Philips Hue Lets You Control Your Lighting From Anywhere
Hate coming home to a dark house? Ever wanted to set the mood for a special dinner or party? Maybe you are looking to compliment the furniture in your living room. If any of these scenarios apply to you, the Philips Hue might be for you. Programmable, colorful LED lighting that fits in most light sockets and can be set up from your iPhone or computer.
The concept is simple, an LED light bulb that is capable of producing thousands of colors and hues. Being LED, the light bulbs also use an estimated 80% less power than traditional light bulbs. The downside? Each bulb will set you back around $50, a hefty price to pay for one light bulb. That being said, they do last for five years, and will most likely save you money in the long run.
You control the lights by using a "bridge" that connects the light bulbs to your Wi-Fi. Then via your iPhone (no Android support, currently) or computer, you can set everything from the color of the lights to the times of day the lights are on. Choose from preset settings designed to calm or invigorate, or create your own custom hues. Browns and yellows are somewhat washed out, but the blues and reds shine brilliantly.
You can also set up times for the lights to turn on and off, whether it's daily or a single time. Set them to turn on shortly before you get home from work, or use the iPhone app to turn them on while on the way home. If you are a small business, this feature could be very helpful. Program your lights to turn off each night, guaranteeing you do not waste energy.
The biggest downfall of these light bulbs is the price. The starter pack runs around $200 and it includes three light bulbs and the bridge necessary to control and program the lights. However, if you have a couple hundred dollars to spare, the Philips Hue makes for a interesting purchase and you will have a lot of fun getting the lights set up exactly how you want them.