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Ikea's Smart Lights Will Challenge Philips Hue

Need to illuminate your Poäng or Ektorp? Ikea is introducing LED smart bulbs and lighting kits that could help consumers set up a smarter home on a budget.

Credit: IKEA

(Image credit: IKEA)

Launching in Sweden on March 31, and expected to roll out to other countries later this year, Ikea's smart lighting kits will offer increased competition to established brands such as Philips, GE, and WeMo.

The Trådfri lineup, as it's called, will offer both individual bulbs as well as lighting kits, which include a gateway, remote control and two bulbs. Prices will start at $11.99 for each bulb versus, say, $15 for a white Philips Hue bulb, when they're available for sale in the United States. Those who set up an Ikea smart lighting system will pay sightly more for a starter kit than they would for a similar Philips kit. Ikea's stater kit will cost $79.99. A similar starter kit from Philips costs $70. Add just one more bulb, however, and the Ikea system will end up cheaper than a similar Hue system.

Ikea will also sell a dimming kit consisting of one bulb and a wireless dimmer for $19.99, and a motion sensor lighting kit, with one motion sensor and one bulb, for $24.99.

Ikea's Swedish website says the smart lighting systems and bulbs will be available starting on March 31. Rollouts in other countries are expected after that date. Ikea already lists its smart lighting products on its U.S. website, but for now, they can only be added to a shopping list.

Currently, Ikea's smart bulbs can only be controlled by Ikea's own smart lighting gateway. By comparison, Philips Hue lights, as well as those from WeMo and more can be connected to other smart home hubs including the Amazon Echo and Google Home.