Just because you're leaving the house does not mean that you can not take smart home technology with you. Whether you're camping, driving a motorhome on the road, or staying in a hotel, you can take away some of your smarthome technology.
Put Google or Alexa in your vehicle.
Just because you're away from home does not mean you can not have your favorite voice assistant. Some automakers include Google Assistant and Alexa in the infotainment system, but even if you're in an older car, you still have options.
Anker produces both an Alexa and a Google version of its Roav product. The Roav looks like a standard car charger, but it syncs with your phone and the speakers of your vehicle and offers a voice assistant on the go. You need a data signal from your phone to make the devices work naturally.
Amazon has announced the Echo Auto, but this is currently just an invitation. Therefore, third-party options are currently the only viable option.
If you use a hotspot, you can also take your Echo Dot or Google Home mini with you. Some hotels also offer echo devices in guest rooms.
Determine Your Internet Options
Many smarthome devices require the Internet to work. Your video doorbell, cameras, and Wi-Fi devices require some network access in order to use all the features they provide.
First, determine what your Internet access should look like. If you are camping tented, you may not have convenient internet access. or if you do, it can be slow. However, if you stay in a hotel or have a mobile hotspot with good reception, you will need to consider other options to reach smart devices from the Internet. If you have an Amazon Echo, there is a process for working with login pages for the web browser. In all other cases you should consider a travel router.
Travelers can connect to a hotel's network and then create a custom Wi-Fi network for them. This process bypasses the sign-in page for all your smart devices and bypasses all the rules that apply to only one device in some hotels.
The easiest way is to create a plan that does not have an internet connection.
Smarthome hub with local control
Since you can not guarantee Internet access from anywhere, and mobile hotspots are often equipped with data restrictions, you can control your devices without them. Internet is the way to go. The easiest way to manage this is to have a hub that works locally.
Although SmartThings and Wink hubs have limited local control capabilities, they rely primarily on the cloud. Therefore, you should skip these for travel. You may want to consider Hubitat, HomeSeer or OpenHab instead.
Local hubs are more difficult to set up than cloud hubs like Wink or SmartThings, but the fact that they can work without the Internet is the main benefit of using them for traveling. As long as you choose smart devices that do not rely on the Internet (or provide a mobile hotspot), your only concern is to power your devices.
Select Z-Wave or ZigBee devices
The other advantage of using a hub, especially a local control hub, is its use from Z-wave and ZigBee. Most Smarthome hubs support the Z-Wave and Zigbee protocols. These protocols form a mesh-style network. This means you can take plugs, lights, and sensors with you, even if you do not have Internet access.
If you stay outdoors, choose devices that are compatible with the weather. The setup is relatively similar to home, and you probably should do the decorating work here anyway. That way, when you arrive, you'll only need to hook up and provision the Internet if you have the Internet.
Intelligent sensors allow you to automate your arrival and departure, and if you have Internet access, you can even build a lightweight security system that notifies you when someone enters your room, vehicle, or campsite.
RELATED: How To Take Your Smarthome Outside
Bluetooth is Decently Alternative to Smart Hubs
How As mentioned earlier, using smart home hubs with local control is usually difficult. If you do not want to work through this or spend money on another hub, Bluetooth is another option.
You can control Bluetooth lights and plugs directly from your phone without having to set up a hub. This option works without Internet, although some devices provide Alexa or Google compatibility if you can provide network access.
In a hotel, by placing switchmates over the light switches, you can prevent them from having to get out of bed again, time to find a switch that you missed to turn off the last light. Your tired body will thank you for the easy control. Do not forget to reset the original bulbs.
The main disadvantage of this option is the short Bluetooth range. In a hotel or RV you probably will not encounter any problems, but at a campsite you may need to keep everything within reach.
You can not take everything with you.
Some smarthome devices have won. & # 39; t travel well. Cameras like Wyze Cam or Nest Cams are an attractive option and are particularly useful for security reasons. But they use a lot of data and would probably break any cap that has a mobile hotspot or suffers from throttling. Likewise, anything you normally connect to a house like a smart lock, a thermostat, or a switch is not a sensible choice.
But as long as you plan the available options correctly, you can take at least part of your smarthome comfort with you when traveling.