Philips currently offer two types of wall switch for their Hue devices. There’s the Smart Dimmer Switch, with a form factor close to a standard US wall switch, and the Tap – a self-powered four-button device, with no need for a battery. It’s powered by the kinetic energy generated by pressing the buttons.
It seems that a kind of hybrid version of the two is currently in the works …
CNET reports that Philips doesn’t plan to manufacture the new switch itself, but rather to partner with existing lighting brands in a new Friends of Hue scheme.
Philips is adding a fleet of lighting manufacturers to its “Friends of Hue” – one in the US and several in Europe, where switches are more diverse in design. The aim: Bring new, self-powering, Hue-compatible light switches to consumers. The first switch, pictured here, comes from Illumra and will arrive in the US by the end of this year. The European models will arrive early in 2019.
Encouragingly, the new switches will be HomeKit compatible when used with the Philips Hue bridge that also works with HomeKit.
We’ll be aiming to review the new switches as soon as they are available, later in the year. The company announced yesterday that it will be updating the Hue app to support Siri Shortcuts.