One of the questions that popped into my mind upon the product release was “Do Ikea smart lights work with Google Home?”. Yes. The Ikea setup is awesome, but how compatible is it with the Google Home?
Back in November, we found out that the popular furniture retailer pushed out an update to its Tradfri line of smart lights that enabled them to work with Amazon Alexa and Apple HomeKit. But where was Google Assistant?
As a Google Home user in search for the most affordable lighting solutions, it sure is annoying when you discover that that great product you found to be just what you want, isn’t compatible with your Voice Assistant.
Our experience with Ikea’s Tradfri puts us in a prime position to help you answer any questions you might have on its compatibility with the Google Home and how to set it up.
- So, Are They Compatible With Google Home?
- How to Set Up Ikea’s Tradfri to Your Google Home
- Requirements for Connecting Tradfri to Google Home
- Setting Up the Connection
- Navigating Through the Tradfri App
- Linking Ikea Trådfri and Google Home (Do Ikea Smart Lights Work with Google Home)
- Control Ikea SmartLights With Voice/Text
- Our Final Verdict
- Related Questions
So, Are They Compatible With Google Home?
Even though we have no idea on what their reasons for the holdup, we’re delighted to announce that Ikea has added Google Assistant support to the Tradfri range. You now have the ability to use Google Assistant voice commands to regulate the lighting in your house.
This is great news because, for some time now, Ikea’s Tradfri (with a reputation for being one of the most affordable smart lighting solutions around) has been supplied to match the needs of several countries around the world.
The only snag was the fact that the only smart means of controlling the lights required the Android or iOS apps with no support for a voice assistant. Support for Alexa came, followed by HomeKit. Google Home users, however, were left to wait for a bit longer. The end of the wait has been long anticipated.
Keep in mind, however, that the Ikea Tradfri line of smart lights requires a hub to function. Of course, there’s an Ikea hub available that obviously works with Tradfri bulbs, however, you have the option of using a third-party hub like the Philips Hue as well. In the case that you already own a hub, inspect to confirm that the Tradfri lights are compatible with your hardware.
How to Set Up Ikea’s Tradfri to Your Google Home
You’ll need to enable that in the app’s settings first.
You can then head over to your Assistant settings (in the Assistant or the Google Home app).
- Go to Home control
- Tap the blue “Add” button at the bottom right, and scroll through the list to find “Tradfri – Ikea smart lighting.”
To get to this point, however, there are some important considerations to make and the purpose of this article is to explain these requirements to you and guide you through the processes involved in connecting your Ikea Smart lights to your Google Home.
Requirements for Connecting Tradfri to Google Home
Of course, connecting your smart lights to Google Home eliminates the need to control the light from the Ikea Tradfri app. However, since you would still need the app to connect the device to your Google Home, we will start with the basics of setting up the app.
The requirements include:
1. The Zigbee Protocol
Both the Tradfri lights and the smart plugs work with the Zigbee protocol. The implication of this is that if you have a device such as the Amazon Echo Plus the Tradfri Gateway bridge would not be one of the requirements for communication between them.
Also, since the Echo Plus houses a Zigbee controller, there won’t be any need for an extra bridge.
The Tradfri smart lights can as well, be an addition to the Philips Hue bridge for people who may have kicked off their smart lighting experience with Hue and are probably now on the lookout for a more economical way to expand. This, in our perception, would be a very smart idea.
2. Tradfri Gateway
Perhaps you’re just starting out and don’t have an Echo Plus or similar device, this notwithstanding, you’ll need a Tradfri Gateway to connect with your router so as to get your Tradfri smart lights and smart plugs working.
Other requirements include:
- A Steering Device (which could serve as a Tradfri Remote Control, Tradfri Motion Sensor or a Tradfri Wireless Dimmer)
- The Ikea Tradfri app
- And, of course, a smart device for it to function.
Setting Up the Connection
Setup is super easy once you have gotten all the requirements in place:
- Download the app
- Plug the Tradfri Gateway into your router
- You’ll need to connect the Steering Device (which acts as a bridge between the bulb and the Gateway).
It’s worth noting you’ll have to be in close proximity to your router and the Gateway as you would have to hold the Remote, Sensor or Dimmer within a couple of inches of the Gateway to create a connection. Once you’ve secured the connection, you will then be able to start adding bulbs.
