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Smart Thoughts

Be smart before buying a smart light bulb

Now becoming a major trend, smart light bulbs are increasing in popularity in smart home technology. And, while you’re intrigued, they may seem a little intimidating at first. Not as simple as just picking the right wattage and knowing if you need a ‘screw-in’ or ‘bayonet’, the process of buying a smart bulb requires a bit more consideration. We break it all down for you, and look at some of the aspects you need to consider prior to installation.

How do smart light bulbs work?

Unfortunately, not a simple ‘plug-in and go’ solution, smart light bulbs require knowing a few more ‘techy’ things. You need to know whether or not a ‘hub’ is required and which system you prefer your bulbs to function on – WiFi or Bluetooth.

A hub sounds rather superfluous and general, but essentially it is a piece of hardware which looks remarkably similar to a typical router and it helps connect the bulbs to the internet. You’ll probably only think about it once, as much as you consider the electrical panel in your home. You only give it a thought if things go awry, otherwise it pretty much just exists there.

If you are looking to upgrade your entire home with a full set of bulbs and a hub, then you are looking at a fair amount of money. However, consider it in an investment. That said, there are smart bulbs that you can use without a hub but these are considerably pricier. So, if you are aiming to kit out your entire home, this is probably not the best route to go. But, if you are non-committal on the smart bulb front, and wouldn’t mind test driving a couple to see if you want to go the whole distance and do every room in the house, this is a great option.

Will they sync up with the rest of my smart home?

You will need to check which platforms your potential bulbs work well with. Check with your store provider for their recommendations. For example, if you prefer Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant, check their compatibility before purchasing them as this will save you precious time.

Are smart light bulbs worth splashing the cash?

Although initially costly, the practicality of smart bulbs is fantastic, and most come with notable features. With the range of smart lighting products growing every day, there is something for every budget. If cost isn’t the issue, but you are wondering if they are just a frivolous purchase, think again.

One of the best things, is that you will be able to dim the lights without installing dimmer switches. And, who doesn’t love control over the lights? Plus, using an app, you can have full functional reign over any room in the house. From anywhere. This

great for when you travel and prefer to have your home look as if someone is in.

However, features extend to bulb warmth and brightness preferences. You can change the entire ambience of your room with a quick tap or swipe of the finger. Custom settings can be organised too, perfect if you prefer different rooms at different types of white light – perhaps a brighter, blue light in the kitchen and a lower intensity warmth and cosiness in the study.

Some have built-in speakers. Lights can pulsate and change colours in sync with music. Perfect if you regularly entertain. On the health side of things, they may help you sleep better by regulating your melatonin levels with the emission of calming light which helps balance your circadian rhythms.

There is now also the possibility of having a bulb in your home that can produce over 16 million colours as in the Flux Smart LED Light Bulb. In an instant, you will be able to change the look of your room. Don’t like the paint colour on your wall? Just add a little blue or red light with low intensity, and alleviate that sad feeling. Simple.

Conclusion

At the end of the day, smart light bulbs may add that extra layer of comfort to your home that you didn’t even realise was missing.

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