Philips has announced the upcoming release of three new products in the Hue lighting ecosystem: a streamlined and dimming white light, a kinetic-powered control panel, and a 3D-printed lamp that will sure to become the centerpiece of any room.
Not every room in your house needs to resemble the interior of a disco—sometimes a basic white bulb is all you need. The Lux bulb is exactly that: a Wi-Fi enabled LED light bulb that only shines white light but is still controlled by the Hue system. It works equally well with third-party hue apps, IFTTT, and the Jawbone Up, which can automatically turn the lights on when you wake up. It's a smart, dimmable bulb that doesn't require a physical dimmer switch. It will be available as a $100 starter kit and $40 individual bulbs later this summer.
These 3D-printed lamps are equal parts modern art and modern technology. Designed by teams from WertelOberfell and Strand+Hvass, the Luminaires act as both conversation pieces and functional lighting.
"We liked the idea of using the geometry seen in the eyes of crustaceans and insects then reversing them so they become light emitting cells rather than light gathering cells," said Jan Wertel of the €2,999 ($4,135), bifurcated pendant lamp. Gernot Oberfell added, "This is a complex design that could not have been produced before 3D printing. The result is an exquisite light effect that transforms a lifeless living space into a colorfully lit ode to nature."
The €2,499 ($3449) table version from Strand + Hvass is "inspired by shadows you see when the spring sun shines through naked branches," according to Christina Strand. "This was translated into a complex design, only possible when 3D printing is combined with Philips hue. Over 3,000 sticks are intertwined around the hue light source, recreating a captivating scene from nature."
One shortcoming of the Hue system is that, while far more functional than a traditional light, controlling it from a smartphone was not nearly as responsive—unlocking the phone and booting the app just isn't as easy as flipping a switch. But with the Tap, it now is. So rather than controlling your lights through a mobile app, the Tap controls them with a physical switch. It simply sticks onto a wall; since it's kinetically powered by the motion of you pushing the button, there are no batteries to change or cords to run. It will allow users to cycle through four preset scenes when it's released later this summer for $60.