Product Review :: Philips Hue lights :: Week 2

Week 2 with the Philips Hue lights.  Unfortunately I was out of town for a couple days so my week trial was cut a little short.  One thing in particular to update from my previous post was figuring out alarms with the Lux lights in my room.  You just need to set up a scene ahead of time (which, for the Lux lights is just turning the lights on) and set the alarm to that scene you set up.  It seems a little convoluted to have to do that to just set an alarm to turn a Lux light on.  I’m also not totally sure how handy the light alarms are.  I’ve used them for naps or for waking up on mornings that I have to get up before sunrise, in conjunction with an audible alarm on my phone.  So far, the audible alarm is what wakes me up, and I just seem to wake up with the lights on.  The fade in wasn’t helping.  Maybe that’s better than waking up in the dark, but I’m not completely convinced yet.  In hindsight, I should have tried setting the lights earlier to see if that would wake me up, but I know myself and I think I’m a bit too heavy of a sleeper for that.   Anyway.


Using the app as a remote control has still been incredibly handy, enough to make me want to build my own once I give the lights back.  Mostly for the convenience of not having to install a dimmer, or get out of bed to use the light switch.  I’ve looked into some 3rd party apps, but they appear to mostly be pre-programmed flashing light animations.  Not too ideal for sitting around the apartment doing homework, but I would definitely try them if we happened to be having a party.  I’m looking forward to getting into the API this week to work with the lighting controller I’m in the process of making with Jingwen.


Unfortunately I’ll need to bring the lights back tomorrow so the class can all use the lights and hub, so I won’t get the full three-week trial.  But overall, my short trial was very positive.  The packaging and out-of-box experience was nice, setup and installation was really easy and it’s been very convenient to use.  One main thing to think about going forward for is whether it makes sense to buy these.  My situation is a little different than an average consumer being in school with fewer spare finances, but still, they are a little expensive.  I would check into the energy efficiency of the bulbs more before making the investment, because right now I’d mostly be paying for a light remote in bed, which seems questionable for a couple hundred dollars.  The Hue project everyone is working on should help to get some more ideas flowing of ways I could potentially use these in the future.  But I guess for now, the best way to verify I enjoyed having the lights is that I’m sad to pack them up.

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