Innr Smart White A19 bulb review: This inexpensive smart bulb seamlessly connects with a Philips Hue Bridge

If you’re already invested in the Hue ecosystem, these budget Zigbee bulbs can fill in your smart bulb gaps without breaking the bank.

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At a Glance
  • Innr Smart White A19 bulb (4-pack)

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Anyone looking for inexpensive white smart bulbs that will work with their existing Philips Hue Bridge or Samsung SmartThings hub should check out the Innr Smart White A19 bulb. Available in a four-pack for $36 (which comes out to a reasonable $9 a bulb) or a two-pack for $23, these basic but sturdy dimmable, warm-white, smart LED bulbs are compatible with most Hue room-grouping features and routines.

If you’re shopping for your first smart bulb and you’re not ready to invest in a hub, an Innr bulb isn’t the cheapest way to go. Instead, you’d be better off with a Bluetooth- or Wi-Fi-enabled bulb that can operate with just a smartphone app. The latest Philips Hue White bulb, for example, which can be controlled via Bluetooth as well as Zigbee), or a Wi-Fi-connected bulb like the $8 Wyze Bulb, which offers the bonus of being color-temperature-tunable.

That said, if you already own a compatible hub and you want all your bulbs to work together, the Innr’s product makes it easy to fill in your smart bulb gaps without breaking the bank. Indeed, at $36 for a four-pack, the white Innr bulbs represent a $11 savings compared to the equivalent 4-pack of non-Bluetooth Hue White bulbs, which sells for $47. And because Innr’s bulbs are compatible with the Hue bridge, they can play nice with your other Hue lights, meaning you can control all my bulbs with a single app, as well as add them to existing “rooms” of Hue bulbs and create Hue routines for them.

An even less-expensive alternative to the Innr Smart White bulbs are Cree’s Connected LED bulbs, which (as of this writing) are currently selling for a mere $5.90 each on Amazon. Like the Innr bulbs, the Cree Connected LED bulbs require a Zigbee-certified bridge, such as the Hue Bridge, SmartThings, or Wink Hub 2. While Cree’s Connected bulbs are enticingly cheap, our reviewer noted that he had trouble connecting them to his SmartThings hub, and he was put off by the bulb’s plastic, “quite homely” design. Still, if you’re willing to roll your sleeves up to get the Cree bulbs working with your hub, that $5.90 price tag is tough to beat.

Setup

Getting the Innr bulbs up and running on my Hue Bridge was a snap. Once I screwed in the light bulbs (which are compatible with standard E26 sockets) and powered them on, the Hue app found the bulbs within seconds, and … well, that was all there was to it, no need to enter serial numbers or deal with elaborate workarounds.

innr smart white a19 bulb philips hue app Ben Patterson/IDG

The four Innr Smart White A19 bulbs I tested connected to my Philips Hue Bridge in a flash, no serial numbers or workarounds needed.

Next, I tried connecting the Innr bulbs to the TP-Link Deco M9 Plus, a mesh router that doubles as a Zigbee hub. Again, I had no trouble, with the router adding the four bulbs to its list of connected smart devices in seconds. (I don’t own a SmartThings hub, so I wasn’t able to test one with the Innr bulbs.)

Connecting the bulbs to Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant was equally seamless, and soon I was commanding Alexa and Assistant to turn “Dimmable light” 1 through 4 on and off, or “Downstairs lights” once I’d added the Innr bulbs to a room in the Hue app. Keep in mind, however, that neither Alexa nor Google Assistant can control the Innr bulbs without help from a bridge. There’s also no Apple HomeKit support, period.

Operation and features

Using the Innr Smart White A19 bulbs within the Hue app was practically the same experience as you’ll have controlling Hue-branded bulbs with the app. While you can’t change the color or color temperature of the 2700K warm-white Innr bulbs (the same goes for non-tunable Hue White bulbs, as opposed to pricier Hue White Ambiance bulbs), you can dim them using the Hue app, and the standard Hue scenes (Bright, Dimmed, and Nightlight) for dimmable but non-tunable bulbs are available.

I was able to add the Innr lights to the “Downstairs” room that I created in the Hue app, and I put them in a wake-up routine that turns the lights on every weekday at 6:35 a.m., which is my usual wake-up time. While the Hue app notes that non-tunable bulbs like the Innr’s are “not optimal” for a wake-up routine, that’s only because they can’t achieve a sunrise-like golden hue, but you can still add the Innr bulbs to a wake-up routine if you wish.

innr smart white a19 bulb detail Ben Patterson/IDG

The sturdy Innr Smart White A19 bulb supports almost all the features in the Philips Hue mobile app, and it works with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant, too.

Indeed, the only Hue feature that the Innr bulbs don’t support at all (besides the fact that you can’t change their color temperature) is the “Power-on behavior” setting, which lets you determine the color temperature and/or brightness of a light when it’s powered on or after a power loss.

Of course, one of the biggest concerns I have with a budget smart bulb (or any type of budget bulb, smart or otherwise) is whether it’ll actually turn on and stay on. During more than a week of daily testing, the Innr bulbs have yet to lose their connectivity or behave erratically. So far, so good.

Bottom line

Snapping up bargain-priced smart bulbs is always a crapshoot, particularly when they rely on a hub, but the Philips Hue-compatible Innr Smart White A26 bulbs exceeded my expectations. Sturdy and (thus far) reliable, the Innr bulbs connected to my Hue Bridge and a second Zigbee hub without any hassle, and I was able to add them to my Hue rooms and routines with ease. In short, these budget Zigbee bulbs make for an inexpensive way for anyone invested in the Hue ecosystem to fill in the smart bulb gaps in their home.

 
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At a Glance
  • If you’re already invested in the Philips Hue lighting ecosystem, these budget Zigbee bulbs can fill in your smart bulb gaps without breaking the bank.

    Pros

    • Sturdy and reliable
    • Compatible with Philips Hue Bridge and other Zigbee hubs
    • Works with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant (bridge or hub required)
    • Inexpensive

    Cons

    • Requires a Zigbee bridge or hub
    • No Apple HomeKit support
  
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