Smart Light Bulbs
Smart light bulbs are usually the first connected appliances adopted in smart homes. Smart LED bulbs boast wireless connectivity that allows them to be controlled remotely. With these, you can turn lighting fixtures on and off without reaching for wall switches. Depending on the model, you may also be able to change light color and brightness, as well as set a schedule for each smart bulb. One of the most popular smart lightning products is the Philips Hue smart lighting system, which offers different types of connected bulbs, in addition to smart LED strips, accent lamps, and wake-up lights.
Types of Smart Light Bulbs
Unlike regular LED lamps, smart bulbs connect wirelessly to hubs and/or the internet via your Wi-Fi network. They use wireless standards such as Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, ZigBee, and Z-Wave. Smart home light bulbs can support more than one of these wireless technologies. Units that support only ZigBee and Z-Wave require dedicated hubs which you can connect to your home router. Bluetooth LED bulbs are the most affordable options. To use, simply pair them to your smartphone or tablet. Bluetooth bulbs can go out of range if you are too far from them in your home. Wi-Fi smart LED bulbs, however, can be controlled anywhere in your home. and are easier to install than hub-based models.
Choosing the Right Smart LED Bulbs
First, consider the color. Most units are white bulbs, but there are also smart color light bulbs. You can change the colors of these LED bulbs to best suit the mood in the room or create your own ambiance. If you have smart dimmers and switches installed in your home, look for dimmable smart LEDs.
When replacing regular bulbs with connected ones, make sure to find replacements of equivalent brightness. Manufacturers often compare LED fixtures to equivalent incandescent bulbs and lamps. For example, an 8 to 9-watt LED unit is equivalent to a 60-watt incandescent bulb. However, the true measure of brightness is lumens. Another key feature to consider is color temperature. Daylight and cool white lamps have high temperatures. Choose these for office lightning and outdoor smart light bulbs. Warm white units, with lower temperatures, are ideal for indoor fixtures, because their warm glow is relaxing.
Can I Control Smart LED Light Bulbs with My Smart Speaker?
Not every smart bulb works with smart speakers. Those that support voice assistants offer a hands-free option for controlling your home lighting. To use this feature, make sure to order Wi-Fi-enabled light bulbs that are compatible with your smart speaker. The three popular voice-enabled home automation platforms are Amazon Alexa, Google Home, and Apple HomeKit. Note that some smart bulbs support both Alexa and Google Assistant.
Start creating the smart home of your dreams by installing your first smart light bulbs. Check out the wide selection of home automation products available at B&H Photo and Video.