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philips hue

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Philips announces updated Hue app, outdoor lighting, and more for 2018

Smart lighting is almost commonplace now, but Hue is still one of the biggest names in this smart home category. At CES, the company has announced several initiatives for 2018. A new app is on the way for everyone, and it'll tie into some interesting synchronization options for those with color-changing lights. There are also new lights coming out that are specifically designed for outdoor environments.

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LIFX, LIFX+, and LIFX Z review: An expensive but hub-free way to beautifully light your world

When my husband and I began designing our new apartment about a year ago, one of the first things I wanted to account for was smart lights. I love well-lit environments and the idea of having lights turn on and off automatically in the different rooms was appealing. I thought it'd be easy to find a smart lighting solution for the entire house, but my search eventually hit so many walls I'm surprised I didn't completely give up after the 10th week of frantic Googling and pointless research.

There were so many things to account for: 220V electricity in Lebanon, different size of wall switch and box compared to US, 908.4 MHz Z-Wave on my smart hub (US frequency), compatibility with SmartThings and Google Home, I didn't want an additional hub hanging off my router, and best of all: super frequent electricity cuts and blackouts.

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Most Wanted: The best smart home products you can buy

One of the biggest trends in consumer technology over the last few years has been the rise of the smart home. The number of different device categories that now make up the 'Internet of Things' (IoT) has grown immensely, with connected appliances now found in many households across the US and beyond.

The smart home was once an expensive hobby for tech-fiends only but has now become an affordable aspiration for normal people. You can get started for less than $30 these days, with some lights or a smart switch that can connect to your Wi-Fi network and be controlled with your phone.

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[Update: Ambiance bulbs on sale too] Deal Alert: Philips Hue White A19 LED Starter Kit is $59.99 ($40 off) at Best Buy and Amazon

Philips makes some of the best smart light bulbs on the planet, but they can get pretty expensive. Just one of those fancy colored bulbs costs $50. If you don't care for the color-changing bulbs, the A19 Starter Kit is $40 off at Best Buy and Amazon.

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[Deal Alert] Get a Google Home, Hue White & Color A19 starter kit, and Chromecast for $209 at Best Buy ($135 off)

In the market for a Google Home to see what all the fuss is about or to supplement your already existing collection of speakers around the house? Then today's Best Buy deal might actually sway you to go big with your purchase by adding some lights and getting a free Chromecast.

Best Buy is selling the Google Home for $104.49 (MSRP $129) and the Philips Hue White and Color A19 Starter Kit for its $179.99 MSRP (though Amazon has it for $150). But if you add both to the cart, you will see the Home go down to $87.25, the Hue kit to $121.74, and a free $35 Chromecast will be added to the cart.

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[Update: Now $188.99] Deal Alert: Get a Google Home and Philips Hue Color Starter Kit for $228.99 ($100 off) at Best Buy

 

Just getting started on your project to make your home smarter? If so, Best Buy may have just the thing for you. You can now purchase a Google Home and a third-generation Philips Hue Color A19 Starter Kit for just $228.99 - a savings of about $100 if you were to buy them separately.

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Multiple Google Home users are reporting issues with Philips Hue light bulbs

A number of users are having difficulties controlling their Philips Hue light bulbs via Google Home, the help forum for which is brimming with activity on the subject. The problem seems to manifest itself when trying to turn the lights on and off with a voice command, which leads the Google Assistant to respond with, "Sorry I can't do that, I'm learning every day."

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[Deal Alert] Amazon's Alexa Deals include a ton of discounts on home automation products

In the wake of Prime Day, Amazon is running a set of "Alexa Deals" that can only be accessed by Prime members via voice commands given to Alexa. Most of the offers are pretty pedestrian, things like gum, snacks, and batteries, but there are a few good ones our readers might enjoy. If you are interested in home automation, you can pick up a ton of stuff, like Philips Hue starter kit, smart plugs, a wireless Lutron starter kit, a touchscreen Schlage deadbolt, and more. 

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[Deal Alert] Great discounts on Philips Hue, Wink Hub, Canary camera, and more smart home products on Amazon Prime Day

Prime Day is underway at Amazon and there are great deals to be had on plenty of gadgets and accessories for the nerdiest of folks. We've already covered deals on phones/tablets/Chromebooks, but what if you're more interested in making your home a little smarter? Well, fret not, because I've scoured the discounts and used my search-fu skills to find the best deals for the smart home noobs and veterans alike, deals that are especially catered for you, the Android user.

But before I start with my list, let me remind you of the couple of deals we've already covered that are relevant in a smart home setting: the Amazon Echo and Echo Dot are at an all-time low of $90 and $35 ($90 and $15 off, respectively), and the NVIDIA Shield TV is $20 off (remember that it's still slated to get SmartThings Hub integration and the SPOT for a cheap add-on Google Home-like experience).

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[Deal Alert] Philips Hue 2nd Gen Starter Kit is $125 manufacturer-refurbished on eBay (normally $180 new)

Are you looking to make your home more... smart? All those WiFi-connected lights, appliances, and speakers can easily make a dent in your wallet. But right now, you can grab a pack of three LED color Philips Hue lights, with the wireless bridge included, for just $124.99 manufacturer-refurbished.

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