Yeelight Smart LED Bulb 1S (Color) review: A solid Wi-Fi smart bulb saddled with a glitchy app

One of the few smart bulbs we’ve seen that is compatible with Alexa, Google Assistant, and HomeKit, the Wi-Fi-enabled Yeelight Smart LED Bulb 1S (Color) is easy to set up, doesn’t require a hub or bridge, and offers a variety of clever features, including a camera-assistant color picker and a music-syncing mode. That said, the Yeelight app throws a few curve balls when it comes to grouping bulbs, and we were annoyed by frequent connectivity issues between the bulb and the app.

The Yeelight Smart LED Bulb 1S (Color) faces formidable competition when it comes to color-enabled smart bulbs. Our Editors’ Choice, the Philips Hue White and Color Ambiance bulb, comes packed with advanced smart features, an easy-to-use mobile app, and Alexa, Google Assistant and HomeKit integration, as well as a deep, peerless ecosystem of smart lighting products and accessories. That said, the latest Philips Hue bulbs won’t connect directly to your Wi-Fi network; instead, they require either a short-range Bluetooth connection (which entails a pared-down set of smart features) or the $50 Hue Bridge (which connects the Zigbee-powered bulbs to your home network via ethernet).

Our runner-up in the color smart bulb category, the LIFX A19, does connect to Wi-Fi networks, which means (like the Yeelight bulb) that it doesn’t require a hub. The 1,100-lumen LIFX bulb is also somewhat brighter than the A19 Yeelight model, while also offering Alexa, Google Assistant, and HomeKit compatibility. Last but not least, our reviewer was impressed by the LIFX app, which has since been revamped to further boost its usability.

This review is part of TechHive’s coverage of the best smart bulbs, where you’ll find reviews of competing products, plus a buyer’s guide to the features you should consider when shopping.

One advantage that the Yeelight A19 color bulb enjoys over both its Hue and LIFX competitor is price. While the Hue and LIFX bulbs each retail for $50 (although they’re regularly packaged in bundles for steep discounts), the Yeelight color bulb costs just $36 on Amazon.

Design and specifications

Yeelight offers a wide variety of stylish smart Wi-Fi lighting products, including ceiling lights, desk lamps, makeup mirrors, motion sensor-enabled night lights, and a light strip. The company also makes a dimmable but non-tunable version of the A19 smart bulbRemove non-product link reviewed here, as well as a vintage-style ST64 filament smart bulbRemove non-product link.

Rated to last 25,000 hours, the Smart LED Bulb 1S (Color) comes equipped with an E26 base that will fit in a standard light socket. The dimmable bulb is temperature-tunable from a very warm 1,700 Kelvin (a color that resembles candlelight) to 6,500 Kelvin (think midday hazy daylight). The bulb can also glow in up to 16 million colors.

Measuring 4.88 x 2.26 inches (pretty standard for an A19 bulb), the Smart LED Bulb S1 can emit up to 800 lumens at maximum brightness, which is roughly equivalent to (although a tad dimmer than) a 60-watt incandescent bulb. That should be bright enough to light up a room or a desk. I installed the bulb in a bedside table lamp and it looked just as bright as the other (dumb) LED bulb that flanks our bed.


Getting the Smart LED Bulb S1 up and running took only a few minutes. If this is your first Yeelight bulb, you’ll need to go to the trouble of downloading the app and creating a Yeelight account (you can’t simply log in with Google or Facebook, so you’ll need to enter your phone number or email address and a password). Once that’s done, you tap the “+” button to add a device, then you turn the bulb on and off five times in a row to put it into pairing mode.