UPDATE REQUEST - Have ST Geofence controlling multiple Arlo Cameras

My goal is that when I leave or arrive at my home, I would like the geofencing to see this and adjust the Arlo system accordingly. Currently Arlo (App) supports a geofencing option that has been in beta stages for quite some time. Many users note that when using the Arlo app to control geofencing, that you have to have the app enabled in order for the system to see you arriving home or leaving. The app will time out if it has been closed and will not run in the back ground in order to tell the system you are home or leaving. Meaning, you have to physically open the Arlo app and then the system will recognize your geolocation and adjust the system accordingly. So…why use geofencing if you have to open the app anyways, why not open the app and just hit arm or disarm?

Now onto Smartthings… the app and system work great with geofencing. ST is able to arm and disarm according to what devices I have set up in the app. So I attempted to set my ST up so that when ST geofencing sees that I leave or arrive it will run a routine that will turn my Arlo cameras on (armed) or off (disarmed). The problem is that this method only works for one camera. I have 2 arlo cameras. In the setup of the routine with ST I am presented with the option of turning on what device/switch and then selecting the two cameras in my Arlo system. However, the ST geofencing will only activate or deactivate (arm/unarm) only one of my cameras.

I attempted to seperate the cameras based on routine in ST. I made a second routine in ST. Now I had two routines that were mirror images of each other except for the assigning of the cameras. Camera one with one routine and the second camera with the second routine. Tested geofencing, tested switching from arm (away) to arm (home) to disarm. I was still unable to activate (arm) or deactivate (disarm) the second camera.

I called and spoke with a ST tech rep. I was told to try the exact same things I described above with a second routine, etc… When I explained this, I was then told that ST only works with one camera in Arlo to geofence activate (arm) or deactivate (disarm) a camera based on geofencing.

END GOAL: ST to be able to use the current geofencing to also activate(arm) and deactivate (disarm) multiple Arlo cameras, it would solve my Geofencing issue with the Arlo app. From my experience, ST does work with only one camera correctly with a routine set up to arm the ST system and also arm one Arlo camera.

You should be able to use the IFTTT interface if it can handle multiple Arlo cameras.

You would still need to set up one routine for each camera.

The routine would turn on a virtual switch. The virtual switch would be recognized by IFT TT with the SmartThings channel as the IF.

Then use the Arlo channel as the THAT.

It’s clunky, and there may be some additional lag (this varies for different people, at my house it’s a pretty consistent eight seconds), but it might work for some use cases.



Hi Tim. I have three Arlo cameras and although I quit using geofencing a long time ago due to several times when the cloud was slow, my system never armed with it. These days I manually arm and disarm my system by using the Goodbye and I’M Back routines. That being said I am confused as to how you are using geofencing to activate your cameras. If you can explain that to me, I might be able to help you. It seems to me that if you can set a routine to run by geofencing you should be able to set both cameras to record.

Are you using the camera device handler in your routine or are you using the motion detector device handler or switch device handler? The reason I ask is that the Arlo cameras are always “on” meaning they are always detecting motion regardless of whether you have them turned on or off. They only record video once you have turned them on t record video. is this making sense? In my Goodbye routine it asks me which lights or switches I want to turn on. My Arlo cameras show up there so I select all three. This is how I set mine up to wake up so to speak and start recording video when motion is detected by them,

Therefore, if I understand you correctly, if you can run a routine through geofencing the routine should be able to turn both of the switches, (Arlo cameras), Then the I’m Back routine should turn off these switches, (Arlo cameras).

Hope this helps.

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Sorry, @tims0891, I had just woken up from a nap and I am not sure if I made myself clear. So here is how I am enabling my Arlo cameras:

Normally my house in in the disarmed state meaning that the cameras are “off,” but still detecting motion. In this state they will not record video nor will I get any notifications if motion is detected.

When I leave I run the Goodbye routine and turns on the three switches (Arlo cameras). It lso sets SHM to Armed(away) and sets the mode to Away, On the same page I automatically perform Goodbye when Everyone Leaves. This should solve your geofencing issue, I think.

When I return I run the I’m Back routine which turns off the Switches, (Arlo cameras), sets SHM to Disarmed and sets the Mode to Home. I automatically perform I"m Back when anyone arrives and on the next page I select Someone arrives, and on the next page I select all the iPhones that are on my account.

