Philips Hue has announced the launch of its Hue Play HDMI Sync Box, which syncs smart lights to whatever is playing on your television.
Designed to sync with Philips Hue smart lights the dynamic lighting control uses an HDMI pass-through system to create ‘an exciting and interactive experience in your whole room increasing the overall enjoyment of what is happening on the screen’ by adjusting colour, brightness and light intensity.
The device is available for preorder at $229.99 (USD) with an expected ship date of 15 October, though no word yet on when the device will be available in Australia.
Up to four devices can be connected to the Hue Play HDMI Sync Box, with full 4K resolution support, including the HDR10 standard.
“Philips Hue users can now easily connect the colour-capable lights in their room with their home entertainment systems, taking their movie- and TV-watching, listening and gaming experience to a completely new level”, said Business Leader, Home Systems & Luminaires, Philips Hue at Signify, Jasper Vervoot.
The software has been upgraded to allow individual adjustment of brightness, speed and light intensity, as well as default preferences for each HDMI input.
Each input will automatically switch depending on which is in use, with up to 10 Hue lights synced at a time.
One caveat with the new product is the requirement for Hue Bridge and Hue colour lights.
Third-party smart lights are not compatible with the Sync Box; adding a Hue ecosystem tax on top of the $229.99 price tag.
Hue Entertainment did not initially include the pass-through approach present in the HDMI Sync Box.
Instead, Philips required the user to download Hue Sync software to their computer to sync smart lights with the screen output.
This new product extends the functionality beyond just PC gaming to consoles gamers and cinephiles.
For those concerned about privacy, Philips Hue parent company Signify says the box does not store any information about what you watch.
Cord clutter is reduced since the Sync Box is compatible with the same plug-in power supply as the Hue Play bars – designed to power up to three devices at once.
With all this functionality built into a such a small device, Philips’ is hoping users will get ‘lost in their entertainment’.