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Philips Hue Festavia string lights review: brilliantly bright but lacking identity
12:18 am | December 16, 2023

Author: admin | Category: Computers Gadgets Home Smart Home Smart Lights | Tags: | Comments: Off

Philips Hue Festavia: Two-minute review

If bold but minimalistic lights are your go-to at Christmas, or you just like the idea of syncing your Christmas tree with the rest of your smart lighting, then the Philips Hue Festavia smart string lights might be for you. Philips Hue’s lights are among the best smart lights, so it’s no surprise that the brand has ventured into string lights. While these smart lights were initially released in December 2022, there were a lot of issues with stock, and the lights were for indoor use only; you can use 2023’s edition outdoors, as well as in your home. 

Available in different lengths directly from Philips Hue as well as third-party retailers like Amazon (pricing detailed in the next section), these lights are marketed predominantly as tree decorations, but are weatherproofed and therefore also suitable for outdoor use. They offer much the same features and functionality as Philips Hue’s wider smart lighting line, as well as the robust design and build quality we’ve come to expect from the brand. 

Philips Hue Festavia smart string lights next to a felt polar bear.

Christmas has come b-early! (Image credit: Future)

However, if you want a little more from these lights – specifically features and functions you’d commonly expect from standard tree lights, you’ll likely find yourself disappointed.

The string lights are split into two halves, A and B. Both halves start in the middle of your tree, with the former working upwards and the latter downwards. It’s worth noting that because of this, if you’re using the lights to decorate something other than a tree, the power supply is situated in the middle of the light strip.

I opted against using Hue’s lights for my tree after careful consideration; they were ever so slightly shorter than what I needed for full coverage. The split strings can make them a little difficult to use for anything beyond tree decoration, but in my home, I used them to line two living room walls, which ended up giving a lovely effect. Each individual light is round, roughly 1.11 inches / 3cm long, and spaced 2.95 inches / 7.5cm apart. 

Philips Hue Festavia smart string lights

With the lights fully dimmed, the Festavia lights shine brightly (Image credit: Future)

Although Hue’s bulbs are remarkably bright, when I quickly trialed tree placement following Philips Hue’s detailed instructions on my  7.2ft / 2.2m tree, I realized the particular shape of my tree and its size wouldn’t do the lights justice in photos. That’s largely to do with the tree I bought this year, but I also prefer densely lit trees; the spacing of these lights makes them ill-suited for those who dislike darker voids on their tree. This is worth noting, as Philips Hue suggests that the 500-bulb version I tested offers coverage for trees over 7ft / 2.1m tall but, as mentioned, they proved unsuitable.

The black cord used to connect the lights also seems like a poorly thought-out choice when many string lights are green to match the tree or come in a choice of colors. Add to that the thickness of the wires, and it can be quite apparent when the lights are hung up. 

I did appreciate the Festavia string light’s brightness, which was just right for that gentle, homely feeling I want from festive lighting. If you did want to use them for anything else throughout the rest of the year, though, the max brightness might be a little low compared to Philips Hue’s strip lights. 

As with all Philips Hue smart lights, the Festavia string lights can be controlled using Philips Hue’s app via either a Philips Hue Bridge or Bluetooth connection. It’s superbly easy to set up, and from the app you’ll have access to almost all of the usual features and options, including the 16 million color options and six special effects: Candle, Fireplace, Glisten, Sparkle, Prism, and Opal. Personally, I favored Glisten (a bolder flickering off-white), Sparkle (gentler flickering off-white), and Prism (rainbow gradient), as both Candle and Fireplace were too fiery, and Opal was a bit twee with its pastel palette.

Philips Hue Festavia smart string lights

(Image credit: Future)

Plus, you can sync the Philips Hue Festavia string lights with your other bulbs, or with your entertainment, provided you’ve got a Hue Play HDMI Sync box for your TV or a Spotify account for music. 

Otherwise, these lights feel distinctly unchristmassy; it’s almost as if Philips Hue can’t decide if they’re regular string lights or festive ones. Yes, the profiles are great – but why are there only one or two settings versus the six or seven often included in dumb lights? Why can’t you adjust the colors, the speed, or design your own patterns?

For such a pricey product I felt rather let down by the Festavia lights’ lack of identity, but I’m nonetheless impressed as ever by Hue’s light quality and general features. With just some small software tweaks – and the option of different cable colors – these could easily be the smart lights of the future, and even worth their lofty price tag; but right now I’d say they’re only really worth it for the devout Philips Hue fan, given that other smart and colorful string lights exist at a much more affordable price, such as those from Twinkly and Nanoleaf.

