Skip to main content

Smart security, with camera, motion sensors, and facial recognition, in one light bulb

One of the great things about CES is that you see innovators that combine two ideas or products to make a single unit greater than the sum of its parts. There’s Kube, which is a speaker that also keeps your drinks cold. Fly6 is both an HD camera and bike light. Sengled embraces this concept with its Pulse light bulb: an LED bulb that also acts as a wireless speaker. The company unveiled Snap, another multi-functional bulb, but one aimed at security, at CES 2015.

Safety is one of the first and biggest issues that draws people to smart homes, so it’s not too surprising that Sengled is moving into the arena. Unlike a lot of smart security products, the Snap light is designed to be a little something extra that’s super easy to install.

There’s a reason “How many fill-in-the-blanks does it take to screw in a light bulb?” is a classic joke: It’s a simple process that should only take one person (not some obscure number you’ve never heard of, as hipsters would have you believe). That’s the draw of Sengled’s products: You get a long-lasting (over 20 years!) LED bulb, with an added benefit that requires no extra effort on your part.

Photo credit: Digital Trends / Jenny McGrath
Photo credit: Digital Trends / Jenny McGrath Image used with permission by copyright holder

“We don’t believe in trying to create the ‘God light bulb,’” said Robin Foreman, Sengled’s VP of business development. In other words, the light bulb isn’t meant to be everything to everyone. Instead, it’s trying to focus on innovations that consumers actually want, without overburdening them with tech and too many bells and whistles.

The Snap encapsulates lots of security feature in one understated bulb. It comes equipped with speakers, a microphone, and motion sensors, and it streams video to your smart device. Its facial recognition feature can let you know when there’s a stranger on the porch, while geofencing alerts can be programmed for when the kids enter or leave the vicinity of your house.

The bulbs are designed to work with your existing infrastructure. They won’t be released until later this year, so there’s no price available yet. However, Pulse retails for $170, while Boost, a bulb that amps up your Wi-Fi signal, costs $50.

Editors' Recommendations

Jenny McGrath
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Jenny McGrath is a senior writer at Digital Trends covering the intersection of tech and the arts and the environment. Before…
How to mount your Blink Mini 2 security camera
The Blink Mini 2 installed outside.

The Blink Mini 2 offers an affordable way to keep tabs on your home. Clocking in at just $40, you'd be hard-pressed to find a security camera that offers better value. Along with 1080p footage capture, you can set up customized motion zones, activate Person Detection, and modify a bunch of other settings via the Blink mobile app. One of the best things about the Blink Mini 2, however, is that you can mount it on a wall or ceiling for improved visibility. It also comes with a basic stand for tabletop use.

Read more
How to reset Philips Hue bulbs and light strips
Philips Hue bulb on a bleached wood plank.

The Philips Hue smart light bulbs are some of the best on the market, offering reliable performance and dozens of customization options. But like all electronics, they're susceptible to various glitches and errors. Thankfully, running into a problem with your Hue light bulb doesn't mean it's time to replace it – you might just need to perform a reset.

Alternatively, a reset is a great option if you're looking to sell your Hue lights, ensuring none of your data or settings carries over to the new owner.

Read more
Blink Mini 2 vs. Blink Mini: Is Amazon’s new security camera a worthy upgrade?
The Blink Mini 2 installed outside.

Amazon recently introduced the Blink Mini 2, the successor to the wildly popular Blink Mini indoor security camera. The smart home device adds a few new tricks, including support for outdoor use and Person Detection, making it a nice improvement over the aging Blink Mini. But what exactly is the difference between the Blink Mini 2 and Blink Mini? And, more importantly, is it worth rushing out to replace your Blink Mini with the newer security camera?

From resolution and pricing to Person Detection and more, here's a look at everything you need to know about the Blink Mini and Blink Mini 2.
Pricing and monthly fees

Read more