LIFX Developer Zone


I have two new LIFX bulbs (my first), and I’m trying to get them connected to my network.

However, while I own an iPhone, I do not want them connected to HomeKit. I’m already running HomeAssistant and have no interest in cloud-based home device management.

I can connect to the bulbs’ temporary wifi networks and I dismiss iOS’s “Add to Home and Wifi?” dialog, but when I return to the LIFX app, even though I selected “My Device Doesn’t Support HomeKit”, I can’t progress past the “123” menu (the right green arrow button is greyed out).

Where do I go to just enter the SSID and password to get these bulbs onto my network, without getting additional parties involved in that transaction?


If you wait 15 minutes after turning them on, the App will give you a legacy onboarding option and you can onboard it without homekit using that :slight_smile:

I don’t know why, but the app wasn’t moving forward to the “Communicating with Device…” screen. Now it’s working perfectly!

yay, the system works! :slight_smile:

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Is there any way to avoid waiting 15 minutes per bulb for the app to timeout, so I can onboard some bulbs without homekit? 15 minutes to onboard, per bulb, is unacceptable.

Can I onboard from a laptop? Is there a command line onboarding script or something I can use after connecting a laptop to the bulb’s wifi broadcast?

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Hello, on iOS there is currently no way around that in our App. If you have an Android phone then that doesn’t have the 15 minute wait to do LIFX onboarding.

Can I onboard from a laptop? Is there a command line onboarding script or something I can use after connecting a laptop to the bulb’s wifi broadcast?

There is not. Sorry.

Wow. There has to be something I’m missing then. What are people without an android phone doing to onboard without waiting 15 mins per light?

With an iphone, I did attempt the homekit workflow with the picture of the QR code, but neither of the lights I just bought would onboard… it just hung in the middle, and it told me that the devices were not supported by homekit.

I’m not trying to argue or be rude… I’m just honestly curious - am I doing something wrong, or is the company’s expected customer behavior to take 15 mins per light to onboard?

I’ve had a number of bulbs for years and I like them a lot - but my onboarding experiences have always been difficult and have usually worked only on the 2nd or 3rd attempt. I figured this stuff would have been worked out by now.

We’re currently investigating ways that we can work around the 15 minute wait constraint from Apple. In the meantime, you can onboard with HomeKit and then disconnect HomeKit if you don’t want to use it, otherwise, the 15-minute wait is unavoidable.

You really need to get this sorted. I’ve spent 3 hours so far, trying to connect a new bulb and nothing works. These are not inexpensive items!

Finally got it to connect!

Second bulb today - same problem!

If you wait 15 minutes after turning them on, the App will give you a legacy onboarding option and you can onboard it without homekit using that

I am trying to set up my beam without homekit and am confused as to where I need to wait 15 mins in app. The homepage? Can someone please help.

Tl;dr - the timeout is on the bulbs, not in the app.

The process you want to follow is:

  1. connect lifx bulb to power
  2. wait 15 minutes
  3. open LIFX app and start adding devices

For the first 15 minutes, the bulb is broadcasting “hey, I can connect to homekit!” and the app picks that up. After that the bulb stops broadcasting but will still be found when you scan for devices.

@freerj if you have multiple bulbs to set up, you shouldn’t have to wait 15 mins per bulb. Plug them all in, switch them all on, make a cuppa, scroll through the socials for a bit, then open the LIFX app and set them all up.

This dismissive treatment of legacy hardware is a great way to contribute to the cycle of consumptive waste, not to mention abominable UX. Every year it’s a new fad, new set of chargers, adapters, and lights they barely work because we can’t seem to give zero shits about this planet.

Keep the legacy lights working, and stop acting like people want to throw their perfectly functional hardware out every year.

I’m not sure anyone’s talking specifically about legacy bulbs not working here.

Many users have dozens of bulbs of various ages. Personally I’ve got a couple of older White 800s and Colour 1000s still going strong, and the support team have been nothing but helpful when I’ve had an issue with a bulb. I can say with absolute certainty that most of my LIFX bulbs are outlasting the bulb they’re replacing.

Similar issue but for me I have Google Home setup but recently moved to Apple handset. I am maintaining the Google Home but have no interest in Apple Home so having the option to skip Apple Home is hugely needed.

@markh, I’m in the same situation as others here, and don’t particularly mind onboarding with HomeKit and then disconnecting from HomeKit, as you suggested.

However, I’m unable to get it to work.

Here’s what I’m experiencing:

On the Edit Device page for a bulb, under Homekit, I see Status; Paired, with a red Remove button off to the right.

When I tap Remove there, I get an Are you sure you want to remove this… dialog, with Cancel and Remove buttons.

When I tap Remove there, after a ~1 second delay I get a Remove Failed: An error ocurred while trying to remove the light from HomeKit dialog. (and that’s the app misspelling “occurred”—not me!)

Is there another way to accomplish this? If not, what do you suggest?

So, besides finding this documented on this site, with some sporadic comments from LIFX colleagues, is there any official or mainstream doco on what is going on with this ?
ie: For someone who is not tech savvy ? with screenshots, and how/when to wait the required 15 minutes ?

From my perspective the user experience with this is sub-optimal. I’ve already had friends get sick of going in circles, with mixed results and simply returning the devices for a full refund. Surely that’s not a good outcome.

I myself have been trying to get 4 new bulbs setup for the last 2 hours. and to be honest, I am very close to getting a refund and simply going elsewhere. Only got 1 setup so far, and I’m not sure how I did it since nothing appears repeatable.

Is there more to this story ? Is there an official “how to” with pictures and exact timings for the non-tech ? or are LIFX simply happy to hemorrhage customers ?


This has got to be the most inconvenient smart product I’ve ever had. I have an older bulb with out a HomeKit code. I moved into a new apartment and the bulb got disconnected. The dumb thing won’t set up properly because of HomeKit. I would love to set it up so something that at least works, but with out a home kit code, it’s useless. The cute little 15 minute “wait time” does not work for this bulb. Can someone from this company please reach out and offer a suggestion on how to get this $60 light bulb working again? What an absolute headache, thing makes me want to just bust out a candle and go back to the before-fore times


I used to be a big fan and evangelist of lifx company and their products. I used to praise their ease of use and the quality of their product. I supported them since the kickstarters days and I have to say their company and products have fallen pretty far for me.

I own 1 kickstater A19 equivalent bulb, 4x A19 bulbs and 1 beam. All of them have issues with connectivity with staying connected with the wifi while multiple other products such as smart switches/lights/etc have 0 problem with my network. It’s been a fucken disaster trying to reconnect these stupid devices back to the app and have it work. Whether it be setting it up with homekit or what have you but the new “add device” setup is completely garbage. I wish I could still say good things about their product and app but there isnt anything good to say. If I could get all my money but I would. But now I just struggle with waiting 15 mins for this so this app can say setup without homekit is stupid. The legacy setup back in the kickstarter days were amazing and straight forward and the reliability was fine. Then some new product manager at the company said, I want to make an impact so they wanted to rebrand and redesign the damn app to this shit version where the core functionality of reliable connection and ease of use goes out the window for fancy marketing support like homekit and scene and schedulding or whatever. They lost their way and it’s such a bad product and app that I can’t recommend it to anyone anymore. I basically have about 6 lights that cost over $60 dollars each that are the dumbest lights possible and only work with physical on off switches rather than there advertised smart light bulbs.

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