camera

 

Saving 4K video to Local storage:

 https://kb.arlo.com/000062124/How-do-I-record-4K-videos-to-a-local-storage-device

 

the word "subscription" is NOT found on either support article.   I have saved copies of these since Arlo will probably edit them soon.

 

Anyway, as we all know, that is how it was originally marketed.  now they have clearly crippled their hardware.  

 

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Initiate
Initiate

I have owned 6 Arlo Q and Pro 2 cameras for the past 2 years to keep an eye on two homes on different sides of the Atlantic. 3 of the Q cameras gave me a lot of problems.  One has a purple picture.  Another refuses to update its firmware and just becomes incommunicado every few days.  A third can't sustain a WIFI connection unless it's within about 20 feet of my router. I put up with Arlo, however, because they are reasonably priced. I simply threw out two of the defective cameras (I still use the purple picture one).   So.... 

 

I just purchased a 4-camera Ultra set because I need the highest resolution to monitor a vineyard from afar.  My understanding was that the cameras came with a 1-year free subscription for full resolution recordings and live monitoring.  

 

It took about 5 hours of being on hold on the telephone before I finally got through to Arlo support to get the free subscription working.  Turns out I had to reset the base and then re-add it again.  Seems like there was a glitch with the Arlo service when I installed the base a few days ago -- the free subscription was never offered after installation.   Okay, so that was 5 hours of time wasted. 

 

Once the subscription became active today, I was very disappointed to discover I can only get 2K resolution when looking at the camera in the iphone app and on the web.  Apparently this is a limitation of the "Smart Premiere" subscription that Arlo gives you free for 1 year.  You need the more expensive "Smart Elite" subscription to actually see the 4K images that the camera can produce.  Wow.  Talk about bad policies.  Spending $1000 for a set of cameras whose resolution you can't enjoy without paying more. The nice support guy told me I should add all of my existing cameras to the new "Premiere" subscription, and then remove one and put it on an a single-camera "Elite" subscription to try out the 4K resolution.  But he warned me I won't be able to put that 1 camera back on the free "Premiere" subscription again, because removing it will make it ineligible.  

 

Doubly screwed up.  I'd really like to be contacted by the CEO of Arlo.   I was the CEO of a 100-person software company for 15 years and I would want to hear about disappointing experiences like the one I'm having, and I would thank the person who contacted me for taking the time to help my company be better. Let's see what sort of customer empathy and integrity the  CEO of Arlo has ???  So far, I'm not seeing any way to reach out to this person other than posting on a public community forum for all to see! 

Model: VMC5040 | Arlo Ultra Wire-Free Camera
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Mentor
Mentor
Welcome to the club of the big giant Arlo mess
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Tutor
Tutor

Still no updates from Arlo, at all.

Does anyone know who Arlo's reps are in the UK?

I'd now like to escalate this to a legal issue. Anyone else coming along with me?

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Aspirant
Aspirant

I am not sure where you reside, but in the U.S. litigation is super duper expensive beyond good reason. Unless you are considering some sort of class action where the firm takes a part of the settlement not sure if it is worth litigating with Arlo for a $1000 kit. 

 

If you have a way where we could do this for minimal personal loss (financially) I am sure other Ultra owners will be in with you. You can count me in as well if that is the case.

Model: VMC5040 | Arlo Ultra Wire-Free Camera
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Aspirant
Aspirant
I just want Arlo to replace my defective cameras that they promised to do over 1.5 months a ago. This is beyond the fact that Arlo has released a defective product/system with hidden gotchas on their promised resolutions, it’s essentially now a coverup operation because their tech support department makes you jump through hoops that they know will not fix anything and then after wasting hours of your time they deliver promises to replace your defective equipment when they have no intention to do so.

I was told someone would get back to me with specifics on replacing my defective cameras about 6 weeks ago. Think about this, why would the tech support rep I spoke to not be able to arrange this after he personally confirmed I tried everything they asked me to do and concluded that my cameras were defective? He could have, but Arlo has their support setup so they will string along their customers until they simply give up and they not have to honor their warranty on their defective products. My PM to their so called tech rep on this forum asking for assistance/guidance is still unanswered from a month ago.

Check out what the stores are carrying, it’s very tough to find any Arlo Ultra systems anymore, even though this is their supposed to be their latest and greatest. They are abandoning the product and their customers as they know it’s a colossal failure and it would hurt their bottom line too much to honor their warranties.

A terrible product can be simply chalked up to bad software engineering, which happens, but a company who has developed disingenuous operating practices to purposefully avoid honoring their warranties is something altogether different and much worse.
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Prodigy
Prodigy
That is why arlo is so smug and not worried, they know it's spendy but then so is a bad reputation to a business.
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