Controlling the brightness and colour of the lights in your home or office is now made easier thanks to the LIFX Windows 10 app. Traditionally controlled from a mobile app, the Windows 10 app offers LIFX bulb owners the ability to control their lighting schemes from their desktop. With support for touch, its also possible to grab a cheap Windows 10 tablet, hang it on the wall and use it as a touchscreen controller anyone in the family can access.
Naturally the app provides the ability to access and control each globe in your home. Tapping on each light or group of lights pops open the controller panel on the right. The familiar colour and brightness controls are easily accessible and allows you to easily select your favourite colour. Personally I’d like to see the ability to copy and paste a hex value into the app, or upload an image to precisely match your mood of the day.
Moving through the options, there’s colour colour and white controls, as well as the ability to select a theme. Themes (including the recent Halloween) are a colour schemes which are used for the bulbs to fade through. Finally there’s also the Effects panel (missing the strobe effect of the mobile app), which provide fine grained control over the transition speeds.
Underneath the Bulbs selection area, the app provides links to services that integrate with LIFX. These include Nest, IFTTT (my favourite), SmartThings, Amazon Echo and the Harmony Remote. Unfortunately these are integrated into the app, they’re simply web shortcuts.
The final option in the app is the add new lights or buy additional bulbs. With recent price cuts, LIFX bulbs are more affordable that when they launched, so if the reason you don’t have them was price, it’s worth another look.
The app also features Cortana integration, which allows you to control your lights via voice. Personally I’ve had mixed results with this, if they can sort out the accuracy, then this will be a killer feature, especially if you’re leaving the house and can simply say “Hey Cortana, turn off all my lights”.
It’s a very decent first version of the Windows 10 app, that lets you control your home or office lighting from any Windows 10 device. Strangely the app doesn’t allow you to rename bulbs or add and remove bulbs from a group, that definitely needs to be addressed in a future update.
Download the LIFX app now from the Windows Store.