Testing the Philips Hue Smart Plug: a useful connected plug in the Hue ecosystem

Ergonomics

Better late than never. Even if the Hue Smart Plug is released in 2019, we are trying to get there. The smart plug is one of the most compact we’ve tested. At 51mm wide, 80.6mm deep and just 100g, it will fit in any outlet. Konyks Priska Max Easy is just smarter.

In white plastic, it consists of a type E plug, clearly compatible with French sockets. Philips only has one ground plug, which is pretty classic for a socket. However, Meross surprised us by equipping his Smart Wi-Fi Plug MSS310 with two earth plugs. Very practical when connecting the device, but it remains a detail.

Typically, a switch sits on the side of the socket to turn it on and off. An LED will then flash red or green depending on its condition.

Editor's Rating: 3 out of 5

Ease of use

The Hue Smart Plug delivers up to 2300 W and 10 A, the equivalent of the Amazon Smart Plug. If that seems weak, Philips Hue makes it with more than appreciated connectivity. Basically, the socket is compatible with Bluetooth and ZigBee. To make this last connection, you have to go through the Hue Bridge. It connects to the home Internet network via Ethernet and then communicates with Hue devices via ZigBee.

Philips Hue Bridge 2 (Homekit compatible)

Introductory price 60 €


Philips Hue Bridge 2 (Homekit compatible)

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How the pricing table works

If it is possible to control the socket remotely via the app, other devices can do so. Bridge actually allows Hue equipment to interact, and therefore switch the socket via the Smart Button or a motion detector, for example.

The Hue Smart Plug and the Hue Bridge.

The Hue Smart Plug and the Hue Bridge.

Smart Plug is also compatible with various voice assistants. We found the unbeatable Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa, but also Apple HomeKit and Microsoft Cortana, the latter two only via the connection bridge.

Aside from these features, the Philips smart plug is standard to say the least. There is no timer or even Away mode to simulate being at home. Best of all, the Smart Plug doesn’t offer consumption monitoring, which is so popular with the TP-Link Tapo P110.

Editor's Rating: 4 out of 5

Applications

We will start by pairing the Hue Smart Plug via the ZigBee connection bridge. You need to plug it near the Bridge and open the Hue app. The procedure is smooth: the Hue Bridge is easy to find, as well as the connected plug that can now be found in the app, in the “lamp” category.

The Hue Bridge pairing method.

The Hue Bridge pairing method.

In fact, Philips naturally considers that the Smart Plug commands a new lamp, which is not necessarily the case. The user can choose to integrate an unconnected lamp into the Hue universe by plugging it into the connected socket, but many options are available to him. He may want to connect a fan, a coffee maker, an air purifier. In short, anything is possible.

The various options available in the application.

The various options available in the application.

If already registered, the socket will be available. Other features are unlocked in the app, even if they are very limited. In particular, it is possible to create routines to turn off or turn on the Smart Plug at specific times. But most of all the automations are interesting. Thanks to this option, connected objects mixed in the Hue universe can interact. The user can decide to switch the socket if he wakes up simultaneously with his light, for example. It is even more important that by connecting to your Hue account, the equipment can be controlled remotely, outside the home. If this functionality is an undeniable asset, it is unfortunately one of the offerings of Smart Plug.

You will need to log in to your Philips Hue account to open the remote control option.

You will need to log in to your Philips Hue account to open the remote control option.

We decided to pair the socket via Bluetooth. This is happening right now on the Hue BT app. While the pairing method is different, it’s very simple. Once Bluetooth is activated, the app will find the socket to use immediately. With this method, there is no need to purchase a connection bridge to benefit from the options; however, it is not possible to control the socket remotely. It is up to you to decide which option is best for you.

The Bluetooth app.

Strong points

  • Ease of installation.

  • Add and unconnected object around Philips Hue.

  • Consistent with many voice assistants.

Weak points

  • Very few features.

  • Use is limited without other equipment from the Philips Hue range.

Conclusion

Global brand

Editor's Rating: 3 out of 5

How does grading work?

With Smart Plug, Philips does what it can best: connect things to each other and make them interact. Thanks to this socket, the user can add unconnected equipment to the Hue universe, and therefore benefit from the tools offered by the ecosystem. A bridge connection is however required to have access to the remote control. Aside from this advantage, the Smart Plug has no other use. Without the connected Hue items, it is therefore wiser to opt for a more complete socket.

Sub Notes

  • Ergonomics

    Editor's Rating: 5 out of 5

  • Ease of use

    Editor's Rating: 3 out of 5

  • Applications

    Editor's Rating: 4 out of 5

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