Nanoleaf ‘Essentials’ A19 Bulb and Strip Now Available From Apple

Last month, Nanoleaf officially announced a slew of new products, including new Triangle and Mini Triangle Shapes light panels, that work with the recently released Hexagon Shapes light panels. They also showed off a couple of new products under the ‘Essentials’ banner – and A19 colour bulb, and a colour light strip – both of which work with HomeKit, but in a new and exciting way.

Whilst most of the company’s products to date have relied on WiFi to connect to your network, and your HomeKit home, the new Essentials lineup uses the new Thread protocol, which has been described as a mesh network that takes the best of Bluetooth and Zigbee functionality, but cheaper and faster.

While you may not have heard much about Thread, if at all, and more than likely don’t have a Thread enabled device, if you’ve pre-ordered, or are planning on buying the new Apple HomePod Mini, you’ll be happy to know that the Mini is a Thread hub essentially, which will allow the new Nanoleaf products to connect to your HomeKit setup.

However, if you don’t have plans to get a Mini, fear not, as the Essentials rely on Bluetooth as a backup option, which means you only require an Apple Home Hub (Apple TV, HomePod etc) in order for these to be used in Scenes and Automations.

The bulb is capable of full colour (16m) as well as warm and cool whites, with an average brightness of 806lm (when using colours), or a maximum brightness of 1100lm when using cool white, using just 9w of power. The price is just US$19.99.

The light strip is also capable of 16m colours and comes as a starter pack that includes an 80 inch/2-metre strip and controller. Nanoleaf also sells an expansion pack, which includes a 40 inch/1-metre strip. The starter pack light strip consumes 30w of power, has an average brightness of 2,000lm, with a maximum brightness of 2,200lm. The strip, in addition to having LEDs for RGB, also has dedicated LEDs for both cool and warm whites. The Starter and Expansion packs will be priced at US$49.99 and US$24.99 respectively.

Both products are exclusively available on Apple.com (US), with other stores to follow.

The Editor

Editor - Musician, graphic designer and HomeKit aficionado.

2 thoughts on “Nanoleaf ‘Essentials’ A19 Bulb and Strip Now Available From Apple

  • 16th November 2020 at 2:24 pm
    Permalink

    Just received the new Nanoleaf essentials bulb on friday. I have a number of Hue and Lifx bulbs already deployed around my house and am interested in cheaper alternatives. Based on a few days of use, I can offer the following assessment:

    Pros
    • nice tunable whites (especially the warm part of the spectrum)
    • lenty of lumens (white spectrum only)
    • attractive shape
    • easy/seamless Homekit integration
    • $20 price (compared to $40-50 for Hue/Lifx)

    Cons
    • deep colors are much dimmer than with a similar Hue/Lifx bulb
    • color/brightness adjustments via Home app and native Nanoleaf app can lag – sometimes it’s almost instantaneous but other times it can take up to 5 seconds or not process at all.
    • bulb sometimes sporadically switches to white when I’m navigating through various portions of the color palate (reds/purples) and won’t allow the selected color to display.

    The bottom line is that the bulb does not offer the same brightness with respect to non-white colors and seems to have some connectivity/responsiveness issues when compared to a Lifx/Hue bulb placed in the exact same location. Wondering if this would change if I deploy some Thread-enabled devices. Even so, it’s only $20.

    Hoping that there is a way for me to tune the system to get better responsiveness.

    Reply
    • 16th November 2020 at 2:28 pm
      Permalink

      Thanks for the feedback Matt, I’ve gone for the lightstrip, as I already have too many spare colour bulbs sitting around. As regards the occasional lag/latency, I’m guessing that’s down to Bluetooth, as can be experienced with many other Bluetooth devices. If you are planning on getting the HomePod Mini, you may find that lag vanishes, with the bulb using Thread instead – or tandem with – Bluetooth.

      Reply

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