The best smart bulbs are useful for many reasons. For starters, they're all LED, so they use much less energy than traditional incandescent, halogen and CFL bulbs (as explained in our bulb guide).
Another reason we like smart bulbs is that you can connect them to your home network and control them with your smartphone or a smart assistant like Alexa, Google Assistant or Siri.
You can also connect your smart bulbs to other top smart home devices so that when you unlock the door, the lights turn on and when you leave the house, they randomly turn on and off to make it look like someone is home.
There are hundreds, if not thousands, of smart bulbs to consider for your space. And while they all claim to be the best, many of them are not as good as they say. So we did hours of testing to put together a list of the best light bulbs you can buy.
Check out all the best smart light bulbs below.
After testing dozens of models, we think the best smart bulbs are Philips Hue White and Color Ambiance. Not only do Philips Hue lights connect to virtually any smart home product, but they also have a number of features in their app that allow you to do more with them than any other smart light manufacturer. If you just want white light, check out the Philips Hue White bulbs as well.
The caveat with Philips Hue lights is that if you have several in your home and want to use all of the bulb's features, you'll need to install the Philips Hue Bridge (which connects the lights to your Wi-Fi network). But if you only have a few devices, look for Bluetooth-compatible devices that you can control with your smartphone.
And if you need something with a simpler setup, we recommend the Sengled Smart Wi-Fi bulb because it connects directly to your Wi-Fi network. Sengled Smart bulbs cost about $12 per bulb and are relatively inexpensive in this category. Sengled also makes some of the best smart bulbs with built-in motion sensors for outdoor use.
You can also check out Wyze's Wi-Fi bulb, which is even cheaper: $8 for one bulb and $30 for a pack of four. As the best smart bulbs for those on a budget, Wyze bulbs work with most home assistants and offer a temperature range of 2700K to 6500K.
Best smart bulb starter kit
Philips Hue's White and Color Ambiance starter kit includes two or four dimmable colored bulbs and a hub. What sets Philips apart from the competition - and makes it stand out among the best smart bulbs - is the depth of its app, which is packed with features including routines, sunrise/sunset automation, scenes, geofencing, and holiday mode. Plus, the Philips Hue app works with just about any other system or device you can imagine: Alexa, Google Home, IFTTT, Nest, SmartThings, and more. If you're looking for a white smart bulb that can be a versatile addition to your smart home, this is it.
As a caveat, Philips Hue systems have known security flaws. Make sure you update your bulb's firmware to prevent malware from jumping through the bridge to your network. To update your Philips Hue bridge, go to the Philips Hue mobile app, open Settings, and click Software Update.
Best cheap smart bulb
The biggest problem with smart bulbs is that they are expensive, even compared to other LED bulbs. Therefore, Wyze smart bulbs are perfect for those who are on a tight budget. This is one of the best smart bulbs if you are just looking for a bulb that you can control and combine with other home appliances. You can change both brightness and color temperature (2,700k - 6,500k), and not just from the Wyze app; you can also make these adjustments using Alexa, Google Assistant, and IFTTT.
From within the Wyze app, you can create schedules for when the lights should turn on or off - but only based on a specific time, not dawn or dusk - and set a Holiday mode that turns the bulbs on and off randomly to make it look like home. You can also create triggers based on other Wyze cameras and motion sensors. At $8 per bulb, you'll have to find a better option at this price.
Affordable Wi-Fi smart bulb
For only $12, Sengled offers one of the best smart bulbs for those looking for an affordable and easy to install option. Sengled bulbs are great for the less tech-savvy because unlike Philips bulbs, Sengled Wi-Fi smart bulbs connect directly to your home network. There's no bridge needed to light up your space.
You can choose from three options to get started: a white bulb for $12, a daylight bulb for $15, and a multi-color bulb for $25. If you have multiple Sengled devices, you might want to consider getting a Sengled hub (or one of the best smart home hubs. ) The Sengled app works with Alexa and Google Assistant, and offers all the basic smart bulb features, including timers, scenes, schedules, and routines, but it's less sophisticated than what you get with Philips.
This smart outdoor spotlight has a built-in motion sensor.
We think the Sengled Smart LED with Motion Sensor is one of the best smart bulbs for people who need an outdoor walking spotlight. Not only does it crank out over 1,000 lumens, but it has a built-in motion sensor so it can automatically turn on the light if it detects motion within a 30-foot radius. That way, you won't be stumbling around in the dark trying to get from your driveway to your door.
The Sengled Smart LED with Motion Sensor works with Alexa, Google Assistant, and SmartThings. You can get push notifications and trigger other smart home actions when motion is detected using the routines, too. However, to control this bulb, you need to purchase the Sengled Smart Hub or another compatible smart home hub.