Philips Hue just made its smart light system much simpler (and cheaper)

Philips introduces new Bluetooth Hue bulbs that work without a hub

Philips introduces new Bluetooth Hue bulbs that work without a hub

"People often underestimate the power that lighting can have on the ambiance of a room". Moreover, you can't take advantage of numerous features that make the Hue platform so special, including the ability to control the lights from anywhere, integrations with compatible smart home devices, HomeKit and IFTTT compatibility, support for Hue accessories such as the Hue Tap and Hue Motion Sensor, and support for Hue Sync and Hue Entertainment applications.

New Philips Hue bulbs are being introduced to work without the previously essential bridge, making smart lighting easier to control for new consumers.

You can start with a single bulb or link multiple Hue Bluetooth products together. Bulbs can also be connected to an Amazon Echo device for voice control via Alexa. That will bridge both the Hue Bluetooth and the traditional Hue bulbs, too. There's a standard white light for $14.99, a white "ambience" light that lets you adjust its color temperature for $24.99 and a white and colored option for $49.99. In addition to the luminaries themselves, you've also needed a smart hub to manage everything, adding to the overall cost.

Do you have an Amazon Echo, Google Home smart speaker or Nest smart display?

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Connecting new Philips Hue with Bluetooth light bulbs to Alexa is easy. Bulbs purchased using the same account associated with a compatible Echo will automatically pair with the device during setup.

Philips There are a lot of devices you can get to begin your smart home journey.

The best part is that the Bluetooth-controlled Hue bulbs price isn't increasing over their bridge-required versions. It allows you to make use of all Hue features and benefits. Advanced features, like away-from-home access, can still be had when you add a bridge at any time.

For starters, Philips is offering the Bluetooth-enabled Hue in three varieties. After screwing the bulb in, the Hue app will walk through pairing it with a phone. More Bluetooth support will spread across the rest of the Hue range this year and in 2020.

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