Philips Hue White Starter Kit and Color Ambiance A19

 Philips Hue White and Color Ambiance A19 Starter Kit

No doubt, Philips has revolutionized the world of bright LEDs. The latest bulb, Hue White, and Color Ambiance prove that why the company has been a major competitor in this space from the very beginning. The design of the latest Philips Hue White Starter Kit has just changed slightly. Though they are still shaped like a rounded off twister, now they come up with a white base instead of a silver one. Overall, the bulbs remain quite modest in comparison to the competition. They are designed to work successfully in connection to your Wi-Fi router through an Ethernet cable.

Philips Hue White and Color Ambiance A19 Starter Kit

The Philips Hue White and Color Ambiance A19 Starter kit is not small and more streamlined in contrast to prior models at $60. It is included along with three bulbs in a $200 kit reviewed here. It has become a standard in its way and now compatible with methods and GE bulbs. These Hue lights efficiently work with Amazon’s Alexa voice assistant, Apple’s HomeKit platform, and several other smart-home products. Have a look to know more about finer features and reliable performance of Philips Hue White and Color Ambiance A19 Starter kit.

Let’s get rolling……

 Philips Hue White and Color Ambiance A19 Starter Kit pros and cons
Philips Hue White and Color Ambiance A19 Starter Kit pros and cons

Pros

  • Philips Hue White Starter kit offers an impressive list of compatible smart home platforms.
  • It can sync your bulb with the iOS device.
  • You can trigger lighting changes by asking Siri.
  • The redesigned Hue bridge is less intrusive.
  • It includes support for Apple Siri and Apple watch.
  • The technical improvements make them the best looking and brightest bulbs.
  • It offers smooth dimming, so the lights are never too bright or dark.
  • You can control lights from anywhere when paired with Philips Hue bridge.
  • It lets you set different rooms for different times.
  • You can download third-party apps to integrate A19 bulb with music or gaming experience.
  • It offers a range of natural white light from cool energizing daylight to relaxing warm white light.
  • You can use 16 million colors to paint your walls with a variety of light shades.

 

Cons

  • The app could have more benefited from the ease of use upgrade.
  • There are no fun features.
  • Installation process may be a bit complicated.
  • The A19 starter kit is expensive.
  • The app is simple with white only features.
  • It requires a proprietary hub.

Key Features

Power output Eco-friendly Compatibility A 19 Color Bulbs A 19 Colors Lumen Output A 19 Colors Light Output Warranty
100–240 V AC / 50–60Hz

 

14°F- 113°F temperature iOS 8.0 and later iPhone 4S, 5, 5S, 6, 6 Plus E26 contact medium 800 lm at 4000K

 

Functional white light

 

2-years
5 V DC 600Ma output voltage 5% < H < 95% humidity Apple Home Kit compatibility, only iOS 9.0 10W Screw base fitting 570 lm at 2700K

 

16 million colors

 

0.1 W max standby power iPad 2, 3rd and 4th generation Lifetime: 25k hours 342 lm at 2000K

 

CCT range 2000-6500K
iPad Air 1, 2 Less than 2sec startup from AC power 550 lm at 6500K

 

Dimming only via RF down to 5%
iPad Mini 1, 2, 3 Less than 5 sec startup from standby 80 lm/W luminous efficacy @4000K

 

Beam angle –160° ± 20°

 

iPod touch 5th generation 110V-130V input voltage
Android 2.3 or later 2.4×4.3-inch lamp size

 

Features

Philips Hue White Starter Kit
Philips Hue White Starter Kit features

Philips Hue White  Starter kit comes with three Hue bulbs and a bridge that you can control via Philips Hue App on your Android or iOS device. The most significant addition is that Philips benefited from HomeKit without compromising on the core components of the Hue platform. The major advantages of Hue include updated software that allows third party developers to make their apps for the lights and bring up a new functionality.

Some developer stuff, great isn’t it?

Philips Hue White and Color Ambiance A19 Starter Kit

With the app, you can change the color of your bulbs using the drag and drop display that lets you cover the part of the spectrum that you want. The emergence of HomeKit support allows smart home devices to effectively communicate within iOS. The HomeKit compatibility makes it exceptionally easy for other product to assimilate Hue controls into their controller apps. That means you can program lighting changes that are linked directly to those products e.g. lights that turn on or off when you lock your door.

Moreover, you can do that a lot by syncing your lights with a master hub called as SmartThings or an automation system like IFTTT. Philips Hue White and Color Ambiance A19 Starter kit association with HomeKit brings you voice activation and on-demand lighting changes that are fit for the system. Now asking Siri to turn the lights is way too easier. In addition to red, blue and orange which are the primary colors, you can request teal, gold, and other colors as well. Siri can understand modifiers such as light blue. However, it cannot understand anything on the white light spectrum such as soft white, daylight or 2700K.

 Philips Hue White and Color Ambiance A19 Starter Kit app
Philips Hue White and Color Ambiance A19 Starter Kit app

While using Siri, you can also control your Hue scenes which lets you trigger multiple bulbs at a time.  The Hue scenes are not programmed in the same way as HomeKit scenes so they might not work at first. However, the working is simple. All you need to do is go to the Hue’s app settings and select “Siri voice control.” You will get a list of scenes that you want to control using Siri and He will translate them into something that Siri can work with.

Pretty customized, right?

Another option you have is to create new scenes using an app that follows Home Kit’s scene-creation protocols. Though it might look inappropriate to program the Hue lights outside the Hue app, by doing so, it will let you create more complex scenes that involve your other HomeKit-compatible gadgets e.g.  a good night scene will turn the lights off and lock your door.

