This is the second of many posts to come in my smart home category. Earlier, I wrote about one of the most basic smart home devices you can buy, the Kasa Smart Mini Plug. Be sure to check out that post!
Shedding Light on Smart Bulbs
The next addition to my smart home network is the Kasa Smart Wi-Fi LED Light Bulb by TP-Link. Just like any other device in the Kasa Smart line, these bulbs do not require a central hub device to work. You simply need to have a Kasa Smart account and download their app to control them. Going beyond a simple on and off function, these smart LED bulbs are dimmable and tunable to different types of white light. This means you can have either a warm soft light or brighter daylight to suit your liking. Another cool feature is the ability to let the app control the color temperature (more on that below) and brightness automatically, based on the time of day.
With the advent of LEDs, there are a lot of new options when it comes to lighting your home. You can buy super bright white or warm yellow bulbs and LED fixtures and this may be confusing if you aren’t already familiar with color temperature. Without getting into too much technical detail, color temperature is measured in degrees Kelvin or just “K” for short. You will likely see this measurement on LED or fluorescent bulb packaging. So for example, a bulb with a rating of 3000K will be a warmer yellow and softer light. A bulb with a rating of 6500k will seem brighter and bluer. Don’t confuse the Kelvin rating for total brightness. That is measured in lumens (total output) and isn’t directly correlated with color temperature.
Color temperature in the home is definitely worth considering because it can impact how you sleep, your mood and strain on your eyes. Warmer lighting with a lower K rating is better for reading sessions and generally better in dark settings such as nighttime or in rooms with no natural sunlight. Cooler (bluer) light is closer to natural daylight from the sun and is better for task lighting. So when you need to see detail, think higher K. **One last note worth mentioning and then we’ll get back to the topic at hand: too much blue light can be harsh. I find 5500k to be the highest I will go for task lighting.
Tunable Bulbs & Color Temperature
So now that you’re an expert on color temperature, you can see how having a tunable LED bulb is really useful. You could put the bulb in an area of your home that sees a lot of use such as a family room for example. Then you can set the app to automatically tune the color temperature so that it is cooler during daylight hours, and warmer at night. I’ve done a comparison and have some side by side images below so you can better understand the difference in color temperature.
Overall, I really like these Kasa Smart bulbs and I now have better control and functionality over my lighting than when I was just using the smart plugs alone. These smart bulbs were a breeze to connect to wifi and the Kasa Smart app. With the app, I can set the color temperature and brightness as desired. I can also create four preset options to switch between. I did notice that the bulb base gets warm but this is to be expected for a complex device such as this (not burning hot, but something to keep in mind if you were to put this in some sort of enclosed lamp).
So if you are in the market for some smart lighting that is simple to set up, I can definitely recommend the Kasa Smart Wi-Fi LED Bulb by TP-Link.
Thanks for reading and be sure to check back regularly for new content as I add more awesome devices to my smart home network!