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Netgear is facing a class action lawsuit over claims that its popular Arlo Baby Monitor is nothing more than a “paperweight” due to its alleged unreliable monitoring and functionality.

Plaintiff Ryan Klebba purchased Netgear’s Arlo Baby Monitor in August 2017 for $244 in anticipation of the birth of his twin babies. When he set up the Arlo Baby Monitor in his nursery and experimented with its functionality, he quickly realized that the video and audio monitoring features of the Arlo Baby were unreliable and ineffective, and prone to extended bouts of heavy pixelization and static.

Nevertheless, when his twin arrived in November 2017, Klebba attempted to use the Arlo Baby Monitor but continued to experience difficulty, prompting a discussion with Netgear’s tech support staff, who ultimately offered to send him a replacement for his original Arlo Baby Monitor, which Klebba accepted in hopes that it would resolve the connection issues he experienced. This however, did not resolve any of Klebba’s issues with the Arlo Baby Monitor’s poor visual quality and frequent disconnects.

In May 2017, Netgear released the Arlo Baby Monitor, promising an “all-in-one” baby monitoring experience, capable of video and audio monitoring, along with a host of other features, from night lights to music playing capabilities. A particular feature of the Arlo Baby Monitor that Netgear touted was its ability to let consumers monitor their children “anywhere, anytime,” and to “always stay connected to the most important things in your life, even when you can’t be where they are.”

Another critical feature of the Arlo Baby that Netgear advertised was the ability to combine it with Netgear’s proprietary companion tablet, to be released in Summer 2017. According to Netgear, the companion tablet promised the unique ability to stream the Arlo Baby to the tablet without an internet connection, thereby allowing consumers to monitor their baby away from Wi-Fi networks like a traditional baby monitor.

However, unbeknownst to consumers, including Kleppa, who purchased the Arlo Baby Monitor, Netgear cancelled the release its proprietary tablet, thereby “depriving consumers of the ability to use the Arlo Baby without an active internet connection”, the lawsuit states, and basically rendering the Arlo Baby Monitor pretty much useless.

Indeed, countless consumer complaints echo Kleppa’s experience, pointing out that the Arlo Baby Monitor frequently disconnects and fails to reconnect without manual intervention, leaving the baby monitor unable to perform the single task it was designed to do: provide continuous monitoring of babies while the parents attempted to sleep in a different room.

Klebba claims that this left him and other parents who purchased the Arlo Baby Monitor “with little more than a frustrating paperweight, capable of sporadic and unreliable monitoring with less functionality than a conventional baby monitor available for one-tenth of the price of the Arlo Baby.”

By filing this class action lawsuit, Klebba is seeking to represent a nationwide Class of all consumers who purchased an Arlo Baby Monitor, as well as a Texas subclass. He is asking the court to award actual, consequential and compensatory damages, as well as injunctive relief and restitution to all Class members.

Klebba is represented by Aaron D. Radbil and Alexander D. Kruzyk of Greenwalk Davidson Radbil PLLC.

The Arlo Baby Monitor Class Action Lawsuit is Ryan Klebba, et al. v. Netgear Inc., Case No. 1:18-cv-00438, in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas.

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