Smart lighting explained

13 July, 2023

The light bulb is arguably one of the world's greatest inventions of the 19th century, transforming the way we live our lives and illuminating our homes much more easily. Skipping forward to the 21st century, you'll see an evolution in design and technologies that seemed, at one point, impossible for traditional light bulbs. With these advancements, it seemed as though they couldn't get any better — that is, until smart lights came along. This somewhat-new term is known, but what is smart lighting, really?

What is smart lighting?

Smart lighting is an advanced way to light your home. Smart LED bulbs contain software that connects to an app, smart home assistant, or other smart accessory so you can automate your lights or control them remotely, eliminating the need for traditional wall switches.

Women talking in a color-lit living room

Conventional light bulbs work by flipping a switch on and off. Sometimes they are hardwired into a dimmer switch, allowing you to dim or brighten the lights. However, this is generally the extent of the functionality of traditional home lighting. 

Smart lighting, on the other hand, gives you far more control over your lights. They are still connected to your home's power, but each smart bulb and LED-integrated fixture allows you to control it wirelessly with your phone, tablet, or smart assistant, such as Google Assistant or Amazon Alexa.

Smart lighting benefits

The advantages of smart lights don't just stop at controlling your lights automatically or remotely — there are other, less obvious, benefits to switching to smart lighting.

Living room with blue-lit lighting in the background

Easily dimmable

Traditional bulbs require you to use a switch to control the lights — and nothing else. If you want to be able to dim your lights, you need to wire a dimmer switch into your wall. Smart LED lights, however, can be controlled — including dimming — via the app or other smart accessories.

Energy efficiency     

Smart LED bulbs last much longer and generate less heat than the original light bulbs, thus using less energy. 


Using your smart lighting system with other connected devices such as cameras, audio equipment, thermostats, or home assistants allows you to create an entire smart home.

Bright idea: Since your lights are controlled via an app, you can see their status from anywhere. Never ask, "Did I leave the light on?" again!


Smart LED bulbs can be configured individually or as a group. You can set timers that automatically turn off all the lights at a specific time of configure your lights to turn on and off when you're not at home, mimicking your presence.

Front of a house during the night

Bright idea: Schedule your smart lights to dim to a certain setting every evening at the same time to signal bedtime or set a timer so that your lights get brighter after a one-hour nap.

Instant mood lighting

Preset and customized light scenes create ambiance for any occasion, whether you're using warm-to-cool white light or colour LED lights and all you have to do is tap a button.

Couple talking and sitting on a sofa in a purple-lit living room

You may never have thought that you could improve your home lighting experience — but with smart lighting, you can. With just the touch of a button, you can automate your home lighting, control your lights with your app or voice, or set routines to make it look you're home even if you're not. With smart lighting, anything is possible!

How to set up Philips Hue Smart Lighting

*When a bulb displays "Up to" a certain number of lumens in its specifications, it displays the maximum lumen output of the bulb. It shows how bright the bulb can get at 2700 K (White bulbs) or 4000 K (White ambiance or White and color ambiance bulbs). Learn more about brightness