Smart home devices can be complicated and confusing at times, and if you want customer or tech support for your Arlo devices, you’ll now have to pay for access. Starting this week, Arlo users without a subscription lose access to the most basic types of tech support after a short period.
According to Arlo’s support page, if you’re not subscribed to Arlo’s paid plan, you’ll lose phone support 90 days after purchase. Then, after the first year of ownership and your 1-year warranty ends, all live chat help, support, or troubleshooting disappears too. To make matters worse, at the end of 90 days, you’ll lose what Arlo calls “Priority agent routing,” which is its most experienced agents to help handle your issues.
Essentially, after the first year of ownership, you’ll get downgraded to forum support. By this, we mean your only option is the Arlo Community forum and knowledge base — where other customers may be able to help.
If you run into any sort of problems and want phone or chat support from an actual Arlo employee, you’ll have to subscribe to an Arlo paid plan.
Customers with an Arlo subscription, trial, or within 90 days of purchase receive the following support options:
- Priority agent routing: The most experienced agents handle your issues
- Live chat and phone support: Get agent-assisted support via chat and phone
- Self-help: Access the Arlo virtual assistant, Arlo community, knowledge base articles, and manuals
Then, as you can see from the image above, users that don’t subscribe to Arlo’s paid service get stuck with a virtual assistant, forums or will have to “read the manual” to try and figure out problems and errors. Ouch.
How Much Does an Arlo Subscription Cost?
If you only have one Arlo device, the cost isn’t too bad, and you’ll enjoy all the added features and controls it has to offer. That said, once you have multiple devices, it starts to get a little more expensive.
- Arlo Secure (Single Camera) – $2.99 per month
- Arlo Secure (Multi Camera) – $9.99 per month
- Arlo Secure Plus (Multi Camera) – $14.99 per month
If there’s a silver lining here, it’s that you may already be a subscriber to get extra features and controls on your Arlo smart home products. An Arlo Secure subscription delivers cloud recording, motion detection, smoke/CO alarm detection, activity zones, and more.
Forcing customers to pay for the most basic customer support on a smart home product isn’t ideal. In fact, it’s pretty ridiculous that $200 and $300 devices only get three months of decent tech support.