Philips Hue’s glamorous, oversized dimmable smart bulbs designed as open lighting fixtures have hit a snag. “Aesthetic inconsistency” (i.e., they didn’t look good) discovered during consumer testing of the new Lightguide bulb line has caused the company to stop making the triangle- and globe-shaped bulbs. Kelly Hrank, public relations lead of Signify, which owns Philips Hue, confirmed the issue but said that the ellipse-shaped Lightguide bulb from the line that launched last year doesn’t suffer from the same problem and remains available.
The news was first reported on HueBlog.de and confirmed to The Verge by Hrank. “After discussions with our suppliers, it came to light that there wasn’t a feasible solution to the aesthetic inconsistency of the Philips Hue Lightguide bulbs discovered during consumer tests,” she said. “Due to our continued dedication to the premium experience of our users, Philips Hue has decided to stop production of the Lightguide triangle- and globe-shaped bulbs.”
The Lightguide line is the first real statement lighting bulb from Philips Hue, which makes indoor and outdoor smart light fixtures and a wide range of smart bulbs for existing fixtures. With a contemporary look, the Lightguide color and white capable bulbs are designed to be used without a lampshade or any other fixture. The bulbs cost $74.99 to $89.99 and work with a specially made $49.99 pendant cord.
I was excited about this new line, as it represented a branching out of the smart lighting space into the designer lighting space. To date, it’s been hard to find decent smart light fixtures that also look good. With many high-end lighting manufacturers switching to built-in LED lights, smart switches have been the only way to add the convenience of connected lighting to your home.
The Lightguide line was one of the first smart lighting options I’ve come across that would look good over my dining room table and be capable of changing to the colors of my favorite sports team or offering features like adaptive lighting. Here’s hoping they can fix those “aesthetic issues” soon.
While the ellipse Lightguide is still being manufactured, Hrank says the $89.99 bulb is currently out of stock, with a tentative restock date of March. If you already purchased a triangle- or globe-shaped bulb, you can get a full refund or exchange.