The Yeelight LED lightstrip offers the easiest way to get started with accent lighting.
Xiaomi has managed to carve out a niche for itself in the smart lighting segment with its Yeelight sub-brand. Yeelight's LED bulbs offer an affordable alternative to Philips' Hue, and the same holds true for the brand's LED lightstrip.
Available for $29.99, the Yeelight LED lightstrip costs a fraction of the $90 Philips Hue Lightstrip while offering a similar set of features. The strip measures two meters — the same as Hue — and comes with a single-button remote that's embedded in the power cable. You'll be able to toggle the lightstrip on and off with the remote, but more often than not, you'll use Xiaomi's Mi Home app for the job. But first, a closer look at the lightstrip itself.
The Yeelight LED lightstrip
The Yeelight lightstrip supports 16 million colors and goes up to 140 lumens, allowing you to illuminate a large area with ease. The strip is made out of soft PU, and you can flex it or bend it around corners as needed. Installation is as easy as it gets — just peel off the adhesive tape at the back and stick the lightstrip onto a surface.
If you don't intend to make full use of the entire length of the two-meter lightstrip, you can cut it at specific sections. The strip has a rubber coating that runs over its entire surface, which gives it added resistance to the elements with an IP65 rating. The power cable is three meters long, letting you stick the lightstrip anywhere you want in your house.
You can press the controller button on the lightstrip to turn it off and on, and use a long-press action to change scenes.
Mi Home, IFTTT, and Alexa
The highlight of the Yeelight LED lightstrip is its integration with IFTTT, Amazon's Alexa platform, and Xiaomi's Mi Home app. As soon as you plug in the lightstrip to a wall socket, you can set it up using the Mi Home app.
The app automatically detects the lightstrip, allowing you to connect it to your home network. Once it's set up, you can control the lights and select scenes from the Mi Home app, or use voice commands on Alexa to make changes. The lightstrip also works with IFTTT, and you can configure it to automatically change the color based on the weather conditions, switch off at a particular time, and much more.
Google Assistant integration isn't available right now, but it is on the way and should be rolled out in the coming months.
For $30, you're getting incredible value with the Yeelight LED lightstrip.
Primarily, you'll be using the Mi Home app to interact with the Yeelight lightstrip. The app allows you to configure schedules, set a timer for the lightstrip to automatically turn on and off, select from a variety of scenes, and set favorite colors. You can also take a photo of a particular object and use the color picker to extract the color information from the image.
One of the main drawbacks with Philips' Hue Lightstrip is its price. But with a retail price of $30, that isn't an issue for the Yeelight LED lightstrip. If you're looking for an affordable RGB lightstrip that you can control with your phone or through Alexa, look no further.
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