These days as we’re starting to see the market shift towards creating smarter homes, one of the easiest places to start to make your home smarter is through smart lighting systems. This is because all of us need lights, and smart lights are a relatively inexpensive way to begin to make your home smarter.
There are also advantages to using a smart lighting system, where you can use a schedule to make sure that lights are turned off when they should, and turned on when they are needed. Compatibility with other apps such as IFTTT also means that you can create custom scenarios to trigger the lights.
Here is a list of what we would consider being the five best smart lighting products of 2019, so check them out if you are interested in giving your home a bit of a hi-tech makeover.
It would be hard to start this article and not mentions Philips. The company’s Hue smart bulbs have become more or less the default brand that many turn to when trying to design a smart home. Given that Philips has also been making light bulbs for the past decade or so, it’s safe to say that they are pretty experienced when it comes to these sorts of things.
The company has a variety of smart lighting products, but its Hue starter kit, currently priced at $140, is probably one of the most popular around. It will fit into A19 light sockets which means that you should have some ceiling lamps or table lamps that should already be compatible. The starter kit will include four bulbs and also a Hue bridge which can be used together with future Hue bulbs as well.
While the Philips Hue series of smart lights are pretty popular, one of the complaints that some users have had with it is that it requires the Hue bridge. This is an extra device that users need to deal with, which some people do not appreciate. This is where LIFX’s smart bulbs come in, where one of their advantages is that they do not require an additional bridging device.
The downside is that they are more expensive than the Hue bulbs, but the upside is that they are brighter, which some of you might prefer. There are even some models that can emit infrared light at night which will be useful if you have security cameras. A basic bulb from LIFX is priced at $45.
In case you didn’t know, Xiaomi actually makes their own smart lights, and just like the company’s other products, the Yeelight bulbs are actually pretty darn cheap at just $20 per bulb. This makes it way more affordable compared to the other systems out there, and it also does not require a bridging device. All you need to do is screw it into a compatible light fitting, follow the setup instructions on its accompanying app, and you’re good to go.
While most reviews have been favorable, one of the disadvantages of the Yeelight is that it is dimmer compared to some of the competition out there. This means that maybe they might not necessarily be ideal for primary lighting, but it could be good enough for mood lighting.
If you’re after more affordable smart lighting systems but want more out of them compared to what Xiaomi’s Yeelight can offer, Sengled could be worth your consideration. The company’s smart bulbs are priced relatively affordably where a single bulb is priced only at $10. Unfortunately, similar to Philips, the Sengled bulbs will require users to have a hub to bridge their devices together, but if you’re not too fussed about that, the base starter kit which includes a pair of soft white LEDs are only priced at $40. The app that accompanies the bulbs will also include the ability for users to monitor their electricity usage.
So far the options that we have listed are mostly for smart bulbs, but if you’re after something more for mood lighting or just something a bit more fancy, then Nanoleaf would be a brand worth checking out. These are smart lighting panels that we’re sure you’ve seen in many YouTube videos and photos of gaming setups.
The benefit to this system is that you can arrange these panels according to your needs and how you see fit. Since they are individual panels, they can also be customized so that each panel can display a different color. They also feature tool-less installation so all you need to mount them is to tape them to the wall, no drilling or screws required. They can also be expanded upon by adding more panels. That being said, the Nanoleaf system is one of the more expensive systems out there at $200.