Since all my cameras are outside and I do not want an intrusion alert every time there is motion, I do not select them in SHM.

Instead I created a custom configuration for each camera. On the page that asks me “What kind of device do you want to use?” I selected “motion Sensor.” Then I selected one of my cameras. On the next page I selected "Text and Push Notifications. On the next page I gave my phone number and Wrote a custom message to tell me what camera fired. On the next page I gave the configuration a custom name.

I made the three custom configurations so that I would know which camera detected motion. Arlo Also gives me a message but it doesn’t tell me which camera fired.

Now, setting up Arlo can be confusing. That is another long set of instructions. But I do not use Arlo’s geofencing.

Thanks for the response. Correct, I am not using geofencing with Arlo…it is worthless in my opinion.
are you saying that ST can not arm/disarm the cameras (turn them on or off to detect motion)?
ST can only enable and disable the cameras (Active/Unactive)?

Lets see if I can break this down in text as best I can.

Arlo App:
Cameras are there, I can access them. On the devices screen I went to the little gear and checked to make sure the cameras are set to ON (Green slider)
I then went to the Mode screen and selected Smarthings as my mode. (Not geofencing)

When my ST runs the routine Goodbye it is because it is triggered by ST Geofencing enabling the routine Goodbye which in turn sets the Security mode to ARMED AWAY. If a door sensor or motion sensor is activated while in this mode, I have a ton of lights that kick on and I am alerted via push notification and email. Works great.

When ST runs the I’m Back routine it is because it is triggered by ST Geofencing enabling this routine which in turn sets the Security mode to DISARMED. Now no sensor will turn any light on. Works great.

Here are the steps I took for setting the Arlo cameras up:
(In SmartThings app)
From the dashboard I clicked on the gear in the upper right - Selected Security - for Armed Away I selected to use every open/close and motion sensor (blue slider).
Clicked Next
For Armed Home selected the door sensors and the motion sensors of the two Aarlo cameras.
Clicked Next
I am on the Configure intrusion alarm notifications page.
Text and Push and Alert with Lights…blah blah…set how I want them to alert me.
The capture video from these cameras area I selected the two Arlo cameras.
I clicked on Done in the upper right.

Back at the Dashboard of Smart Things App.
Automation - clicked the gear next to routine Goodbye - Selected “Turn on these lights or switches” - Selected my two Arlo Cameras.
Set SHM to Armed Away mode
Automatically perform Goodbye! when…someone leaves.
Clicked Done

Clicked the gear next to I’m Back routine - Turn Off these lights or switches - Selected both Arlo Cameras.
Set SHM to Disarmed Home mode
Automatically perform I’m Back when…someone arrives.
Clicked Done

In theory, what ST is doing is when it sets the mode to ARMED AWAY based on the geofencing of my device (cell phone), I would think that it is because it is running the Goodbye! routine which includes the Arlo cameras being turned on and the security value was set to capture video from the motion sensors (Arlo cameras) that if ST sees motion on the Arlo cameras, that should trip the alarm and record video? Is this correct thinking?
Was this set correctly in your opinion?

The IFTTT recipes… I am familiar with these, however, I do not believe that there is a IFTTT for Android to trigger geofencing and then activate the Arlo cameras. Just iOS for now. Please tell me if I am wrong or missed something with IFTTT.

Much appreciated on everyones help and information. I am a tech guy but this is making me scratch my head.

Yes, there is an android location with IFTTT.

Although what I was thinking was using your SmartThings Geopresence to flip a virtual switch and then use that switch coming on as the IF in your IFTTT applet ( their new word for recipe) and the Arlo camera as the that.

You have many items in your post to answer all at once, but first. Away Mode and Armed (Away) State (on SHM main page) are not the same thing. A routine can change the alarm state, but not the other way around. Alarm states, Armed (Away), Armed (Home) and Disarmed do not run routines. But a routine can set the alarm state. The Alarm states are how ST determines the stste of your system and the customer cannot modify them. This has been my biggest complaint since I purchased my Arlo cameras as I use them outdoors and do not want an intrusion alert just because steps onto my front or back porches when the system is armed. The alarm states work in conjunction with the Security App.

