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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: 2) by MostCynical on Wednesday December 16 2015, @02:16AM

    by MostCynical (2589) on Wednesday December 16 2015, @02:16AM (#276936) Journal

    retro-fitting a house with centrally-controllable electric devices is painful and expensive.

    "Standards" for home automation are a joke.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Home_automation [wikipedia.org]
    http://www.digitaltrends.com/home/zigbee-vs-zwave-vs-insteon-home-automation-protocols-explained/ [digitaltrends.com]

    These LEDs at least pretended to play nicely with others, and were wireless.

    The pity is, that no private company will want to be undercut by cheap import knock-offs, and no company will support someone else's "standard".

    Want your windows to shut, your doors to close and lock, and your lights to turn off when you leave? Better start designing the control system and building it in *before* you even start laying foundations!

    --
    "I guess once you start doubting, there's no end to it." -Batou, Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex
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