Philips Hue Festavia: Price and availability

  • How much is it? $219.99-$359.99 / £109.99-£199.99 / AU$199.95-$589.95
  • When is it available? Available now
  • Where is it available? Directly from Philips Hue and at Amazon

The Philips Hue Festavia smart string lights cost a pretty penny, there's no two ways about it. The three different string lengths have varied availability from region to region: 

When compared to more affordable options like the Nanoleaf holiday smart string lights, which are a lot more festive-first, this makes the Philips Hue Festavia extortionately priced.

  • Value:  3 / 5

Philips Hue Festavia: Specs

Philips Hue Festavia lights set up next to a polar bear plushie

(Image credit: Future)

Should I buy the Philips Hue Festavia?

Buy it if...

Don't buy it if... 

Philips Hue Festavia: Also consider

If the Philips Hue Festavia aren't for you, here are a couple of excellent alternatives

Philips Hue Festavia smart string lights

(Image credit: Future)

How I tested the Govee Christmas String Lights

  • I used the Philips Hue Festavia lights to decorate my living room
  • I also briefly trialed them on my Christmas tree
  • I paired the Festavia lights with the Philips Hue app

I set the Philips Hue Festavia string lights up in my home, opting to use them to line my living room walls following a quick trial on my Christmas tree. I compared them to two sets of non-smart string lights to assess the brightness, color payoff, spacing and wire quality.

After decorating, I connected the Philips Hue Festavia to the Hue companion app, a setup I’m familiar with from testing smart lights over the past two years, and went to work testing out Philips Hue’s standard features on the lights. Additionally, I tried some of the Festavia-specific effects and the standard effects.

I’ve been testing smart home devices for two years, using my expertise and experience in tech testing and everyday use to assess the key strengths and weaknesses of products.

We pride ourselves on our independence and our rigorous review-testing process, offering up long-term attention to the products we review and making sure our reviews are updated and maintained - regardless of when a device was released, if you can still buy it, it's on our radar.

Read more about how we test

First reviewed December 2023

Philips Hue Tap Dial Switch review
11:42 pm | August 17, 2023

Author: admin | Category: Computers Gadgets | Tags: | Comments: Off

One-minute review

Aimed at those looking for a more capable switch for their smart lighting, the Tap Dial Switch is a serious upgrade over the smaller, simpler (and cheaper) Philips Hue wireless dimmer switch. There are four buttons, each programable with up to two commands, plus a rotating dial that can be set to dim anything from one bulb to your entire home.

Available in white and black, the Tap Dial Switch is wireless, battery powered and connected magnetically to a wall-mountable base plate for portability and easy storage.

Dots on the buttons help you identify which is which, but remembering what they all do can take a bit of practice. Each button can control a single bulb, a group of lights, a room, a floor, or your whole home. Configuring everything in the Hue app is simple and intuitive.

This is a pro-level switch, which at $49.99 / £44.99/ AU$ 79.95 costs twice as much as the regular Hue wireless switch, but it could be perfect for users who need more advanced control over their smart home lighting.

As ever, the Hue app is easy to use while also offering a huge amount of customization to ensure that your smart lighting system works just how you want it to.

Philips Hue Tap Dial Switch: specs

Philips Hue Tap Dial Switch review: performance

  • Quick and easy setup
  • Total of nine control options
  • Highly configurable

If you’re looking for a smarter switch or your Hue lighting system, then this is undoubtedly it. Where the regular Hue switches have four buttons in total (power, brightness up, brightness down, mode switch), the Tap Dial Switch has four, plus a rotating dial. Furthermore, each of the four buttons can be assigned two different commands; one activated with a quick press and another activated with a press and brief hold.

This means a total of eight commands, plus the rotating dial which can control the brightness of one light, a room, a floor or an entire home. It can also be configured to turn a certain set of lights on or off when you start rotating.

Philips Hue Tap Dial Switch

(Image credit: Future)

As with other Hue switches the buttons have a quality click to them, and the dial is nicely damped. It’s a premium item whose design and build quality go some way to justifying the not-inconsiderate price (especially compared to regular, non-smart light switches).

Setting up the Tap Dial Switch will be very familiar to anyone who already has a Hue system and knows how the simpler switches work.

