Smart lights(or bulbs) are still in their first generation. We haven’t seen a mass-market adoption for them and there aren’t many to choose from either. But we have seen what they’re capable of and they fit right in with what’s happening these days – the modern home has a lot of smartphones. And these smartlights take great advantage of these smartphones to give functionaity no normal light source can provide. To find out more about these smartlights, check out our list of the best smartlights you can buy today.
Philips was one of the first entrants into the smartlights business with its hue range of smart bulbs. These bulbs are reasonably priced and do some amazing stuff. But you have to get the starter kit to actually use them. The starter kit consists of 3 bulbs and the hue bridge, which really is the brains of the whole operation. The bridge needs to be connected to a WiFi modem via a LAN wire so you can start controlling the bulbs via the free hue app. The bridge can control up to 53 bulbs at a time, so there’s plenty of room to grow as well. You can control the color of the lighting and set alarms/timers with them as well. Philips even has an hue API so app developers can find new creative uses for the hue bulb as well.
The LIFX bulb is on the pricier end of the smart bulb spectrum. At $99.99, it costs more than the Philips hue smart bulb, but then it does have all the components built-in – you don’t have to link the LIFX bulbs to a bridge to use them. Even a single bulb will be controllable via the LIFX app, that might be the reason these are expensive. As for the functionality, well they’re pretty identical to the hues in this respect. You can control the color of the light with the app, set them to pulse when you get messages/calls. And the LIFX bulbs can even be programmed to turn on when you enter your home.
Lumen by Tabu Smart Bulb
If you’re looking for fancy LED smart bulbs on the cheap, you might want to give the Lumen by Tabu smart bulb a shot. These smart bulbs cost $50 a piece and are independently controllable (you don’t need a bridge). They connect to your smartphone via Bluetooth 4.0 which has a range of about 40 feet. You can change the color of the bulb or select from a number of pre-programmed light settings. You’ll have to be careful before purchasing these bulbs though because your phone can only control 10 bulbs at a time, so you’re limited if you’re going big with the smart bulbs. Still, this is an economical choice if you really want to spice up the lighting of your home/room.