Philips adds a six-pack of new partners to Friends of Hue smart lighting system

It’s been a momentous year for Philips Lighting. In addition to a corporate name change to Signify in May, the New Jersey-based smart lighting company introduced six new partners in the Friends of Hue program at IFA 2018 in Berlin this week.

The newest members of the Hue lighting and smart devices family include two wall-switch companies: Busch-Jaeger and Illumra will offer Friends of Hue smart wall switches in a wide selection of styles and colors to give homeowners the chance to match their taste and decor.

Hue smart switches in single and multiple-switch frames do not need wired connections or batteries to turn lights on or off, dim the lights, or choose light scenes. The switches operate via an energy-harvesting 2.4 GHz Zigbee GreenPower wireless technology based on kinetic energy from EnOcean.

“Our partners in smart switches unite ease of control with design to match your personal taste and style,” said Marijn de Jong, Global Product Manager for Friends of Hue at Signify. “The partnership program expresses our ongoing commitment to grow the Philips Hue ecosystem with Friends of Hue that enhance the experience of smart lighting in the home.”

Building on Hue smart lighting capabilities and the wireless Hue smart switch features, four new lighting design companies bring their scene designs, or luminaires, to the party. The luminary designers include Kichler from the U.S., Makris by Imoon from Italy, Koizumi from Japan, and John Lewis from the U.K.

Customers can mix and match Hue smart lights and switches with multiple luminaires to create personalized lighting to match any mood or occasion. Stored light designs can be turned on with Hue smart switches or via other Hue lighting management methods including Alexa skill requests.

“Our new Friends of Hue luminaire partners offer striking designs to complement any indoor space,” de Jong said. “We all want our homes to look their best, and perfecting our interior design is a very personal thing. With this in mind, Philips Hue has expanded its Friends of Hue offering so users can experience more choice and freedom than ever before when it comes to illuminating their homes and enjoying the benefits of connected lighting.”

Signify announced that the new switches from Busch-Jaeger and Illumra will be released this fall along with previously announced Family of Hue partner switches from Niko, Vimar, and Feller. The luminaires from the four new partners and six existing designers are now available. More information on the Family of Hue partners and products will be available when the products are released.

Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Write music with your voice, make homemade cheese

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!
Smart Home

Lutron’s Fan Control makes ceiling fans smart, but has some turnoffs

Lutron recently came out with a smart switch that controls ceiling fans, the Lutron Caseta Fan Speed Control Switch. How does it stack up? Here's a first-hand review of the Lutron Fan Control switch.
Smart Home

Whatever happened to those dumb smart products we wrote about in 2017?

A smart salt dispenser? As manufacturers rush to get the next new smart item out there, we wonder if all these new inventions are really necessary. Here’s a list of 10 of the quirkiest home smart gadgets available, and where they are now.
Smart Home

Amazon drops price of newest Echo Dot with Sengled two-bulb smart light kit

Amazon just dropped the price of a new third-generation Echo Dot bundled with the Element Classic by Sengled Starter Kit with two smart light bulbs and a Sengled controller. Connect the lights to turn lights on and off with voice commands.
Smart Home

Thermomix introduces a small appliance that can do it all

The Thermomix TM6 just might be what you're looking for. This all-in-one appliance can perform 20 unique tasks that will cut down on the work of meal preparation and will help you cook just about anything.
Smart Home

Amazon knocks down the price on the second-generation Echo smart speaker

Amazon just knocked down the price of the second-generation Echo smart speaker with Alexa by 25 percent. The Echo can answer questions, control smart home devices, fill a room with music with its Dolby speakers, and make hands-free calls.
Smart Home

Smeg Dolce and Gabbana small appliances make an art gallery of your kitchen

Spice up your kitchen with Smeg's Dolce and Gabbana-styled Sicily Is My Love collection. Following its introduction of Sicilian-themed major appliances, the Italian collaborators added countertop devices with traditional icons and images.
Smart Home

Sign up for Amazon’s Prime Book Box and get an Echo Dot Kids Edition for $1

Do your kids like books? Sign up for Amazon's Prime Book Box for kids through March 26 and you can get an Echo Dot Kids Edition for just $0.99. The Prime Book Box includes two to four books, delivered every one, two, or three months.
Smart Home

Ikea isn’t throwing shade with the delayed release of its smart blinds

Ikea planned to release is Tradfri-compatible smart blinds in April 2019, but the products have been delayed until later in the year for a firmware update that promises better functionality.
Cars

Amazon and Kia team up to simplify EV home-charging station installs

Kia Motors announced a new program with Amazon for electric vehicles. Customers planning to purchase a new Kia EV or PHEV can check out recommended Level 2 240-volt home charging stations and arrange installation in their homes.
Smart Home

Traeger’s latest wood-pellet grills are smoky, smart, and spacious

Traeger is famous in the world of barbecue and heavy-duty grills for its signature pellet grills and now the company is expanding this year by adding three new brands of redesigned
Smart Home

The five best teeth-whitening kits you can buy on Amazon

Teeth whitening can have a major impact on a person’s smile and overall appearance. You don't necessarily have to go to the dentist to get your teeth whitened though. Here are the best teeth-whitening kits you can buy.
Smart Home

Is your Keurig making gross coffee? Might be time for a cleaning

No one likes a dirty, scaled, or smelly Keurig, but how are you supposed to clean them? Before you throw yours out the window, here is a quick guide on cleaning your machine out thoroughly.
Smart Home

Which is better, the original Echo or the Echo Dot? We compare them

Amazon Echo vs. Dot: Having Alexa answer your questions is nothing short of futuristic, but which device should you get? There are some big differences between the two, especially in size, sound, and cost.