TP-Link have taken a different approach to their smart lightbulbs and switches than most other products. Whereas most other products require a hub and connect via Zigbee or other low power wireless protocol, the TP-Link products use straightforward Wi-Fi. Units connect to your Wi-Fi and you use the app on your phone to connect to any nearby devices. In setup mode the lightbulbs act as a wireless AP that your phone connects to, this allows you to give the lightbulb your home Wi-Fi settings.

tp-link-bulbAll bulbs then get linked to your online TP-Link account. The Kasa app allows for a lot of customization around scheduling and is even able to give you power usage summaries for each of your components. Although the Kasa App does allow for the control of the light bulbs when you are away from home through the internet, the lightbulbs are able to run on a local only mode. This means if your internet goes down at home, you are still able to control the lights from your cellphone when connected to the same Wi-Fi network.

TP-Link have also developed a product for the Alexa range of products from Amazon. Installing this on your compatible device and logging in to your TP-Link account makes it easy to control all your devices by voice offer four different lightbulbs: a low power version, a standard white bulb, a tunable white bulb and their multi-color bulb. One great think about TP-Link is that they also offer light switches and plug adapters that operate in the same manner as the light bulbs. This means that for rooms with many light bulbs, you can feasibly just replace the light switch, instead of each individual bulb, cutting costs.

Selection of these products is simple though as the there is only one light-switch product, and two plugs; one including the ability to monitor power usage.

All the products receive a 4+ star average rating from customer reviews. Mostly people are impressed with how easy the bulbs are to setup and get operating. Complaints comprise a variety of topics from connectivity issues to trouble with setup.

For individually controllable Wi-Fi connected devices the prices are very reasonable and offer a great alternative to the market leading Hue products. Customer reviews are overwhelming positive and the Kasa app with integration into Alexa offers a host of control options.

Bulb: Smart LED Light bulb
Plug: Smart Plug HS100
Light switch: Smart Wi-Fi Light Switch HS200


images: TP-Link