IKEA switches on affordable smart lighting range and phone app

Love it or hate it, Swedish home furnishing brand IKEA has a strong track record of providing affordable, well-designed home wares with unpronounceable names.

Although the lights are going on sale in the United Kingdom for the first time, customers in Europe have been able to get their hands on the remote controlled solutions since September previous year.

IKEA is aiming to make smart lighting affordable and accessible to the masses.

The solution seems to me (without having seen or used it) to be similar to the Philips Hue range, allowing you to switch out bulbs and get started with just one light - but be careful, it's a downward spiral into a full home lighting replacement once you get started!

Helen Akinsete, lighting sales leader at IKEA UK and Ireland, said the range was a response to research suggesting many consumers perceive such home smart lighting technology as too expensive or hard to understand.

In a sign of how seriously Ikea is treating its latest product the retailer has also begun selling a series of LED panels and illuminated doors which can be attached to compatible storage units.

"We also know that being able to dim and adjust lighting is one of the things that people look for and appreciate at home, and being able to do this remotely or via the app with Smart Lighting makes the collection really exciting". "With IKEA Home Smart we aim to improve everyday life at home by making it more convenient and comfortable".

However, while Ikea's products are a heck of a lot cheaper than rivals, they're not now compatible with either Amazon Alexa nor the upcoming Google Home. It's about adding functionality to our entire product range by integrating technology into our home furnishing offer. "We're busy exploring new ways of implementing technology in the home and will continue to develop ranges in the years to come".

The real boon is the range comes bearing a typically low IKEA price tag; the most basic smart lighting package containing an LED lightbulb and a dimming remote will set you back just £15. There's no word on United States availability, but as this is Ikea, you never know.

  • Carolyn Briggs