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12 March 2013, 11:30

APIs for networked LED bulbs from Philips

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The Hue starter pack
Zoom The Hue starter pack
Source: Philips

Philips has released two developer interfaces (APIs) for its networked LED lighting system Hue. One API comes in the form of an SDK for iOS apps, available from GitHub, the other provides a user-friendly REST interface.

Developers can use the APIs to query how many lights are available, sort lights into groups and address lights on their own or as groups. Both colour (up to 16 million shades) and brightness are configurable. The bulbs communicate with the base station over a standard ZigBee Light Link connection. It is, for example, possible to have Hue respond to ambient light – one example is already available in the form of a hack for the XBMC media centre.

Philips is selling a Hue starter set, consisting of a Zigbee bridge and a total of three bulbs, for £179.95 on the Apple Store. More bulbs can be added in later for £49.95 each.

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