Your Holiday Travel Tech Essentials Are Here


Have holiday travel plans over the next few weeks? There is still time to grab a few tech essentials to keep you on track, whether you’re venturing by car, plane, or train, and if you’re plans are taking you home for the holidays, out on a great adventure, or away for work.

First: Keep Your Home Secure

At Modern Home Systems, we believe that smart home tech is an essential for every home in the 21st Century. There are many great home security systems you can install and monitor from your personal device while you’re away. However, if you’re in a pinch, here are a couple of quick pickups you can get for some piece of mind before you set off on your holiday travels:

The Nest Cam has a video quality of 1080p as well as night vision, and you can link this to your other smart home (and personal!) devices. As a bonus, if you have the Nest thermostat, the Nest Cam can be set up to record in your home as soon as the thermostat is set to “Away.”

Similarly, with the WiFi-connected Ring Video Doorbell, you can view who is at your door—even talk with them from your personal device—while you’re away. The device is motion-activated and has a 720p camera with a 180-degree field of view—and you can purchase a service that stores its video recordings in the cloud.

Going for your great adventure?

You can boost the quality of your iPhone camera shots by connecting the DxO One, a lightweight camera that plugs right into your iPhone’s Lightening connector, using your display as your viewfinder. One of the DxO One’s specialties is low-light photography. Retails for under $500.

If you’re really in the adventure-minded spirit for your holiday travel plans, now may be time to pick up the new GoPro Hero5Black, complete with a sturdier case, is waterproof up to 33 feet WITHOUT the bulkier housing of the previous generation, and has a built-in LCD touchscreen so you can actually see what you’re taking. Starting price is just under $400.

For work or play, you need the little extras for all your holiday travel gadgets

Mobile chargers are a must for travel. The Jackery Bolt is a portable charger with a 6,000mAh battery and can recharge the iPhone 6 nearly three times before the charger itself needs recharging. It’s also compact and lightweight enough to bring with you anywhere.

If you’re traveling by car, check out a device like the Nonda Zus Smart Car Charger, which plugs directly into the car’s lighter port and has two separate USB ports for iPhone, iPad, Galaxy S, or other devices. A bonus to the Zus? It has a free app that tells you where you parked your car.

For the power traveler hard at work

You have so many devices required for a mobile office—what you need is a plethora of USB ports. We like the Femoro USB-C Hub, with ports equipped for MacBooks and PCs (and any USB port hub). It can charge devices and also connect to external hard drives. A second option is the Sabrent 4-port USB 3.0 Hub; it’s a low-cost accessory that plugs into to one of your existing USB ports, giving you access to 4 additional USB ports, with transfer sppeds up to 5 GB/s.

With all that tech, don’t forget the surge protector. Accell Home or Away Power Station is travel-ready and plugs directly into a wall outlet. It has three standard outlets and two USB charging ports, giving you the capability of charging five devices at a time without worrying about a power surge.

And to complete your holiday travel plans, consider the last minute upgrades:

Apple Watch Series 2 has a great new design, geared especially toward fitness, and includes improved water resistance and much easier to read display. Pricing starts at $369.

And finally, consider that upgrade to the Apple iPhone 7 Plus, so you really can manage your entire life in the palm of your hand. The camera has a new dual-lens with wide and 2x optical zoom, a gorgeous display, stereo speakers, and an improved waterproof housing. 32G retails at $769, 128GB retails at $869, and 265GB is at a very-worth-it price of $969.

We at Modern Home Systems wish you a happy holiday and safe travel plans for the end of 2016 and into a bright, technology-filled new year. To make your life easier, come check out your smart tech for home and travel at or stop by our showroom at 7007 Carroll Rd, San Diego CA 92121 and our Apple Boutique at16081 San Dieguito Rd “G2,” Rancho Santa Fe CA 92091.