In this post we cover the best smart light bulbs for Apple HomeKit and how you can get the most out of smart light bulbs that work with Apple HomeKit and Siri voice control.
If you have an iphone and want to to control your smart lighting though apple home kit or with voice using Siri you have two options. You can either install smart light bulbs that will screw into your existing light bulb sockets which doesn’t require any wiring or you can install new smart light switches in place of your existing light switches.
Related Post: Best Smart Light Switches That Work With Apple Home Kit
Apple Homekit is a little different from other smart home services like Alexa and Google home in that it is primarily designed around using your smart phone with Siri for voice control rather than using smart speaker assistants placed around your house for voice control. Apple HomeKit does have fewer devices that are designed for native integration with Siri but all of the devices that are compatible and that we recommend work great with HomeKit.
You should also know that you can have hybrid control of your smart home devices with HomeKit and Alexa. You can add all of your smart home devices like smart light bulbs into HomeKit to allow for smart voice control with Siri and you can simultaneously add them as Alexa devices for smart home control with Alexa voice control.
They are not mutually exclusive and will not interfere with each other so if you want to use your phone with Siri the majority of the time to control your smart home you can or if you are not near your phone you can use an Alexa speaker to control your smart home devices with your voice and Alexa commands. One of my favorite Alexa devices is the Echo Show with it’s 10” touch screen.
What is a Smart Light Bulb?
Smart light bulbs allow you to control the light bulbs in your home through wifi. All you need to do is remove your old smart light bulb, screw in the new smart light bulb, set it up through an app on your phone and you’re ready to start controlling your smart light bulb though your phone. With smart phone control of your smart light bulb you can turn on and off your smart light bulb from your phone and with some smart light bulbs you can even change the color of the light or dim or brighten the light.
Once you set up the smart light bulb through the manufacturers app you will connect the smart light bulb to HomeKit to enable Siri voice control.
What can you do with Smart Light Bulbs That Work With HomeKit?
With standard smart light bulb configurations you can control your smart light bulb through your smart phone. Connecting your smart light bulb to HomeKit and Siri opens up a whole new world of smart home and smart light bulb control in that it allows you to control your smart light bulbs using voice commands with Siri.
You can control your smart light bulbs with Siri HomeKit voice commands by saying:
“Siri, turn off lights”
“Siri, turn on lights”
“Siri, turn on living room”
“Siri, set living room to 50%”
Adding Siri HomeKit voice control to your home is a true luxury and your smart home to the next level. I’ve lived with smart lighting control for 5 years and there’s nothing like laying in bed at the end of a long day and telling your house to turn off the lights with smart light bulbs for HomeKit. To control your smart light bulbs with HomeKit all you need is an iPhone and Siri compatible light bulbs.
What is HomeKit? How Do HomeKit Smart Light bulbs Work?
HomeKit is Apples home automation standard that directly interfaces smart home devices with Siri. This means if you have a HomeKit compatible device it can typically be controlled with your voice using Siri. HomeKit also provides custom integrations, and settings that you can use to control your smart home through the HomeKit interface.
There are two ways that smart light bulbs work with HomeKit, one type of smart light bulb connects directly to your wifi network and then connects to home kit though the app on your phone after being installed with manufacturer iOS app. The HomeKit compatible smart light bulbs that connect directly to your wifi network don’t require any type of home control hub and are typically the easiest to setup and install.
The other style of HomeKit compatible smart light bulbs connect first to a “home automation hub”, which then connects to your network, and can then be set up on the app through your phone and added onto HomeKit.
Best Smart Light Bulbs For HomeKit
These are the first smart light bulbs that I started my smart home with and they have worked reliably without any issues.
I literally plugged the hub into my router, setup the the light bulbs up on the Phillips Hue app and they flawlessly responded to the touch commands on my phone. Setting these light bulbs up with Apple HomeKit was a breeze. The Philips Hue style smart light bulbs are probably the most popular smart light bulbs that work with HomeKit.
