Smart light bulbs, what are they and how do they work?

Smart light bulbs are one of the best things that automation or home automation has brought, because it is not only a luxury as many think, they are systems that can be very useful, practical, and can even help us save a little on the bill of the light.

Smart bulbs are exactly what they say, lamps with intelligence based mainly on automation and remote control. With these it is possible to set the automatic turning on and off of the lights, or control it from a remote control or with our smartphone.

Because they are rapidly gaining popularity, we want to explain to you some important things about smart bulb:

How do they work?

The first thing to clarify is that the connectivity of these smart bulbs works with something similar to a Wi-Fi network, but it is not a regular Wi-Fi network like the one that may be in your router. If so, their consumption would skyrocket, making the light bulbs less attractive. Therefore, it should be clarified that there are different connection protocols for smart bulbs, and each manufacturer uses a different one.

The best known and used is the open source standard protocol, characterized by great energy efficiency, as well as its excellent coverage thanks to its operation similar to mesh Wi-Fi, and its ease of use since it requires very little circuitry and electronics. Another protocol used in some models is identical to the first one, but is incompatible with it. What many manufacturers have done has been to implement the two protocols in the same bulb to solve this problem.

A common feature of these two systems is that they need a HUB, which is a kind of bridge between the bulbs and the home Wi-Fi network. Therefore, the acquisition of this HUB is essential to take advantage of the advanced features of these bulbs.

Other manufacturers, on the other hand, have created their own protocols. They have used a wireless network very similar to that of our routers and with which it is not necessary to use any HUB to control the light bulbs, but we can control the light bulb using only an app from our mobile through Wi-Fi or bluetooth connections.

The highlight of smart bulbs is that they can be controlled remotely. Therefore, the most important thing will be to check the connectivity they have.

There are two ways:

– Direct connection with a Smartphone: through Wi-Fi, Bluetooth or another connectivity system.

– Connection through a HUB: they use protocols which requires an intermediary home automation system to control them. They link this system to the router and then allow it to be controlled with a mobile App.

The suitability of the connection will depend exclusively on the use that is given to smart bulbs. If we are only going to use these bulbs for very specific lamps or objects, the first connectivity model is the most appropriate.

If, on the other hand, we plan to install large numbers of smart bulbs, the most effective way will be to use the second connection system. This allows interference to be reduced, since there will not be as many devices connected to the router (only the HUB that we will install).

Additionally, this option allows you to scale your automation by adding plugs, sensors, or switches. As a general rule, the bulbs of the first type will be cheaper than those destined to be part of a HUB. Therefore, if what we are looking for is to experiment in this area, we recommend starting with the first type. Later there will be time to make a larger investment.

But if we want greater spectacularity and control from the first moment, the smart bulbs of the second group are recommended. Need more info? Just visit!

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