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Sengled's smart bulbs sync up with Apple HomeKit at CES 2020

You could already control Sengled bulbs with Alexa and Google Assistant voice commands. Now, you can use Siri, too -- but you'll need to upgrade your hub.

Upgrade your Sengled Hub to the new third-gen version and you'll be able to connect your bulbs with Apple HomeKit.

This story is part of CES, where CNET covers the latest news on the most incredible tech coming soon.

Sengled brought a couple of new connected light bulbs to CES 2020 this year -- namely, a vintage-style filament LED and a color-changing candelabra bulb. It brought something else to share, too: New compatibility with HomeKit, Apple's smart-home platform.

The benefit? You'll be able to control the bulbs using Siri. The rub? You'll need a new hub.

Specifically, that'd be the third-gen Sengled Smart Hub, which you'll be able to pick up for $30 later this year. It looks just like the last Sengled hub and works just the same, plugging into your router and translating the bulbs' Zigbee signals into something your home network can understand. And with support for up to 64 Sengled devices -- same as the last Sengled hub -- it isn't any more robust than before, either.

Still, what's important is that the new hub adds support for Apple HomeKit's authentication requirements, as well as support for the latest Zigbee protocols.

If you've already bought in with Sengled and you think you'd put those Siri controls to good use, then $30 isn't too painful a premium. And if you haven't bought in yet at all, look for new starter kits that bundle the new hub with a couple of bulbs -- white light or RGB, your choice.

Meanwhile, Sengled bulbs already support voice controls via Alexa and the Google Assistant. No need to upgrade the hub if you prefer either of those platforms.

Sengled's new filament LEDs will sell in a two-pack for $30.


Speaking of bulbs, let's get to the new ones. First up is a clear-glass, vintage-style smart bulb that arranges the light-emitting diodes inside into tiny columns. The result are fake filaments that mimic that look of old-school incandescent light bulbs, making for a nostalgic aesthetic that can work well in exposed-bulb setups. They'll sell in a two-pack for $30 later this year.

Also new: a color-changing candelabra bulb. At $25 each, it's a bit pricey, especially considering that you'll almost certainly need several of them to fill out a chandelier. They're less expensive than similar multicolor candelabra bulbs from Lifx and Philips Hue, but I'd still suggest waiting for a sale.

In addition to the new bulbs, Sengled has a new energy-monitoring smart plug for its platform, too. Just plug it in and sync it up with the Sengled app -- from there, you'll be able to turn anything you plug into it on and off from your phone, and track how much energy its using, too. It'll cost $20.

Expect more details on the new bulbs the next time we update our guide to the best smart lights of the year, where Sengled already gets a shoutout or two for its value compared to pricier options like Philips Hue.