It was only a matter of time before Walmart would try to take command of the LED light bulb market by drastically undercutting the competition. That's now happened; the massive retailer has unveiled a new line of LED bulbs under its in-house Great Value brand. The light bulbs, immediately available from all US stores and soon at Walmart.com, start at under $9 — priced even lower than Cree's $13 breakthrough bulb. Walmart isn't new to selling LED light bulbs, but this is its most aggressive push yet to make them affordable for shoppers. In all, the Great Value line includes 26 different bulb types, the cheapest of which costs only $8.88. Traditional incandescent bulbs can still be had for less than $1, but falling LED prices paired with Walmart's cutthroat pricing tactics means choosing the environmental path is more affordable than ever.
Walmart wants to make the benefits of adopting LED bulbs incredibly obvious, so it's putting potential cost savings and energy improvements right on the Great Value box. The retailer says customers could save $134 over the lifetime of an 800 lumens light bulb (equivalent to a 60-watt incandescent). The quality of light output from LED bulbs can vary dramatically, however. We liked the results from Cree's bulbs, but can't yet speak to how well Walmart's Great Value line will light up your surroundings. Seeing as they're less than $10, you can probably afford to take the risk.