Nanoleaf hit the scene last year with its triangular Light Panels (formerly known as Aurora), and it hasn’t let up when it comes to innovating in the quirky world of wall-based accent lighting. In addition to adding a music module and an oddball remote control to its Light Panel kit, the company is now pushing beyond the triangle and into the future, which is to say, the square.
The Philips Hue Calla bollard-style light fixture, $130, costs a small fortune compared to the typical compared to the typical “dumb” low-voltage outdoor LED path lighting. In fact, you can buy a half dozen of the latter—as you might need to fully illuminate an entire pathway—for the price of one of the former. But the Calla offers three major advantages conventional lights don’t: You can select from 16 million shades of colored light, various temperatures of white light (warm to cool), and you can integrate it with other Philips Hue bulbs and luminaires, indoors and out.
In its marketing material, newcomer Currant says, “You’ve never seen a smart outlet like this before,” and the claim isn’t wrong. Smart outlets are rapidly becoming a commodity, but Currant’s new Smart Outlet is shaping up as one of the best.
If flexibility is what you’re looking for in a smart plug, Lutron’s Caseta Wireless Smart Lighting Lamp Dimmer kit is worth serious consideration. Whether you simply want to add a dimmer to an existing outlet or wish to integrate the system with a more complex smart home setup, Lutron has you covered.
Leviton has dozens of smart lighting-control products in various shapes and sizes offering different sets of features, but that isn’t stopping the company from pumping out more. The latest is an addition to the company’s Wi-Fi-enabled, no-hub-needed, Decora Smart with Wi-Fi Technology product line, the Decora Mini Plug-In Outlet DW15P.
Leviton is no stranger to the light switch, and it was an early mover into the smart home space. That kind of maturity is good news for those seeking product stability, but it also means shoppers face a daunting, complex market, as Leviton now sells more than a dozen smart switch products based on Bluetooth, HomeKit, Z-Wave, and—in this case—Wi-Fi protocols.
When is a remote control not a remote control? When it’s the Nanoleaf Remote, a new smart home controller disguised as a baseball-sized dodecahedron (that’s a 12-sided figure in non-nerd terms).
Sengled is probably best known for its ingenious Bluetooth light bulbs that integrate a wireless speaker into one housing, but now it’s moving into the broader commodity smart light bulb space with the Sengled Element line. There are four models in the Element line: two non-tunable white, one tunable white, and one featuring tunable full color. We received the lattermost, the Element Color Plus, for review.
Amazon’s Alexa two-way voice technology has been embedded in clock radios, thermostats, televisions, and even lamps. With the Ecobee Switch+, it now comes to the humble light switch.
Swapping in a smart light bulb for a dumb, traditional one is easy. Subbing in a smart light switch for a traditional one is another story, one that usually involves a toolbox, a healthy knowledge of electrical wiring, and the potential for electrocution if you don’t know what you’re doing. (Always turn off the power at the circuit breaker!)