If you want to add smart lighting to your home but want the classic look of a traditional clear light bulb, check out the TP-Link Kasa Filament Smart Bulb KL50 ($ 12.99). This new addition to the Kasa family of smart home devices is a clear LED lamp that emits 600 lumens of warm white light. It works with other smart devices that use IFTTT applets and can be controlled with voice commands from Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. However, it does not work with Apple HomeKit and you cannot adjust the color temperature of the light bulb like our editorial team. the $ 7.99 Wyze Bulb.
Design and functions
The KL50 is a standard lamp of the type A19 with an E26 screw connection. The light bulb is clear and uses four LED strands that are similar to the filament strands used in old school incandescent lamps. It emits 600 lumens, which roughly corresponds to a 40-watt incandescent lamp, and has a warm white color temperature of 2700K. This means you cannot set the white temperature like you can with the Wyze light bulb. The lamp consumes seven watts of power and has a lifespan of almost 14 years based on an average usage rate of three hours a day.
The light bulb has an embedded 2.4 GHz WLAN radio and therefore does not require a hub like most Philips Hue light bulbs. It can be controlled with voice commands from Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant and supports IFTTT applets with which it can interact with intelligent third-party devices such as motion sensors, surveillance cameras and video doorbells.
The KL50 uses the same mobile Kasa Smart app (for Android and iOS) as other TP-Link products. The lamp is displayed on a tab in the device dashboard along with tabs for other installed Kasa devices. The tab contains an on / off button that is green when the light is on and gray when it is off. It has a brightness indicator and a lamp symbol that lights up when the lamp is switched on and dark when it is switched off. Tap the tab to launch a lamp screen that shows a larger on / off button and four brightness presets (100, 75, 25, and 1 percent). Tap a preset to change the brightness of the light bulb and tap the pencil icon to change each preset to the desired brightness level.
Below the on / off button there are options for switching between the "Power supply" and "Brightness" modes. Below that are the buttons "Preferences", "Schedule" and "Use". The Preferences button takes you to a screen where you can edit the preferences (as above) and view all of the most recently used preferences. Tap anywhere to change the brightness level. Tap the Schedule button to turn the lightbulb on and off according to a schedule, to show and hide the lightbulb at a specific time, and to turn it on to a selected brightness preset. The Usage screen shows daily, weekly, and monthly energy usage statistics and total usage time. It also shows potential daily and annual savings compared to a standard 40 watt lamp.
Back in the device dashboard is a "Scenes" button that opens a screen in which you can create scenes that control one or more devices at the push of a button. There is also a smart action button that takes you to a screen where you can create controls that Kasa Smart devices can interact with. However, a specific router (the TP-Link SR20) is required for this.
Installation and performance
The KL50 lamp is easy to install. First download the Kasa Smart mobile app and create an account. Tap on the plus symbol at the top, then on Add device and select the KL50 from the Smart Bulb menu. Follow the on-screen instructions to turn off the lamp where you want to install the light bulb and replace the old light bulb with the KL50. Tap Next and turn on the device. After five seconds, the light bulb flashes three times. At this point, you will be instructed to use your phone to connect to the bulb's Wi-Fi SSID.
Once connected, return to the app and wait a few seconds for the lightbulb to connect to your phone. Next, select your home WiFi SSID and enter your WiFi password. The light bulb will be added to your network in a few seconds and automatically added to your Alexa device list.
The KL50 delivered a nice warm light during testing and reacted immediately to switch-on and switch-off commands and brightness level adjustments with the mobile app. It also responded quickly to Alexa voice commands and followed my schedules with no problems. I created an IFTTT applet that dims the light bulb to 10 percent when an Arlo Pro 3 camera detects motion, and it works fine, as does my applet that turns the light bulb on when a sensor is off the Wyze Sense Starter Kit detects movement.
With the TP-Link Kasa Filament Smart Light Bulb KL50 you can equip your lamps with intelligent LED lamps that offer the classic look of clear light bulbs. The KL50 is a pure white lamp, easy to install and offers planning and power consumption reports. You can control the lightbulb with voice commands from Alexa and Google and use IFTTT applets to respond to triggers from third-party devices. However, you cannot set the temperature of the white color like our cheaper editor’s choice for smart white LEDs, the Wyze light bulb.
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