Boondocking Basics

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Does the Ring Camera Require Internet Access?

Does the Ring Camera Require Internet Access?


The Ring Camera has become popular with boondockers as a way to set up a small, remote camera to capture video of intruders getting too close to their campsite. We had a reader ask us a question about the Ring Camera requiring Internet access in order to work.

ring camera in tree
Ring Camera mounted into a tree at a campsite

Does the Ring Camera Require Internet Access?

We received the following question from a reader…

I’m new to Boondocking I was reading in the suggest having a Ring camera which you can strap to a tree and watch on your cell phone. But it also states in the Ring app that you need high-speed Internet. What does one do if you’re in an area with no Internet service?


The answer is no, Internet access is not required.

What’s required is a router of some kind. The router does not have to be connected to the Internet in order for the Ring Camera to work. The camera can still connect to a router, even if the router is not connected to the Internet.

  • Most boondockers will use a hotspot device as their router. It will usually be a hotspot device they purchased through their cellular service provider.
  • Note that the hotspot device does not have to have a SIM card installed in order to connect local devices. A Ring Camera, a laptop, a tablet, television, etc., can still connect to a hotspot device, even though the hotspot device does not have a SIM card. You’ll be restricted to local use, however. But for purposes of viewing the Ring Camera while inside your vehicle, it will still work.
  • You can also buy a router intended for home use, much like those sold through Best Buy, Walmart, or other places where electronics are sold.
  • Some boondockers use a router sold by Pepwave, which are higher end routers designed to connect up multiple data networks, like cellular, Wi-Fi, or Starlink Satellite.

Why Does Ring Camera Say that Internet Access is Required?

Internet access is only required if you want to view your Ring Camera when you are far away from camp. For example, if you drove into town, and someone gets too close to your campsite, the Ring Camera can use the Internet to send you a notification. Then you can use the Internet to connect to your router, and view the Ring Camera.

If you don’t have Internet access at your campsite, you can still use the Ring Camera. It can still connect to your router, and you can still connect your phone to the router. Then you can use your phone to look through the camera, and/or browse previously saved video.

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