The Philips Hue Tap Dial Switch is the evolution of the Hue Tap. The test reveals whether it is really needed and what distinguishes the light switch from its predecessor.
A light switch turns the light on and off again or dims it. The somewhat smarter Philips Hue Tap Dial Switch can’t actually be that simple, that ingenious and much more. So far, so unspectacular one might think. However, the Hue light switch still proves to be a welcome accessory because it makes operating the smart light more relaxed – especially in rented apartments.
Smart light: dimming without stress
Because probably the biggest selling point for smart light in rented apartments is that they can be dimmed, regardless of which lamp they are used in and without having to change the light switch. Logical: In order for smart lamps to be controlled by voice command or app, they must be constantly supplied with electricity. Accordingly, the “normal” light switches are always switched on.
However, it is not comfortable in every situation to command Siri to dim the floor lamp in the bedroom to 60 percent, which is why the light switch is used more often than originally thought. It is particularly annoying when the light switches are accidentally switched off and the lamps no longer react. A problem that new builders who integrate smart light into the planning of their own home right from the start are not aware of.
The benefits of the Philips Hue Tap Dial Switch
The Philips Hue Tap Dial Switch is equally interesting for both, because it offers several advantages over normal light switches. First of all, it is flexible, its holder can be attached with adhesive strips wherever a light switch is required. Second, it’s mobile. It’s less a light switch than a light remote control.
Incidentally, thanks to the magnet, it can also be held anywhere where no light switch would otherwise be possible, for example on the extractor hood or the refrigerator. And third, the Hue Tap Dial Switch is configurable. A standard light switch turns the main light in a room on, off, or dims it. The Hue Tap, on the other hand, has four buttons and a rotary wheel, so it can control and switch off as well as dim up to four individual lamps in a room. Of course, many other configuration options are possible. More on that later.
Hue Tap Dial Switch: Package Contents
Phillips limits the scope of delivery to the essentials: user manual, tap switch, bracket. Finished. It doesn’t need more. Compared to its predecessor, the Hue Tap Dial Switch offers two key innovations. The first generation Hue Tap still charged its battery using kinetic energy generated by pressing the switches.
With the new generation, Philips relies on a battery. Sounds like a disadvantage at first glance. Anyone who is afraid of changing a button battery every few months should know that, according to Philips, it can last up to five years. The Hue Tap Dial Switch also offers a rotary wheel for dimming. The predecessor didn’t have that.
The device is set up – how could it be otherwise – via the Philips Hue app. Under the “Accessories” menu item, the app finds the Tap Dial Switch when the user presses one of the Tap Dial’s buttons. The menu then leads to further configuration of the buttons. The Hue Tap Dial Switch offers the option of assigning individual rooms or lamps to one of its four buttons. Specific light scenes can then be assigned to the rooms or lamps. And then that was it. The operation works smoothly, the switch fits well in the hand and the keystroke is pleasant. Nothing clatters or indicates poor workmanship.
It was tested for a total of three days and controlled two lamps in the study and two lamps in the bedroom. And so gallantly that Siri had to execute significantly fewer commands during this time. A light switch is more convenient than a “Hey Siri, turn on the light in the study.” Otherwise, the Tap Dial Switch tended to sit on tables rather than in places where light switches would normally be. It’s also more convenient to turn off the light from the bed. The only annoying thing is when the light remote control is misplaced.
Philips charged 49.99 euros as a recommended retail price for its Hue Tap Dial Switch. Depending on how many lamps and rooms are controlled with it, this can be a sensible investment. However, more than four individual lamps are not included. Heavy users therefore prefer to use one of the switches per room. The setup is easy, as is the configuration via app. In short: it does what it is supposed to and ensures that the Hue lamps can be easily dimmed without having to change the actual light switch.
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