Govee’s Cylinder Smart Lamp takes a more understated approach to smart lighting, making it an excellent choice for family homes or more contemporary living spaces. It’s simple, bright, and pretty affordable; but some of its greatest strengths double as weaknesses when it comes to white light diffusion and build quality.
Bright and powerful
Some washed-out scenes and colors
White light isn’t diffused enough
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There are plenty of fantastic, futuristic, and eye-catching smart lamps available on the market. But, sometimes, you just want a good old-fashioned corner lamp for your living room. Govee’s Cylinder Smart Lamp offers exactly that: a simple and chic modern lamp with a great color wheel and some brilliant pre-made scenes.
The lamp sells for $169.99 at Amazon or directly from Govee, which is super affordable compared to the $349.99 Signe gradient floor lamp by Philips Hue – probably the closest comparison and one of the best smart lights available. While Govee’s lamp definitely doesn’t have the same premium finish – and, as you’ll read, the performance isn’t exactly up to par – but it’s charming and capable.
Standing at 10.3 x 68.8 x 10.3 inches / 26.16 x 174.75 x 26.16cm (h x w x d), this corner lamp is a bright and powerful smart light that will easily illuminate your living space. Plus, it’s compatible with both Google Assistant and Alexa.
Design-wise, it’s simple: a metal stand with a round base is topped with a plastic cylinder that houses the LED light. Just below this is the only physical control for the light – an on/off switch.
In the box you’ll find the LED cylinder, three segments that make up the stand, and a base, all of which are easily assembled by screwing the pieces together; it took me about 5 minutes. It isn’t the most elegant, nor robust, of constructions – the base wobbles slightly, and when I gave it a good knock, its foundations weren’t strong enough to keep it upright. However, it’s by no means flimsy; rather a little cheaper and more basic than I’d like.
Once constructed, you need to connect the light to the primary controller, which in this case is the Govee app. In my experience this took just a few minutes, while a Wi-Fi connection was established. The app is very basic, but offers a whole host of lighting options, from music rhythm detection to block colors, as well as a decent library of more than 60 scenes plus a DIY mode.
First, I tried out the Block Color mode to test the trueness of the colors. Most hues were bright and vibrant; however, as is the case with a number of smart lights (especially the more affordable ones), the Govee struggles with rich, purple colors. Its white light, on the other hand, is brilliant and bright; too bright, to the point where it isn’t sufficiently diffused, especially when set to a colder temperature. It proved uncomfortable in my direct eye line. Nevertheless, it’s more than capable of lighting up a small to medium-sized living room.
Next up, I tried the Music mode, which performed pretty well. It was a little slow and basic, and definitely struggled with more complex, layered songs. However, I did find it worked much better when using my phone’s microphone, which you can switch to in the app.
The selection of scenes is decent, but didn’t quite match the more family-friendly nature of the device. From neon eyes of Sauron to blotchy UFOs, there are some pretty quirky creations to enjoy. For my personal taste – I typically look for a more sophisticated feel to my smart home – they were a little garish, with some of the imagery quite muddy and the colors loud.
Last but not least, I tried the DIY light scene creation, which in my experience proved quite buggy. There are some really cool customization options, including one where you can draw your own designs, but certain effects seemed to completely glitch and reset my light.
Govee Cylinder Smart Lamp: specifications
|WiZ LED Strip smart light|
|Dimensions||10.3 x 68.8 x 10.3 inches / 26.16 x 174.75 x 26.16cm|
|Lamp tyoe||Floor lamp|
|Compatibility||Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa|
|Controls||On/Off button, voice, app|
|Weight||9.5lbs / 4.3kg|
|Color temperature||6500 Kelvin|
Govee Cylinder Smart Lamp: Should I buy it?
Buy it if...
You want something simple and familiar
With its simple design reminiscent of lamps you might have had in your living room for years prior, the Govee is a bit more contemporary than some of the futuristic, high-tech alternatives.
You have kids
Some of the presets just ooze fun, and would make a fantastic addition to an entertainment room or bedroom.
You’re on a budget
Especially when compared to other smart lamps, Govee’s Smart Lamp is very affordable.
Don't buy it if...
You want something sophisticated
While the lamp itself is fairly inoffensive, it lacks some of the maturity and finesse you’d find in other smart lamps - especially when it comes to the presets.
You want bold and beautiful hues
Quite a few of the richer hues I’d have wanted from the Govee Smart Lamp were washed out and a little sad.
Govee Cylinder Smart Lamp: Also consider
|Govee Cylinder Smart Lamp||Philips Hue Gradient Signe table light||Philips Hue Gradient Signe floor light|
|Designed for:||Living room, bedrooms||Living room, bedrooms||Living room, bedrooms|
|Connectivity:||Wi-Fi||Bluetooth and Hue Bridge||Bluetooth and Hue Bridge|
|Voice command compatibility||Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa||Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant & Apple HomeKit||Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant & Apple HomeKit|
|Lumen output at 4000K:||1,500lm||1,040lm||2,500lm|
|Dimensions:||10.3 x 68.8 x 10.3in / 26.16 x 174.75 x 26.16cm (h x l x w)||21.7 x 4.37 x 4.37in / 55.3 x 11.5 x 11.5cm (h x l x w)||57.4 x 4.37 x 4.37in / 145.8 x 11.5 x 11.5cm (h x l x w)|
Still not sold on the WiZ LED strip smart light? Here’s how it compares to two similar products.
Philips Hue Signe
This elegant and chic floor lamp is a slick bar of light capable of illuminating a room with vibrant colors; but it’s pricey.
Read our full Philips Hue Gradient Signe table lamp review
How I tested the Govee Cylindrical Smart Lamp
- I tested the Govee Cylinder Smart Lamp for two weeks.
- I set it up with my Alexa smart speaker and the Govee app.
- I tested its color payoff, brightness and in-app modes.
I used the Govee Cylinder Smart Lamp for two weeks in my home. I set it up using the Govee app and Alexa, and tested the robustness of the build quality. I measured response time to commands, as well as how easily it functioned with other smart lights, both from Govee and other manufacturers such as Nanoleaf and Philips Hue.
I also tested all of the in-app features to see how well they worked, along with the pickup of the built-in microphone, which is used in its rhythm detection mode.
Josephine Watson (@JosieWatson) is TechRadar's Managing Editor - Lifestyle. Josephine has previously written on a variety of topics, from pop culture to gaming and even the energy industry, joining TechRadar to support general site management. She is a smart home nerd, as well as an advocate for internet safety and education, and has also made a point of using her position to fight for progression in the treatment of diversity and inclusion, mental health, and neurodiversity in corporate settings. Generally, you'll find her watching Disney movies, playing on her Switch, or showing people pictures of her cats, Mr. Smith and Heady.