In my opinion they are one of the best smart light bulbs that works with HomeKit because they are simple to use, they have a good phone app, they easily integrate with HomeKit and can be integrated with dozens of other apps for smart home control.
This smart home light bulb kit includes everything you need to get started with smart light bulbs. These smart light bulbs are capable of dimming and allow you to pick any shade of 16 million different colors. If you are looking for a HomeKit compatible smart bulb and want every feature possible these smart light bulbs are for you.
These smart light bulbs a require the Phillips Hue smart home hub control which comes with the Kit and is compatible to control any style or type of Phillips Hue Smart Light Bulbs. For those of you that are interested in the tech specs. The Phillips Hue light bulbs work on the zigbee home automation protocol, they are also stated to last up to 22 years so you can forget about needing to change your lightbulbs ever again if you install these in your home.
These smart light bulbs that work with HomeKit are unique in that they have full color control and dimming capability but don’t require a smart home hub like the Phillips Hue light bulbs. They typically are a little bit more expensive per light bulb but can make up for the added cost because they don’t require you to purchase the smart home hub. LIFX smart light bulbs have been around a long time and have proven themselves to be high quality, reliable smart light bulbs that work with HomeKit.
The LIFX light bulbs work on directly on home wifi networks to provide quick response times and easy setup. To setup the LIFX smart bulbs that work with HomeKit you just download the app, screw in the light bulb and follow the instructions on the app. They offer simple installation that is as easy as screwing in a light bulb. A major advantage of the LIFX smart light bulbs is that you can purchase just one smart home light bulb, that doesn’t require any type of home hub to get started testing out smart lighting and voice control in your home. You can always add more smart light bulbs in the future without needing to invest in a hub and you might find that you only want to control 2 or two light bulbs with HomeKit and you would prefer to install more smart light switches instead of smart light bulbs.
These smart light bulbs offer the same app and control as the multi-color Philips Hue smart light bulbs and will allow you to control your smart light bulbs with your phone or Siri using voice commands but come only in white. Even though these don’t support 16 million colors like the full spectrum Phillips Hue lights they are still reliable, functional and are typically at a much lower price point than the full color smart light bulbs.
In reality these smart light bulbs are more often what people choose over the full color smart light bulbs. Most people just don’t need full color smart light bulbs, while the idea of having 16 million colors of light to choose from might sound appealing, in reality you’re probably going to set your lights to pink, purple, green, blue or yellow to read a book or eat dinner.
My inner child purchased a 16 million color Philips Hue light bulb, which I will admit I enjoyed for 15 minutes until my wife reminded me that I’m no longer in college, we don’t live in a dance club, I’m married and my choice in interior design used to consist of mounting sailing and outdoors memorabilia to walls as decoration. While I thought my interior design skills awesome and it looked like nice beach cottage, the reality was that I was wrong, the same applies to the 16 million color smart light bulbs, the concept is great but the reality is you probably don’t need them.
Now I’m not here to shoot down the dreamers among you so if you really want to get the 16 million color smart light bulbs do it, but be forewarned that your wife will probably think your nuts if you get a full house of color changing smart light bulbs. And if your in college, and think you have a dance club in your basement or single and want the “coolest” tech go right ahead and get that fancy multi-colored light bulb! For the rest of you, you’re probably better off with the more inexpensive and simpler white smart light bulbs.
The white smart light bulbs from Phillips Hue are more practical, easier to control and work flawlessly with HomeKit. I have few of the smart white light bulbs in my closets combined with a Phillips Hue Remote that allow me to place the remote inside the closet just like a built in switch.
Combining the Smart Light Bulbs with the remote is a great way to add switched closet control of lighting if you have one of those old fashion pull strings or multiple lights inside a closet you want to control. We have a coat closet that had one of those old pull string light fixtures to turn on or off the light and the string always seemed to get tangled in coats and coat hangers so adding the Phillips Hue white light bulb with a Phillips Hue remote was a great solution to eliminate the pull string on the light fixture and looks a lot nicer. They also offer a Phillips Hue smart light bulb kit that includes the dimming remote so you can quickly upgrade any closet or pull string light fixture.
