Hueblog: Lytvox wants to become a streaming app with lighting effects

Lytvox wants to become a streaming app with lighting effects

Completely without HDMI Sync Box

Synchronising the light to match the content on the TV. Philips pursued this idea several years ago with Ambilight and Philips Hue has had its HDMI Play Sync Box at the start for some time now, and I'm expecting the successor with HDMI 2.1 this year. But why additional hardware, couldn't it be simpler?

That's exactly what app developer Kevin Kolasinski thought: “So I tried to develop a system that can work with any brand of light and doesn't require any additional hardware. After 10 months of development and research, I'm finally ready to share my creation with the world.” His project is called Lytvox and you can already register for a beta version via the website. Incidentally, it not only works with Philips Hue, but also with LIFX and Nanoleaf.

I have already tried out the first beta version and the basic idea works well: you can select a video in the Lytvox app and the lights in the entertainment area previously created in the Hue app light up to match it. Brightness and synchronisation can be adjusted directly in Lytvox.

However, Lytvox does not work with all content, but only with the videos available in the app. Later on, the app will not only work with on-demand videos, but also with live content. For example, integration directly into the app of a streaming provider would be conceivable.

The idea seems somehow familiar to me

The Lytvox project is definitely an ambitious story and I'm honestly a little sceptical, because someone has already told me about a very similar idea. Who? Philips Hue in September 2017.

At the time, a press release stated: “The new feature takes home entertainment to a new dimension by synchronising colour-enabled Hue bulbs with movies, video games and music – including streamed content and in close collaboration with the entertainment industry.” At that time, the aim was to cooperate with providers of TV content, films and music and offer them a developer interface with which the lighting control could be perfectly matched to the content.

In May 2018, Hue Sync was launched as an app for Windows and PC to synchronise screen content. Since then, there has been no sign of the direct integration of streaming content on the TV. In September 2018, Hue inventor George Yianni then had to say: “A lot of things could be easier right now, it's just taking longer than we previously thought. The content industry is really very complicated and DRM is like a punch in the neck. We are taking small steps and we want to further integrate different content and services, but there are always two sides to these things. We can't do everything on our own, we need the entertainment industry on board.”

A little later, Philips Hue abandoned the original idea of Hue Entertainment and introduced the Philips Hue Play HDMI Sync Box in September 2019. You probably know the rest of the story…

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Check your local Philips Hue Online Store for availability of Hue products in your country. There you will also find all the technical information and prices.

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.

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