TRANS­FORM YOUR WALLS WITH A SMART LIGHT IN­STAL­LA­TION

En­joy a world of cus­tom colours and slick voice con­trol, all with LIFX’s ex­cel­lent app at the heart of it

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At­mos­phere is all-im­por­tant in the mod­ern home. In fact, there might be no bet­ter way of gen­er­at­ing a spe­cific mood or vibe than by hav­ing the right light­ing, and that’s where LIFX seems to be fo­cus­ing most of its ef­forts these days. The brand’s ceil­ing or lamp bulbs are just the tip of the ice­berg – the com­pany is push­ing se­cu­rity light­ing with its in­fra-red emit­ting LIFX+ line, it has down­lights, light strips and light bars… Ba­si­cally, wher­ever you need a splash of colour, this Kick­starter suc­cess story is de­ter­mined to splash it there for you.

The Tile, one of LIFX’s lat­est prod­ucts, makes the jump from light to wall fea­ture, al­most leap­ing so far as to be­come dig­i­tal art. Its big, bold, smart il­lu­mi­na­tion de­signed to cre­ate a con­ver­sa­tion as much as it is to help you re­lax and en­joy your liv­ing area. The Tile is a way to fill a space with some­thing prac­ti­cal. It is, we must say, pretty damn cool.

Part of the Tile’s ap­peal comes in its de­sign, a sim­ple setup that uses LIFX’s sys­tem of in­di­vid­u­ally ad­dress­able bulbs, each with its own Homekit code should you wish to use it. The in­di­vid­ual tiles are chained to­gether, con­nected to a sin­gle power source and op­er­ated as a sin­gle en­tity. They’re cov­ered in dif­fuse plas­tic, opaque enough to com­pletely ob­scure and com­bine the LED ar­ray below, but with no hard edge. That means the light of each blos­soms out onto your wall.

Each tile can take on a kalei­do­scope of colours at once. They can also be con­fig­ured to show bright in­di­vid­ual colours, to use dif­fer­ent white tem­per­a­tures or bright­nesses, and be ar­ranged with oth­ers in what­ever con­fig­u­ra­tion (within the short length of the con­nect­ing ca­bles wires) you see fit. You can, nat­u­rally, use them with all the gim­micks of the LIFX app, ty­ing them to­gether as a mu­sic vi­su­aliser, giv­ing them ran­dom pat­terns, or an­i­mat­ing themes like some jumped-up, mod­ern-day lava lamp.

So the Tile (or a com­bi­na­tion of Tiles) is a tool for am­biance and a tool for fun. You won’t use it to light up your en­tire room – it doesn’t quite throw out the lu­mens of a proper bulb, and you’ll gen­er­ally need full light to come from the ceil­ing rather than a wall – but for those spots where you want some­thing spe­cial, high­light light­ing like the Tile is hard to beat.

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