Networked light bulb can be controlled with a smartphone

insteon bulb iphone

Launched this week by a home automation company called Insteon, a new type of LED light bulb will allow consumers to alter the level of light in the room with a couple taps on a smartphone application. This is the first time any company has attempted to include remote control hardware within the actual light bulb. Consumers interested in installing home automation devices previously had to purchase a plug-in lamp module controlled by a keypad or other device in order turn lights on and off. With the networking hardware, the bulb can communicate with Insteon controllers in the home as well as laptops, tablets and smartphones.

insteon bulbCompatible for both the iOS and Android platforms, the free Insteon application can be installed on a smartphone and a user can dim any light fixture that uses the new bulb. The only caveat is that users also have to purchase a $100 Insteon SmartLinc Hub that relays commands between the smartphone and the bulb.

When the bulb is connected for the first time, the unique network address assigned to the bulb is recognized by the Insteon network automatically. If a user wants to move the bulb to another location, they don’t have to run any type of syncing process when the bulb is screwed into a new lamp or light fixture.

According to Insteon, the bulb consumes eight watts of power, but offers the equivalent lighting of a 60W to 100W incandescent bulb. More expensive than a standard incandescent bulb, Insteon is pricing the LED bulb at $29.99. While Insteon doesn’t indicate how long the bulb will last, an average LED bulb typically has a fifteen to twenty year lifespan when the bulb is used a specific amount of time each day. For instance, this 9-watt, $30 GE LED bulb is rated at 25,000 hours and may last up to 22 years when the bulb is used an average of three hours a day.

Mobile

The Google Pixel Stand turns your Android phone into an Assistant-powered hub

Google has taken the wraps off of the new Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL, and alongside them, the Google Pixel Stand. The Pixel Stand turns an Android phone into a Google Assistant hub, allowing you to see important information at a glance.
Smart Home

How to create spooky Halloween effects with smart home lighting and sound

This Halloween, bathe your home with eerie smart home lighting and audio effects guaranteed to spook your neighbors. Use colored light and eerie sounds to create eerie Halloween effects.
Deals

How to create a smart living room for under $250

By being shrewd about which brands and products you invest in, you can quickly and easily turn your house into a home that's “smart,” and that's true even if you’re starting from scratch.
Smart Home

Want to know if that smart bulb works with Google Assistant? We can help

Google Home is a voice-controlled speaker built to compete with the Amazon Echo. It can currently control lights, switches, and thermostats from select partners. Here's a list of some of the best Google Home-compatible devices on the…
Emerging Tech

New ‘parkour’ video shows Boston Dynamics robot training to overthrow humanity

Robots doing backflips? That's so 2017! In its latest jaw-dropping YouTube video, Boston Dynamics’ Atlas robot pulls off some frankly astonishing parkour stunts for our viewing pleasure.
Emerging Tech

With VR dinosaurs and ‘Minecraft,’ one hospital is making medicine less scary

From augmented reality rabbits on the wards to a Minecraft recreation of the hospital for kids to explore, one of the world's most renowned children's hospitals just got a major tech overhaul.
Emerging Tech

Will we ever fly supersonic again? Unraveling the concorde’s complex legacy

In a new book, Last Days of the Concorde, journalist and author Samme Chittum delves into the mindset that inspired engineers to design this marvel, the series of events that led to its fatal crash, and the possibility that commercial SSTs…
Emerging Tech

Check out the British Army’s beefy new bomb-disposal robot

The British Army is about to get an impressive new explosive ordnance disposal robot that is able to climb stairs, negotiate slopes, cut wires, and … oh, yes, dispose of bombs, too.
Emerging Tech

Kill it before it lays eggs! Crazy 32-leg robot moves like a cyborg sea urchin

We’ve seen one-legged, two-legged, four-legged and even six-legged robots, but researchers from Japan have gone way, way further with their latest project: A 32-legged robot. Check it out.
Emerging Tech

Leafy greens are grown by machines at new, automated Silicon Valley farm

Farming hasn't changed too much for hundreds of years. Now a new startup called Iron Ox has opened its first automated hydroponics farm, producing a variety of leafy greens tended by machines.
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: DIY smartphones and zip-on bike tires

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!
Gaming

As deaf gamers speak up, game studios are finally listening to those who can’t

Using social media, personal blogs and Twitch, a small group of deaf and hard-of-hearing players have been working to make their voices heard and improve accessibility in the gaming industry.
Emerging Tech

From flying for fun to pro filmmaking, these are the best drones you can buy

In just the past few years, drones have transformed from a geeky hobbyist affair to a full-on cultural phenomenon. Here's a no-nonsense rundown of the best drones you can buy right now, no matter what kind of flying you plan to do.
Emerging Tech

Get your head in the clouds with the best vaporizers for flower and concentrates

Why combust dead plant matter when you could vaporize the good stuff and leave the leaves behind? Here's a rundown of the best vaporizers money can buy, no matter what your style is.