Best Apps For Hue

Hue’s long awaited app store has opened up, and it is full of spectacular options to enhance your Hue lighting experience. Here is a look at some of the best apps that work with your smart lights and bridge, allowing you to customize how you use them.

Best Philips Hue apps 2020: Make your lights more fun and dynamic

Best Apps For Hue

A huge library of dynamic scenes, including a mode that syncs your lights to your music

OnSwitch is one of the Philips Hue appsScreenshots from an app about fireworks, albums and light groups

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OnSwitch works with both Hue and Lifx bulbs, so if you’re someone with both those brands, then this could be one of the best Philips Hue apps for you. All the basic controls are at your fingertips, but it’s the library of scenes that make this app stand out. From candlelight scenes to jellyfish (hey, you do you; we’re not judging) there are heaps to choose from. The app is constantly updated with new themes to stay relevant, with the Super Bowl and Chinese New Year, both recent additions.

Some are unlikely to get much use – we’re not sure how many people want to have their lights and speakers imitate a German police car, but it’s an option. The app is pretty easy to use overall, although it sports a slightly messy interface.

There are some scenes available for free, but you’ll need to cough up a monthly fee of £3.99 for the premium tier to unlock the whole catalogue. Alternatively, you can buy the premium scenes à la carte, but just keep an eye on how much you’re spending. There’s a 7-day free trial if you want a taste of the ongoing paid tier.

Moves beyond standard lighting with experiences that combine audio with a light show

hueDynamic is one of the Philips Hue appsScreenshots from Huedynamic app about all lights, color pallete and ambiences

One of our absolute favourite Hue apps right now is hueDynamic, which is jam-packed with features for your setup. There are “experiences” that combine lights with sound and can be mixed and matched. “Ambiences” create scenes based on photos (and are stored on the bridge, so you don’t have to keep replicating them). There’s a Disco mode and even a feature that lets you point your phone at the TV to create scene-fitting dynamic lighting.

You can include the same lights in multiple groups and control lights on multiple bridges at once – super-handy!

It’s a pretty substantial package, and much is available for free – although you’ll need to upgrade to the paid Pro version to remove time limits on certain experiences and unlock features such as advanced Hue Dap and Dimmer programming.

A simpler way to control your lights than the standard Hue app provides

Huemote is one of the Philips Hue apps

Huemote is one of the simplest and most straightforward Hue apps around, providing a quick and easy dashboard of all your Hue smart lights. It makes changing bulb colours or adjusting brightness super-easy, and you can even control groups and scenes from the lock-screen using the Today widget.

You can build groups and control up to 16 lights at any time, with the ability to organise bulbs and groups as you wish.

If you have a lot of Hue lights and rooms in your home, the Huemote app offers a great way to view the status of all your lights on one screen. Highly recommended for anyone who wants to simplify their Hue experience as much as possible. There’s even an Apple Watch app.

An Android exclusive that makes it light work of controlling your lights

quickhue is only available on Android

Exclusive to Android, QuickHue adds a Hue icon to your Android’s Quick Settings, allowing you to turn your lights on and off with a tap. It’s that simple.

The basic version is free and provides a single tile, while the $1.99/£1.99 Pro version gives you up to six. Try the free version and see how you get on, but for Android users, this app comes thoroughly recommended as one of the Best Philips Hue apps. A real time-saver.

Hue Disco
The Best Philips Hue app for party-lovers

HueDisco is one of the Philips Hue appsThree smartphones displaying Hue Disco settings screen and Hue Mood settings screen

One for the party-lovers. The Hue Disco app uses your phone’s microphone to transform sounds into a light show. It isn’t totally random, either: you can select a themed colour-set for the app to work from, and tweak settings such as transition times, how bright you want the lights, and how often you want to see different colours. There’s a strobe setting, too, which also lets you build a custom colour theme.

We also like how you can adjust the microphone sensitivity and silence detection to control how the lights respond to sound.

There’s enough here for a good time – but it will cost you. The app costs £3.99 to download, making it one of the more expensive options on this list; but it means you get the full suite of features right away.

An incredibly powerful way to control your lights, but it’s for iOS only

iConnectHue is only available on iOS

If we’re just counting features, the iOS-only iConnectHue might be the most accomplished on the list. It has a £5.99 up-front cost, but for the money, you’re getting an app that’s crammed with new ways to use your Hue lights. Better yet, it’s extremely well polished and regularly updated.

Creating animations is super-easy, and there’s an impressive level of depth to the customisation. Features include intelligent timers, and something called “Magic Scenes” – an easy, fun tool for building custom gradients and deploying them across rooms.

The switch and motion sensor editor is really great, too, making it easy to assign various scenes to different buttons and triggers.

It also now offers Siri Shortcut support, letting you execute scenes without opening the app at all. Overall, our favourite app on this list – just a shame it isn’t available on Android.

Best hue apps iphone

iConnectHue is one of the most comprehensive third-party Hue apps in the business at the moment, and it’s only available for iOS. It has a wide range of features include automated timings, music syncing, simple light grouping, intuitive color management and plenty more besides.