Notify Me When Smart App has only one purpose - to give you a big red intrusion alert when any of the devices you have selected in that app fire.

In Arlo select the edit pencil next to the Smartthings mode and you will notice your two cameras. Select the pencil for each camera snd be sure “Motion Is Detected” is checked. Also be sure that “Record Video” is checked and “Push Notifications” is also checked. Click on the arrow beside the “Record Video” an on the next page.

Here is the tricky part: If you click on the name of that camera you will notice that it is a drop down box and you have the choice to select the other camera to record video at the same time or have only this camera recrd video without the other one. A lot of people miss this step.

Do this for both cameras.

Now, go to the Settings section at Arlo’s bottom page and select your first camera. Set the camera to off. Do this for the other camera as well.

Digest this and I’ll try to help you with the rest of the setup.

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You asked, " are you saying that ST can not arm/disarm the cameras (turn them on or off to detect motion)?

ST can only enable and disable the cameras (Active/Unactive)?" - The purpose of tying the Arlo cameras with Smartthings is to prevent the cameras from firing off a video every time it detects motion and only record videos when Smartthings is armed, so that you don’t have to arm Smartthings and then go to the Arlo app and arm the cameras again. So in effect Smartthings makes it easy to only arm/disarm one system and both smartthings and Arlo arm/disarm with one step. Smartthings is simply putting the cameras in the “off,” “sleep” or whatever you want to call it to prevent Arlo from recording videos when your Smartthings system is not armed. Thus you should be theoretically conserving Arlo camera battery life.

You also asked “Cameras are there, I can access them. On the devices screen I went to the little gear and checked to make sure the cameras are set to ON (Green slider)”

This is incorrect You want the cameras turned off in the Arlo app and let Smartthings turn the cameras on and off. This is done by selecting the “switches” I mentioned befor in the Goodbye and I’m Back routines.

Next - SmartThings:
When my ST runs the routine Goodbye it is because it is triggered by ST Geofencing enabling the routine Goodbye which in turn sets the Security mode to ARMED AWAY. If a door sensor or motion sensor is activated while in this mode, I have a ton of lights that kick on and I am alerted via push notification and email. Works great.

The Goodbye Routine turns on the cameras (switches), uses the geofence to determine if the home is empty or occupied and acts according to how you set up the routine when someone or everyone leaves, and sets the mode to Away and the Alarm State to Armed (Away). Now - one word of caution here - if you set the alarm state from the home page to Armed(Away) the routine will not run and the cameras will not come on and record video. Therefore, the home page becomes useless to you. You must ARM/DISARM the system using ROUTINES from now on.

You stated “In theory, what ST is doing is when it sets the mode to ARMED AWAY based on the geofencing of my device (cell phone), I would think that it is because it is running the Goodbye! routine which includes the Arlo cameras being turned on and the security value was set to capture video from the motion sensors (Arlo cameras) that if ST sees motion on the Arlo cameras, that should trip the alarm and record video? Is this correct thinking?
Was this set correctly in your opinion?”

That is basically correct, but just remember it is the routine that is setting the geofence and doing all the work.

The only thing I can determine why the other camera is not working properly is because it is not set up to turn on (as a switch) in the routine or you missed the step that I mentioned many people overlook above.

Trying hard to explain everything that is going on correctly but it is a difficult concept to get your head around. It took me a couple of weeks of fiddling before I got working to my satisfaction.


Let’s see if I can simplify the concept a little. You do not need to integrate Arlo with Smartthings if you do not want.to. If you use the Armed mode in Arlo to control the cameras they will record video every time motion is detected and send you a notification. Selecting the Disarmed mode in Arlo will turn the cameras off from recording video and will not send you a notification but the cameras will still detect motion.

The reason to integrate Arlo with Smartthings is to have Smartthings act as an on/off switch to arm/disarm both Smartthings and Arlo in one step. So the Im Back routine turns off the cameras video capabilities, (puts them to sleep) and the Goodbye routine Turns them back on, (wakes them up).

Both routines determine when to use the geofence determined by how you set the routine up.


