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Philips Hue bulbs go bridge-less with new Bluetooth lights

Philips Hue bulbs with Bluetooth
(Image credit: Philips Hue)

New Philips Hue bulbs are being introduced to work without the previously essential bridge, making smart lighting easier to control for new consumers.

Philips Hue Bluetooth bulb types so far include the traditional A19 lightbulbs and the BR30 downlight bulbs in the US starting today, and the new bridge-less tech applies to the three variants: White, White Ambiance, and White and Color Ambiance.

Signify is doing this to ease new users into its brand of smart lights – and it's catching up to its competitors that offer bulbs without a bridge, too.

Philips Hue bulbs with Bluetooth

(Image credit: Philips Hue)

The Bluetooth Hue bulbs only require being screwed in and pairing with the Hue app and work with Amazon Alexa or the Google Assistant right away. Advanced features, like away-from-home access, can still be had when you add a bridge at any time.

The best part is that the Bluetooth-controlled Hue bulbs price isn't increasing over their bridge-required versions. The dimmable White bulbs cost $14.99 (£14.99), the custom-white-shaded White Ambiance bulbs cost $24.99 (£29.99), and the millions of colors-filled White and Color Ambiance bulbs cost $49.99 (£49.99). Pricing in other regions is not yet available.

These are just the first Bluetooth-enabled Philips Hue bulbs, with Signify saying that more of its products will be getting the bridge-less treatment in 2020.

Matt Swider

US Editor-in-Chief

Matt Swider is TechRadar's gadget-savvy, globe-trotting US Editor-in-Chief who leads the US team in New York City. He began his tech journalism career all the way back in 1999 at the age of 14, and first started writing for TechRadar in 2012. He's tested over 1,000 phones, tablets and wearables and commands a Twitter account of 777,000+ followers. Matt received his journalism degree from Penn State University and is never seen without his TechRadar headphones.