10 best Philips Hue apps for Android

featured image - best Philips Hue apps for Android
Philips Hue was one of the first truly mainstream smart lights. You can find them in a variety of styles, including bulbs and light strips. There are competitors in the space that may or may not do a better job. That’s usually up to personal interpretation. As it turns out, there are plenty of options when it comes to Philips Hue apps. Philips has left their stuff open for third party developers to play with. Here are the best Philips Hue apps for Android! Note, some of these also come with support for Lifx lights as well, one of Philips Hue’s larger competitors.


AutoHue (Tasker Plug-in)

Price: $1.29
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Task can do basically everything. It can also control your Philips Hue lights with this plug-in. Tasker has a bit of a learning curve. That means this isn’t the best option for those who need something simple and easy. However, the customization is top notch. You can control brightness, color, blinks of various lengths, color loops, and custom JSON scripts. You’ll have to learn how to use Tasker. However, it otherwise works very well. It’s definitely one of the better Philips Hue apps.
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Hue Disco

Price: $3.99
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Hue Disco is one of the better Philips Hue apps for parties. It taps into Hue’s ability to change depending on sound. You just play loud music with the app running. The lights will then change color, get dimmer, or get brighter. It’ll all depend on the music you’re listening to. There are a variety of features and customization options. It’ll even let you know if your music has hit the threshold of your lighting set up and can’t go any further. You will need a Philips Hue Controller in order to make this app work.
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hueManic

Price: Free / $2.99
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hueManis is one of many Philips Hue apps that makes your lights more dynamic. By that, we mean that it’ll change the colors more frequently. It has about a dozen scenes that you can use. The colors will change and keep pace with things like music, your mood, etc. It works really well on its own. However, there are some additional features for the super tech savvy like ADB commands. You can try this one for free if you’d like. The full version costs $2.99.
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Hue Pro

Price: $1.99
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Hue Pro is one of the better basic Philips Hue apps. It comes with a lot of the same features as the stock app. That includes lighting presets, dimming and brightness toggles, a widget, music integration, and more. You can even control your lights away from home once you set it up right. Unlike most, the developers have a list of devices that they used to test this app. It should still work on devices that aren’t on the list. However, it’ll almost certainly work better on the apps that do. There’s no free version of this one. You’ll have to buy it and test it inside of the refund time to make sure you like it.
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Hue Pro

Hue Switcher

Price: Free / $3.99
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Hue Switcher is another one of the replacement Philips Hue apps for the stock app. It has one of the most robust sets of features of any app on the list. It features over 40 lava-lamp style changing scenes. You can also control the lights through your phone. That includes color, brightness, and the usual on/off. It also has support for the Hue Tap, Dimmer Switch, and Motion Sensor products. It should work for pretty much whatever you need it to work for. You can download this one and try it for free. The pro version will run you $3.99.
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Lumio (for Philips Hue)

Price: Free with in-app purchases
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Lumio is one of the newer Philips Hue apps for Android. It is also one of the simpler options. You can do the basic stuff. That includes turning the lights on and off, changing the color, and changing the brightness. It also boasts the ability to change the color with fewer taps than the stock app. It doesn’t compete with the other Philips Hue apps in terms of features. At least, it doesn’t yet. However, the interface is really nice and it does the basics pretty well. It may be a bit buggy, though.
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Lumio (for Philips Hue)

MediaVibe

Price: Up to $2.99
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MediaVibe is a developer on Google Play. They have released several decent Philips Hue apps. Their apps include Philips Hue profiles for a variety of events. They have one for Halloween, one for fireworks, and even Christmas. They also have unique ones like an app with profiles for the World Cup or Twister (the game). Each app is a little bit different. However, they all perform more or less the same function. They load in color profiles that match the event in their name. The prices vary, but none of them are more expensive than $2.99.
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MediaVibe

OnSwitch

Price: Free / Up to $9.99
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OnSwitch is one of the more interesting Philips Hue apps. That’s because it also comes with direct support for LIFX lights as well. Most of the features work for both sets of smart lights. That includes 30 light scenes, the ability to manage groups of bulbs, and the ability to control independent bulbs. It doesn’t really have any more features than the stock app for those lights. However, this is still a great option for people who happened to have both types of bulbs and want one app to at least mostly control all of them. You can download it for free to see if it works. The pro version will cost money.
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OnSwitch