Are you using the Arlo Q cameras or the outdoor cameras. If you are using the Arlo Q cameras then that might be the problem. If not and you are using the Arlo outdoor cameras then we can do a little troubleshooting…

Take the two cameras and set them about chest high in two different rooms (hopefully within 25 to 30 feet from the Arlo hub) with the lights on in the room. Set the Arlo mode to Armed and be sure the cameras will send you a text message. Now walk past the camera that is working and see if you get a text message and wait about 30 seconds and see if you get a video from that camera. Next go to the next room and do the same thing with the camera that isn’t working. If both cameras are working, then there could be a range problem, obstacle or Smartthings problem.

Now to show you that the Arlo cameras are always detecting motion, set the Arlo mode to disarmed and turn the lights off in each room. Walk past each camera again. You will notice, (assuming you are using the original Arlo cameras), you will see the red LEDs come on as you walk past. That shows you that the camera is detecting motion. You will not get a message nor a video as you are in the Disarmed mode. By having the cameras always detect motion regardless of the Arlo mode can be a big problem in a dark and high traffic area as they will wear the batteries down very quickly even though they are not recording any video.

If both cameras worked well then move the cameras farther away from the Arlo hub and try again. If any camera fails, be sure the motion detection sensitivity is set to max. Now, if both cameras are working in Arlo in the position that you want to mount them, then we can assume that the problem is with the Smartthings integration.

Thank you so much for the breakdown in explaination. I will do exactly what you said in digesting the info…not at 10pm on a work night though. Lol.

I would like to have Smart Things control it all for me including the Arlo cameras. One system to arm and disarm everything. With that in mind I will compare your instructions to my settings and go from there.

Regardless, I will reach out with a success or another question if I run into a brick wall.

Thanks so much

I am not using the Arlo Q cameras. Basic cameras being used.

You wrote:
In Arlo select the edit pencil next to the Smartthings mode and you will notice your two cameras.

I think this is an issue I am having in the app. When I open Arlo app and select the pencil for Smart Things…I do see the one camera under the Rules section. When I attempt to ad the second camera by clicking on the plus sign Add Rule, I follow the bouncing ball and add the second camera and when I click to save the new rule, the second camera does not show up under the rules category for the smartthings mode edit screen. Almost like the app is not allowing me to add two cameras as rules under the smartthings mode selection.

In the Arlo app, If I could add this second camera as a rule under the ST mode screen, I believe that would help solve my issue.

You mentioned range possibly being an issue. From second camera to hub. What kind of puzzles me about that is that the Arlo Hub is able to communicate with the second camera fine. The Arlo hub and the ST hub and my wireless router are all next to each other within inches of each other. So in theory when I have ST send commands to try to control my second camera fuctions through Arlo…wouldn;t the communication path be ST to my router to my Arlo Hub to the camera? Communication between wireless router and hubs is within inches and the Arlo hub talking to the second camera works fine with range. Thoughts?

Side Note:
In Arlo app I set both cameras to OFF (green slide switch). On the devices page I notice both cameras say, “This camera is currently disabled…” When I set the routine in ST (Goodbye!) to switch on the Arlo cameras, I understand that this means that the ST app routine Goodbye! is turning the cameras on and based on my settings within the routine, to record movement for X amount of time, however, when this routine activates…if I switch back over to my Arlo app and look at the Devices page, the first camera now shows the image and an option to play (view live) video from the first camera. The second camera still shows the message, “This camera is currently disabled…”

If I select the routine I’m Back! in ST, and switch over to the Arlo app devices page, I notice now that both cameras have the, “This camera is currently disabled…” message.

I would assume that after running a routine in ST, if I switch over to the Arlo app, I should see both my cameras enabling and disabling…not just the one camera. It’s like it is working for one camera and not the other.

I am not sure if you set yours up in a similar way that I want mine set up where ST is controlling everything… however, if so, is it possible to do a step by step of how you did this? I must be missing something on the set up path or the app just doesn’t allow what I want to happen.

I did look through and saw all the Android location recipes. However, I do not see one that aims toward ST or Arlo, unless i am missing something.

You mention having ST geopresence flip a virtual switch…etc…
Are you able to give me a break down of this thought a little more?

It sounds like what you mean is based on Geolocation (in IFTTT or ST?) ST would activate an IFTTT virtual switch which would then have IFTTT send signal to Arlo to activate a certain camera? Correct?


