Today's smart home devices are too dumb to succeed

At the end of 2012, working hard on my own connected lighting startup, MooresCloud, I got very excited to find out that Philips planned to launch Hue, the company's own full-spectrum connected lights. I bought a ‘starter pack’ of three soon after release, and played with them for weeks.

It immediately became clear that Philips had put everything they understood about the psychological qualities of illumination into the Hue bulbs. Although they could produce a broad selection of reds, greens, blues and whites, almost all of the colours were highly desaturated pastels. Why, when equipped with the infinite variability of LEDs, would Philips limit their bulbs like this? Because fully saturated colours - particularly greens - make people look like zombies.

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