You’ve got a huge choice of scenes and animations to pick from inside the app, while you can customize the app to bring the settings and the features you need the most to the forefront. It works with just about every Philips Hue accessory too, including the dimmer switch and motion sensor devices.

$4.99 | Download iOS app

quickhue app

An Android-only app, QuickHue puts an on/off switch in your phone’s pull-down Quick Settings, so you can quickly control your lights. It’s really as simple as that.

There’s a free version available, which gets you a single control, but upgrade to the Pro version ($1.99) and you can add up to six. This app may lose some of the fancy features of other apps on this list, but it’s a useful addition and can save time delving through other apps.

Download Android app

hueDynamic app
A current favorite at Ambient Towers, hueDynamic has made a name for itself with its “ambiences” and “experiences”, with new scenes added daily and more features than you can shake a light strip at. Want to get the party banging? There are some neat sound to light disco modes in here. You can even create ambiences from photos.

hueDynamic also lets you point your phone’s camera at the TV while you’re watching a movie to sync your lights for added ambience. And here’s a welcome bonus: You can control lights on multiple bridges without having to switch between them.

Download Android app | Download iOS app

hue homekit adaptive lighting

Apple Home
One for Apple users only, obviously, the Home app might seem like a strange addition here, but it now offers one feature that Hue doesn’t: Adaptive Lighting. When you select the Adaptive Lighting option in the Home app, your selected apps will adjust colour temperature automatically through the day: warmer in the morning, colder light in the middle of the day, and no blue light for the evening.

The only minor issue is that if you use a Hue wireless switch to change mode, you disable Adaptive Lighting. One workaround is to use a HomeKit compatible button, such as the Flic 2 (hub required), and set this up to turn on Adaptive Lighting.

Yonomi app hue

Yonomi lets you automate your home with powerful routines, supporting devices from most major manufacturers, including Philips Hue. For example, you can have your Honeywell Evohome change mode, your Hue lights turn off, and your Sonos player stop when you leave home.

Yonomi has basic control over Hue lights only, but as a powerful way to control your home automatically, it’s an excellent addition to any smart home. Even better, its controls operate faster than similar rules using IFTTT.

Check out our comprehensive guide to Yonomi.

Download Android app | Download iOS app

Thorlight for hue

By default, the Hue app only gives you rather boring static light settings. Thorlight improves on that with dynamic lighting effects that can shift and move through the colour spectrum.

You can use the app to link lights that are physically near to each other, so that Thorlight’s animations can spread and move more naturally through a room, giving a more involving and deeper effect.

There’s an impressive range of free animations and scenes bundled with the app, but there are also other options that you can unlock with in-app purchases.

Download iOS app

If you’re having a house party, or just want to liven your music up, HueDisco is the app for you. It uses your phone’s speaker to listen to background music and then makes your Hue lights pop and flash in time to the beat, giving you an instant disco.

You get full control over how fast the lights change (we found slower works best even for a party), the colours used and the maximum brightness. And you can choose which bulbs you want to be part of the disco, leaving some lights on for mood lighting.

$3.99 | Download Android app | Download iOS app

ilightshow hue app

iLightShow works along similar lines to Hue Disco, but it’s specifically for syncing your lights with whatever’s playing on Spotify or Apple Music – so this isn’t an app to go for if you do all your streaming through YouTube Music or Deezer. As an added bonus, it works with Lifx and Nanoleaf lights too.

All you really have to do is connect your lights and connect your music service of choice, and the app takes care of the rest. There are a few customization options to play around with however, letting you control the brightness, saturation, colors and timing of the light show generated by your playlists.

Download Android app | Download iOS app

Hue TV app

Hue TV
The Philips Hue Play Sync box can sync lights in your room to the on-screen action, giving you an immersive light show. It’s an expensive option, though, particularly if you splash out on the new Philips Hue Gradient light strip.

With the Hue TV app, you use your phone or tablet’s camera trained on the screen, Hue TV changes your Hue bulbs’ colour to match the on-screen action. Using the app means you can’t use your tablet or phone for anything else at the same time, but it’s worth it for the extra experience that Hue TV brings. Also works with Lifx bulb

$2.99 | Download iOS app

lightbow philips hue app
If you’re looking to turn your Philips Hue (you can add in your WeMo or Lifx too) lights into a stunning light show to make your room a showstopper, Lightbow for iOS is essential. It’s one of the largest libraries of light shows you can get.

Not only that, but there’s a fairly powerful editor that you can use to create your own light shows. You can control each light step, the duration of the light step, the colour of the light step, fades between the steps and the overall duration. There’s also a $24.99 yearly subscription that’ll get you access to all presets as they continue to be added to the app.

$4.99| Download iOS app

prisimify hue app

If you want the slickest synchronization between Spotify and your Philips Hue lights then Prismify is worth a look (as long as you’ve got an Android phone rather than an iPhone): it aims to be as precise and real time as possible, building on a detailed analysis of your Spotify tracks to create a light show that really does feel perfectly matched.

Another area where the app stands out is in its customization options. You can play around with the different sync settings inside the app, and even get Prismify to remember the lighting timings and colors that go with certain songs so that they can be repeated the next time the tracks come round again. Whether you’re looking for a disco or an ambient effect, Prismify can help.


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