HomeTechnologyNewsThe best smart lights of 2022

The best smart lights of 2022

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Can smart bulbs be used in ceiling fans?


Smart bulbs can be used in ceiling fans, but the type of fan and the size of the bulb may make them incompatible. Also, if the ceiling fan also doubles as a dimmer, the bulb may not work properly due to limited power supply.



  • Third-party integrations like Spotify and IFTTT
  • Comes with the Hue Hub
  • Richer, more lifelike colors
  • Compatible with Alexa, Google Assistant and Apple HomeKit


  • The hub must be connected to the router or modem
  • on the expensive side

To have a hub or not to have a hub. That is the question when deciding on a whole house lighting system. While a hubless system is cheaper, you miss out on some wonderful integrations, which is why the Philips Hue Starter Kit wins the vote for best smart lighting system.

While it’s a little inconvenient to have to connect the Hue Hub to your Wi-Fi modem or router (meaning any internet outage will leave you without access to your light’s features), the smart light starter kit opens the door. to a host of options if you need to decide to expand into other lighting and automation.

For example, an entire scene can be set up with this starter kit, a Philips Hue light strip, and Spotify for lights that move to music. That scene can also be controlled via Alexa, Google Assistant, and Apple HomeKit, which is surprisingly absent from many smart lights. While the hub simplifies the connection process, dependency on Wi-Fi can infrequently lead to unstable connections.

The lights themselves offer a vibrant 1,100 lumens, which may seem too bright to some. Fortunately, each bulb can be individually dimmed and changed to one of over 16 million colors. Some colors stand out better than others, but the spectrum as a whole is rich and deep.

The Philips Hue Starter Kit is a fantastic starting point for any home or office converting to smart lighting, serving as a base system with the potential for something much more elaborate.

The best smart lighting system

Philips Hue Starter Kit

This convenient and easy-to-use kit promotes whole-home automation while providing bright lighting and a broad spectrum of colors. Enjoy a host of third-party integrations to personalize your experience.

Philips Hue light bulb on blue background


  • Bluetooth compatible for quick and easy control
  • Brilliant whites and true vivid colors.
  • Connects to other Philips Hue products
  • Compatible with Alexa, Google Assistant and Apple HomeKit


  • Requires Hue Hub for advanced integrations
  • Very expensive for individual bulbs

Philips Hue may be known for being the most expensive smart lighting brand, but there’s a good reason for that. The Philips Hue light bulb is more than just a regular light bulb. Its range of whites and colors promises to illuminate your space with the brightness of your choice.

The Philips smart light bulb is a versatile unit that can work with other Philips Hue products to create serene scenes or be scheduled to turn on and off automatically at different times of the day.

Although the bulb can be controlled individually via Bluetooth, any advanced integration with other lights or home assistants requires a Hue Hub. If you do not receive the hub as part of the kit, it is sold separately and must be connected to your modem or router. One of the main benefits of the Philips Hue bulb and hub is that it can be turned on, off or dimmed even when you’re not home.

The smart bulb is a minimum of 10 watts and illuminates your space with the equivalent brightness of a 60-watt bulb. At 800 lumens, its whites are pretty standard, mimicking a standard incandescent bulb.

Where this light really shines is with its 16 million brilliant, true colors that create ambient displays. If there’s one thing you need to keep in mind, choosing one among millions of shades can be quite intimidating and time consuming.

The best smart bulb

Philips Hue bulb

A full-featured option for individual smart lighting, the Philips Hue smart bulb produces bright white and colorful lights. Enjoy 60 watt brightness with 10 watt power consumption.

Govee smart strips in salon


  • Wide spectrum of bright, vivid colors.
  • Clips ensure strip stays attached to surface
  • Bold selection of preset scenes and color schemes.
  • Lights respond to an external music source


  • More expensive than most light strips.
  • DIY mode can be too complicated

Whether you’re adding lighting to your kitchen countertops, adding a pop of color to your bedroom, or completing your entertainment space with ambient lighting, the Govee 65.6ft Strip Lights should be your go-to choice.

Govee may not have the name power of Philips, but its products are consistently top-of-the-line, and this strip is no exception. From solid colors to a gradient of different shades, the LED strip has an impressive array of customization options.

