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posted by cmn32480 on Tuesday December 15 2015, @11:09PM   Printer-friendly
from the like-deja-vu-all-over-again dept.

Purchasers of the Philips Hue "smart" ambient lighting system are finding out that the new firmware pushed out by the manufacturer has cut off access to previously-supported lightbulbs.

Philips uses ZigBee, which should mean any bulbs compatible with this standard will work with its Hue products. Not anymore. The firmware update removes this support, limiting this "open, global" standard to Philips' own bulbs and those it has designated as "Friends of Hue."

When owners complained that they had been given the old bait-and-switch on products they already paid for, Philips issued this statement:

While the Philips Hue system is based on open technologies we are not able to ensure all products from other brands are tested and fully interoperable with all of our software updates. For guaranteed compatibility you need to use Philips Hue or certified Friends of Hue products.

The Philips Hue is a premium-priced LED lighting system, but the rapid pace of LED efficiency gains has started to leave them behind. Cheaper competitors have started to significantly undercut Hue's pricing. Maybe this lockout is more about pricing protection than it is about quality protection


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  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by frojack on Wednesday December 16 2015, @12:22AM

    by frojack (1554) on Wednesday December 16 2015, @12:22AM (#276900) Journal

    Trying to invoke lockins the minute you notice people are eating your market share is virtually never successful.

    I'm not aware of having purchased any Phillips LED bulbs in the past, but I assure you I won't in the future.
    I've replaced just about every incandescent and compact florescent bulb in my house. I'm still waiting
    for certain size bulbs that just don't seem to be available in anything but halogen. underneath your
    hanging microwave, or above your bathroom mirrors).

    I haven't a single use for color tune-able light bulbs, and am not likely to look for one.

    --
    No, you are mistaken. I've always had this sig.
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  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday December 16 2015, @12:48AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday December 16 2015, @12:48AM (#276912)

    > Trying to invoke lockins the minute you notice people are eating your market share is virtually never successful.

    I've been holding of buying any smart bulbs, waiting for Philiips to do a 2nd generation of theirs with increased lux and decreased prices. Instead of competing based on value they took this route. I guess that means I should give up on waiting for their stuff to get better and just go with one of the lesser known brands.