These LIFX smart light bulbs work in the same way as their full color LIFX counterparts, but offer remote control in dimming in warm white. If you don’t want to purchase a control hub like the Phillips Hue Bulbs require these are a great way to get started with smart lighting that works with HomeKit. You can just buy one bulb with minimal investment to try out smart lighting that works with to see if you like using your voice with Siri and HomeKit to control your smart lighting.
If I was staring out and was going to get just one smart light bulb, I would start by putting one in a night stand or bed side lamp, to control your smart lighting with Siri voice commands before you go to bed or when you wake up. Every night I use voice commands with smart lighting to turn on and off my night stand light without needing to get out of bed to turn on or off the lights. It feels like a true luxury every night before I go to bed and love it.
What I really like about the LIFX smart light bulbs that work with HomeKit is the “warm” color of light that they put out. The “Warm White” color is closer to more traditional incandescent bulb colors and looks good in any home, some other colors of smart bulb are too blue and make you feel like you’re in a hospital waiting room or school. The LIFX smart light bulbs have dialed in the perfect shade of white for this smart light bulb that works on your wifi and provides an economical smart bulb option that’s easy to set up and get started with smart lighting.
What sets these light bulbs apart from other smart light bulbs are the high quality and because they can be combined with other “color” LIFX light bulbs within your home to create scenes and controlled through the LIFX app. Both the Phillips Hue and LIFX light bulbs are accompanied by a full line of bulb sizes, light strips and light fixtures.
This sets these two brands apart (Phillips & LIFX) from the rest of the smart light bulbs compatible with HomeKit because they offer so much flexibility in the light bulbs that you can use in your fixtures that you will most likely be able to find the right smart light bulb that works with HomeKit for even the most unique light fixtures.
These smart light bulbs that work with HomeKit aren’t light bulbs at all but light strips, so why are they on this list? Well the Philips Hue smart light strips deserve and honorable mention because they are a great product but they also serve a wide variety of speciality applications that aren’t possible with the other smart light bulbs we have listed.
These smart light strips will work with Apple HomeKit and work with the Philips Hue app just like all of the other Philips Hue smart bulbs and the light strips offer 16 million different colors.
But what is most impressive about the Philips Hue Light Strips that work with Google Home is how they can be used. They are great for adding accent lighting below a cabinet either at hidden at the base of a cabinet or underneath an upper cabinet to illuminate your work surface.
These make great accent lighting for soffits, recessed lighting or in home theaters. I think that multi-colored lighting fits in best for accent lights, where it’s not the main source of light but will catch your eye at night or when the light is dim. This is where the Philips Hue Smart Light strips excel, they are small, easy to install and have a low profile so they can be hidden where you want some additional accent lighting in locations like a home bar.
They have peel and stick adhesive which allows them to be placed virtually anywhere you can think of and plug into a standard wall socket. The light strips can be connected together with multiple light strips to form one longer continuous run of lighting if needed. The standard kit comes in 80” sections but can be extended to 30FT.
Other Smart Light Bulbs That Work With HomeKit.
We covered the best smart light bulbs that work with HomeKit and the most popular smart light bulbs that work with home kit. If you stick to Phillips Hue or LIFX smart light bulbs you won’t be disappointed. Both brands produce high quality smart light bulbs and have been in the smart light bulb space for a long time. We did not included several other brands of smart light bulbs that work with HomeKit because they did not preform up to our expectations in comparison to the LIFX and Phillips Hue smart light bulbs.
However we just covered the standard A19 style smart light bulbs which are the typical size light bulbs for 75% of light fixtures. Buy you might have a unique light fixture that uses either smaller light bulbs or larger floodlight style smart light bulbs. Phillips Hue and LIFX also make a wide variety of smart light bulb sizes that should fit almost any size or style light fixture. We’ve included some of the different size and shape smart light bulbs that we recommend from both Philips Hue and LIFX in the grids below.
What are you waiting for? Go out there and upgrade your smart home.