Philips Hue/Lux Light Switch

I enjoy my new Philips Lux light (part of the Philips Hue brand, but not multi-color).  It is a low-barrier entry in to the home automation world — something I’ve been dreaming about tinkering in since my undergraduate years.

To start, I want to use it in the main fixtures in a room.  This means the switch that powers the fixtures should remain “on” to allow the Philips wireless hub to control the light’s state — on, off, or dimmed.  But, leaving the switch always on means there’s no easy way to control the light without using my smartphone — ick!

As simple as is it to replace a standard light bulb with a smartbulb, there aren’t any compatible products that are replacements for a standard light switch.  (Yes, there’s the Hue Tap — but that’s an additional switch stuck on the wall next to the original switch!)

Inspirational devices:


The wireless communication between the Hue Hub and any lights/devices use ZigBee standards.  This is great, because a lot of the DIY home automation projects use it — the most common being the Digi XBee Modules.  Unfortunately, with the XBee it is not currently possible to implement the Zigbee Lighting Link protocol.

This means the solution requires finding a microcontroller that does support a ZigBee Lighting Link stack.  Some of those are:

Finding a pre-made development board that uses one of these chips would move the development to software and hardware modification.

Possible contacts:


To join the Zigbee Light Link network, any device would need the “master key”.  This is only available from Zigbee after the device goes through the certification process.  Sadly, this ends the possibility of a DIY device…


This is all unrelated to the well documented hue hub web interface.  The goal is to provide a ZigBee Lighting Link compatible switch device.


One Response to Philips Hue/Lux Light Switch

  1. matthijskooijman says:

    Just a quick note: Apparently it _is_ possible to talk to at least the Hue bulbs by letting them join an existing Zigbee Home Automation (HA) network, instead of forming a light-link network. I’m not sure how this works yet, but see this thread for some more info:

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