Philips Hue wall switch module. Test, specs, price, release

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Masking or even removing the classic light switches?  Not very smart!  With the Philips Hue wall switch module © Philips Hue, Signify, COMPUTERBILD

The Philips Hue wall switch module breathes new life into the classic light switch. This test shows how this works.

Philips Hue closes a gap in its product range. Anyone who is at home in the Hue universe no longer has to worry about stupid, useless light switches on the wall. The module makes operation easier for Hue users without having to change anything visually or laboriously cabling. Those who also rely on smart lighting from other providers or do not have a Hue bridge at all will be just as unhappy with the solution as HomeKit fans. The Philips Hue could also improve on the functions and enable time-based switching, for example.

Per

  • Installed quickly
  • Also for double rockers and dimmers
  • Lamps can also be switched in scenes

Cons

  • Relatively high price
  • For Hue lights only
  • Hue bridge required

Assessment of the editors

Good

D.hat annoys every smart home fan: guests, children or those who refuse to use technology, who are not familiar with the smart lighting in the house, have reflexively pressed the light switch again – and thus de-energized the networked ceiling light. Even lighting systems such as Philips Hue are then no longer smart: they are simply no longer accessible via app, automation or voice commands. Philips Hue has the solution with the new wall switch module. The small control box is supposed to pimp classic light switches so that the smart lamps can respond. COMPUTER BILD clarifies how well this works in a practical test.

Practice test: install and wire the module

Installation was easy in the test. To do this, the module is built into the wall behind the light switch. With its dimensions (4.3×3.8 centimeters) it is quite compact – smaller than a slim matchbox. On top of that, it is only 1 centimeter thick, so it is usually flat enough to fit in the can behind the light switch. There is a small battery in the module. Thanks to the button cell, the wall module does not have to be connected to the electricity; it is only wired to the light switch. The existing current is bridged using the supplied terminal and routed past the switch. This ensures that the ceiling lamp, including the Hue lamp screwed into it, is permanently supplied with power. The module itself docks to the light switch using two cables. Finally, the other end of the cable goes into the small socket at the bottom of the module. Important: Even if connecting the module is quite easy to do, it is essential to remove the fuse before working on the 230-volt power supply and, if in doubt, to hire an electrician. Anyone can change the battery at the appropriate time – and according to Philips Hue, it is due after five years at the earliest.


Philips Hue app: this is how the light switch becomes smart

If the module is wired to the light switch, it makes contact with the Philips Hue bridge via Zigbee radio. It is absolutely necessary because it forwards the control commands from the Philips Hue app on the mobile phone to the module and lamp. Which ones these are and which lamps should react can be set in the app. The “simple mode” allows the light to be switched on and off easily. If you want more, choose the “scene cycle”. Here, the souped-up light switch can be assigned three light scenes. In the kitchen, a simple press could switch on a bright light for cooking, press the switch three times (on-off-on) to activate a cozy light for dinner and press it five times (on-off-on-off-on) the subtle lighting for the nightly course get to the fridge. The switch does not have to be flicked several times in a hurry – the testers were happy to take two seconds for each press. And: The whole thing is not limited to the ceiling lamp that is under constant current. Rather, any other Hue lamps in the room or in the Hue system can also be switched.



FAQ: Important questions about the module clarified

Since the module is an entirely new product from Philips Hue, it raises many questions. COMPUTER BILD gives the answers:

Philips Hue wall switch module, light switch, back, battery compartment © Philips Hue, Signify, COMPUTERBILD

Battery operation: Because there is a button cell in the module, it does not have to be connected to the power line. The battery should last at least five years.




Philips Hue wall switch module: test result, price

Philips Hue closes a gap in its product range. Anyone who is at home in the Hue universe no longer has to worry about stupid, useless light switches on the wall. The module makes operation easier for Hue users without having to change anything visually or laboriously cabling. Those who also rely on smart lighting from other providers or do not have a Hue bridge at all will be just as unhappy with the solution as HomeKit fans. The Philips Hue could also improve on the functions and enable time-based switching, for example.

The Philips Hue wall switch module costs 40 euros plus 6 euros postage, im Double pack it is available free of charge for 70 euros. So if you want to make the light switches in the entire house smart, you have to dig deep into your pocket – and be patient: So far, the part can only be ordered via the Philips Hue online shop, but is regularly out of stock there.

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