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Home / NewTech / Philips Hue Outdoor Sensor Test: Use this $ 50 sensor to trigger Hue lights and HomeKit gadgets

Philips Hue Outdoor Sensor Test: Use this $ 50 sensor to trigger Hue lights and HomeKit gadgets



An outdoor motion sensor from Philips Hue seemed almost inevitable last year after the Intelligent Lighting Leg introduced a new series of luminaires for the exterior of your home – none of which has built-in motion sensors of their own. It was then at the CES in January – a weatherproof, battery powered outdoor sensor from Philips Hue that tracks not only movement, but also temperature and ambient light.

The Philips Hue Outdoor Sensor is available now and costs US $ 50. Like everything else in the Hue catalog, he uses a wireless Zigbee radio signal to connect to the Hue Bridge, which you need to keep connected to your router. Mount the sensor outside your home and the all-seeing eye can trigger your lights when something passes by. It worked well when I tried it and it adds enough to the existing Hue experience to make it a worthy hauler for those who have already bought into the ecosystem ̵

1; especially if you are interested What Hue Is Going for Outdoor Lighting (And if you are not, remember that there is a Philips Hue Indoor Motion Sensor that costs a little less.)

Hues Sensitive Page

With Hues Outdoor, you can trigger up to three light groups simultaneously, completely with separate settings on how the lighting should behave during the day and night hours.


Screenshots of Ry Crist / CNET

Motion-activated lights are nothing new, and if you only want it for your porch, you'll find many non-smart options in your local hardware store that cost a lot less. Ring 's upcoming Outdoor Smart Lights look like they're also better bargains with a variety of low-cost lights that have their own motion sensors.

What Hue Adds The equation is the ability to fire up to three groups of lights simultaneously, including in-app controls for the behavior of the lights. This is simple enough – just tell the app which scene your lights are supposed to jump on, if motion is detected, what scene to return to, if the movement is stopped, and how long after stopping the movement before it starts takes place. [19659002] There may still be some quirks with these scene controls. During a series of tests in the CNET Smart Home, I set the front garden lights to always turn on an icy, "arctic aurora" scene when motion is detected. Instead, the standard soft white was activated after several attempts. I've tried switching the automation to another scene – the hot white "Energize" setting – but the lights are always glowing in a soft yellowish white.

Interestingly, during these Energize tests, the lights were initially turned on at the correct bluish-white setting – but only for a fraction of a second before switching to soft-white. What I mean by that is the Twitter video I embedded above on an otherwise successful test.

Besides that, the sensor worked really well in my tests. Setting up was easy (just press a button on the back of the device and then insert it into the Hue app), and only a single screw was drilled during assembly. I have not noticed any strange false alarms, and above all, it has always turned on the light when it should.

Also nice: I could tell the difference when I adjusted the motion sensitivity up and down. At the lowest setting it would still crawl me. That's a good thing – you want to be able to dial them down to minimize false positives without compromising the ability to recognize people.
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