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Are smart lights bulbs worth it?

Smart light bulbs are among the most popular smart home devices of 2023. Offering heaps of functionality and clocking in at prices under $30, they’re an affordable way to bring smarts into your home.

But are they actually worth the investment? After all, they’re more expensive than traditional light bulbs — and unless they do something really special, they may not be worth the hassle.

Here’s a closer look at these unique gadgets to help you decide if smart light bulbs are worth it.

What are smart light bulbs?

A person reading next to smart light bulb.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Smart light bulbs are typically offered in two formats — white or color. A white bulb allows you to swap between different shades of white, while color smart light bulbs let you pick between millions of colors from just about anywhere on the light spectrum.

Changing colors is handled by a smartphone app, which also lets you program in schedules, timers, or even activate “Vacation Modes” that toggle the lights in a way that makes it look like someone is home while you’re actually away. You can also power smart light bulbs from the app, turning them off remotely or dimming them for a movie night.

Depending on the model, you may benefit from support for HomeKit, Alexa, or Google Home.

How much do smart light bulbs cost?

Govee app to change colors on smart lights.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Much like traditional light bulbs, pricing for smart light bulbs varies. Affordable ones can be had for as little as $8, while premium smart light bulbs might cost $20 each. In general, however, they tend to be more expensive than traditional bulbs. Your best bet to save money is to snag a two-pack of something like the Wyze Bulb White, which clocks in at just $17.

Can smart light bulbs save you money?

Philips Hue Smart Dimmable LED Smart Light Recipe Kit lifestyle
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Since nearly all smart light bulbs are LED bulbs, they’re more energy efficient than nearly any other type of bulb. So if you’re looking to upgrade from old incandescent bulbs, this is a great way to immediately save money. They also tend to last much longer, meaning the increase in upfront costs might even out over the years.

Toss in the ability to set schedules so you remember to turn off the lights at night (or turn them off remotely if you forget about them before heading out on vacation), and it’s easy to see how smart light bulbs might be able to save you a few bucks.

Are smart light bulbs worth it?

Philips Hue smart lighting in a home.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

If you’re looking for a quick, affordable way to upgrade your smart home, smart light bulbs are a great option. Not only do they offer you heaps of functionality, but they’re not too much more expensive than traditional bulbs — and it’s possible they’ll pay themselves off thanks to the energy savings. They’re especially enticing if you don’t already have LED lights at home.

Once you’re ready to bring smart light bulbs into your home, be sure to check out our roundup of the best smart bulbs of 2023. The list includes a product for every budget, along with both plain white and color models.

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Jon Bitner
Jon Bitner is a writer covering consumer electronics, technology, and gaming. His work has been published on various websites…
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