Philips Hue app

Price: Free
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The official Philips Hue app really isn’t as bad as its horrible Google Play rating would indicate. A lot of people use the Google Play Store to complain about all kinds of Philips Hue issues. Thus, a lot of the criticism isn’t with the app, but issues with the entire product line whenever they have an issue with something. In any case, the app is actually pretty decent. It can do the basics like change colors, scenes, and brightness. They also have a very basic, but functional automation system to do things like change scenes or turn the lights on/off at a certain time. It also has support for Philips Hue accessories. It’s not perfect and it is fairly clunky. We’re not saying it’s a five star app. However, it is better than its current 2.9 rating would suggest.
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Philips Hue app

Scott Dodson apps

Price: Up to $2.99
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Scott Dodson is a developer on Google Play. His works are similar to MediaVibe. He has released several Philips Hue apps that have specific themes. Some of the themes include Firestorm, Thunderstorm, and Soundstorm. They work in a fun manner. For the Thunderstorm version, it’ll emulate a thunderstorm by having bright flashes of light to simulate lightning. These apps also come with various customizations, settings, and even sound options. They’re fun for what they are. The apps are around $2.99. There are also LIFX versions of these apps if you have those.
DOWNLOAD ON GOOGLE PLAY

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If we missed any great Philips Hue apps, tell us about them in the comments! You can also click here to check out our latest app and game lists!

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OnePlus 5 vs OnePlus 3T: quick look

After months of leaks and rumors, the OnePlus 5 is finally official, and we really do love this latest flagship phone that combines high-end hardware features with a relatively low price point. However, it was just seven months ago that the same company launched the OnePlus 3T, and that phone is still a solid choice for anyone looking for a new handset. So how does the new OnePlus flagship compete against its immediate predecessor? Is it worth it for OnePlus 3T owners to upgrade to the OnePlus 5? That’s just what we will try to answer in this quick.

See also:

OnePlus 5 review – the Never Settle promise lives on

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Design

Both the OnePlus 5 and 3T feature a full metal unibody construction and some design and hardware elements remain the same between both phones. The OnePlus 5 retains the popular Alert Slider found on other OnePlus devices, and the fingerprint sensor remains on the front. Moving around to the back, you’ll notice the OnePlus 5 is a bit cleaner than its predecessor, with the antenna lines that blend in and the camera, now of the dual-sensor variety, moved to the top-left corner.

Before we go any further, we will admit that the OnePlus 5 looks very much like the iPhone 7 Plus in terms of its design. It is also practically identical to the recently announced OPPO R11. Some of you may feel that OnePlus should have used some more inspiration when it comes to the look of their new phone. However, there’s no denying that the OnePlus 5 is still a sleek smartphone that looks and feel great in the hand. That is also the case with the earlier OnePlus 3T.

In terms of size and handling, the OnePlus 5 is only a hair shorter, thinner, and narrower than the 3T, and the handling experience is pretty much the same with both. In short, if you like the look and feel of the OnePlus 3T, you should be happy with the new OnePlus 5.

Hardware

Both the OnePlus 3T and the OnePlus 5 come with the same 5.5-inch AMOLED display with a 1080p Full HD resolution and the more standard 16:9 aspect ratio. OnePlus has yet to make the jump to a Quad HD display for its phones, but unless you want to view some VR content, the Full HD screen for the OnePlus 5 should be more than acceptable.

The OnePlus 3T shipped with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 processor, which at the time was the fastest chip you could get in a phone. The new OnePlus 5 is even faster, with the new Snapdragon 835 chip, which is the same found in the US versions of the Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus and the HTC U11.

Also read: OnePlus 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S8: quick look

The OnePlus 3T came with 6 GB of RAM,which is still more than what you can get from most current flagship smartphones. The standard OnePlus 5 can be bought with either 6 or 8 GB of RAM, and either with 64 GB or 128 GB of onboard storage, compared to just 64 GB for the OnePlus 3T. The OnePlus 5 has plenty of memory and storage for most users, although it does not have the option to add more storage due to the lack of a microSD card slot. 

The OnePlus 3T launched with a 3,400 mAh battery, but thanks in part to its thinner design, the OnePlus 5 comes with a slightly smaller 3,300 mAh battery. However, the phone is supposed to last up to 20 percent longer on a single charge compared to its predecessor, thanks to the more power-efficient Snapdragon 835 chip. Both phones also feature the super fast Dash Charge technology. The OnePlus 5 can charge over 50 percent of its battery in about 30 minutes, and can reach its full capacity in less than 90 minutes. 

Camera

Perhaps the biggest difference between the OnePlus 3T and the OnePlus 5 is with their rear cameras. The 16 MP rear camera of the OnePlus 3T proved to be a very good and reliable shooter, but the company decided to take the big leap by putting in a dual lens setup on the OnePlus 5, with 16 and 20 MP sensors. Both phones come with the same 16 MP front-facing shooter that will help you capture some high-quality selfies.

