The lightbulb is about to go through a major overhaul. As for January, you won’t be able to find incandescent lightbulbs in the stores; you’ll need to replace them with power-sipping LED bulbs. Philips, of course, has plenty of bulbs ready, including their new SlimStyle, which is… flatter?


Believe it or not, there’s actually a reason behind Philips making a flat light bulb. LED bulbs may be more power efficient, but they have a problem in the sense that they can put out a lot of heat. Most LED bulbs need to dissipate that heat, or they’ll burn out, melt, and/or set your house on fire. OK, maybe not that last one, but still, it’s a problem.

Can’t Stand The Heat

Most LED bulbs have aluminum heat sinks, but that’s not the best solution because putting a molded chunk of aluminum in your bulb is both a design challenge and it raises the price of making and thus selling LED bulbs. The flat design both allows Philips to space out the LEDs to better dissipate the heat, and in theory doing away with the need for a heat sink altogether.

Also, it looks cool. You can’t really knock a product built around the idea of looking cool. Come on, it’s a flat lightbulb!

Oh, And It’s A Good Lightbulb


And, if you were looking for a replacement for your 60-watt bulb, this will do the trick. It puts out 800 lumens, and it’s got a nice soft white color temperature that will make your room look good. That said, one thing that’s not clear is how much the SlimStyle is going to cost; Philips hasn’t yet talked about a price, just that it’ll be in hardware stores and other such locations across the country in January. But without the heat sink, expect it to be cheap.

Dan Seitz

Dan Seitz is an obsessive nerd living in New England. He lives in the Boston area with a fiancee, a dog, a cat, and far too many objects with processors.