The ability to use Siri and a single app to control your smart home technology makes HomeKit compatibility almost a must these days, but so far that has not come cheap – as both Zac and myself discovered. Smart bulbs from the market leader Philips mostly cost $30 per bulb for white and $50 for color, a price that soon adds up if you’re looking to fit out your entire home (though there is a $15 option).
But all that is set to change in the summer as Ikea has announced that its smart lighting system will be HomeKit-compatible as of the summer. Ikea’s smart bulbs start at just $11.99 …
iPhone-ticker reports that Ikea is updating its TRÅDFRI smart lights to be compatible with HomeKit, Amazon Echo and Google Home. The site says that the company will ‘retrofit’ the functionality, suggesting that compatibility will apply to existing products.
The existing product line is limited to white bulbs, but once you’ve bought the gateway for $79.99 (which includes two bulbs), you can add smart bulbs at prices ranging from $11.99 for a 1000-lumen E28 bulb, through $14.99 for a 400-lumen E12, $17.99 for a 980-lumen E27 to a $19.99 G10 spotlight. Dimmers and motion sensors are also available at similarly affordable pricing.
Philips probably isn’t too worried by the development. The ability to use color to create different mood lighting is a key part of the appeal behind its Color Ambiance range of bulbs, and of course Hue lighting also gives you access to a wide range of third-party apps to provide everything from gentle color shifts over time to disco-style strobe lighting. But for those who just want the convenience of Siri-controlled lighting, Ikea’s products provide a wallet-friendly starting point.