Philips Hue Wall Switch Module finally makes your old switches smarter

Philips Hue has a new line-up for CES 2021, with a fresh outdoor light to make dull walls more interesting, along with a long-anticipated way to make dumb light switches smart. The Philips Hue Wall Switch Module finally settles one of the last big frustrations about the smart lighting system, and is joined by a 2021 update of the Hue Dimmer Switch remote.

The Philips Hue Amarant is what Signify is calling a "linear spotlight" – effectively making a wash of color for a wall. It's designed to be placed on the floor, wall mounted, or even hung up in the eaves of an overhanging roof, and is rated for outdoor use as part of the company's LowVolt luminaire collection.

As with other Hue lights, it supports millions of colors. There's a metal shield that runs along it, guiding the flood of light to the wall itself. If you have multiple LowVolt fixtures, you can daisy-chain them off it, too, or include Amarant in an existing chain. It'll go on sale January 26 in Europe, priced at 149.99 euro, and March 2 in North America, priced at $169.99.

Philips Hue Wall Switch Module

One of the lingering frustrations around Hue – and, indeed, most smart bulbs – has been the fact that it ignores your existing light switches. Not only does turning them off mean your Hue bulbs can't be reached by the app any more, but you also lose manual control. Now, finally, there's a Philips Hue Wall Switch Module to address that.

It'll require a little more installation effort than the typical Hue bulb, fitting behind existing light switches and tapping into their connection. The unit itself is battery powered, with a minimum life of five years, and it means that not only do you not have to worry about someone inadvertently switching off the lights and leaving your Hue bulbs unreachable, but it can also be used to control them manually. In the app, you'll be able to set specific light scenes to the switch, too.

The Hue Wall Switch Module will go on sale in Europe this spring, priced at 39.95 euro for one or 69.96 euro for two. It'll arrive in North America this summer, priced at $39.95 for one or $69.95 for two.

Philips Hue Dimmer Switch 2021

If installing something into existing circuits doesn't appeal, the Philips Hue Dimmer Switch is getting a 2021 upgrade. As before, it allows for control over a certain set of lights without pulling up the app. You can turn a preprogrammed scene on and off, as well as dim it.

It looks sleeker now, compared to the original design, and still comes with a wall plate. It'll also cling magnetically to metal surfaces, too. It'll go on sale January 26 in Europe, priced at 19.95 euro, and from February 23 in North America, priced at $24.99.