Ok Tim, so if I understand you correctly if you go to a Armed Mode in the Aro app you can set up the Arlo Rules for both cameras just fine. If you move in front of the cameras do you record a video from each camera?

The Arlo hub needs to be separated from the Smartthings hub by several feet.from what I have read. Place it as far away as the cable that came with it allows for now.

Remember that I have three cameras hooked up so it is possible. I believe that somehow the problem is still on the Arlo side. You may have to log onto the Arlo website at https://arlo.netgear.com/#/settings/mydevices and make your settings and rules there. Try that first.

For the sake of argument, I’ll only discuss two of my cameras for now. I have one on my back porch that I named in Arlo, “Back Porch Camera.” I have another one on my front porch named “Front Porch Arlo.” I obviously dont want the Back Porch Camera to record when someone comes to the front porch and vice versa. So in Arlo’s Edit Mode for Smartthings, I see all of my cameras listed. When I click on the pencil for the first camera it takes me to the Edit Rule for my Front Porch Camera. Below that where it says “Then do the following” I see Front Porch Camera again. Click on the first instance if that camera’s name above the section “Then do the following” and that section of the screen expands and you should see a circle with that camera’s name and below that another circle beside the other camera’s name. Here is where you set up the cameras to record individually or as a group when this camera starts recording.

If you want both cameras to record at the same time, be sure to click both circles to enable them. If you only want the first camera only to record only select the first camera.

Now back out to the Edit Mode and repeat the procedure for the second camera.

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I will make this easier to describe as well… camera 1 is front door. Camera 2 is garage.

In Arlo app, when I select Armed mode pencil I do have the two rules.One for each camera. In the Arlo app when I select Smartthings mode pencil I am only able to add one camera under the rules area.

You typed:
So in Arlo’s Edit Mode for Smartthings, I see all of my cameras listed.

I do not see this…I only see my front door camera under rules. I do not see the garage camera. This is where I was unable to add the garage camera when I clicked on the plus sign add new rule. I will attempt to try to add this rule on the website opposed to the Arlo app.

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Tim, is it the garage camera that is not working? If so, it might be out of range. Be sure that in your rule for that camera click the pencil beside “Motion is detected” and make sure the sensitivity is set to 100%.

You can also bring that camera closer to the hub for test purposes and see if it works when it is closer to the hub. I had the exact problem you are describing before I set the motion sensitivity to 100%

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You don’t need one that “aims towards smart things or Arlo” since both smart things and Arlo already have their own IFTTT channels. So you could use the android presence as the “if” and the Arlo channel as the “that”

If this

then That

( I include these only for completeness, since it sounds like @hbr is giving you the best advice. :sunglasses:)

Holy goodness…I may have fixed it…

Through the Arlo website (not the app) I was able to add the garage camera under the rules of ST mode in the Arlo mode menu. I then logged out and loged into the Arlo app and I notice that the rules now reflect the garage cam under the ST edit menu. Step in the right direction.
Now when I go into ST app and run the Goodbye! routine, ST app shows the cameras going active. In the Arlo app I also notice the cameras switch still remains off (green slider switch) and ST app is still able to access the camera feeds. Good.

When I toggle the routines in ST app I am able to see both cameras responding to this command. Activating and Deactivation based on the routine mode within ST app.

Good grief, it seems as though all along the missing key was adding the garage camera to the Arlo app ST mode rules. Long story short… you can not add multiple devices through the Arlo app, only on the web. Arlo app has issues.

When I get home, I will test drive this more and update with a final determination.

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JD…your advice is also great advice. I will test the theory of HBR later and then if any brick wall comes up I will attempt the IFTTT attempt as well. BTW, thanks for the graphics showing the steps, much appreciated. Either way I will respond with an update.

For now, onto some Tylenol for the tech headache. lol

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Not fixed. Routines are set up correctly in ST app. Arlo app has the SmartThings mode selected. However, when switching routine from Goodbye! to I’m Back!.. In the Arlo app I only notice the Front Door Camera activating and deactivating. The Garage camera stays as unactivated in the Arlo app.

Doesn’t sound like I will be fixing this issue, unless there is some magic you used in setting yours up HBR.

I know you mentioned range…however, the garage camera is not that far away from the Arlo Hub. 20 feet maybe. It still sounds like Arlo in general is not working for me in the functioning.