But there is an extra degree of complexity here that takes a bit of time to get your head around. Depending on your system, it might not be immediately obvious how the switch is set up. It is probably easier if you have a large Hue system, with lots of options and combinations of lighting that need controlling. If you have a simple system, perhaps with only a bulb or two in some of your rooms, this switch might be overkill for your needs.

Philips Hue Tap Dial Switch

(Image credit: Future)

Being magnetic, the switch can be detached from its base plate and carried around. It’s a handy way of bringing lighting control to the sofa, your desk, or other places where the wall switches are out of reach. You can always use voice commands or the Hue app instead, but it’s sometimes quicker to simply press a button to control the lights.

With no obvious ‘on’ button, you’ll doubtless find yourself explaining to guests how to turn the lights on. Hue’s regular dimmer switches have a prominent power button at the top, but this doesn’t. It therefore might not be suitable for the bathroom.

The switch works very quickly, turning lights on and off almost as quickly as a traditional wired switch. The coin-style cell battery should last a long time, and is easy to replace thanks to a removable back plate. Like other Hue switches, the Tap Dial requires a Hue Bridge to function.

Philips Hue Tap Dial Switch review: app

  • Comprehensive feature set
  • Switch configuration is quick and easy
  • Works when away from home (Hue Bridge hub required)

As with other Hue switches, the Tap Dial is a breeze to add to your existing Hue system through the Hue smartphone app.

If you're new to Hue, the app offers a comprehensive place to add new lights and accessories like the Tap Dial, plus the ability to organize lights into groups (to match the rooms of your home, for example) and managing scheduling. There are also automation tools for configuring your lights to mimic a sunrise, or to make it look like you're home while the house is unoccupied. 

The app is also where you assign roles to the Tap Dial's buttons, making it easy to have one button turn a whole room to a certain color, for example, and have another button turn the entire system off.

A Hue Bridge, which connects to your router with an Ethernet cable, is required if you want to access the app and control your lighting system remotely, such as when away from home.

Philips Hue app

(Image credit: Future)

Philips Hue Tap Dial Switch review: Should I buy?

Buy it if...

Don't buy it if...

Philips Hue Tap Dial Switch review: also consider

If you want to add more smart lighting to your home, here are a couple of options to consider...

Philips Hue Tap Dial Switch review: How I tested

  • I added the switch to my Philips Hue system
  • I set up and used the switch as part of my daily routine

As I already have a Hue smart lighting system, it was easy to add the Tap Dial Switch, mount it to the wall in the hallway, and start using it. I configured the switch a few different ways during my testing, in a bid to discover how it would best fit into my existing system. I used the switch to quickly enable pre-configured lighting scenes across several rooms, and made use of the dial to dim lights.

Being wireless, the switch was often brought into the lounge, bedroom and kitchen, where it was placed on a table or worktop and used to control the lighting in each room.

Read more about how we test

First reviewed August 2023

WiZ LED strip smart light review: brilliant, bright and budget-friendly
8:00 pm | June 24, 2023

Author: admin | Category: Computers Gadgets | Tags: | Comments: Off

Two-minute review

Editor's note 06/07/23 - WiZ moved nice and quickly with its Matter support rollout, meaning that you can now use the WiZ LED strip smart light with Apple HomeKit, provided you're using the new WiZ app v2. 

The WiZ LED strip smart light is a simple and sweet addition or starting point to your smart home, offering 840-lumen output across 16 million colors and compatibility with Alexa, Google and Siri Shortcuts. As of writing, WiZ is in the process of rolling out Matter support for older devices, so you can’t yet use Apple HomeKit to control these lights.

The 13ft / 4-meter kit that I tested was affordably priced at $34.99 / £29.99. It’s available from the WiZ store in the US and Argos in the UK, as well as on Amazon, where it can be shipped to Australia from Europe. Otherwise, this light strip is currently unavailable in Australia, though given the number of products that do make it over from WiZ, it should be expected this eventually will too. There are also more expensive varieties available in the US and Australia that offer slightly greater total lumen output and light color.

WiZ LED Strip smart light

My tea-making station has never looked so serene (Image credit: Future)

Although WiZ is owned by the same company as Philips Hue, the two brands operate very differently; you certainly can’t expect the same intelligence and controls from affordable WiZ lights as you would the more premium Hue lights. We’ve compared WiZ vs. Philips Hue if you want more detail. The closest alternative from Hue is the Ambiance Lightstrip Plus smart light, which is half the length and twice the price at $99.99 / £79.99 / AU$149.95.

