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Hue vs. LIFX: Which smart bulb should you buy in 2022?

Best answer: Philips Hue offers more lighting products to choose from while being compatible with more smart home devices than LIFX.

What functions do the two brands share?

For either brand, bulbs that offer color ambiance give you access to millions of colors and temperature hues to find the shade and color you like best. You'll be able to control either with the most common voice control platforms including Amazon Alexa, Apple HomeKit, Google Assistant or Microsoft's Cortana. They each have their own easy-to-use app and work with select third-party smart services.

What differences are there between the two brands?

Philips Hue: Up until recently, you needed to a have a $60 Hue Bridge (opens in new tab) hub in order to control Hue smart lights via voice command or app. That changed in June 2019 when Philips added Bluetooth control to several of their bulbs. Now if you buy a Bluetooth-capable Hue light you don't need the Hue Bridge, but you can still purchase one if you want to unlock additional features. For instance, Bridge allows you to add up to 50 lights and accessories, which is much more than the standard 10.

One of the biggest reasons to go with Hue is because the bulbs tend to cost less than LIFX's bulbs, so you'll save more money in the long run. You'll find a larger ecosystem of lighting products like switches, hubs, outdoor lighting, and sensors. Hue also works with a wider range of third-party services and products including Nest, XFINITY Home, IFTTT, Logitech, Samsung SmartThings, Vivint Smart Home, and Razer.

LIFX: Now, just because we favor Hue over LIFX it doesn't mean that the latter is without merit. LIFX is known to produce more vibrant colors than Hue and none of its bulbs require any type of hub for you to control them. As stated previously, the trade off is that they do tend to cost more than Hue bulbs and there's less third-party support, so they might not be as convenient to use.

This company offers a few different lighting options aside from bulbs including feature lighting and power supplies, but the number of accessories they offer is much fewer than Hue. LIFX supports the following third-party services: Nest, Flic, Xfinity, and Logitech Harmony, IFTTT, Sisense, Abode, and Scout Alarm.

Rebecca Spear
Staff Writer

Rebecca Spear is a staff writer for Android Central who loves following the latest tech, drawing with her Wacom, and playing video games. You can find her posting about her pets, art, and video game preferences on Twitter @rrspear.