Last week I attended the showcase of Vodafone’s ‘Connected Motorhome’; an example of just how tech-savvy motorcaravanning is becoming.
The project, led by Dirk Ellenbeck, of Vodafone Germany, has seen his Adria Matrix Axess M650SF kitted out with all the latest touring, security and safety tech, both from Vodafone and from various other companies.
At the end of a two-week trip that Dirk and his wife took to Wales, they stopped at Battersea Park to show us around the motorhome. (We also got to meet his dog, Hazel, who is himself fully fitted out with a V-Pet Tracker Pod 3.)
Among the many high-tech products fitted to the ‘van were the V-Auto Car Tracker, which connects to your smartphone so you’ll always know where your ‘van is, giving peace of mind and a much higher likelihood of recovering your motorhome if it’s stolen.
There was also the V-Home Safety Starter Kit, which monitors your ‘van with a motion-detecting infra-red enabled Smart Camera, sensors to detect when windows or doors are opened unexpectedly, and a Siren alarm.
The Netgear Arlo Go adds to security and is connected to the Vodafone network via V-SIM so you don’t have to ensure a WiFi connection. It’s also weatherproof, so can be used to keep an eye on your ‘van while it’s at your storage location. Because it’s cordless, you can move it around, too, so it can be used to make sure your pets aren’t getting into trouble while you’re out for the day, too.
There were also a number of systems that aren’t yet available in the UK; Vodafone Parking Sensors and Vodafone Anti-Theft System, which allows the engine to be disabled remotely, should your motorhome be stolen.
Not to mention the tech solutions that aren’t from Vodafone; the motorhome was also fitted with Truma connected air conditioning and heating, which can be controlled from your smartphone, an Alpine Navigation System, the Goldschmitt levelling system and Tegos door locking system.
Dirk also told me about some exciting developments that Vodafone are working on. V2X technology (Vehicle-2-Everything), which connects vehicles, pedestrians, traffic lights and more through the mobile network, is being tested in the 5G mobility lab near Düsseldorf by a number of companies. Eventually, this could lead to ‘see-through’ technology that will allow you to see what’s happening ahead of the vehicle in front of you, so you’ve got more time to react to hazards, and making overtaking lorries, for example, far safer.
I’ll be writing about all of this in more detail in an upcoming issue, so keep an eye out for it if you want to know more!
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Among the many high-tech products fitted to the 'van were the V-Auto Car Tracker, which connects to your smartphone so you'll always know where your 'van is