Light bulbs aren’t the sort of things you think of as being at the cutting edge of technology. They’re just there, dangling somewhere above your head and producing light when it gets dark.
But the Philips Hue personal wireless lighting system has become a tech phenomenon in recent years, thanks to two brilliant features: lights that not only change colour and provide a range of natural white light, but connect to the internet so you can control them with a smart device. Those (quite literal) light bulb moments have reinvented the light bulb – and the possibilities are endless.
Your lights, your rules
All this is possible because Philips Hue combines brilliant and energy-efficient LED light with intuitive technology. They also last for up to 20 years – which means less time balancing on stools changing lights. But it’s the way in which Philips Hue changes how you’ll view your lights that really inspires.
Want to turn on that lamp on the other side of your living room? Easy: control it using your smartphone from your sofa. Forgot to turn your lights off before you left home? Do it from your desk via an app. On holiday? Set your lights to turn on and off automatically.
You can build up a whole-house system, with up to 50 Hue products. Kick off with a Philips Hue white and colour ambience starter kit (£149.99). It has everything you need to get started, including the bridge (also sold separately for £49.99). The bridge connects your system, and is compatible with Apple Homekit (yes, Siri will turn your lights on if you ask). Then you can add in products such as the bendable Philips Hue lightstrip, or Philips Hue Iris, which projects colours onto your walls. There’s also the portable, battery-powered Hue Go.
Matching your mood
You can also download third-party apps to make your Hue even better. Music apps, such as Splyce, Hue Party and Ambify, adjust your lighting to match your music. It could be strobe lighting with dance tunes, or a flickering candle for times when you need something a little more… intimate.
Watching TV? The Huebilight app matches your lights to whatever you’re watching. And apps such as Huedini and Espresso for Hue will match your home lighting to your mood. There are even seasonal apps, if you want to simulate fireworks on New Year’s Eve.
Philips Hue also connects with other home wireless systems, such as Nest. Your lights will turn on when you use Nest Cam to see what’s going on in your home, and turn off when you leave the room and Nest sets your temperature lower.
With Philips Hue, lights aren’t just boring things you turn on at night: they now reflect your mood, your music and your life. That light bulb moment just got a whole lot smarter – and with added firework effects.
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