It would be nice if the gradient was more dynamic and could be set to chase or breathe. It’s an easy oversight to overlook, especially since you’re likely to be distracted by the highly sensitive microphone that allows the lights to sync up with music from an external source.

The Govee app is crucial to getting the most out of the 65.6-foot light strip, as it opens up a host of effects and scenes. It’s surprisingly intimidating when you first dive in, but spend an hour or so poking around, and you’ll start to get familiar with Effects Lab and DIY features.

One of the strip’s best features isn’t even related to the lights. Govee clearly understands the problem of hanging LED strips and includes individual clips that help keep things in place. The clips stick to the wall and cover the strip, so if the strip loses adhesive, it won’t tear the entire setup down.

The best overall smart light strips

Govee 65.6ft LED Strip Lights

Govee’s strip lights, while more expensive than the competition, offer bright, beautiful colors, a friendly app, and are compatible with Google Assistant and Alexa.



  • It’s not an eyesore during the day.
  • Govee app offers extensive customization
  • Surprisingly bright for only 80 lumens
  • Compatible with Alexa and the Google Assistant


  • The adapter is not waterproof.
  • Not really worth 36 foot spans
  • Cannot connect multiple threads

Decorate your outdoor space with these bright multi-use outdoor lights. Govee’s outdoor ground lights are a unique way to bring illumination and color to your front or backyard. Individual lights can be driven into the ground along sidewalks, patios, and driveways to create a safer path for walking. Each light is separated by 1.6 feet of wire and covers approximately 24 feet of ground.

The total length of the string is 36 feet, but there is a 12.5 foot gap between the first light and the adapter. While that sounds like a lot of wasted space, the gap serves two purposes. First of all, it adapts to outdoor spaces where the outlets are further from the intended path. Second, while the lights are weatherproof, the adapter is not and should not be placed anywhere that might get wet, including dewy grass.

Although each bulb is only 80 lumens, that’s more than enough considering the purpose of these multi-color ground lights. They are not bright enough to disturb your neighbors while remaining visible in the dead of night. And even if they’re too bright, there’s a dimmer built into Govee’s dedicated app.

Application is both a strong point and a weak point with all Govee products. While there’s a lot to play with in creating scenes and setting individual colors for each backlight, it can be a bit much at first.

Once you get the hang of it, you’ll have access to a music sync mode for dancing lights, a timer, and more colors than you’ll ever need. If you have other Govee lights, the app is where you’ll link everything together for visual spectacles.

If you are using the Govee outdoor ground lights as pathway lights, the time feature in the Govee app will be invaluable as you can set a weekly schedule to compensate for the lack of a motion sensor.

The best smart outdoor light

Person Stringing Twinkly Lights on Christmas Tree


  • Mappable lighting for a fully customizable look
  • Easily syncs with other Twinkly lights
  • Responds to music for dynamic viewing
  • Compatible with Alexa and the Google Assistant


  • Each thread requires its own output.
  • Twinkly app can be difficult to navigate

There was a time when Christmas lights were a single length of green string and bright lights. Smart home automation changed everything and gave us Twinkly Strings, a string of indoor and outdoor Christmas lights that can do just about anything.

Twinkly Strings goes beyond the traditional Christmas lights. Each fully controllable strand can be mapped via the Twinkly app for a light show to suit your holiday aesthetic. That’s a lot of technology for a string of Christmas lights, so Twinkly’s awesome smart lights won’t be for everyone.

In fact, if you don’t use the many features and capabilities, you won’t get the most out of your purchase.

Even though the longest thread is over 150 feet long, it would have been nice to connect them end to end. You may run into problems if you are trying to run Twinkly outside, as each thread requires its output. Since the adapter is in the center of the wire, it is even more difficult to route multiple cables.

However, when you get it working, you’re in for a surprise. Twinkly Strings is arguably the most unique Christmas light set, and the capabilities from creating custom graphics to orchestrating entire light shows lend themselves to a vibrant Christmas display.

The best smart Christmas lights

Twinkly Strings Generation II

Forget Walmart lights, Twinkly’s Smart LED Christmas Tree Lights are fully customizable, with tons of fantastic colors and dynamic effects. Also, you can map your Christmas tree to customize each of its segments and create the cleanest looking Christmas tree you have ever seen.


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