LIFX bulbs, with all their customizable features, can be difficult to interface with a Windows computer. You might be wondering if there is a way to use your Windows computer to interact with your LIFX bulb?
Fortunately, there are ways to make LIFX work well with Windows. So, let’s dive in and explore the options available to you.
Control LIFX with Windows
Unfortunately, LIFX no longer supports its official desktop app, according to an email sent to a Redditor using LIFX. Due to a lack of Windows users and the move to a cloud-based web application, Windows 10 users wishing to control their LIFX are apparently out of luck.
Luckily, there are still several different methods to access your LIFX bulb through Windows 10 or 11.
Control LIFX with the official app
The official app is, as already mentioned, no longer supported. It’s technically functional, though, and if you can get your hands on a copy, you’ll be surprised how limited it is in terms of features.
The app hasn’t been updated for nearly a decade now and is not hosted by any reputable mirrors, so we won’t link it here.
Control your lights with the LIFX control panel
Fortunately, the LIFX community has come to help Windows users. Open source and more feature-rich than the official app, LIFX Control Panel is able to interact with your LIFX bulb entirely via LAN.
Download the LIFX control panel from the GitHub page. Go to the releases page and get the latest lifx-control-panel.exe to file.
How to use the LIFX control panel
The LIFX Control Panel lacks the sleek touch of modern UI design, but it is extremely functional. When launching the app on the same network as a LIFX bulb, your bulb should be immediately recognized
If not recognized, try restarting your bulb and press Rescan in the LIFX control panel.
Let’s see how to perform your basic LIFX functions with this new app, as well as the new features it brings.
Learn the Basics with the LIFX Control Panel
Your bulbs, along with room groups, are displayed at the bottom of the app. Click on one of these bulbs to modify its properties.
When a bulb is selected, you have sliders for Hue, Saturation, Brightness, and Kelvin. Drag them to change the mood of your light bulb, just like you would on the old desktop app.
Below are the preset options. On the left is a list of base colors that you can quickly switch to. On the right are the User Presets, which are carried over from your existing LIFX setup. You can also set them yourself using the settings menu.
Now we will look at some more interesting features. Features that the previous desktop app didn’t have, and some features that even the official app doesn’t support.
Take a look at the buttons listed under Special functions.
- Avg. Screen Color: Sends a continuous average of the color of your screen to the light. Ideal for matching with movies or games.
- Choose color: Opens an RGB interface to precisely choose the desired color.
- Dominant Screen Color: Sends light to the most dominant color on your screen.
- Color Eyedropper: Minimizes the app and lets you click on any part of the screen to send that color to your light.
- Music Color: Syncs audio to your light and visualizes music based on intensity.
- Stop Effects: Stops all special functions.
With a little creativity, these effects can be combined to good effect.
All of these options, as well as the app itself, can be configured in the Settings menu. This includes choosing which monitor sends information to the light, as well as setting up hotkeys to quickly switch to and from different presets.
A great alternative to the official app
While it’s unfortunate that LIFX has chosen to no longer support the native Windows app, it’s great that the community has provided an option for those not interested in the web-based alternative.
The LIFX control panel is a great way to add even more ambiance to your smart home lighting setup.
Are you overwhelmed by the number of smart lighting products available? Here’s everything you need to know before choosing smart bulbs for your home.
About the Author