There’s a Kickstarter campaign launched yesterday that has me all aflutter. You probably remember the Amplifi HD from Ubiquiti Labs, the mesh router that GeekDad Anthony Karcz fell in love with in 2016 and that won our hearts earlier this year by running a “Join the Dark Side” giveaway on Star Wars Day. For those who don’t remember, it’s the cute little mesh router that looks like it came out of Cupertino and blankets your home in fast, reliable Wi-Fi.
On to the big news! Ubiquiti announced a brand new product via Kickstarter called Amplifi Teleport, a product that “provides a secure and convenient way to reach resources at home, even when you are not.” The Amplifi Teleport does this by creating and maintaining an encrypted link between itself and your Amplifi HD base station anywhere the Amplifi Teleport is able to connect to the internet. This is basically a carry-it-with-you hardware VPN device that you can set up in seconds with a smartphone app and plug in anywhere you have a connection.
While I haven’t actually gotten a review unit yet, we do have lots of pictures, and I’m excited by the possibilities presented by a device like this. The most obvious use case is for the road warrior who wants to stay connected to their home network while traveling, whether it be for the ability to stream content off their local media server or just to check in on the status of local IoT devices. There are numerous reasons why someone who finds themselves traveling for days on end might want to have a quick and easy way to stay connected to the home network.
Security is another big reason someone might want a solution like this in their go bag. I, like many others, wouldn’t dream of connecting to a hotel network (or my cousin’s dodgy network, for that matter) without some sort of VPN up and running. But software VPN services aren’t always reliable and good ones cost money. There’s something intriguing about being able to not only run your own VPN server at home but also being able to connect to it effortlessly when you’re out and about.
I can think of any number of other use cases: being able to keep a connection to my parents’ network for troubleshooting purposes or even something as silly as being able to bring an Amazon Echo Dot with me on a trip and already having it configured for my Wi-Fi connection.
I’m not sure yet whether the Amplifi Teleport will be available as a standalone add-on for people who already own the Amplifi mesh router, but the Amplifi Teleport Kit (Amplifi Router plus the Teleport) will be available at launch for a limited-time early bird price of $199.
Stay tuned to the campaign for updates and, hopefully, I’ll get a review unit in my hot little hands very quickly so I can give you a real review.