Moving on, the Hue offers a bridge transfer mode in the app that will make it more easy to switch. Simply follow the onscreen instructions, and it will save your existing settings in the cloud and load them into the new bridge. It will consume few minutes to get things switched, and after you are done, many lights and scenes will remain intact.

Though Siri-powered voice control works well, still occasionally there might be language mix-up. Another unexpected drawback is the Hue’s integration with the voice-activated Amazon Echo. The new bridge does not let the Echo talk to your lights. The company is working with Amazon to fix it as soon as possible.

 

Performance

Performance
Performance

Philips Hue White and Color Ambiance A19 Starter kit offers a superb performance that can make your day. Using the Hue mobile app, Web portal, Siri or HomeKit support, you can easily create sophisticated remote controlled lighting setups along with automation. For instance, you can set all your lights off as soon as your iPhone leaves the house.

In our testing, we set the lamps fade at sunset, and it worked well. Also, you can trigger the scenes to switch between color and brightness settings. We have tried even more elaborate options through IFTTT integration. The white ambiance bulbs strike between Philips cheaper pure white options and expensive full-color models. This white ambiance collection offers various color temperatures within the white spectrum that range from a warm orange to a cold blueish white. The important part is that you can still adjust your lights as per different moods or times of the day. Additionally, the updated Hue app gives you an option of “Wake up” and “Go to sleep” along with “Nightlight” scenes. All these options are formulated with the white ambiance.

Philips Hue White and Color Ambiance A19 Starter Kit

While testing the Philips Hue White and Color Ambiance A19 Starter kit which comes with two bulbs, scene switch and bright hub, we found that warmer lights excellent from the most basic LED bulbs which can be quite refreshing according to our liking. In the various situation, warm lighting feels more natural. Moreover, the full brightness is 800 lumens which are available along with the neutral 4,000K color temperature and is not the default setting. The output dims as you go warmer down to 400 lumens while you hit 2,220K. For few people, even 800 lumens are dim, and they look for using some extra lighting to compensate.

 Philips Hue White and Color Ambiance A19 Starter Kit performance
Philips Hue White and Color Ambiance A19 Starter Kit performance

We found the new Hue app relatively well designed. It allows users setup lights, rooms, routine without any trouble. Also, it lets you manage bridges and switches. You can control the lights over cellular connections through the app. However, Siri will only work outside of Wi-Fi range if you have an Apple TV. We observed some odd limitations in the software. For example, to rename the bulbs, you need to go into the settings menu and manually resync them with Siri. Also, Siri will not automatically recognize each scene. Hence you must select by yourself.

Furthermore, when you say, “turn on the living room lights” or “dim the living room lights to 40%”, you can’t say “turn on the existing lights to 40 percent” as first, you have to turn them on and then you can tweak brightness. Another issue in our observation with the app is that it may not be instantly apparent how to adjust brightness unless you use scenes or routines. The only way to control color temperature on each bulb is by tapping icons that you may not recognize as interactive. Also, with routines, you cannot set lights to shift to a particular color temperature automatically. In many cases, you may not have any way to create routines for individual bulbs rather than making separate rooms.

Comparison

Comparison
Comparison

As the brand says it all, Philips is one of the most prominent competitors in the electronic world. The Hue color ambiance bulbs have not changed much since 2012. Philips Hue White and Color Ambiance A19 Starter kit comes with the new bulbs that last longer. Also, the company is adding new shapes, sized and accessories. The Hue app has also improved significantly. The Hue bulbs are available in wide range of forms in which A19 has become very popular in a short while. The price of the starter kit includes the required Philips Hue Bridge.

Whereas, new bulbs cost $60 each. Here LIFX color has become a major rival. The LIFX color LED bright bulb along with an array of infrared LEDs will even help your home security camera to see in the dark. Overall, Philips has earned the best position for extensive collection of styles and several compatible accessories. If you want color A19 or BR30, LIFX is also a considerable option. It’s true if you are installing them in cylinder lamps as they are the brightest bulbs in this roundup.

The price of the starter kit includes the required Philips Hue Bridge. Whereas, new bulbs cost $60 each. Here LIFX color has become a major rival. The LIFX color LED bright bulb along with an array of infrared LEDs will even help your home security camera to see in the dark. Overall, Philips has earned the best position for extensive collection of styles and several compatible accessories. If you want color A19 or BR30, LIFX is also a considerable option. It’s true if you are installing them in cylinder lamps as they are the brightest bulbs in this roundup.

Overall, Philips has earned the best position for extensive collection of styles and several compatible accessories. If you want color A19 or BR30, LIFX is also a considerable option. It’s true if you are installing them in cylinder lamps as they are the brightest bulbs in this roundup.

Philips Hue White and Color Ambiance A19 Starter Kit

 

Conclusion

Nonetheless, automation is the foremost reason to buy Philips Hue White and Color Ambiance A19 Starter kit. Once you set up the right routine, you will hardly need Siri or app to switch. This is something fanatic about lights that are coming on whenever you need them and shutting off when they are not required. Hence, it boosts security and power efficiency at the same time. This white ambiance kit is an excellent starting point when you need at least two bulbs with warmer lighting. Therefore, it makes clear sense to go for $175 white and color kit.

Additionally, if you have several smart gadgets and you want color hanging bulbs that incredibly work with them then Hue is the best option you can get. Likewise, if you are a Hue and iOS user as well, then upgrading the new Hue Bridge to setup and add Siri controls is worth considering this kit.

But if you haven’t bought Philips Hue White and Color Ambiance A19 Starter kit yet, the $200 cost of getting started might be high for you. On the other hand, competition is even more compelling. LIFX offers brighter and high-quality color bulbs with easy to use the app at $60 each.  Also, there is no hub required so you can control each one straight away from the box, meaning you don’t need to invest $200 just to get started.

Lighten up your life, the Philips way!

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