Home Automation with Alexa Needs Internet

If you’ve been following my home automation activities, then you know that I’ve been fairly invested in using Alexa. Even though I live in an RV which basically has only 3 rooms, I am using 4 (sometimes 5) Echo devices. These provide a very rich voice control experience and I’ve been very happy with them.

A problem with using Alexa, at least from the perspective of one living in an RV, is the requirement of having an internet connection. Without a live internet connection Alexa is dumb as a box of rocks.

However, Alexa doesn’t need a fast connection. So I’ve setup my networking to connect my router to a Verizon Jetpack while I’m on the road. Since I’m a Verizon unlimited customer already, adding a Jetpack only costs about $10/month. It provides 15 gig of high speed bandwidth then throttles down to 600k, which is actually enough for Alexa and for communicating with all my IoT devices. So it continues to work even if I’ve used up the high speed bandwidth.