Philips Hue lights to work way better with Samsung TVs and SmartThings, for a price

Philips Hue's new SmartThings integration
(Image credit: Philips Hue)

Philips Hue is expanding its partnership with Samsung SmartThings, giving users greater control over how their smart lights “interact with their home entertainment systems.” To achieve this, Philips will launch a major update to its Sync TV app that'll introducing a handful of new features. Philips is even changing the software’s subscription model to be more financially comfortable.

Starting from the top, people will be able to adjust settings on certain Samsung TVs via the app, without interrupting a movie or show. This includes changing different lighting modes on the fly as well as choosing when to start or stop content syncing. 

Additionally, users can create “multi-device automations”. These are smart home profiles that'll work in collaboration with your Samsung TV instead of keeping the display isolated from everything else. Samsung says you can synchronize the lighting fixtures with "other smart home devices to enhance [the] TV-watching environment."

Philips Hue's new Music Mode

(Image credit: Philips Hue)

Select 2024 Samsung TVs will also receive a Music Mode that’ll cause the lights around your display to react to the audio being played. Dance beats, for example, will see the fixtures pulsate to the rhythm. Looking at the official image, it appears you tweak the level of intensity.

“Samsung Q60 series or higher QLED TVs manufactured from 2022 onward” will support the upgraded Sync TV app, according to the Philips Hue announcement. Music Mode’s availability is a little different. As we said, it’ll first come out to “compatible 2024 Samsung TVs.” Later on in the year, the feature will expand to “compatible 2022 and 2023 Samsung TVs.” It's still unclear exactly which compatible TVs that includes. 

New subscription model

Besides the patch, Philip Hue is launching a new subscription model for Sync TV where you can pay $2.99 a month and connect the app to up to three individual Samsung displays at once. Prior to this, people could pay a one-time fee of $130 to connect the app to a single Samsung TV. But that was it, there was no monthly option until recently.

Philips Hue's Sync TV new subscription model

(Image credit: Samsung)

It’s unknown if the subscription model will be globally available. Samsung in its post states the pricing will be €2.99 across Europe, but didn’t mention any other locales. Speaking of global regions, the app will be coming out to several new nations including Brazil, Poland, and the Czech Republic.

Like the feature update, Philip Hue’s refreshed Sync TV subscription is slated to release later in the Spring. While we still have you, check out TechRadar's list of the best Samsung TVs for 2024.

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Cesar Cadenas

Cesar Cadenas has been writing about the tech industry for several years now specializing in consumer electronics, entertainment devices, Windows, and the gaming industry. But he’s also passionate about smartphones, GPUs, and cybersecurity.