Bryan and Jeff explore the good points and less-than-good points of Apple’s HomeKit, and the news that HomePod is going to need your iPhone to do some things. They also look at mounting evidence that Apple is back in gear for regular updates across its product line.
Sylvania announced two lighting products for Apple’s HomeKit ecosystem. The Sylvania Smart+ A19 Soft White LED Bulb puts out 800 lumens, the equivalent of a 60 watt incandescent lightbulb. It’s dimmable, and joins the full color A19 already on the market. The Sylvania Smart+ Full Color LED Flex Strip supports both full color and dimming. It puts out 400 lumens, or roughly the equivalent of a 30 watt incandescent bulb. Neither light requires a hub for on-off functionality, but work in Apple’s HomeKit ecosystem with hubs like an Apple TV, HomePod, or an iPad. Using a hub, users can automate the lights and access them remotely. I’m stoked to see new HomeKit products hit the market, and these ship on October 23rd. They’re on Amazon now, listed as out-of-stock. The Smart+ A19 Soft White LED Bulb is $25.99, while the Smart+ Full Color LED Flex Strip is $59.99.
Sylvania announced Tuesday it was launching an LED smartbulb in its LEDVANCE product line with support for Apple’s HomeKit (yay!). Better yet, the Smart Multicolor A19 doesn’t require a hub—just plug it in, find it with Apple’s Home app, and you’re good to go. Sylvania said the device will be sold through Amazon and ship in “early 2017.” This will be a great addition to the HomeKit ecosystem. To that end, I’ve been seeing more HomeKit stuff in my inbox during the last few weeks for CES 2017. It’s almost as if Apple’s smarthome platform is finally coming alive. Let’s hope, at any rate. I’ve left messages with Sylvania reps asking about pricing, which wasn’t announced. Sylvania also didn’t release images of the new bulb—the image below is of current products in the company’s smartbulb line. [Update: Sylvania’s PR folks got back to me—pricing is definitely unannounced. I also added a rendered image of the A19. We’ll be visiting with the company next week at CES. – Bryan]