Broadly speaking, the WiZ LED strip smart lights offer easy installation - simply peel off the 3M backing, stick down your lights and switch, follow the in-app pairing guide, and you’re all set. The pairing process can be a little confusing; for instance, it guides you to turn the switch off three times to begin pairing, but it’s not clear that it’s referring to the mains rather than the controls that come with the WiZ strip lights. It’s also worth noting you’ll need 2.4GHz Wi-Fi, as unlike Philips Hue lights, WiZ cannot connect via Bridge or Bluetooth.

WiZ LED Strip smart light switch, stuck on a wall

WiZ LED Strip smart light switch, which can be stuck to surfaces with its 3M backing. It's a little annoying how close to the end of the light strip this is, and limits you slightly where you can place them. (Image credit: Future)

These lights can be cut every 10 inches / 25cm so they can better fit the space you want to brighten up - plus you can buy extensions. They can’t turn corners, so you’re best off lining straight edges. Alternatively (and at your own risk) you can look into purchasing a 6-pin corner piece, which will allow you to connect two strips at a corner or reconnect cutoffs.

Now, onto the interesting part; how these light strips perform. Considering their more affordable price point, the WiZ lights are vibrant and transformed my rather bleak kitchen counter into a warmer and more ambient space, however, they’re not quite as bright as other strip lights available. Some of the red-tone colors are a little washed out, but minimally so.

WiZ LED Strip smart light

(Image credit: Future)

The app isn’t quite as sophisticated as Philips Hue’s in either form or function, but it certainly looks similar and offers some decent features, including 33 presets and optional customized settings. You can also set up scenes (room-wide pre-sets) and rhythms (matching the lighting to the time of day), or schedule your lights.

Especially considering how much more affordable these smart lights are compared to the likes of Hue, I’d say the WiZ LED strip smart lights are well worth it. For first-time smart home explorers or those already in the WiZ ecosystem, they’re a fantastic choice to brighten any room and add a little ambiance. If, however, you want something that will play nice in a wider smart home ecosystem or work with Apple HomeKit, it’s not the best choice.

WiZ LED Strip smart light: specifications

WiZ LED Strip smart light: Should I buy it?

Buy it if...

Don't buy it if...

WiZ LED Strip smart light: Also consider

Still not sold on the WiZ LED strip smart light? Here’s how it compares to two similar products. 

How I tested the WiZ LED Strip smart light

  • I spent a few days testing the WiZ LED Strip smart light
  • I installed the lights and tried all of the app features and functions 
  • I also compared the hue and saturation of colors to my Philips Hue lights.

To test the WiZ LED strip smart light, I installed the lights underneath my cabinets and set up the app, connecting the lights to my 2.4GHz Wi-Fi. 

I used all of the settings and features in the app to stress test the performance and tried using both Alexa and Shortcuts to control the device. 

I also used my Philips Hue Go Table Lamp as a point of reference for the color payoff in these lights, as well as comparing color swatches to the light spray. 

Nanoleaf Essentials A19 E27 smart bulb review: affordable smart lighting
9:34 am | September 24, 2021

Author: admin | Category: Computers Gadgets | Tags: , | Comments: Off

Nanoleaf might be better known for its beautiful light panels and lines, but the brand went back to basics in 2020 by offering a smart bulb – a great option for anyone testing the smart home waters for the first time.

The Nanoleaf Essentials A19 (or A60 in some regions) smart bulb, however, isn’t your typical smart bulb. Not only does it step away from the usual smooth dome diffuser, it also supports an incredible 16 million colors, with a white color temperature range of 2,700-6,500 Kelvin. It surpasses some of its competitors by being able to hit 1,100 lumens, making it one of the brightest available today.

Its looks and brightness aren’t the only features that make the Nanoleaf Essentials A19 smart light bulb stand apart from the crowd. This smart bulb is the first of its kind to come with both Thread and Bluetooth connectivity. That means the Essentials light bulb can be used alongside any other Thread-enabled smart device without a hub and, if you aren't using one of those, the bulbs will work via Bluetooth, giving them a wider and more future-proof appeal.

