Important sensible tech to tackle tenting journeys


The weather is getting warmer and it’s time to get outside again. You may think you need to leave your favorite gadgets behind, but the line between technology and the great outdoors is blurring by the day.

If you or someone you know needs the motivation to get outside, we’re here to help. Tap or click here for 15 outdoor sports and activity gift ideas to get everyone off their couch.

Your technique can make your journey into the wilderness easier and safer. A strong cellular signal will come in handy in an emergency, as will a portable GPS that can alert others if you need help. Read on for must-have smart tech for your next camping trip.

1. Check the coverage

You could spend your camping trip reading text messages, email, and social media, or you could go on a digital detox. Whichever you prefer, check your provider’s coverage maps to see what good signal you can expect at your destination. You never know when you need to make a call or send a message.

Check out the following coverage maps for three of the largest wireless carriers:

2. How to boost your signal

You can get extra coverage with a Cell Booster. Use a mobile hotspot to share your signal with others at your camp. If coverage is unavailable, a satellite phone is your best bet. Here are some of our recommended devices:

The weBoost Drive Sleek plugs into your car’s auxiliary power socket (aka cigarette lighter socket) to boost 5G & 4G LTE for all US carriers including Verizon, AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile. You get improved voice quality, faster mobile internet and better streaming.

The mount is adaptable to most phones and can even accommodate hotspots. A USB port and cable are included so you can charge a device while using the booster.

The kit comes with booster, mount and bracket, magnetic outdoor antenna, power supply, magnetic air vent clip and installation instructions.

The GlocalMe DuoTurbo 4G LTE mobile hotspot does not require a SIM card, but can support a nano SIM card if required.

You can get 4G internet on the go from virtually anywhere in the world. Share your WiFi connection with up to 10 devices at the same time. You get 1.1GB of worldwide data and 8GB of US data for free if you contact the company and redeem the IMEI 2 on the back of the device.

There are no contract or roaming fees for data. Choose a plan from the Glocalme app and pay as you need:

  • The 2GB plan costs $6.99 for one day.
  • Upgrade to 25GB per month for $88.
  • Go up to 50GB per month for $99.
  • The top-tier data plan gets you 100GB per month for $159.

The Thuraya XT-LITE satellite phone is well suited for telephoning far away from any cell phone coverage. You can make voice calls and send text messages using a SIM card. Feel free to walk and move during use without worrying about losing your signal.

This satellite phone includes many features you are used to: address book, alarm, calculator, call logs, conference calls, contact groups, speed dial, stopwatch and world time.

The battery offers up to six hours of talk time and 80 hours of standby time.

3. Keep in touch without getting lost

A satellite messenger keeps you connected in areas without cell service. These are not like satellite phones in that you cannot make calls. However, you can share your location, send text messages, and send an SOS signal that notifies local rescue workers that you need help and gives them your exact latitude and longitude.

We recommend the following satellite messenger as the best option when going camping:

With the Spot X 2-way satellite messenger, you can exchange messages with any phone number or email address from virtually anywhere. The quick check-in feature lets your loved ones know you’re safe.

Connect to the Spot X app via Bluetooth for a satellite connection that includes tracking intervals and cloud-based mapping. Navigate your adventure with the built-in compass and programmable waypoints.

In an emergency, the SOS function alerts the International Emergency Response Coordination Center (IERCC) with your GPS coordinates and sends information to local teams who can come to the rescue. All you have to do is push a button.

The Spot X comes with device, strap and carabiner, micro USB data/power cable, quick start guide, SOS mirror sticker, warranty card and kickstand. It’s currently under $250 on Amazon.

Turn on

Your gadgets are paperweights without electricity, so you’ll want to invest in a portable power station to keep them running.

We like the Jackery Explorer 300. It has the capacity to charge multiple devices at once or even power small devices. Charge a smartphone up to 30 times or a laptop up to four times on a single charge.

See our review for more information.

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