AmpliFi’s new Teleport aims to warp you back home (review)
Home networking has come a long way in recent history with the addition of things like mesh networks; Ubiquiti’s AmpliFi has been right at the forefront of that development. In the past, we have reviewed the AmpliFi Router as well as the Amplifi Mesh Point. The most recent expansion of the AmpliFi line is a crowd-funded device they have dubbed Teleport.
The Teleport connects you to your home network no matter where you are, as long as you have access to an internet connection. What does this do? It allows you to access any devices on your internal, home network as well as skirt some of those pesky regional settings for services like Netflix, Hulu, HBO, etc. We will talk more about its advantages later.
The previous iterations of AmpliFi equipment have been minimal in their setup, well Teleport is no different. Step number one is to get your AmpliFi router set up. The review unit we were provided with came with a router but if you are already a follower and user of AmpliFi equipment then you can use your existing AmpliFi router, provided it is upgraded to the latest firmware
The next step is to synchronize the router and Teleport. This is done by first plugging in the teleport into a wall outlet. Once the light begins flashing in a circle connect to the Teleport’s default Wireless network with any wifi enabled device. Once connected, you will be asked to connect to a network, Connect the Teleport to the network that comes from your AmpliFi router. Once connected you will be asked to confirm the connection between the router and the Teleport (this will happen within the AmpliFi app so make sure you have it up on your phone).
The final step is to connect the teleport to a different wireless network (at a hotel, friends house, or wherever you may find yourself) and watch the connection to your home network appear before your eyes.
What does it all mean?
Put simply, the Teleport device is establishing a Point-to-Point connection from wherever you are to your home network. It is essentially the same tools that allow large corporations to have the same network across facilities in many states or even countries. The Teleport simply accomplishes this on a much smaller scale with less expensive hardware.
What does this mean for you? Technically speaking, you now have access to your entire home network. Anything you do on the internet will appear as though you are doing it from your home. Additionally, you will have access to any device or files that are on your local network (ie. security cameras, thermostats, network storage for videos or music).
Being a self-proclaimed nerd, there have been many occasions where I have wanted an easy way to connect to my home network, to troubleshoot something for my wife while I was out of town, to access some local files on one of my computers, or just to get around those pesky site blockers at hotels — ughhhh, am I right?
There are, however, a few things that you need to keep in mind when using this device. Anything you do or stream from your home network is using your network’s upload speed. Many plans here in the US have much slower upload speeds than they do download speeds. This may affect the quality of your stream or interrupt something else that is happening on your network at the same time. It is also important to remember that the connection you are using for the Teleport needs to be fast enough to support what you are trying to accomplish.
My experience with the Teleport was an overall success. I was able to access devices on my local network and confirmed that the internet thought I was at home when using it. Pulling down images and streaming music off of my network storage was a breeze and played with no issues. I was even able to access the Hard Drive of my laptops at home and open any documents that were available there which could be nice for those who forgot to copy a document to their cloud drive before heading out to that meeting. Now, if we could just get AmpliFi to make use of that USB port in the back for network storage or network printing that would be awesome!
As of today, you can preorder your Teleport from the AmpliFi Store for $99 as a stand-alone unit or $229 for the router/Teleport combo.