[UPDATE (April 2023): Nanoleaf has a new Essentials bulb now available in most major markets. This new model is Matter enabled, the latest standard in smart home connectivity. While the new bulb isn't very different from the model reviewed here, Matter connectivity means it should become easier to set up a smart home without having to worry about getting caught up within a specific platform or ecosystem. So whether you use Apple devices, Google or even Amazon's Alexa as a smart hub, all Matter-compatible gadgets can be controlled using any iOS or Android handset. At the time of writing this update, Nanoleaf is just one of two companies to have released Matter-compatible smart devices.]

Nanoleaf Essentials smart bulb

(Image credit: TechRadar)

Price and availability

  • Cheaper than Philips Hue
  • Announced November 2020
  • Available to buy from Apple and directly from Nanoleaf

Nanoleaf announced its Essentials range in 2020, going up for pre-order on the company’s online storefront in November and available to purchase immediately from Apple. As of March 2021, the Essentials range – which currently includes the light bulb and a lightstrip – is available to buy directly from Nanoleaf and several other major retailers around the world, Apple included.

The Essential light bulb costs just $19.99 / £17.99 / AU$39.99 each. That's cheaper than the basic Philips Hue White Ambiance bulb that only offers – you guessed it – different hues of white/yellow light for $25.99 / £29.99 / AU$84.95.

Considering that the Nanoleaf bulb supports several colors and light hues, its direct competition is the Philips Hue White and Color Ambiance that costs a lot more at $64.99 / £49.99 / AU$99.95 per light globe, so there's a lot more value for money here.

And if you opt to upgrade to the new Matter-enabled Essentials bulb (see update above), you won't be paying too much more either. The new Essentials bulb cost $19.99 / £19.99 / AU$39.99 and that means future-proofing your smart home setup doesn't have to cost a pretty penny.

Nanoleaf Essentials smart bulb

(Image credit: TechRadar)


  • Unique rhombicosidodecahedron shape
  • Looks great even when switch off
  • Available in E27 and B22 fittings

The Nanoleaf Essentials smart light bulb looks more like a golf ball than a light fixture – very much in keeping with Nanoleaf’s design ethic. Its geometric dome is a rhombicosidodecahedron, a shape made up of a combination of triangular and pentagonal faces with several edges.

This interesting shape also makes it look quite good when not in use, and perfect for those industrial-looking lamps that keep the bulbs exposed.

Other than that, the Essentials smart bulb looks like any other standard bulb, measuring 6cm x 11cm (2.4in x 4.4in). Like its Philips Hue counterparts, it’s available in both Bayonet and Edison screw caps that fit most standard fixtures.

Nanoleaf Essentials smart bulb

(Image credit: TechRadar)

Setup and app

  • Easy setup
  • Works with HomeKit and Google Assistant
  • Not the best app design

The Essentials light bulb is remarkably simple to set up. Just get it out of its box, screw it into a lamp, scan the QR code on the device or from the card in the box and you’re done. The bulb automatically decides what the best connection method is without you having to think about it too much. 

If it recognizes an Apple HomePod mini, it quickly latches on and you’re set up immediately, with no additional steps to go through. However, you don’t need a HomePod mini to use the Essentials bulb. HomeKit will add the bulb to your collection of smart devices if you’re an iPhone user, while the Google Home app takes care of it for Android users, and both work via Bluetooth.

Nanoleaf Essentials smart bulb

Screw the bulb into a holder, scan the code and you're ready to go (Image credit: TechRadar)

If you’ve already set up a Nanoleaf Essentials accessory and then get a HomePod mini, it automatically shifts its communication to the Apple smart speaker (or any other Thread-enabled device) without you needing to reconnect. At present, the HomePod mini and the latest Apple TV 4K are the only Thread device commercially available to buy – other smart speakers have Thread radios installed, like the Google Nest Hub Max or Amazon’s Eero, but they haven’t been ‘switched on’.

When connected via Thread, the Nanoleaf bulb works real quick, responding to commands instantly. On a Bluetooth connection, however, there is some lag which, during our testing, wasn’t too significant – it took no more than a couple of seconds to pick up a command, provided you’re in the same room or within range.

Both Siri and Google Assistant can be used to control the Nanoleaf Essentials via voice commands but, at the time of writing, there was no Alexa support which might be a deal breaker for some.

Nanoleaf Essentials smart bulb

(Image credit: TechRadar)

The Nanoleaf app, while great for the light panels, is not as user-friendly for the Essentials range. At launch, you couldn't even download the several user-defined Scenes available in the Nanoleaf library. That, however, is not possible and it's a lot of fun to watch the lights previewed on the bulb before downloading a particular Scene.

