We've been raving about the Philips Hue smart lighting system since it first dropped. Well we've been raving about everything except its outrageous pricing -- $US60 a bulb ($69.95 in Australia), are you serious? But with the new Hue Lux, you can get a basic white smart light at a fraction of the price.
The Hue Lux is just like the original Hue bulbs, save for that the new models only shine in a single colour -- warm white -- rather than the 16 million or so that the originals did. On the other hand, these new bulbs output 750 lumen, 150 more lumen than the originals, and cost just $US30 a pop. Yes, that still seems outrageous for a remotely dimmable LED bulb, but compared to the $US60 price tag the originals carry, it's a steal -- especially if you already have the Hue system installed but don't actually need every room in your house to be bathed in every conceivable colour.
The Lux joins another recently released device for the Hue ecosystem, the very slick Hue Tap. It's a batteryless Bluetooth-enabled, four-way light switch that can cycle your lights through four preset scenes. It really doesn't use any batteries, instead generating just enough power to send a signal from the mechanical motion of you actually pushing the button. The device pairs with your Hue Bridge and is programmable through the official Philips Hue app, though you won't need to have your phone out or the program open to actually use the Tap. Plus its removable adhesive backing allows you to install the Tap anywhere that's convenient, not just on a wall by the front door.
Between the Lux and the Tap and the growing menagerie of compatible free-standing lamps, lights strips and wall accents, the Hue line is quickly becoming the singular solution to your homes smart lighting needs. Keep an eye out for Australian pricing and availability.