Staying at an Airbnb or in a hotel is less scary with this portable security system

A few years ago, Derek Blumke booked a less-than-ideal room for a last-minute trip. When he arrived, he saw that the door had been kicked down, “Cops style” and the shoddy repairs made the six-foot-tall, 190-pound Air Force veteran feel extremely unsafe and wonder how someone without his stature and training would feel.

“I was angry,” he told Digital Trends. “Feeling like you don’t have control of your environment or your own well-being or safety is something that no one should have to feel.”

Blumke went in search of a solution and wound up inventing one: the TripSafe, a portable security system you can fit in your suitcase. “Seventeen percent of homeowners have a security system, probably less than 0.01 percent of travelers have any type of solution,” says Blumke.

The device consists of two wedges you can slide under your the door of your hotel room or Airbnb doors and a docking station. You plug in the base and open the app, which records your location and lets you enter your room number if you’re staying at a hotel.

TripSafe Travel Security System PortableThe wedges have accelerometers, that can detect if someone’s trying to force the door. In that event, the dock’s alarm will sound, and you’ll get a notification on your phone. If it’s just your drunk BFF stumbling in for the night, you can silence the alarm. If something more sinister is happening, TripSafe will call you and help coordinate action, whether it’s alerting the front desk or the police. You’ll only get that service if you sign up for the subscription, otherwise you and your designated contacts will simply get an alert that someone’s trying to break in or the motion-activated camera has picked up activity.

The entire thing weighs less than a pound and is six inches tall. The wedges fit into the base, but they jut out a bit, so it’s definitely not as slim as a smartphone. Still, Blumke did demonstrate that it fits into the pocket of his khakis (though he said he can’t make it work with his skinny jeans). The base has a fair amount of tech, including a 1080p camera, motion detector, microphone for detecting glass breaking, smoke detector, and speakers. While it has a plug, it can also run on a battery and can even recharge your phone. “Everyone I talk to has got another idea on how to use it,” says Blumke. He’s heard from parents who want to get a TripSafe for their college student.

Early birds can snag the system for $99 on Indiegogo. The team expects to ship the TripSafe in February 2017. As with all crowdfunding campaigns, it’s backer beware.

Updated 6/16/2016: Updated to indicate Derek Blumke is an Air Force veteran. 

Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: 1-handed drone control, a pot that stirs itself

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!
Movies & TV

The best movies on Amazon Prime right now (November 2018)

Prime Video provides subscribers with access to a host of fantastic films, but sorting through the catalog can be an undertaking. Luckily, we've done the work for you. Here are the best movies on Amazon Prime Video right now.
Home Theater

The best movies on Netflix in November, from 'The Witch’ to ‘Dracula’

Save yourself from hours wasted scrolling through Netflix's massive library by checking out our picks for the streamer's best movies available right now, whether you're into explosive action, witty humor, or anything else.
Home Theater

Don't wake the baby! How to connect headphones to a TV

Do you need to connect a pair of headphones to your TV? Our handy guide will show you how to hook up your headphones in a variety of ways, whether you're using wired headphones, wireless headphones, or gaming headsets.

Here are the best Amazon Echo and Google Home deals for Black Friday

Google Home and Amazon Echo smart speakers compete head to head when it comes to smart home tech. Whether you're a fan of Alexa or Google Home, we've found the best prices on your favorite smart home devices.
Product Review

You don't need Alexa in your microwave, but you'd be surprised what she can do

Amazon has added to its long portfolio of products with the AmazonBasics Microwave, a small appliance that works with Alexa. We took the microwave for a test drive to find out more.
Smart Home

Wynd’s new air-purifying bundle lets smart home owners breathe easier

Wynd is already well known in the tech industry for its popular Kickstarter-backed air purifier and now the company is launching two new products designed to improve air quality to inform smart home owners.
Smart Home

Google Assistant adds smart home bells and whistles in time for the holidays

Just in time for the holidays, Google Assistant is introducing a bunch of new smart home features, including the ability to reply to broadcast messages, create and use cookbooks, and access enhanced storybook content for kids.
Smart Home

Brew it fast, hot, and flavorful with our favorite coffee makers

Whether you're looking for a simple coffee maker to get you through the morning or a high-end brewer that will impress your taste buds and your friends, you'll find some of the best coffee makers around on this list.
Emerging Tech

These Alexa-stuffed retro phones don’t listen until you take them off the hook

Looking for an Amazon Echo with a cool vintage touch? Los Angeles-based Grain Design is taking old, non-working antique phones and transforming them into amazing Alexa smart speakers.
Smart Home

This alarm clock uses targeted light and sound to wake you, but not your partner

The Wake v2 isn't like your typical bedside alarm. Instead, it wakes you by shining a soft light directly into your face, thereby not disturbing the person sharing a bed with you. Pretty smart, huh?

All the best Amazon Black Friday deals for 2018

Amazon may be an online-only retailer, but that doesn’t mean its Black Friday sales are anything to sniff at. In fact, due to its online status, Amazon has huge flexibility with the range of products and deals it can offer. Here's our…

Xfinity indoor/outdoor camera zooms in on Grinch’s faces and license plates

Comcast's Xfinity Home security cameras can help the police catch Grinches who steal delivery packages from your home. The cameras use artificial intelligence to analyze moving objects and zoom in on faces at your door and license plates.
Smart Home

Airbnb hosts are offering free rooms to those displaced by California wildfires

Several thousand Airbnb hosts in California are opening their homes to help those displaced by the devastating wildfires in the state. Free accommodation is being offered to those affected through November 29.