Having tried out the Arlo Go 2 security camera on his Karnic 2250, MBY editor Hugo Andreae explains why it could make such a useful addition to your boat…
One of my colleagues on a sailing title shared a rather alarming story the other day of a reader who’d recently discovered a squatter living on board his boat in the marina.
Despite all the evidence you could wish for (and a lot you wouldn’t), the police were unable to prosecute the miscreant because as he’d only had to unzip the covers to gain access, it wasn’t considered breaking and entering.
The advice the marina gave to stop this happening again was to install a motion-activated camera that lets you know when anyone steps on board.
As it happens, I’ve been testing just such a device to keep an eye on my boat. The Arlo Go 2 is a waterproof, wireless security camera that you can locate pretty much anywhere.
So long as it has either mobile (3G or 4G) or WiFi internet connection, it will warn you whenever its motion sensor picks up signs of activity, and send livestream footage of what the camera is seeing.
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This can also be recorded on either a microSD card in the camera or via a cloud-based subscription system. If you do spot an uninvited guest on board you can also tell them in no uncertain terms to “get off my boat” using the two-way speaker/microphone.
I’ve tried it in a number of locations inside and outside at the yard where I keep my boat, as well as in my house. The motion sensor is pretty sensitive so in a public space you will get a lot of alerts but you can turn it on and off from your phone if it gets too much.
A better bet is to place it inside your boat’s cockpit or saloon so it only picks up motion on board the boat itself. It also has a built-in light that comes on automatically when triggered at night, although this does of course alert the intruder to its presence.
If you’re not within range of a reliable WiFi hub, you will need to buy a SIM card and data plan from a mobile supplier, but the Arlo Go 2 is smart enough to switch between the two automatically.
You may also want to subscribe to the Arlo security monitoring service (from £2.79 a month) which, as well as keeping cloud-based footage for up to 30 days (a savvy thief could remove the camera or SD card) has more advanced software detection to filter out false alarms from animals and cars.
The box includes a secure mounting bracket and charging cable for the battery, which lasts around two months in normal usage. I was pleasantly surprised to find that even when switched off, the Arlo Go 2 sent a notification letting me know when the battery was running low.
Image quality is good for 1080p and the absence of wires makes it simple to install. It could intrude on crew privacy though, so don’t forget to turn it off when you get to your boat.
MBY rating: 5/5