Philips Hue Bridge 2.0 and Apple Homekit – Review
Hue Says ‘Hey Siri’
When it comes to home automation, there are dozens of products and it takes patience to determine what works with what, with the exception of the Philips Hue line of smart bulbs and, to some extent, Apple Homekit.
The former is a fairly substantial lineup of color-changing LED bulbs, white LED bulbs, controllable dimmer switches, LED lightstrips, and light fixtures with built-in LED bulbs. The latter is not a product but a common language offered by Apple in the latest version of iOS that allows smart devices such as Hue to be controlled by Siri.
The vast array of devices that Homekit supports ranges from bulbs, thermostats, and televisions, to smart locks, and garage openers. Although there are yet not very many Homekit-compatible products on the market, the current list of supported devices includes August Smart Lock; Ecobee3 Smart Wi-Fi Thermostat; Schlage Sense Door Lock; Honeywell Lyric Thermostat; MyQ Garage Opener; Incipio Power Strips, Outlets, and Adapters; Eve Home Monitoring by Elgato; and iHome SmartPlug.
INSTALLING THE NEW HOMEKIT-COMPATIBLE PHILIPS HUE BRIDGE
We installed the new Apple Homekit-compatible bridge on our existing Philips Hue lighting system. The upgrade was straightforward and Philips offers a 33% discount to those with an existing bridge, making the cost of the upgrade a nominal $40.
Plugging in the bridge to both the router as well as to the electrical outlet, the app on my iPhone 6s Plus immediately detected its presence and offered to initiate the one-time upgrade procedure.
I had to press the button on the old bridge for the app to see it, and then repeat the procedure with the new bridge. It then upgraded the bridge’s firmware and proceeded – after seeking approval – to transfer all settings over (the instructions state it will “ irreversibly replace“ my old bridge via this step). At the end, I had to reset the old bridge to its factory configuration, a step that had to be repeated since it didn’t take at first, and that was it.
Click here to continue to Page 2 – Using Philips Hue with Siri and HomeKit
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