You can have two Remote Controls in your setup: one for the bedroom overseeing the bulbs and smart plugs; one for your kitchen and living room looking after as many categories of smart bulbs as you have.
It is quite practical to put in different ‘rooms’ to a Steering Device, but we also found it easier to have two Remote Controls; one upstairs and one downstairs.
The fact that you are required to use a Remote Control or Motion Sensor can get a little annoying as, not only is it an extra device to purchase, but it is also an additional step to the setup. It’s quite handy, however, if your phone is not close to you though, or if you don’t have a smart assistant setup
The Ikea Tradfri app is pretty basic, but that’s all part of the simplicity of design.
For starters though, you’ll have to be on the same Wi-Fi network your Tradfri Gateway is on so as to manage your Tradfri devices. This can get quite discomfiting as it implies that you won’t be able to control your switches from a remote location away from home as you would wish.
There is a scheduling feature located in the Tradfri app though. Indicated by a timer icon at the top left corner of the app, it offers three features (Rise and Shine, Away from Home, On or Off), as well as the ability to add extra timers for each feature in case you want the bedroom and kitchen lights to turn on at different times.
A “Rise and Shine” feature that enables you to program your Ikea smart lights to slowly dim 30 minutes before you want them to come on.
An “Away from Home” feature that allows you to program your lights and plugs to turn on and off at specific times, as though someone was at home. There aren’t so many differences between the “On or Off” feature and the “Away From Home” feature. Both of them give you the option to set up exactly when you want to turn your lights either on or off. In addition, you can decide on which lights serve which days.
Getting to the central section of the Tradfri app shows your home divided into different areas by the Steering Device. At this point, you can follow our example and rename your Remote Controls to rooms making the app a lot simpler to use. You can also do the same with your Ikea smart lights and plugs.
To see the devices connected to a particular control, you can simply click on the drop-down menu under each steering device. Adjusting the hue is then made possible as long as you have the compatible white spectrum bulbs. You can also adjust the brightness of any of the Ikea smart lights, and turn any Tradfri device on or off.
You can manage your devices using the settings section of the app located at the top right corner of the home screen. Actions that can be performed include adding a new bulb, a new room, and also integrations.
Since Tradfri is compatible with Google Assistant you’ll be able to, at this point, grant permission to the program to enable you to use voice to manage your lights.
Linking Ikea Trådfri and Google Home (Do Ikea Smart Lights Work with Google Home)
Now, to the main issue at hand, let’s look at the processes involved in setting up your Ikea Tradfri app to your Google Home.
Our experience using the Ikea Tradfri system with Google Home has been a pretty much seamless affair. The two systems work seamlessly together, with the Google Home app offering control of the Ikea smart lights and plugs without the need to open the app.
The Voice Control Experience
The joy in integrating your Ikea smart lights with Google Home is the voice control element. “Ok Google, turn off the kitchen lights” or “Hey Google, turn off the bedroom lights” are probably my most used phrases at home. They are especially helpful in those moments when you’ve got your hands full.
The Google Home app has the added advantage of permitting you to make commands that control the smart lights and plugs when you are on a tour in Paris and are reminded that you forgot to schedule your kitchen lights to turn on at 5 pm using the Tradfri app. It’s a workaround to the feature not being available through the Tradfri app. You can also schedule through the Google Home app too.
Connecting Your Ikea Smart Lights to Google Home (Step-by-step Guide)
Once you have done through the previous requirements, the process of connecting to Google is quite a walk in the park. It is majorly about finding and including your Ikea smart lights to the Google Assistant app and tagging them to a room.
- Start the Google Assistant app.
- In the Explore section, tap the compass icon located at the top right corner of the screen.
- Tap the three-dots at the top right corner of the screen
- Tap on Settings.
- Scroll down to the Services section and tap on Home Control.
- Tap the Plus (+) in the bottom right corner.
- Scroll down and select Philips Hue (if it is the Tradfri gateway that connects directly to your router)
Note: Any other smart light bulbs you have will also appear here.
- At this point, you can sign in to your Philips Hue account, and all the lights you’ve set up will instantly show up in the devices under Home CoControl.
