Best Smart Light Bulbs iMore 2020
Adding smart light bulbs to your home is a quick and easy way to make your place smarter without breaking the bank. Available in all sorts of sizes and styles, a smart bulb can set the mood through dimming or setting a scene with bursts of color. The LIFX Wi-Fi Smart LED Light Bulb strikes the perfect balance of quality and capability by producing bright vivid colors and connecting to your home network via Wi-Fi. We have gathered the best smart light bulbs around to help you decide which is the best fit for you.
- Best Overall: LIFX Wi-Fi Smart LED Light Bulb
- Best Value: Sengled Smart White LED Bulb
- Best Filament Style: Sylvania Soft White Filament Bulb
- Best Integration: Philips Hue White LED Bulb
- Best BR30 Bulb: FEIT Smart Wi-Fi LED Color Bulb
- Best Candelabra Bulb: Hue White Ambiance Smart Bulb
Best Overall: LIFX Wi-Fi Smart LED Light Bulb
The LIFX Wi-Fi Smart LED Light is the best option for those looking for a high-quality bulb capable of producing millions of colors and bright whites. Rated at 1,100 lumens of light output, LIFX's smart bulb is one of the brightest smart bulbs around, and because it is an LED, it sips power, running at just 11 watts.
The LIFX smart bulb connects directly to your home's network via Wi-Fi, allowing it to work without the need for an additional hub. The bulb integrates with Apple's HomeKit, Amazon Alexa and the Google Assistant making it a highly compatible solution. This allows it to work with other smart home devices, enabling complex automations and scenes.
Powerful dimming options and an abundant color selection make LIFX's bulbs a great way to set the mood in any area of your home. Backed with a two-year warranty and a life expectancy of 22.8 years, means that LIFX's bulbs will be around for the long haul.
- Vivid Colors
- Uses Wi-Fi
- Non-Traditional design
Light it up
The LIFX led bulb produces bright, vivid colors, and connects directly to your home network. This bulb is also compatible with Alexa, Google, and HomeKit.
Best Value: Sengled Smart White LED Bulb
The Sengled Smart White LED Bulb is one of the lowest cost smart bulbs around. Despite the low price, the LED bulb produces bright light, up to 800 lumens, and offers energy monitoring via Sengled's App which is available for iOS and Android.
Since Sengled's smart bulb uses ZigBee for connectivity, it means that a separate hub is necessary for smart functionality. This can be from Wink, SmartThings, or even Amazon's Alexa with smart home capabilities built in. Once connected, voice control support allows you to quickly turn off the lights on your way out the door.
- Low cost
- Energy monitoring
- Requires ZigBee hub
- Does not work with HomeKit
- Only available in A19 size
Bang for your buck
Sengled's smart bulb is a low-cost solution for those that have a ZigBee home hub. This bulb produces bright light, using just 9 watts of power.
Best Filament Style: Sylvania Soft White Filament Bulb
Sylvania's Soft White Filament Bulb brings smart capabilities to the iconic light bulb style. Sylvania's bulb is capable of outputting up to 650 lumens and does so using just 10 watts of power, making it a smart replacement for the older filament bulbs that you may still have around.
Connection to Apple's HomeKit enables Sylvania's Filament Bulb to work with Siri for voice control, as well as with scenes and automations. Bluetooth connectivity allows the bulb to pair directly with HomeKit and it will be ready to control via your iOS device in just a few moments.
- Low cost
- No hub required
- HomeKit only
- Not the brightest
- Limited range
Best Filament Style
The Sylvania filament bulb is a stylish alternative to traditional globe light bulbs. Bluetooth connectivity means you will be up and running in minutes.
Best Integration: Philips Hue White LED Bulb
The Philips Hue line is synonymous with smart lighting and is celebrated for bringing connected bulbs to the masses. The Philips Hue White LED Bulb is the company's low cost, entry-level product, for those looking to expand their smart lighting without putting a dent in their wallet.
Even though the Philips Hue White LED Bulbs are cost-effective, they still provide the same high-quality light that the company is famous for. When paired with the required Hue Hub, these bulbs are able to work with scenes or routines within the various smart home platforms enabling scheduling and powerful automations.
- Fast response
- Works with all smart home platforms
- Requires Hue Hub
- Indoor use only
- Clunky app
The Philips Hue single white LED bulb offers a perfect balance of cost and quality. ZigBee connectivity means fast, reliable, connections to the Hue Hub.
Best BR30 Bulb: FEIT Smart Wi-Fi LED Color Bulb
Smart floodlights, particularly BR30 bulbs, are more expensive and not as widely available as the standard A19 style of light bulbs. FEIT's Smart Wi-Fi LED Color Bulb is the most cost-effective solution on the market, and it does so without skimping on quality.
Rated at 650 lumens, the FEIT Smart Wi-Fi LED Color Bulb is bright enough to light the traditional out of reach spots and provides the added benefit of color capability which can set the stage for your next party. Wi-Fi connectivity ensures that this bulb will work out of the box with your network, and it does not require a special hub to make it work.
- Low price
- Color and tunable white light
- Does not require a hub
- Does not work with HomeKit
- Low lumen output
- No mesh networking for Wi-Fi
Best BR30 Bulb
Flood it with light
FEIT's smart bulb is a great value for the specialty BR30 size. This bulb can output over one million different colors, and connects to Alexa and Google.
Best Candelabra Bulb: Hue White Ambiance Smart Bulb
Smart candelabra bulbs are a hard to find size thanks to their small footprint and base size. The Philips Hue White Ambiance Smart Bulb fills this gap and does so with style with their high lumen output. Rated at 800 lumens, these bulbs will brighten up your space, especially when paired with other bulbs on the same fixture, such as on a ceiling fan or chandelier.
The Philips Hue line of bulbs offers one of the most reliable, fastest responding lighting devices around. This is thanks to the ZigBee wireless connection, which can create a mesh network of its own with other devices in your home. Of course, this does require the Philips Hue Hub, which can be found bundled with certain bulb kits.
- Solution for hard-to-find size
- 800-lumen output
- Fast response
- Requires Hue hub
- Large size
Best Candelabra Bulb
Rock the candelabra
Hue's candelabra bulb is a perfect solution for those needing a smart light in their ceiling fans and chandeliers. The 850-lumen output is bright for its size.
Light all the things
Having a smart light bulb opens the door to many different possibilities. Through smart home integrations, light bulbs can be automated to simulate the light of day, or they can activate when motion is sensed. Best of all, smart bulbs are the ultimate in convenience as they allow you to control them without having to get up from the comforts of your couch or bed.
If you are in the market for a high quality, universally compatible smart light bulb, look no further than LIFX's Wi-Fi Smart LED Light Bulb. LIFX's bulb offers accurate colors, high lumen output, and connects directly to your home network without the need for an additional hub. Compatibility with all of the major smart home platforms ensures that it will be around for years to come.
Credits — The team that worked on this guide
Christopher Close spends most of his time writing and dreaming about all things HomeKit for iMore. If you wish to join him on his quest to automate everything, you can follow him on Twitter at @itschrisclose.
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