What is the Hue Bridge, and is it Needed?
The Hue Bridge is the hub, the control panel, the heart of the Hue echo system. The bridge is the device that talks to your bulbs, tells them what to do, when to turn on, colors to be and what to do.
The bridge itself is mains powered and connects to your network via an ethernet cable, it is quick and easy to set up.
The Philips Hue Bridge
The small hub that allows you to adjust your hue bulbs using your phone or tablet, be it at home or away on holiday. With the bridge connected to the internet you can access your hue bulbs when away from home, allowing you to turn lights on and off if you are on holiday for example as a security measure.
The hub doesn’t require an internet connection and can be used perfectly fine with it. However it does need to be connected to a wire router, as the bridge it self is not wireless.
Downsides with the bridge is that it is an additional piece of hardware you need to purchase adding to the cost and investment in the Hue echo system, additionally the hub is not wireless and therefore needs a wired connection to your router.
Philips Hue Bridge Setup
This video shows how quick and easy it is to set up your Hue Bridge.
It is important to note that you don’t need an internet connection, just a working router and network, an internet connection is needed to update the firmware on the bulbs and hue bridge, and also to control your bulbs when away from home.
How many lights can a Hue bridge control?
The latest gen 2 Philips hue bridge (Square one) can control up to 50 light bulbs and 12 accessories at a time.
You can tell which bridge you have and which is the latest from the image below.
You can view all the philips hue bridge lights here that you can buy and use.
Is it needed?
Yes and no, I say that because you can use your hue bulbs without, however you are limited by what you can do which sort of makes it a pointless excercise.
You can turn your hue bulbs on and off using the Hue dimmer switch, you can add up to 10 bulbs to this switch turning them on and off and dimming, however that is all. You cannot adjust the colors of the bulbs or turn them on or off from your phone.
With the hub you can control all your bulbs turning them on and off as a group or individually, changing the colours and the ability to add up to 50 bulbs to your set up allowing you to cover your home in them.
Buying a Philips Hue Bridge
If you are looking to buy a Hue bridge then a starter kit is a great way to get a bridge and bulbs in a package that makes for good value compared to buying it all individually.
This starter kits includes a bridge, 3 bulbs and a dimmer switch. Perfect for kick starting your hue set up and using in a single room such as living room or kitchen.
If you already have Hue bulbs or looking to upgrade from the 1st gen hue bridge then you can buy it on its own. Amazon sell the Hue bridge, you can also by it from most electrical online stores.
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