If you're feeling adventurous and creative, you can create your own Scenes, although editing after you’ve saved a Scene can take a few annoying tries. A color palette in the app makes it easy to choose your preferred shade or to set white light at different hues. You can even set a specific RGB value if you know precisely what you want – a feature that isn’t common for smart lights.

The app will also let you adjust brightness, change Scenes and set a circadian rhythm for the lights. The last feature automatically adjusts the light’s color temperature through the day to calm or energize the mind by switching to warm tones for the morning and evening, and cooler white for the afternoon.

Nanoleaf Essentials smart bulb

(Image credit: TechRadar)

However, annoyingly, you can set schedules for any of the Essentials products in the Nanoleaf app. You'll have to use Apple HomeKit or Google Home to do that, as long you have a smart home hub set up on a device. There is a dedicated section for scheduling in the app, so we’re hoping this functionality will be added as part of a future update.

Another annoyance about the app is its complete sync with HomeKit. This pushes every single default Scene in the Nanoleaf app to the Home app every time you open it, even if you’ve previously removed it from HomeKit.

Features and functionality

  • Supports 16 million colors
  • Screen mirroring
  • Quite bright for a smart bulb

The Nanoleaf Essentials smart bulb is rated for a maximum of 1,100 lumens, making it one of the brightest smart lights on the market, with an average brightness of over 800 lumens. We’ve tested a few smart bulbs in the past and compared to them, including some older Philips Hue lights, it’s a lot brighter. The only other bulb that trumps Essentials bulb in brightness is the newest white-only Philips Hue light that’s rated for 1,600 lumens.

However, brightness dips significantly when you change the light from white to color, but this is not unique to Nanoleaf – every color smart bulb we’ve tested behaves the same way.

Nanoleaf Essentials smart bulb

(Image credit: TechRadar)

While you can use Nanoleaf’s own Circadian Lighting feature in the app, the Essentials bulb currently does not support the HomeKit Adaptive Lighting option – this changes color temperature of white light automatically throughout the day to match daylight in your location. However, Nanoleaf’s Circadian Lighting feature gets deactivated every time you use HomeKit to control the accessory and you will need to switch it on again in the Nanoleaf app.

The Essentials bulb also has the best dimming ability of any smart bulb we’ve tested. While most others dim down only to a certain point, the Nanoleaf goes all the way down to zero.

At launch, Nanoleaf said the bulb would have the ability to mirror colors of Mac and Windows displays, but the feature was rolled out only months after the device has been on the market. It's here, however, and you will need to download the Nanoleaf desktop app to make it work, and keep it running as long as you want the bulb to mirror your monitor. So the only way to make the bulb mirror your TV is to cast a streaming service onto your telly. There are different mirroring 'moods' to choose from as well, which is rather nice.

Nanoleaf Essentials smart bulb

(Image credit: TechRadar)


It’s easy to recommend a smart lighting system that won’t burn a hole in your pocket, or eat through your energy bill, especially when they look as good as the Nanoleaf Essentials smart bulb and work as well. Admittedly Nanoleaf has some work to do on its app to make it a little more intuitive, but you can ignore the app for the most part and use Apple's HomeKit or Google Home instead.

Moreover, with Thread support built in, this is a future-proof smart bulb that can easily be used with any other Thread-enabled device without the need for a hub, thus streamlining your smart home setup. Bluetooth connectivity might not be as quick as Thread, but that’s not the fault of the bulb but of the wireless protocol itself.

It’s also feature-packed, with circadian rhythm available on the app, and plenty of custom Scenes that you can set up yourself if you don’t like any of the default ones. There's even screen mirroring on board. 

While it needs Thread connectivity to unlock its full potential, it's still worth it on a Bluetooth connection as well.

Nanoleaf Essentials smart bulb

(Image credit: TechRadar)

Should I buy the Nanoleaf Essentials A19 smart bulb?

If you’re after an affordable HomeKit-enabled smart lighting system, then yes. And even more resounding yes if you already own an Apple HomePod mini or Apple TV 4K (the 2021 edition specifically), or plan to get either one. Its white light is brighter than most other smart bulbs on the market and its colors are beautiful and vivid, like the Nanoleaf Shapes light panels. It already has some great features, with more to come, making them well worth it.

However, there’s no Alexa support available at the time of writing, although Nanoleaf has promised to roll that out soon. So if you use an Alexa speaker to control your smart home, you may need to look elsewhere.

[First reviewed March 2021]