How to Connect Philips Hue to Alexa 2017

Today I’m going to show you how to connect Alexa to Hue in 2017 with just a couple quick and simple steps. Connecting your Philips Hue smart lights to your Alexa enabled device will grant you very basic control to start. In order to get the full range of functionality, like having Alexa change Hue color with your voice, you will need to install the Philips Hue app. We will go over all of that.

You can gain basic voice control your Philips Hue Bulbs with Alexa in about 45 seconds flat. Making Echo change Philips Hue colors is a little more work, however. This tutorial was made in May 2017, so maybe the process will become smoother in the future!



First, let’s go ahead and tackle the basic Alexa Hue setup and connection. It’s really easy!

Step 1: Ask Alexa to Discover your Hue Bulbs

To setup your Echo with Hue, you need Alexa to discover your Hue bulbs. This is easy. Simply say:

“Alexa, Discover Devices.”

Alexa will reply: “Starting discovery. This can take up to 20 seconds. If you have Philips Hue, press the button on your bridge.”

The button on the Philips Hue Bridge is not very difficult to locate…it’s the only button.

Philips Hue Bridge
There is only ONE button to locate on a Philips Hue Bridge, and it’s right smack dab in the middle of the unit.

After about 20 seconds, Alexa will report her discovery is complete, and she has located X number of devices. Obviously this number will vary based on how many different smart devices you have around your home.

Alexa App Hue Devices Discovered
Alexa easily discovered all my bulbs just by my command “Alexa, discover devices.” Even the two Hue Bulbs that I had powered down during this demonstration.

Now Alexa knows about your bulbs, you can use your Echo or Echo Dot to control them. This took about 45 seconds. It really is THAT EASY! However, there’s a catch…

Once Alexa finds your Hue bulbs she can:

  • Turn them on
  • Turn them off
  • Change the brightness (dimming)

But that is it. Also, at this point you must command Alexa to control your Hue bulbs as they are labeled in your Alexa app. So you can use the command:

“Alexa, turn off Hue color lamp 1.”

To set dimming or brightness just use the Alexa command:

“Alexa, Hue color lamp 1 fifty percent.”

But what if you have the Philips Hue color bulbs like me? What about the millions of colors you paid for? What about the scenes?! We will go over that in just a moment.

Step 2: Create A Group To Control Multiple Lights With A Single Name

Let’s say you want to control all the lamps in a room at once. You’ll want to create a “group” in the Alexa app. This will also save you from having to refer to them as “Hue color lamp 1, 2, 3…”

Within the Alexa app, tap the menu button (3 bars) in the top left corner to open the main menu.

Main Menu -> Smart Home -> Groups -> Create Group

Create Group Alexa App
You can create and modify groups in your Alexa app. Open the main menu, select Smart Home, then tap “Create Group.”

Now just name your group whatever you want to call it and tap save.

At that point you can control all smart devices in that group by the group name. So if you grouped 3 Hue color bulbs into a group named “Living Room,” you could immediately use the command:

“Alexa, turn on the living room.”

Pretty neat huh?

So let’s say you want to turn your living room lights blue. You try: “Alexa, turn the living room lights blue” and you’ll notice it DOES NOT WORK.

Step 3: Download Hue Skill to Make Alexa Change Light Bulb Color

So we’ve covered the different Amazon Echo Hue commands for turning lights on, off, and dimming, now it’s time to learn how to use Amazon Echo to make Philips Hue change color.

Alexa App Scenes
In order to set scenes or change your Hue bulb colors with Alexa you’ll need to download the Hue Skill in your Alexa app.

Without the Alexa Hue skill, the scenes and colors will not work. So open the main menu in the top left hand corner of the Alexa App and select “Skills.”

Alexa Skills Home Screen
This is the Alexa Skills Home Screen. Just type in “Hue” in the search bar.
Search Hue in Alexa App
Hue skill pops right up when you type “Hue” into the search bar.

After you find the Hue Skill, just tap the enable button. You’ll be directed to log into your Philips Hue account.

Log in Philips Hue App
Log in Philips Hue App (or create an account) with your email and password.
Philips Hue Permissions
Simply follow the prompts and grant permissions.

The app will display this screen:

Alexa linked with Hue
When you see this screen you are almost ready to go!

Now it’s time to return to your Smart Home screen, select scenes, and tap discover devices. Alexa will do its thing and then you’ll see a screen like this:

Alexa Hue Scenes
You’ll see the Alexa App has automatically paired Philips Hue scenes with the group I created in the Alexa app.

The correct verbiage to use these commands is:

“Alexa, turn on ‘Scene’ in ‘Group.'”

So you could say…

“Alexa, turn on Savanna sunset in Living Room”

You also now have the capability to ask Alexa to change the color of your Hue lights.

Alexa Hue Savanna Sunset
Here’s my lamp when I had the Savanna Sunset scene active.
Alexa Hue Green Light
This is what happened when I used the command: “Alexa, turn the Living Room lights green.”

Learning the Correct Alexa Commands for Hue

If you are unsure what exactly to say to get Alexa to control your Hue bulbs, simply…

  1. Open your Alexa app
  2. Open the Main Menu
  3. Select Smart Home
  4. Tap Smart Home Skills
  5. Select the Hue Skill

On the Philips Hue Skill screen you’ll see a short list of commands under “TRY SAYING.” It will look like this…

Alexa Commands for Philips Hue
Find your Hue skill under the Smart Home option in your Alexa app. You’ll find a list of Alexa commands to try.

Enjoy the Alexa Hue Customizations

And that’s it. I made this tutorial in May 2017. The process may become more streamlined in the future, but I don’t think it was that bad!

While there was bit of a hangup logging into the Philips Hue app to get the Hue skill going, the rest was pretty easy and intuitive. It didn’t take a ton of time to get set up. I was able to get basic voice control over my Philips Hue bulbs in about 45 seconds. Setup for Amazon Echo to make Philips Hue change color took another couple of minutes. But again, it wasn’t insanely difficult.