Do You Need a Hub for Smart Lights?

YES! If you are planning on having smart lights in your house, then you need to have a sort of smart home hub that will help you to be able to control your lights from any place.

I had been curious about installing smart lights in my house, and people kept telling me that I don’t need to have a smart home hub for me to have them installed. While I am a smart home tech fanatic, I was looking for a jump-off point where I could just start with a few smart light bulbs, my phone, and smart light hub.

So if you want to know whether you need to have a hub for smart lights, the short answer is a YES! If you are planning on having smart lights in your house, then you need to have a sort of smart home hub that will help you to be able to control your lights from any place.

After I had installed mine, I don’t need to now get out of bed right before I sleep because I had forgotten to turn off the lights in the living room.

I have the freedom now to switch my lights from dim lighting for a movie night or dinner party to so having something that is brighter for the early mornings. Though there are many different setups that I tried out with my wife to try and find which one would work out best for us.

The goal we had with my wife was to have modest lighting, which turned out to be full-blown smart lighting. We planned on just starting with four lamps, three of them in the living room while the other one we put in our daughter’s nursery.

And I wanted to have the ability to be able to turn them all on or off whenever I felt like. I also wanted to be able to control them individually and set up some basic scenes like having the side lamps in the living room turn on while we were watching the TV.

Ideally, all these I wanted it to be done with just my voice and my smartphone and control everything that is necessary.

To enable me to do this in our home, I had to choose the kind of smart lights that would just work perfectly for me. So I choose PhillipsHue smart lights. You can have a look at them right here on Amazon and find out there reviews.

To enable me to control everything just as I wanted, I had to use the Samsung SmartThings hub and app. These are smart home lights that I ended up with, and I realized that I could yell at them and sometimes they could respond to me.

The Philips Hue Smart Bulbs

These are one of the best decision that I did for my smarthome lights. They enable me to adjust their brightness and the colortemperature with the outright color as well.

They make my house to feel like a college town head shop, and enable me to make all the lights in my living room to be purple.

The Philips Hue bulbs enable me to choose from over 16million colors that will change the atmosphere and the look of the house using my voice.

A friend also recommend me to buy the Hue Dimmer Switch that enables me to expand the accessories of my lighting system. This enables me to adjust the intensity and color of my lights smoothly and switch them on and off.

From experience I have had with the bulbs, I have realized that I ended up just caring for the ability to be able to change or adjust the brightness and color temperature of my bulbs.

Some of the bulbs you may find out there will only allow you to adjust the brightness and not the color temperature and brighter blues during the day when you want them to and relaxing yellows in the evening.

I had been struggling in my life thinking of a situation whereby I would be able to change the color of my room to appear green or blue. It was not until I had these Philips Hue smart lights.

You may also have a look at my other article here on weather Philips Hue Bulbs Need a Hub.

Samsung SmartThings Hub

Almost every nice, a smart light bulb that you will find in the market right now will require you to have a hub or some bridge that will enable you to control the lights.

This can be like baffling especially in this world where most of the stuff we have naturally connected to everything else through Wi-Fi or by Bluetooth. The fact that these smart lights need to have their own specialized hardware is because of smart lighting and smart home tech using the Zigbee protocol.

Advantages of Zigbee

Zigbee is most ideal for communication protocols because it uses low power and low data rate digital radios that are based on IEEE 802.15.4standards for wireless personal area networks.

This technology is simpler and also cheaper compared to WPANS such as Bluetooth. It is ideal for radio frequency applications that need low data rate and also long battery life with secure networking.

Any system that is being used for home automation has a goal of reducing the effort that humans put in operating the various gadgets remotely. This is where lighting control comes in place.

Lighting control comes into place in the implementation of the overall design of a Wireless Home Automation System (WHAS). The Zigbee network depends on low power with faster access facility.

The smarts

If you want to avoid the headache of having different hubs for every smart light, you may buy, later on, it’s better to have the SamsungSmartThings hub that works across a broader range of products. You can have a look at there current prices here on Amazon.

The good thing about them is you can be able to set up any other different type of light to be up and running. They offer the solution that I was looking for in a smart hub.

Other hubs you may get out there in the market support relatively smaller brands of products compared to the Samsung SmartThings hub, and they may also tend to cost more.

Once I had the installed my smart bulbs and connected them to the hub, the other thing I had to do is decide on how I would control them.

One thing I liked about the Philips Hue smart lights is that they come with a very sleek app that enabled me to assign the bulbs I had to a room, then rename them and then set up scenes.

The SmartThings app is not only meant for controlling smart lights though but also door locks and refrigerators, but they didn’t have a slick app like Philips Hue though it allowed me to group the lights into rooms and set up certain automation.

You may have a look at my article on how smart light bulbs work here also.

Conclusion

If you have the goal of setting up smart lighting, then get the Philips Hue bulbs and the Samsung SmartThings. The bulbs are easy to use out any option. Having a SmartThings hub will enable you to have plenty of room to build your smart home.

In the end, the goal I had to be able to control all my four smart lights with my voice came to fruition. Though in the beginning, I was very skeptical about the smart lighting concept. You may find my article here on the cheap smart lights that work with Google Home for more information.

My main concern now is whether I am willing to sink deeper into replacing every light bulb in my home so that I can replicate this awesome feeling in the entire house.