Want to control your Hue lights easily? You don’t have to pick up the phone or shout across the room on Alexa, Google Assistant, or Siri. Here are some easy ways to control Hue lights right from your Mac.
We’ll cover a few solutions here: The smarthome feature built into macOS and a convenient third-party utility for controlling Hue lights from your Mac’s menu bar.
Option 1: Use the Home App
Your Mac has the same version of the “Home” app that you can use on iPhone and iPad. It can control all of your HomeKit-enabled smarthome devices.
To open it, press Command + Space to open Spotlight search, type “Home”, and launch the Home app. Your Hue lights will appear here if you’ve set up the integration to control it with Siri on your iPhone or iPad.
To turn the Hue lights on and off, click the tile. For more options, right-click or Ctrl-click one of the tiles here and select “Show Controls.”
This window provides an easy way to turn lights on and off, select a brightness level, and change the color. However, it’s not as full-featured as the Hue app itself.
(If you haven’t set up Hue integration yet, open the Hue app on your iPhone or iPad and go to Settings> HomeKit & Siri.)
Option 2: Talk to Siri
Assuming you’ve set up HomeKit integration, you don’t even need to open the Home app. You can control the Hue lights from your Mac with Siri just like you can from an iPhone or iPad.
To use this, click the SIri icon in the top right corner of your Mac menu bar or press and hold Command + Space. Speak into your Mac’s microphone and say a command like “Turn off lights” or “Turn on [specific lights]” – any Siri command to turn lights on and off, adjust brightness, or change colors will work on your Mac as they do on iPhone or iPad.
You can also type commands for Siri on Mac.
Option 3: Set Color to Pattern
OK, the built-in features in Mac are great, but they’re not really perfect. Wouldn’t it be great to control your Hue lights from your Mac’s menu bar with just your mouse and have access to all the color options that Hue has to offer?
Colors for Hue, a free app available on the Mac App Store, offers all of these features. This app has in-app purchases, but only for donations if you want to support the developer – you can use everything in the app for free without ads.
Once installed, launch the Color for Hue app. The first time you use it, you’ll need to be connected to your Hue Bridge. Use the “Connect” tab in the app’s settings window to scan a Hue Bridge on your network.
You can also enter your Hue Bridge IP address manually. (You can find this information from within the Hue app. Go to Settings> Hue Bridge and tap the “i” to the right of the bridge name.)
Can’t see the “Scan by IP” box? We found a strange bug with it – to open it, click the “Support Us” icon at the top of the window and then click the “Connect” icon once again.
Press the button on your Hue Bridge when prompted to complete the connection process.
You now have a light bulb icon on your Mac’s menu bar. Click for easy access to your Hue lights: you can turn them on, turn them off, adjust brightness, change the color, and even use the “Delayed Off” feature to have the lights turn off automatically after a certain amount of time.
You can use the Color preferences window for Hue (click “Preferences” in the menu) to reset the list of lights and organize groups. Click the “Lights” tab to find this option.
That’s all – you’ll still have to use the Hue app for many features like adding new lights and setting up routines, but Color for Hue provides quick access to the standard controls you’ll need.