No, your old Arlo cameras are not being bricked
But it is reneging on an old promise.
What you need to know
- Arlo has reversed its policy canceling the free 7-day rolling cloud storage program.
- Several older Arlo cameras manufactured before 2019 will no longer receive firmware updates or be able to generate email notifications after the specified date for that model.
- Arlo says customers can continue using these EOL'd cameras by utilizing an Arlo base station or subscribing to an Arlo Secure plan.
- Arlo will also EOL its email notifications and E911 service for all Arlo products in favor of its newer Emergency Response system after April 1, 2023.
Update: Arlo has officially rolled back the policy changes that would have canceled 7-day free rolling cloud storage. However, the affected cameras will still not receive security updates after July 1, 2024.
When Arlo issued a new EOL (end-of-life) policy on January 1, 2023, many were rightly worried about the state of their home security systems. In short, Arlo is sunsetting several cameras manufactured between 2014 and 2018 and will no longer offer firmware updates for those products. It's also ending the previously-free 7-day rolling cloud storage program that many Arlo customers have enjoyed for years.
If you have one of the cameras below, note that all motion events, recorded videos, live streaming capabilities, and most other functions will continue to work as they do today. Thankfully, this is not a security-related issue like we recently saw with Eufy cameras and Wyze cameras before that.
Arlo's CEO took to Twitter to further explain that these older cameras — listed below in detail — aren't being bricked or defeatured. Rather, Arlo says it's unable to support these devices because many of the components are no longer available or produced and haven't been for years. If you have a working camera in the list below and still plan to use it after the EOL date, your cameras will still record video and issue motion alerts as they do today — with one exception.
Arlo CEO Matthew McRae says that the previous email system is no longer considered "a secure method of communication" due to phishing and other scams that have actively affected Arlo customers. He also points out that email notifications often introduced significant latency and that, instead, the Arlo app will be the go-to way to receive push notifications from all Arlo cameras in the future.
This will affect all Arlo cameras by January 1, 2024, not just the ones in the list below. Make sure you've got that Arlo app installed on any devices that you want to receive push notifications from.
Additionally, Arlo is sunsetting its E911 services on January 1, 2024, in favor of its own Emergency Response service that's included with Arlo Smart subscription plans. Arlo says the old E911 system is outdated and needs to be replaced with one that is "a substantially safer and more robust emergency solution." McRae says that Emergency Response is better because you can talk to a live safety agent 24/7 via the feature instead of the app just working as a "simple 911 dialing assistant."
Arlo cameras being moved to EOL on April 1, 2023:
- Arlo Wire-Free Camera (VMC3030)
- Arlo Pro Camera (VMC4030)
Arlo cameras being moved to EOL on January 1, 2024:
- Arlo Pro 2 (VMC4030P)
- Arlo Q (VMC3040)
- Arlo Q+ (VMC3040S)
- Arlo Baby (ABC1000)
- Arlo Security Light (ALS1101)
- Arlo Audio Doorbell (AAD1001)
Why support is ending for some Arlo cameras
Arlo says that it is moving away from the Amazon S3 cloud storage system that it previously used in favor of "a new video storage architecture for feature, optimization, and security reasons." Android Central reached out to Arlo to find out more details about this new cloud storage system and will update this article if we find out more.
Arlo says this new system only supports storage for longer than 30 days, thus, the old 7-day storage system is incompatible with the new design.
We named Arlo as the best Eufy camera alternative because of its ability to store video locally on an Arlo hub indefinitely, meaning customers who are already utilizing an Arlo Hub likely won't see any changes when Arlo switches over to its new cloud system in a few months.
Arlo says that it is generating offers to help customers transition to its new system in an affordable way and will send marketing emails to customers who opt-in. If you previously opted-in to marketing emails from Arlo and have one of the affected devices above, you should have already received an email. Arlo says it will provide more program details publicly for affected customers soon.
Lastly is the matter of firmware upgrades for older products which could result in actual security concerns in the future. If you have one of the older Arlo cameras above and are concerned about the security of captured footage, it's wisest to invest in a newer Arlo system to ensure you can still get those important firmware security updates in the future.
While customers are rightly irritated by Arlo's choice to EOL its security products less than 10 years after release — with some not even being 5 years old at this point — it's commendable that the company is giving a heads-up to customers before it sunsets security updates.
It's also understandable that this has to take place since Arlo relies on other companies for component manufacturing and support. Many older phones no longer receive security or firmware updates because chipset manufacturers no longer support older chips that power those phones, so this move isn't unprecedented in internet-connected devices.
Get the Android Central Newsletter
Instant access to breaking news, the hottest reviews, great deals and helpful tips.