A New Kind of LED: Reinvented With Smartphones in Mind

LIFX: The Latest in LED Technology
Photo via Kickstarter.com

Remember when clap-on, clap-off lights came out? It was the coolest thing to control the lights without leaving your seat. Well, what if you could control your lights to turn on and off, dim, change colors, and even respond to the beat of your iTunes library, all from the comfort of your favorite easy chair? That would take a lot of clapping.

Phil Bosua, creator of the LIFX smartbulb has decided to spare you the obligation (but not the desire) to thunderously applaud, allowing you to control his revolutionary lamp with your smartphone.

“It’s not like we get up to change the TV channel anymore,” said Bosua, “So why do that with our lights?”

The LIFX smartbulb is a self-contained LED light bulb, so all you need to do to utilize its numerous abilities is screw it into your light socket, and download the free app from iTunes or Google Play.

Photo via Kickstarter.com

Bosua didn’t design this light with merely lethargy in mind – its technological advancements also have the potential to improve your wellbeing. Here are a few things you can do with the LIFX:

  • Control it from anywhere.
  • Customize the light level of a single lamp, a room, or your entire house.
  • Change the light’s color to fit any décor, mood, or time of day.
  • Program the lights to momentarily flicker when you have a notification from Facebook, a text, a new email, etc.
  • Animate the lights to change colors in rhythm to your music.
  • Create a time-sensitive night light.
  • Provide security lighting while you’re on vacation.
  • Turn off when you’re out and on when you return.
  • Save energy and reduce maintenance.

While some of these features may seem silly or impractical (I’m sure not everyone reading this has robot dance parties on the regular) I believe there are 2 notable features that make this LED worth a try:

1. Energy Savings. For the equivalent brightness of a 60W incandescent, this light only uses about 10 watts of energy. Plus, by programming it to turn off when you’re gone and dim automatically, you can save even more energy with minimal effort. The creators also say the LIFX will last up to 25 years, so you won’t need to replace them for a very long time.

2. Changing Colors. While at first, turning your lights from blue to red to green might seem a little superfluous, if you spend long periods of time indoors under the same white, bright lights, it can start to mess with your circadian rhythms. Studies like this one show that having indoor lights that change color along with natural light help us sleep better. You can achieve this lighting scheme with a LIFX, just by lifting a finger.

Adjust color temperature of the LED LIFX
Photo via Kickstarter.com

And if you ever lose your phone, don’t worry, because these lights still work with standard switches too.

The LIFX project is funded through Kickstarter, and light bulbs will start shipping in March of 2013.

To learn more about LIFX you can visit its webpage on Kickstarter.

Annie Josey

Annie was the E-Commerce Marketing Specialist at Pegasus Lighting from June 2012 to October 2013. She has a background in English literature, and loves using language to help illuminate the world. So covering lighting news and tips naturally fit her interests. In her personal time she enjoys painting, biking, and reading.