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Philips Hue’s Latest App Update Supports Multi-User Smart Homes

An updated Philips hue app on an iPhone

If you like Philips Hue smart home devices, then you may find yourself spending a lot of time in the Philips Hue app. Get ready for a big change, as Signify (parent company of Philips hue) started rolling out an overhaul to the app today. You’ll get new colors, features, and better automations.

The app update will roll out over the next few weeks, but if you want it right now, you should be able to head to your respective app store and ask for the update. As soon as you update, you’ll be greeted by a new Home screen. Now you’ll see all your lights and scenes in one place instead of just the rooms and zones before. And that’s one of the big changes to the app, less digging into menus to get to your most-used items.

The Philips Hue app with a room position interface.

Another new feature in the home screen is the ability to switch between multiple Philips Hue bridges from one place. Under the old system that was a hassle. And now, settings for Lights, Rooms, and Zones can now be configured in each section of the Home tab. And rather than head to the settings tab to add a new light, you can add it in the room tab, which removes the extra steps of associating a device to a room later. You can even specify where in the room a new light will go, and it will update its lighting to match other nearby Philips Hue lights in the app.

The updated app adds splashes color everywhere, and in most cases, will match the actual color of your lights. As you change between scenes and colors, the light in the app will change to match the light in your room. But one of the biggest changes centers on routines.

A Philips Hue app listing all the devices in a living room.

Now instead of routines, the Philips Hue app has automations—though the concept is the same. But many of the old limitations with routines are gone now. Now when you create automations centered around sunset or sunrise, you can get even more specific. New options let you turn on the lights five, ten, or even fifteen minutes, or more, before or after sunset and sunrise.

The Philips Hue app also gains a huge new feature for the Coming Home and Leaving Home automations. Under the previous routines, if you set up a Leaving Home routine to turn off all the lights, it would activate even if other people stayed home. Now, if more than one person in the household uses the Philips Hue app, the app will recognize that not everyone left and skip running the automation. The same goes for the Coming Home automation.

Philips Hue 4.0 is rolling out right now, and you can check for the update in both the iOS and Google Play stores.

Download on the Apple App StoreGet it on Google Play
Josh Hendrickson Josh Hendrickson
Josh Hendrickson is the Editor in Chief of Review Geek and is responsible for the site's content direction. He has worked in IT for nearly a decade, including four years spent repairing and servicing computers for Microsoft. He’s also a smart home enthusiast who built his own smart mirror with just a frame, some electronics, a Raspberry Pi, and open-source code. Read Full Bio »