You want to install “smarter” home lighting, but you don’t want to deal with all the different standards like Zigbee, Z-Wave and other proprietary connections. You don’t want to tie your entire smart home down to just one hub, either. All you want is a smart light that simply works out of the box. We get it, and we’re here to help with our guide to the best smart bulbs without a hub.
Also read: Best Google Home accessories
All smart bulbs appearing on this list are A19-class devices fitting into an E26 socket, which you can see illustrated in a chart here. These smart bulbs either have built-in Wi-Fi connectivity, meaning all you need is a wireless network and an internet connection, or built-in Bluetooth, so you can control them with your smartphone and an app.
Best smart bulbs
Philips Hue with Bluetooth smart bulbs
The Phillips Hue smart bulbs may be the most popular products in this small but growing category. Previous though, their bulbs required that you also purchase a separate Hue Bridge hardware hub so you could set them up and control them. That is no longer the case (although you can still use the Hue Bridge with them if you want for additional functionality).
All you need is the company's smartphone app for setup and control.
Instead, as the name suggests, the Philips Hue with Bluetooth smart bulbs have Bluetooth, so all you need is the company’s smartphone app for setup and control. You can use the app to remotely turn the bulbs on or off, or you can dim or brighten the light that comes from the bulbs. The app also comes with pre-sets that let you instantly change the settings to serve your mood; ideal for a romantic night in, or while playing video games or watching movies. If you get one of the bulbs that support millions of different colors, the app lets you change the light to whatever color you desire. If you own an Amazon Echo smart speaker, you can also control the bulbs with voice commands via Alexa, with Google Assistant support coming soon.
The pure white Philips Hue with Bluetooth smart bulbs are available at the Hue website for $14.99 for one bulb. You can get the white ambiance smart bulb for $29.99. Finally, the white and color ambiance smart bulb is available for $49.99 for one bulb. You can also purchase the bulbs in two-bulb packs for higher prices, and the white bulbs are also available in a four-bulb pack
Anker Eufy Lumos Smart Bulb
This is your standard “turnable” white smart LED bulb without any special colors, though you can customize the lighting temperature between warm white (2,700K) and cool white (6,500K). Setup is extremely easy: simply install the bulb, power on the lighting device (lamp, etc.), launch the EufyHome app, and connect the bulb to the internet.
From there, you can link your EufyHome account to Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa. Using voice commands, you can change the lighting temperature, turn off the lights, schedule on and off times, and control the bulb while away from home.
The Eufy Lumos smart bulb has a maximum brightness of 600 Lumens, the equivalent of a 60-watt bulb. You can get a version supporting 16 million colors for a slightly higher price.
Flux WiFi Smart LED Bulb
If you need more color in your life, this Flux LED bulb has plenty with more than 16 million at your fingertips. Simply install the bulb in your lighting device, open the Flux WiFi app, and connect the bulb to the internet.
After the initial setup, connect your account to Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa, or an IFTTT-compatible device to change colors, dim the lights, and more using voice commands. Other features include schedules for appearing at home when away on vacation, music synchronization for dance floor effects, and a wake-up mode.
On the maximum brightness front, the Flux WiFi Smart LED Bulb is comparable to a 50-watt incandescent bulb. You can also get a version with Bluetooth connectivity, and another model with a higher brightness through the Flux website. This bulb has a 20,000-hour lifetime.
LEPOWER LED Smart Bulb
Here’s another multi-color LED smart bulb that works with Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa, and IFTTT devices. It’s controlled by the Smart Life app developed by Yu Xiang, allowing you to connect the bulb directly to the internet and control lighting and color conditions from anywhere via a smartphone, or locally using voice commands.
Other features packed into this smart bulb include eight customizable “scenes” to set specific lighting patterns for parties, reading, and more. There’s also a music mode and a timing function that turns the bulb on and off at set times, perfect for when you’re away on vacation. It supports over 16 million colors.
The LEPOWER LED Smart Bulb has a maximum brightness of 600 Lumens, the equivalent of a 60-watt bulb. It includes a 12-month warranty and a 60-day money back guarantee.
LIFX Wi-Fi Smart LED Bulb
This bulb works with Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa, Apple HomeKit, and Microsoft Cortana. The setup process is no different than the other smart bulbs on our list, requiring you to install the free Lifx app, connect the bulb to the internet, and link the account to your preferred assistant.
Features provided in this smart bulb include over 16 million colors, scheduling, lighting themes, dimming, and more. You can control smart bulbs individually using the Lifx app, or group all the installed smart bulbs together for unified management.
The LIFX Wi-Fi Smart LED bulb is equivalent to a standard 75-watt bulb. It promises up to 22.8 years of life based on a use of three hours per day.
Sengled Smart Wi-Fi LED Soft White Bulb
As the name states, there are no fancy colors here. Instead, this bulb ranges from soft white (2,700K0) to daylight-style (5,000K) illumination. You install and control thus bulb using the Sengled Home app, but it also works with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant after linking your free Sengled account.
With the Sengled Home app, you can create scenes, dim the lights on command, set schedules, and more. The app also includes a performance guide showing power usage, online time, power cycles, and the money you’ve saved after installing the bulb.
This Sengled bulb promises an 80-percent energy savings compared to incandescent light bulbs. It has a two-year warranty and a maximum brightness equivalent to a standard 60-watt bulb.
Teckin RGB Smart Bulb
Like the LEPOWER bulb, this model relies on the Smart Home app developed by Yu xiang. It supports Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and IFTTT devices, enabling voice-based commands. Simply install the app, connect the bulb to the internet, and link the free Teckin account to your favorite assistant.
Similar to other smart bulbs on our list, Teckin’s model supports various customizable themes, schedules, and over 16 million colors. The company says it consumes up to 60 percent less energy than a standard incandescent bulb, which you can track within the app.
The Teckin smart bulb has a maximum brightness equivalent to a 60-watt bulb. It promises a lifespan of over 30,000 hours, or 27.39 years when using the bulb for just three hours a day.
TP-Link Kasa Smart Light Bulb LB120
Similar to the Anker Eufy Lumos model, this smart LED bulbfeatures a “turnable” illumination ranging from soft white (2,700K) to daytime-style white (6,500K). It works with Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and Microsoft Cortana voice commands after linking your free Kasa account to these services.
Controlling TP-Link’s smart bulb is the Kasa Smart app, enabling you to set schedules, lighting scenes, adjust the brightness, track energy usage, and tune the lighting temperature. There are no fancy colors here, but the company does provide an RGB model for a slightly higher price.
This smart bulb has a maximum brightness of 800 Lumens, or the equivalent of a traditional 60-watt bulb. It has a lifespan of 22.8 years when using it for three hours per day.
Xiaomi Yeelight Smart LED Bulb
This bulb comes highly recommended after testing it through the holidays during our hands-on coverage. Compatible with Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa, you connect this bulb to the internet using the free Mi Home app, and then link your free account to your favorite assistant.
Xiaomi’s smart bulb supports more than 16 million colors, allowing you to create lighting scenes based on the holidays, a romantic occasion, reading, and more. Other features include setting the bulb to cycle through customizable colors using various rhythms, and scheduling it to turn off after 15 minutes.
The Xiaomi Yeelight Smart LED bulb has a maximum brightness of 600 Lumens, or the equivalent of a standard 60-watt bulb. It promises a lifespan of up to 11 years.