Signify (formerly know as Philips Lighting) now has two consumer focused lighting brands on the market, which differ quite a bit in how they operate. Philips Hue being the more established brand lacked one big connectivity option, WIFI, which is where Philips Wiz lights come in.
What are Philips Wiz lights?
Starting as a small team in 2015, before being acquire by Signify (Philips lighting brand) in 2019, Wiz lights are essentially a way for Philips to compete with other companies offering WIFI connected lights.
As they connect via WIFI, they have the advantage of not requiring a hub and instead will connect directly to your router. Another advantage is their lower-cost when compared to similar lights in the more established and well-known Philips Hue light range.
Advantages of Philips Wiz lights
With any smart lighting brand there’s always trade-offs, but for the most part they can be a great alternative for some. For instance here’s some great reason you might want to purchase a few.
- Good quality bulbs that don’t break the bank
- Connects directly to your WIFI router, no hub required
- App is well made and works really well for setting up and controlling your lights
- Voice control is possible with Alexa, Google Assistant and Siri (though not in the most user-friendly manner)
Wiz lights also come in a range of different styles, from traditional bulbs to downlights – pure white lights to colour changing ones.
Disadvantages of Philips Wiz lights
We go over the difference between Wiz and Hue lights later on, the list below relates only to the product specific disadvantages.
- Connecting via WIFI only, means any change to your router or password can mean you’ll need to re-connect them again
- Doesn’t support HomeKit
- No Zigbee, Z-wave, Bluetooth or any other connectivity option
Setting up Philips Wiz Lights
Setting up Wiz lights is a pretty straight-forward process. To give you a quick overview, here’s the general steps you’ll take.
- Install the bulbs into the light socket
- Connect to the bulbs via your phone, so you can connect them to your router
- Once connected, you’ll be able to control them (after assign them to a room)
That’s it, now if you change your WIFI password for whatever reason you’ll need to reconnect each bulb which can be time-consuming if you have several lights around your home. They also only connect to the 2.4GHz WIFI network, though that shouldn’t be an issue for most people (as it’s the most common).https://www.youtube.com/embed/eO7UTXC2ipM?controls=1&rel=0&playsinline=0&modestbranding=0&autoplay=0&enablejsapi=1&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.smartandpractical.com&widgetid=1
Difference between Philips Wiz and Philips Hue
While they both fall under the same Philips branding, you should look at them as completely different ranges – as they don’t integrate or work together. Here’s a quick breakdown differences
|Philips Wiz||Philips Hue|
|Connectivity||WIFI||Zigbee and Bluetooth|
|Phone App||Wiz Connected||Philips Hue|
|Voice Assistant||Alexa, Google Assistant, Siri (No HomeKit)||Alexa, Google Assistant, Siri (Including HomeKit)|
The biggest takeaway from all this comes down to the fact, Wiz lights are targeting completely different consumers, who prefer WIFI over Zigbee lights.
Should you get Wiz lights?
We can’t say for certain if Wiz or Hue is the right fit for your home, what we can do is breakdown why we’d choose Hue over Wiz.
Integration is a big part of any home and Hue wins out here, being the more established brand means it has support for most popular smart home products on the market, including integration with all 3 major smart assistants (Alexa, Google Assistant and Siri)
Range of products is again a win for Hue – having entered the market in 2012, Philips Hue offers hundreds of different lighting products, covering most consumer wants and needs.
Automations are really nice to have, with Hue coming on top. This is helped by the fact Hue integrates with so many other smart home products, letting you say, setup an automation when you unlock your front door the lights come on.
Price one of the main reasons you’d look at Wiz lights. Wiz offers some of the most affordable and quality lights on the market.
Other considerations which we haven’t mentioned above include the problem with connecting a lot of WIFI products in your home. While not solely a Wiz related problem, anyone who connects tens or more WIFI devices in their home can run into issues ranging from poor WIFI speed to their WIFI actually dropping.
if you’re looking to include more than a handful of smart lights into your home, stick with Hue (or another similar lighting brand).
While it’s great smart lights are getting more affordable, these just miss some of the main reasons that people want smart lights. Which comes down to the added conveniences smart lights should provide to the home owner, which relies on good integration.
There’s no word on if Philips are looking to get Wiz and Hue lights working together, we’re not hopeful as Hue has proven Zigbee connected lights offer a lot more advantages over WIFI connected ones.
Our biggest recommendation we can offer anyone is simple, carry out some research and stick with one lighting range to make your life easier. Not sure which one to pick or where to being? We’ve created a complete guide to all this smart lighting, which goes over it all.