Previously, we’ve reviewed the HooToo TripMate Nano, a pocket-sized travel router with the ability to view and share files via a USB flash drive, external hard drive or USB card reader. Today, we’ll review the Nano’s cooler big brother, the TripMate SITH.
The SITH is a slightly larger in size and more stylish than the Nano. Similarly, it also serves as a wireless travel router and wireless media streaming and sharing device. It can also be used as a power bank (on-the-go mobile charger) thanks to the built-in 10400 mAh battery.
Below you’ll see how the HooToo compares in size to a coffee mug and a vitamin bottle. This will give you a good idea of its height and width.
The SITH’s Design
The SITH is very cleverly designed, with hidden input and output ports, ethernet WAN port and reset button. All ports are hidden behind rubber flaps at the top of the device. The flaps are very easy to open and close snuggly when the ports aren’t in use.
The power button is located on the top of the device along with five LED indicators (one above and four below). To turn the device on, hold the power button down for 3 seconds.
A short press of the power button (1 second) will show you how much of the battery is left. For instance, a full battery will illuminate all four LEDs, while a very low battery would illuminate just one LED. This is extremely convenient.
There is also a WiFi LED above the power button that will change colors accordingly. Here’s what the different colors mean:
- Flashing Blue – system loading
- Solid Blue – system loaded
- Solid Green – Internet connected
- Off – no Internet available
Setting Up the SITH
Inside the box, you’ll find the SITH, a user manual, and USB cable. There are numerous things you can do with the SITH, but for this review, let’s set it up so that we can view the contents of a USB flash drive.
You will need to download and install the HooToo TripMate Plus app for Android or iOS. Once you have the mobile app, insert the USB flash drive into the USB port on the SITH. Now turn on the device and wait for the WiFi indicator to turn solid blue.
Next you’ll need to get the Internet working. You can use a mobile device or computer (I used an Android tablet). Go to the wireless networks and find the one named “TripMateSith-XXXX.” Select it and connect using the default password 11111111 (the number one 8 times).
Once the connection is established, open your browser and go to 10.10.10.254 (it may open automatically). You’ll need to log in with the username admin and no password (leave it blank).
Once logged in, go to Network Settings -> Internet -> Wired Access. Make sure the Wireless Access option is selected here. Your home (or wherever you are) Internet connection should show up – select it and enter the password if necessary. Then click on the save button.
Now you should be connected to the Internet on your device The WiFi LED on the SITH should also turn solid green, indicating that the Internet is connected.
Finally, open the TripMate Plus app on your mobile device. You will now be able to access the content on your storage device to view and share as desired.
Uses for the SITH
The SITH has three supported modes along with being able to stream content and charge your mobile devices. These modes are:
- Access Point (AP) mode – In this mode the SITH is connected to a wired network so that other devices can connect to it via its WiFi connection.
- Router mode – In this mode the SITH is connected to a DSL or cable modem and works as a regular router.
- Bridge mode – In this mode the SITH can create a secured WiFi connection with a new SSID based on an existing wireless network.
The HooToo TripMate SITH is a very handy device that serves multiple purposes and looks good doing it. The setup process is straightforward and fairly easy for those who are tech savvy. When using one of the modes, the included user manual is very helpful and even includes useful screenshots.
Although the TripMate Plus mobile app isn’t the best looking, it is very easy to navigate and serves it purpose. In Settings, you can change the name of your device to something unique, change the security options (i.e add password protection), and even upgrade the firmware.
While I was able to successfully view the content on my connected USB device, I did find that the Internet speed is on the slower side. Watching a short video was a choppy experience – it kept stopping after a minute or so of playing. I have a 60mbps connection at home (averages 35 – 45mbps upload speeds on a good day). However, I used SpeedTest app while connected to the SITH and found that I only had 2.29mbps download and 2.70mbps upload speeds. As you can see, this will make some tasks painful.
Another issue I had is that when I connect the SITH to my tablet, it connects as a media device and shows a red “X” over my battery. This is disappointing because it disallows me from using it as a power bank. Hopefully, there is a fix for this.
Besides these few issues, this is definitely a device worth having – especially if you need a multi-functional NAS server.
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