Smart light bulbs: Belkin v Philips

Plugged in: Philips’ smart light bulbs.The simple light bulb is looking like the cornerstone of the smart home, with the ability to turn your lights on from across the room or around the world.

At the recent Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Belkin unveiled its new WeMo LED light bulbs as part of its home automation range, while Philips touted its latest BR30 downlight bulb.

These smart light bulbs are designed to work with a normal light socket, although the Philips Hue is only available with a screw fitting (you can buy bayonet adaptors). The Belkin bulbs will be available with either bayonet or screw fittings.

Both support the ZigBee short range wireless protocol, which looks destined to become the backbone of home automation and is already built into some smart meters. Both starter kits come with a central ZigBee hub which connects the lights to your home Wi-Fi network, letting you control them from your Android and Apple gadgets.

The new Philips Hue BR30 is a 630-lumen downlight, joining the original 600-lumen Philips Hue bulbs. You can choose from millions of colours to suit any mood, set timers, use GPS-based geofencing and take advantage of the If This Then That online automation service.

You can’t adjust the colour of the 800-lumen Belkin bulbs. Their selling point is tight integration into the Belkin WeMo ecosystem which already includes smart light switches, power adaptors and motion detectors. You can also set timers and tap into If This Then That.

The writer travelled to Las Vegas as a guest of LG.

The verdict

Philips’ coloured lights are great for setting the mood but Belkin’s wider WeMo ecosystem makes it the more practical choice for people looking to really embrace home automation.

Belkin$US129 (2 bulbs + hub)belkin苏州美甲美睫培训学校/au

Philips$US199 (3 bulbs + hub)philips苏州美甲美睫培训学校.au

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