Amazon is expanding into smart lighting via Ring

When Amazon bought Ring back in February 2018, the company dealt mainly in video doorbells with a sideline in smart security cameras. Now FCC documents show that the company is looking to take a step into smart lighting.

The listing was first spotted by technology writer Dave Zatz on Twitter and could be an interesting statement of intent in a smart bulb space currently dominated by the Philips Hue range.

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Except the listing doesn’t really say anything about what we should expect. We know it has Bluetooth, but that feels like a given for any bulb to be considered “smart.” 

Is it just a bulb to make dumb floodlights smart, in the same way a Fire TV Stick adds streaming to older TVs, or is it something that will only work with other Ring products? Does it contain its own built-in motion sensor, or is it going to piggyback off other sensors? We simply don’t know.

The company has made a couple of moves towards lighting in the past – there’s the Ring Floodlight Cam, for a start, and there’s also path lighting available if you live on the other side of the Atlantic. Both of these need the Ring Bridge accessory to function.

Related: Nest Hello vs Ring Video Doorbell

The Ring branding is potentially interesting, and makes this appear to be more security based than lifestyle (though not as security based as the company’s Blink range), which should make the likes of Philips feel a little more relaxed. 

But if Amazon does at some point decide to go fully after the smart home market, then it’ll have a huge advantage. Not only does it manufacture and sell the most popular virtual assistant in the form of Alexa, but it’s by far the world’s biggest online retailer, capable of riding roughshod over rival products should it wish. While Philips Hue bulbs are currently very easy to find on the site, there’s a reason you can’t find the latest Kobo e-book reader, or the Google Chromecast through the Amazon search bar…

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