Hueblog: Hue Play Lightbar has received Bluetooth as a silent update

Hue Play Lightbar has received Bluetooth as a silent update

Changeover soon to be complete

About one and a half years ago, Philips Hue started to equip its light sources with Bluetooth in addition to ZigBee. Most recently, numerous products were equipped with the additional wireless connection last summer, including the popular Philips Hue Lightstrip Plus. Another product, however, still seems to be waiting for an update: the Philips Hue Play Lightbar.

Those who secretly hoped that Philips Hue would combine the update with some smaller innovations, as was the case with the Lightstrip, unfortunately I have to disappoint them. As Hue inventor George Yianni told me in a conversation, the Philips Hue Play Lightbar has already been equipped with Bluetooth – however, this has not been communicated so far and is also not visible on the packaging.


Why? That is quickly explained. With the Philips Hue Play Lightbar, the focus is on the entertainment functions, such as the synchronisation of the computer screen. And that’s exactly what doesn’t work with Bluetooth, but only with ZigBee via the bridge. So it makes sense in this case not to advertise the Bluetooth function in order not to raise false expectations.

By the way, the Play Lightbar is not the only product where Philips Hue clarifies the Bluetooth thing in this way. For example, a Bluetooth module is also built into the Outdoor Lightstrip – but here, too, the focus is completely on ZigBee wireless technology, which has a much greater range.

By the way, we can expect a few more updates in the coming months. As George Yianni informs us, the complete product portfolio should be equipped with Bluetooth as well as ZigBee within the first half of 2021.


In den letzten Jahren habe ich mich zu einem echten Experten in Sachen Hue & HomeKit entwickelt. Mittlerweile habe ich über 50 Lampen und zahlreiche Schalter im Einsatz. In meinem kleinen Blog teile ich meine Erfahrungen gerne mit euch.

Comments 6 replies

  1. I ordered two lightbars from amazon in germany last week, but these two examples are not recognized by the HUE bluetooth app. Too bad, but i have to send them back now.

  2. Really? And where is that silent update that you mentioned?
    God, I wish people would come up with proofs before they come up with such articles.. it is well known that philips hue bridge can only be used by those who are allowed by their providers to turn on upnp on their routers, otherwise you have to purchase another router so guess how many devices you end up having powered up if you want a single light from philips.

    Maybe in ten years hue light bars will come with a bluetooth update. That sounds more realistic to me.

  3. This is actually not true. i bought the light bar after reading this and no luck connecting to to bluetooth without the bridge. i called phillips customer service and they confirmed you need the bridge to use the light bar. it does not work with just bluetooth

  4. Last week I bought a starter pack from a vendor, the pack consisted of two play light bars and a light strip. I have to mention I was a newbie to the Hue ecosystem and therefore did not have a bridge (and didn’t think of ordering one.)
    My plan at first was to later buy the Hue sync box to use it on my LG OLED but I only use streaming services and my understanding was that it would not work because of DRM..
    Nevertheless I tried the lights the very same night I received them, I first tried the light strip which said it could be used without the bridge because it carried the BT logo on it. I then tried the light bars but saw no BT logo. I was doubtful but the app recognized them wonderfully, so I can’t speak for the previous posters but can say as of March 2022 the light bars indeed carry BT support despite saying otherwise on the documentation.

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