(Pocket-lint) - If you're interested in smart home tech, smart lighting is definitely the place to begin. As every interior designer knows, lighting is absolutely key to getting the best out of a space. So smart lights are the way forward to having complete control over your home lighting.
Smart lights can be anything from a bulb that changes the colour of lights, to a system of lights throughout your home controlled by Siri or Alexa. You might begin your smart lighting journey with a bulb that alters the mood of your bedroom from the bright morning sunshine to evening dusk and is controlled by a simple dedicated app.
And then you could move onto having an automated system where you set the timing of the lights and forget about it, never having to worry about turning a light on or off ever again.
If you have children in the house, smart lights offer the perfect solution to night lights. You can set them up to dim over time, giving the kids the assurance while falling asleep, yet saving on electricity while they're asleep.
The world of smart lights encompasses all the lighting options you can think of. From the simple bulb to LED strips, side lamps to overhead lamps, it covers the whole spectrum. And so does the pricing too. Because of the smart allocation, the general pricing of smart lights will be more than regular lights. You pay for what you get, though, and being able to turn off the lights from your bed without getting up is convenient enough.
Best smart lights to buy today
Lepro Smart Table Lamp
For a simple and clean design, the Lepro Smart Table Lamp ticks the right boxes. It fits right in as a living room lamp or on your bedside table.
The RGB colours give you the options to choose whichever colour you want to set the mood, and the 2000K amber light is particularly good for relaxed evenings. If you like to fall asleep with a light on, then simply set the auto-off timer on and it'll turn itself off in half an hour.
You can set the timer on the Lepro Smart Table Lamp to turn on at a given time, which is fantastic to help you wake up. You can schedule it so that you don't have to think about when it's on or off. But if you're looking for personal control, then Alexa or Google Assistant can be set up so you can go hands-free.
It's usable via the app or by buttons on the light itself, so if you've misplaced your phone, there's still a tactile option. It really is a great option for a wide variety of uses.
LIFX Color A19 800
If you have the ideal lamp and can't imagine getting rid of it, then thankfully there are options out there for you to get into the smart lighting game. By using a bulb you can transform any lamp into a smart light.
The LIFX Color A19 800 lumens is a bulb that works through Wifi to control the colours and ambience of your setting of choice. The bright 800 lumens means it's able to take on duties as a sole light in a room, which is fantastic for a minimal effort lighting solution. It's the perfect entry into getting a handle on your lights without even touching them.
The LIFX is compatible with Apple's Homekit and Siri, Amazon Alexa, and Google Assistant, making it one of the most adaptable options on the market. Simply tell it what to do instead of stumbling about in the dark looking for the switch.
And best yet is that the colour options are wide enough for any imagination, and there's a huge 1500-9000K white range. For a cheapish smart lighting option, there's little better.
TALOYA Smart Ceiling Light
If you're thinking that Alexa isn't doing enough around the house then why not add another chore to her workload. The TALOYA Smart Ceiling Light gives an understated solution to living room lighting, that is easily adaptable to suit any mood or situation.
Its simple and unobtrusive design makes it hide in plain sight. With RBG colours, a dimmable feature, and the ability to change the warmth, it gives large rooms the ability to change personality at the push of a button, or request by Alexa.
It's made specifically to be used by Alexa if you want voice control, but can also be controlled via an app if you so wish. Set a schedule when you want the lights to turn on, to change, or to turn off.
And best yet, you don't have to worry about others turning off the lights when they leave the room, you can just shout to Alexa to do it for you.
Smart lighting should be distinctive, shouldn't it? It can just be a voice-controlled light switch, but it can be so much more too. Nanoleaf is trying for something more.
Its latest range of Shapes lighting tiles come in triangles, hexagons and mini triangles - all of which fit together. They come with a control unit or they can be used with the iOS or Android apps.
They can also react to music and your touch as well, while they intelligently detect how they're laid out. The adhesive is designed to be non-destructive, too.
LIFX Beam Seamless Light Module
The LIFX Beam Seamless Light Module is a design lead smart light that gives users the chance to decide how they want their lights to look, and where they should go.
It uses its own LIFX app for control, and because it's got a cloud system, you can control the light from anywhere. It offers voice control through the app and even notifies you of things like an upcoming Uber ride. And because it can connect to IFTTT, you can use motion detection to turn it on. It's also compatible with Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and Apple HomeKit.
You get 6 beams in the pack, allowing you to frame parts of your room as you like. There are zones in the lighting that can be changed to your preference. These lights offer a subtle style to minimal apartments or a bold framing to bedrooms. They're not cheap, but style never is.
Night Light Star Projector
And now for something completely different. If you had glow-in-the-dark star stickers on your ceiling as a kid, or still dream about rocking a disco ball in your living room, then the Night Light Star Projector might actually be right up your alley. It basically covers both of these bases at once, which is a win-win.
Because it's a projector, it's not going to be your sole light source for any room, but it will provide some distinctive lighting. It's probably best for a kid's room but can definitely double as some party lights too.
You get 10 colour options and three brightness levels, as well as two timer options. It doesn't have the kind of open-ended options as some other smart lights, but because it's a bit of an odd-ball, that's ok.
What's perhaps a bit strange is the Bluetooth speaker function. Don't expect Bose-level sound quality, but for some ambient sounds, it'll fit the bill.
You have the option of getting a remote control version, or a voice-activated version that's compatible with Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa.
Smart Night Light Treatlife Bedside Lamp
Smart lights make awesome bedside lamps, and you could argue that it's where they're best fit for purpose. An excellent example of that is the Smart Night Light Treatlife Bedside Lamp. It's a subtle design that blends into the background and is small enough to leave room for other items on a table.
As with many other smart lights, it's controlled via an app as well as by voice through Alexa and Google Assistant. You can control which of the 16 million colours you'd like to have, and the dimness can be adjusted from 1-100%, so full control.
A feature that makes it stand out is the ability to gradually brighten up, perfect for early mornings or when you turn the light on at night. Nothing like being blinded to startle you awake, so avoiding that is a nice touch. It can be set on a schedule too, so your light can assist you in waking up gradually, like a sunrise.
But as chilled as this little light is, you can still have a bit of a party with it by syncing it up with your music. It'll switch colours to the beat of the music. It also helps that it's surprisingly affordable.
Amazon Echo Glow
Kids want to control their rooms as much as any of us, and their rooms are little sanctuaries away from adults and seriousness. Amazon's Echo Glow was designed specifically for kids to enjoy in their own space.
The Echo Glow was made to work in conjunction with Amazon Alexa to seamlessly change the colours of a room. It's a perfect way for kids to customise their room's lighting and feel like they have a decision in the way they want things to be.
There's a timer option that allows you to change the colours over a period of time, so kids can set what colour they want for a particular time of day. If you're an Alexa home, then it's a great option.
ZEEFO Crystal Table Lamp
Some people need a bit more pizzazz in their homes. Something more vibrant and striking than a plain monotoned lamp shade. And the ZEEFO Crystal Table Lamp is for those exact people.
The crystal lamp itself isn't smart (do you know a crystal that is?) so it uses a smart LED bulb for the lighting controls. Pair it up to the Smart Life app, or use Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant to get your lighting desires met.
While many other options of smart lights will give a more sedate aesthetic, the ZEEFO is unapologetic. But because of its bold design, the lighting has a distinct texture. If you're not a fan of the flat lighting that many other options give, then this may be a great option. Stick it in your dining room, lounge, or even bedroom to give your room a bit more character.