See also:

OnePlus 5 vs the rest: What’s the best Android camera?

4 days ago

Software

On the software front, both the OnePlus 3T and the OnePlus 5 feature the same software package with the latest version of the company’s own OxygenOS, which is based on Android 7.1.1 Nougat. There are a few new software features that owners can check out on the OnePlus 5. They included a Reading Mode that uses gray-scale mapping and the blue light filter to provide an excellent reading experience on its display. It also includes an automatic night mode, expanded screenshots, a do not disturb mode while gaming, and more.

Specs

  OnePlus 5 OnePlus 3T
Display 5.5-inch AMOLED
1920 x 1080 resolution
401 ppi
16:9 aspect ratio
5.5-inch AMOLED
1920 x 1080 resolution
401 ppi
16:9 aspect ratio
Processor 2.45 GHz octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 mobile platform 2.35 GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 821
RAM 6/8 GB
LPDDR4
6 GB
LPDDR4
Storage 64/128 GB
UFS 2.1
64/128 GB
UFS 2.0
MicroSD No No
Cameras Rear camera
Main: 16 MP Sony IMX 398 sensor, 1.12 μm, ƒ/1.7 aperture, EIS, dual LED flash
Telephoto: 20 MP Sony IMX 350 sensor, 1.0 μm, ƒ/2.6 aperture

Front: 16 MP Sony IMX 371 sensor, 1.0 μm, ƒ/2.0 aperture, EIS

Rear: 16 MP Sony IMX 298 sensor, 1.12 μm, ƒ/2.0 aperture, OIS, EIS, dual LED flash

Front: 16 MP Samsung 3P8SP sensor, 1.0 μm, ƒ/2.0 aperture, EIS

Battery 3,300 mAh
Non-removable
Dash Charge (5V 4A)
3,400 mAh
Non-removable
Dash Charge (5V 4A)
Water resistance No No
Software Android 7.1.1 Nougat
OxygenOS
Android 7.1.1 Nougat
OxygenOS
Dimensions and weight 154.2 x 74.1 x 7.25 mm
153 g
152.7 x 74.7 x 7.4 mm
158 g

Pricing

As we have mentioned before, the OnePlus 5 has a starting price of $479 for the 64 GB version, and $539 for the 128 GB edition. That’s a bit higher than the starting price of the OnePlus 3T at $439. However, we still feel that the OnePlus 5 gives customers a lot for the money, especially compared to its current, and higher-priced, rivals.

Conclusion

The OnePlus 5 is not a massive upgrade compared to the OnePlus 3T, and it also comes with a higher price. However, the faster processor, the more efficient battery, and especially the upgrade to the dual rear camera setup makes up for the lack of upgrades in some of the phone’s other features. If you are looking to upgrade from the OnePlus 3T to the OnePlus 5, we think you will be happy with the result.

We want to know your opinion on the OnePlus 3T compared to the OnePlus 5. Do you think 3T owners should upgrade to the 5? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!


Want to learn more about the OnePlus 5? Check out our full review!

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Want your Pixel photos to be seen by millions? So does Google

Google has cooked up an interesting new idea to showcase excellent Pixel photos to millions of users across the globe as Chromecast background screensavers. If you’ve got a Pixel and fancy yourself a bit of a photographic genius in the making, read on.

It’s super easy to enter. All you have to do is append the hashtag #teampixel on any images you shoot on a Pixel and share on Twitter or Instagram. If Google likes what it sees, you’ll be contacted directly to take your first steps towards Chromecast superstardom (if that’s a thing?).

See also:

Best Android smartphone cameras

3 weeks ago

As you can probably guess, competition will be fierce, with actual photographers likely using the platform as a means to get their shots out to millions of Chromecast users. But as we increasingly see with the super-impressive cameras found on most smartphones these days, just being in the right place at the right time with the camera in your pocket is often enough to capture an amazing photo.

You’ll probably remember Google recently did something similar with its Google Featured Screensavers on Macs. You simply had to install the app on your laptop or desktop to enjoy some of the best photos doing the rounds on Google+. This Backdrops competition is just a natural progression, promoting the Pixel’s photographic excellence to folks that already have some Google hardware in their homes, while giving your best shots a chance to be seen by millions.

Here’s Google tips for the best chances of success:

  • Suggested Content: Landscapes, Macro, Nature, Animals, Abstract, Life, Cities, Buildings, Textures
  • No people, logos, watermarks or branding
  • Landscape orientation works best
  • Family friendly: these photos will be seen on millions of devices

To find out more, just visit this page in the Pixel user community.

