I enjoy reviewing new products, especially the ones that I can actually interact with. I was sent a prototype of the Heelight, a smart light bulb designed by MicroNovelty. The company is currently crowdsourcing its funding and this might be something you’d actually use around the house. The Heelight bulb looks like any of the ordinary new LED light bulbs on the market, but unlike that one special person that lights up the room when they’re in it, this one will actually pay attention to you.
Heelight bills itself as the light bulb that can “hear” you. It knows what you’re doing and will adapt the room lighting to whatever you may be doing… and I mean whatever you’re doing.
First off, the Heelight bulb works with a free app for your smartphone, but what makes it different is that it DOESN’T use WiFi, Bluetooth or Zigbee (a wireless ad hoc network) to connect. Matter of fact, this has been one of the absolute easiest connections I have ever used when making a smartphone-to-device initial set up. Extremely easy.
The Heelight from MicroNovelty listens to what’s going on the room and adjusts to help set the mood. For instance, let’s say you are ready for a nice quiet evening. You can use the app to set the color of the bulb to fit a nice quiet evening. Blue might be a good choice. The bulb turns to the corresponding color you’ve chosen. While that might not impress you all that much, what the Heelight does from that point will be a game changer. On the app, there are several options to choose from that will allow your bulb to start listening. For instance, there is “coward” mode, which will make the light flash when it hears a loud scream or use the “siren” mode and it will flash blue and red. While that might seem like a novelty, imagine at night while you’re sleeping and an intruder comes in. I sort of like that aspect of it as well.
The bulb also likes to dance to music. Pop on a jamming hip hop song and the lights go with it. Let’s say the next tune is a slow country song. The Heelight listens and adapts to the tempo and tune. There are other options the light has that might be, well used? Let’s say you’re wanting to “get in the mood.” Things get heated and passionate. The Heelight has something called a “sex” mode that will listen (however pervertedly you want to interpret that) and based on the intensity of what’s going on, will give the room a glow of passion. Passionate pink that is.
Granted, this isn’t all about grown-up stuff, there are some fun functions the bulb has and quite timely as well. There is a “candle” mode that will mimic the light a candle would. A “pumpkin” mode that flickers and gives an orange hue to the room. The easy-to-use app uses icons to allow the room to set the mood. For instance, there is a “dinner” mode, a “reading” mode and the light has a “nightlight” mode. Oh, by the way, did I mention that the lightbulb can light up and look just like the lightbulb in your bathroom?
In full disclosure, the prototype app I used was written in Chinese, which made it difficult at first to figure out what was what. The icons helped tremendously and I am certain that the English version of the app will be available once crowdsourcing is complete. At the end of the day, this is just a lightbulb, however, why not get a lightbulb that actually listens to you?
If the idea for the bulb gets funded (Right now, the crowdfunding effort is $20,000), you’ll be able to get the bulb for $39 if you help back it. There are deals for multi-packs too. Heelight is also offering a desk lamp for $69 if you help to fund as well. Crowdfunding will go to December.
For information on Heelight’s crowdsource funding, go to on Kickstarter: www.kickstarter.com
Rock forth, Mitch
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