Spring is the perfect time to set up your patio for outdoor living. If you have a patio, deck, or backyard, adding tech accessories can turn your space into an outdoor oasis. Best of all, these are all DIY setups that you can do on a weekend. To bring entertainment options outside, here are some things to consider.

Extending Wi-Fi outside for patio season

Having a strong, reliable Wi-Fi signal is the first step in any smart outdoor makeover. Guests and outdoor smart home devices need connectivity to your WiFi network. Then you can stream music, video chat with friends and family, or watch a movie on your patio furniture.

With respect to Wi-Fi and networking equipment, there are several ways to extend Wi-Fi outdoors. 

First, if you currently use a gateway box provided by your ISP, a new Wi-Fi 6 wireless router can extend your Wi-Fi range. Compared to gateway boxes, these routers use the latest Wi-fi 6 technology to extend the Wi-Fi range throughout a home. 

Second, you may want to extend the wireless signal across multiple floors and a large space like a backyard. A Whole Home Mesh Wi-Fi solution is the ultimate choice to blanket an entire property with Wi-Fi. With mesh satellites on each floor and in outdoor spaces like covered decks, you can completely eliminate dead spots.   

Once you have a strong outdoor Wi-Fi signal, you can later add other accessories to transform your outdoor space. This home network buying guide will help you decide which solution is best for you. 

Outdoor TV or projector for movies outside

Imagine having a BBQ and movie night at the same time. If you have a covered space with a nearby power source, adding an outdoor TV brings movie and game night outside. These televisions are designed for the elements and will make “Netflix and Grill” a reality.

If you decide to mount a TV outdoor, look for a full-motion TV mount designed for outdoor use. With an extendable arm, tilt and swivel it around for multiple viewing angles. Furthermore, adding a media streamer brings endless entertainment options for the whole family.   

Another popular option is using an outdoor projector. Unlike an outdoor TV, this is a modular, non-permanent solution for occasional outdoor use. Use a projector on any white surface like a garage door, shed, or outdoor projector screen. Many projectors are smart with built-in access to Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and Disney+. You can find out about all of the features of outdoor projectors in the projector buying guide.

Outdoor audio lets you stream your playlists

Everyone should enjoy listening to their favourite songs or podcasts outdoors. There are many ways you can enjoy music outside, so pick a solution that fits your space and setup. 

First, decide what kind of speakers you want to use. Outdoor weather speakers are a great option if you have an existing wired system or if you want to create one from scratch. Either way, you will need a receiver to connect and control speakers. Rock speakers are a popular choice if you want to be discreet and have the speakers blend into your outdoor space. 

For most, a portable Bluetooth speaker will suffice. There is a wide range of portable speakers including party speakers, camping and BBQ speakers, and speakers for the pool and beach. If you have a covered area like a deck or patio, consider adding smart speakers. This way you can BBQ with your hands, and play DJ with your voice. 

Smart BBQs cook everything perfectly

The best way to impress your family and friends is with BBQs and outdoor cooking. If you’re looking for a new BBQ, first consider your preferred fuel type. There are a variety of BBQs to choose from including Propane, Natural Gas, Charcoal, and Wood Pellet BBQs.

Like most things, BBQs are getting smart. Brands like Weber are now offering BBQs that connect to your smartphone. If you’re building a smart home, this is definitely the type of BBQ for you. 

Adding BBQ parts and accessories to your existing grill is a great way to kick off the outdoor cooking season. New smart BBQ accessories allow you to monitor the temperature of your grill and food from your smartphone. Entertain guests and get notifications when it’s time to flip the burgers. 

Smart cameras keep an eye on your patio

Using your Wifi network, security cameras protect your outdoor smart home devices. They provide peace of mind when you’re away from home. These systems can stream live video in HD resolution and record activity through motion detection activation. Best of all, videos can be viewed directly from your smart home from virtually anywhere. 

There are dedicated security camera systems and IP cameras to choose from. The type of system you choose depends on your power source. Doorbell cameras work great for existing doorbells. Wire-free security cameras are a good choice for outside areas with no power source. 

Many of these camera systems are modular. Add-on security cameras can be purchased later if you want additional coverage areas. To create your own DIY system, there is a range of security camera accessories such as mounts, solar power chargers, and extension cables.  

Outdoor smart lighting adds atmosphere

Garden and outdoor lighting can make or break any outdoor space. As the sun goes down, smart outdoor lighting can keep the party going through the night. These lights can be controlled by an app and voice with the use of a smart speaker. 

Smart outdoor lighting can illuminate pathways or be used as mood lighting on a patio. Colours can be adjusted during the seasons like Christmas and Canada Day. They work great with voice assistants like Google, Assistant, Alexa, and Apple HomeKit. Control the lights and colours on the fly with voice commands. It’s a great way to impress your friends and family.

Upgrade the patio for outdoor entertainment

Spring and Summer are the two seasons to be outside. With the right smart home gear, you can transform any outdoor space into a high-tech entertainment centre. It all starts with good outdoor Wi-Fi so make sure you have that covered before you add smart devices. 

When you’re ready for a smart outdoor makeover, Best Buy has you covered for all your outdoor living needs

Andy Baryer
Andy Baryer aka “Handy Andy” is a technology journalist, gadget reviewer, and DIY/how-to content creator. Known as the handyman of tech, Andy enjoys fixing poor wireless networks, building smart homes, and cooking with the latest kitchen gadgets. He’s a competitive whistler, a budding woodworker, and loves gardening in his home-built smart garden.