Google has made a name for itself in the smart home market through Google Home, its smart artificial intelligence assistant. Now, Google plans to seize control of part of the smart lighting market through a partnership with GE. C by GE has introduced a new line of light bulbs that connect seamlessly to any of Google’s smart assistants without the need for a hub. Rather than go through a sometimes-complicated setup process, just screw in the light bulb and load up your Google Assistant app. It will automatically detect the bulb and let you pair it. From there, turning the bulb on or off, and adjusting the light level is as easy as saying, “Hey, Google.”
You can also control the lights from the Google Home app, as well as set up more advanced features like routines and schedules. This means you won’t need multiple apps on your phone to control the two different devices. The bulbs and Google Home connect via Bluetooth, which frees up your Wi-Fi network for other uses.
Google will offer a “Smart Lighting Starter Kit” which comes with a pre-paired Google Home Mini and a C-Life bulb starting on October 22. The kit will be available for purchase at the Google Store, Best Buy, Lowe’s, and Target. While this makes it easy for new users to jump right in, existing owners of Google Home and/or C by GE bulbs will be able to sync the two together, also starting on October 22.
If you’re interested in picking up some of the C by GE bulbs without the starter kit, standalone options are available at most major national retailers for $25 for a two-pack of C-Life bulbs and for $35 for a two-pack of C-Sleep bulbs. C-Life bulbs have a single color setting, but you have total control over the brightness level. C-Sleep bulbs have three color options and are designed to support your Circadian rhythm, promoting a more natural sleep/wake cycle.
One of the primary obstacles that prevents people from immersing themselves in smart home technology is the idea of a difficult setup. “In today’s growing smart home space, easy, seamless connections are more important than ever,” says Jeff Patton of GM Connected Home Product Management. “This exclusive lighting collaboration with Google means controlling your lighting with your voice is as simple as screwing in a lightbulb.”