Philips Hue empowers endless possibilities in connected lighting, launching a developer program for world’s smartest LED light bulb

Developers can now extend Hue’s capabilities with new applications and integration with other products, advancing digital revolution in home lighting

March 11, 2013

Somerset, NJ – Philips today, as promised, launches a software developer program for Hue that allows consumers to create and control their light bulbs using a smartphone or tablet. In publishing Hue’s open application programming interfaces (APIs), as well as releasing guides and libraries in an iOS software developers’ kit, Philips reinforces its commitment to helping the developer community start programming with Hue.  This move opens the playing field for third party developers to create new, exciting applications using light, enabling Hue to communicate with a variety of devices and applications (apps).  Philips Hue’s developer platform is available at


This is just the first phase of the software developer program for world’s first web-enabled LED home lighting system. It allows the Hue community to create rich functionality for an enhanced customer experience. Already external developers have created apps that integrate Hue with music, resulting in an immersive surround sound and surround lighting experience that allows the lighting to change to the beat of the music. Developers have also created scheduling applications that can integrate with a phone’s calendaring system.


“The response Philips Hue has received from the development community has been incredibly positive and we aim to continue redefining the possibilities of light by enabling developers to create apps that customers want and need,” said Kevin Toms, SDK Designer and Developer Advocate of Hue’s software developers’ platform.  “Already Hue is sparking a digital revolution in home lighting, as well as becoming an important step towards automated, connected homes, allowing it to further integrate with our world and simplify our lives.”


Using the ZigBee LightLink standard, Hue bulbs can not only communicate with each other, they have the potential for communicating with other ZigBee-based devices such as motion sensors and home thermostats, while offering a broad signal range and using significantly less stand-by power than traditional Wi-Fi systems.  Software updates for the bulbs are done automatically via the bridge and the bulbs themselves, and additional apps developed for the system will be made available through app stores or, making it easy and intuitive for users to update Hue with applications and functionality that will enhance their lighting experience. 


Hue’s app already includes numerous pre-programmed light settings, including Light Recipes based on Philips’ research around lighting’s optimal effects.  These pre-programmed scenarios adjust the bulbs to the optimum shade and brightness of white light to relax, read or boost mood and energy.  However, there is additional opportunity with color temperature applications that have the potential to help photographers adjust lighting for shots with a simple app on their smart devices.  The company continues to enhance the possibilities of Hue, with new features around schedules and geo-fencing expected to be released in the coming months.  


Developers with questions about programming with Hue, can join Hue’s developer forum at where Kevin Toms, designer and developer advocate of Hue’s software developers’ kit, will provide technical support. Kevin can also be reached via Twitter: @philipsHuedev 


Hue starter kits comprising three bulbs and a Smartbridge are available at Apple stores for $199.  Additional bulbs can also be purchased for $59. 


For more information about Philips Hue and its capabilities visit

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Hue’s app already includes numerous pre-programmed light settings, including Light Recipes based on Philips’ research around lighting’s optimal effects.

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Hue starter kits comprising three bulbs and a Smartbridge are available at Apple stores for $199.  Additional bulbs can also be purchased for $59.

Media Contact

Silvie Casanova
Lighting Communications, Philips North America
Tel: +1 978-659-7467


About Royal Philips Electronics

Royal Philips Electronics (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHIA) is a diversified health and well-being company, focused on improving people’s lives through meaningful innovation in the areas of Healthcare, Consumer Lifestyle and Lighting. Headquartered in the Netherlands, Philips posted 2012 sales of EUR 24.8 billion and employs approximately 118,000 employees with sales and services in more than 100 countries. The company is a leader in cardiac care, acute care and home healthcare, energy efficient lighting solutions and new lighting applications, as well as male shaving and grooming, home and portable entertainment and oral healthcare. News from Philips is located at


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