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Deal: Unlocked LG V20 on sale for just $355

With the LG V30 right around the corner, not surprisingly, the LG V20 is seeing some solid sales. This current one, via eBay, is about as good as any we’ve seen: just $354.99 for an unlocked 64 GB LG V20. It’s the U.S. version with support for GSM and CDMA networks.

See also:

Best unlocked Android phones

3 weeks ago

If you hit the link below you’ll initially see a $369.99 price tag, but never fear, just enter the coupon code PSUMMER15OFF to get an additional $15. There’s not telling how much stock the seller has, but as always, act fast if you don’t want to miss out. There’s also free shipping on offer.

The LG V20 is still our own Joe Hindy’s all-time favorite Android phone, primarily due to it being a pretty great all-rounder, especially for power users. It also has impressive audio abilities, including a headphone port with a built-in amp and Quad DAC that can support headphones with up to 600 Ohms impedance. The V20 is still unbeatable as far as audiophile go, especially at this price. If you need some awesome headphones to go with it, don’t miss our sister site Sound Guys’ best headphones of 2017.

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LG V30: all the rumors in one place

When you’re in the market for a feature-heavy phone with all of the trimmings, you can usually rely on LG‘s V series to deliver. Just look at the LG V20: QHD display? Check. Latest edition processor? Check. Dual-camera? Check. MicroSD card support? Removable battery? Android’s latest platform? Audio chops? The list goes on.

What’s more impressive is that LG’s two prior V series devices, the V10 and V20, not only delivered on the specs front but also on innovation, bringing an additional “ticker” display into the mix for unique functionality. Despite their flaws, there’s much the Vs got right, which is why we’re eagerly anticipating the rumored successor, the LG V30.

LG is yet to officially announce the handset but feasible speculation from various sources suggests it’s on its way, and possibly in the next two months. In this article, we’ve rounded up all the current LG V30 specs, price, and release date rumors to give you an idea of what you can expect when it launches.

See also:

What LG needs to do to make the V30 a success

2 days ago

LG V30 release date

The LG V30 is tipped to be unveiled on August 31, one day before the opening of IFA 2017 in Berlin which runs until September 6. This rumor was first picked up by The Investor (and then backed up again separately) and, at first glance, it seems unlikely — LG’s previous V series phones didn’t launch at IFA or indeed see an official release in Europe.

However, if LG was to launch the V30 in Europe as it has been suggested, this would be the best time and place to do it ahead of MWC next February — and the company might be keen to get its new phone out there to take the shine off an upcoming 10th anniversary iPhone, expected September. If we do see the V30 at IFA, its official release will probably follow a few weeks later, in South Korea for sure, but hopefully globally.

LG V30 price

It’s still early days to be putting down a potential price on the LG V30, though ETNews has offered one suggestion. Apparently, the LG V30 could set you back 800,000 KRW in South Korea, the equivalent of around $699 for the version touting 64 GB of internal space (32 GB and 128 GB models are also anticipated). ETNews doesn’t outline the source of the information, however, and even if it were true right now, bear in mind that things could change between now and release time. Straight currency conversions are always a risky business too (for reference, the LG V20 had a RRP of $799).

LG V30 Specs

The LG V30 specs are said to include a Snapdragon 835 processor (which seems pretty likely), 3,200 mAh battery, IP68 certification for dust and water resistance and ESS Quad DAC support, as well as a headphone jack. Both the LG V10 and LG V20 were known for offering high-quality audio, so the chances are this will be a standout feature once again. For more on what a Quad DAC means for your phone, hit our explainer article at the link.

More recently, leaker @OnLeaks has suggested that the unit would come with wireless charging, a dual rear camera setup and a rear fingerprint scanner — the latter two of which are also supported by the image at the top of the page (again via ETNews from a concept video). OnLeaks also speculates that the V30 will have a glass rear, something which would corroborate the talk of an IP68 rating. This would dash hope for a removable battery, though; the V10 and V20 both featured removable batteries but their design was far from waterproof.

LG Display

As for the display, LG is said to be utilizing an OLED panel instead of the LCD screens typically used on its handsets. This may be to support a curved display, like on its LG G Flex devices, which also use OLED tech, but it may also just be a flat panel. This would probably be a “bezel-less” display, more like its LG G6 than the LG V20, and is equally likely to include a second screen built into it as on the V10 and V20.

This may feature an inset camera, similar to what’s seen on the Essential Phone and in the LG patent below, though there was also left field speculation of a slider concept design for the V30 (concept images from which can be seen in the pictures above). We’re pretty confident these were very early ideas and won’t be making it into the final product.

That’s all the news we have on the LG V30 so far but we’ll have more for you in the coming weeks. How do you think the LG V30 is shaping up? Let us know in the comments.

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