Getting connected: Smart light bulbs set the mood and boost home security

Smart light bulbs make it possible to set the mood in any room. — AFP Relaxnews

When it comes to the connected home, smart light bulbs offer all kinds of possibilities. These connected alternatives offer many advantages compared to standard lighting solutions, and can even help you save money. Find out why a pack of smart light bulbs could be a great gift idea this holiday season.

What is a smart light bulb?

Smart light bulbs are composed of LEDs that can be controlled remotely. They are equipped with wireless connectivity (Bluetooth or WiFi) to connect them to the home network for control via a dedicated application installed on the user’s smartphone. They can also be controlled by voice, through an intelligent voice assistant.

Switching on and off remotely

The first advantage of a smart light bulb is that it can be turned on or off from anywhere, anytime on your mobile. In addition to the fact that you can switch off the light if you forgot to do so when leaving home, it also means you can light one or more rooms just before you get home, or even to deter would-be burglars while you're away.

Managing different ambiances

Using your smartphone, it’s also possible to adjust the brightness of a room or a given place, by changing the intensity or the colour of the bulb’s light. This makes it very easy to completely change the atmosphere of a room or your entire home, in a few seconds and without having to get up.

Gentle wake-ups, warding off intruders

Different kinds of smart scenarios can be set up with the bulbs, such as turning on a particular light when someone rings the doorbell. This type of bulb can also be very useful for gentle wake-ups, by programming the light in the room to switch on gradually from a certain time. Finally, these bulbs can also be linked to an alarm system to switch on automatically in case of suspicious intrusion. Note that some more advanced bulbs are equipped with a camera or even a smoke detector.

On the market

Today, the reference when it comes to smart light bulbs remains Philips, with its wide range of Hue models available individually or in packs, and in white or colour versions. Whether it's Philips or another manufacturer, like D-Link, prices depend on several factors, including power, colours and any added features. In use, they generally allow for energy savings, partly because they are LED bulbs, and partly because it’s possible to control their brightness. – AFP Relaxnews

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