- Once you’ve connected your lights to Google Home, sort them according to rooms to control them all at once.
- Under Home in the Google Assistant app, tap Rooms.
You’ll then be required to allot Ikea smart lights to respective rooms.
- Tap the pencil icon next to the light, and choose what room it belongs to.
- Tap Done in the top right corner
If you followed through with the instructions, you can now attempt saying, “Hey Google, turn on [or off] the kitchen [or living room] light.”
Control Ikea SmartLights With Voice/Text
Once everything is set up, use voice commands to tell Google Home to perform various actions. Some of the actions include the
- Switching lights on or off
- Dimming or intensifying lights
- Setting a specific brightness level
- Switching light colors (supported bulbs only)
- Controlling all the lights in a room.
Since Google Assistant is regulating your Ikea smart lights through a Google Home device, you can also control your lights using text. Instead of using the microphone on the Google Assistant app, tap on the keyboard icon and type a command such as, “Turn on the living room lights.”
Note: Since your Ikea smart lights are now linked to your Google Home, you are to keep the light switch on. Turning off the light switch cuts off power to the bulb. Simply leave the wall switch on, and ask Google to turn off the lights.
Upon rebooting the Wi-Fi router, we experienced a couple of issues. The reboot seemed to interrupt the connection between Google Home and Ikea Tradfri. While the Tradfri devices still showed up on the Google Home app and Google acknowledged that they were there, we experienced no response with our attempts to switch them off or on via the app or voice input.
To fix this issue, the only option we found available was to unlink our Ikea account from Google Home and then relink it.
Overall though, the Tradfri devices and Google Home are great together.
Our Final Verdict
The Ikea Tradfri range is a no-brainer at its asking price. There is a good range of fittings and options when it comes to the bulbs, more so if you’re not too particular about a color spectrum. The smart plugs are modest but very helpful.
Also, while the Trådfri app is perfectly adequate for bulb control, the Google Home app adds a little more intuition, and this implies that you can also use your Ikea smart lights in combination with your other smart lights (assuming that they work with Google Assistant).
RQ 1. How Much Does The Ikea Tradfri Setup Cost?
If you’re starting from scratch, getting the Tradfri Gateway and Remote Control or Motion Sensor will set you back some £40 altogether. The other expenses include:
- Smart plugs (starting at £9)
- Bulbs (starting at £7)
This is an amazing value compared to other systems on the market. Also, if you’re already a Hue user then you should not hesitate to add these Ikea bulbs to that setup as you continue to improve your smart home experience.
Tradfri doesn’t cut corners on features just because it’s inexpensive either. The addition of Alexa, Google Assistant and Siri compatibility for voice control, as well as scheduling and app control, are an indicator that this smart home system is serious about business.
RQ 2. What are the voice commands I can use to control my Ikes smart lights?
Here are some examples:
|To do this:||Say “Ok Google” or “Hey Google,” then…|
|To turn on/off a light||“Turn on <light name>”|
|Dim a light||“Dim the <light name>”|
|Brighten a light||“Brighten the <light name>”|
|Set a light’s brightness to a certain percentage||“Set <light name> to 50%”|
|Dim/Brighten lights by a certain percentage||Dim/Brighten <light name> by 50%”|
|Change the color of a light||“Turn <light name> green”|
|Turn all lights in the room on or off||“Turn on or off lights in <room name>”|
|Turn all lights on or off||“Turn on or off all of the lights”|
RQ 3. Do I need to have a TRÅDFRI gateway to use TRÅDFRI light sources?
No, you can regulate any TRÅDFRI light source with a TRÅDFRI steering device (remote control, wireless dimmer or motion sensor). You will, however, need a TRÅDFRI gateway (get one here) to regulate TRÅDFRI light sources using the IKEA Home smart app.
RQ 4. I cannot connect Google Assistant with my IKEA Home smart system. What should I do?
If you have a TRÅDFRI portal (for business and language support simply refer to Google support), you can use TRÅDFRI products with Google Assistant. Simply follow the guidelines in the IKEA Home smart app integration guide, which means first allowing the integration of Google Assistant into the IKEA Home smart app, and then enabling it.