What's new in v22: Philips Hue

You are lucky; my A/C, microwave, toaster oven, vacuum cleaner, garbage disposals are all not recognized. Honestly, I’d be happy to get my A/C unit recognized but it’s two-stage and I know that’s harder.

Oh, and my A/C is on it’s internal thermostat so it will never be helped with any of these APIs.

@RyanAtSense I should clarify that my comment about a waste of development time was targeted only at the “control” features that Sense now has over hue devices. I’m not sure why you’d want to control those devices from the Sense app, and it seems like extra support burden for your team. If something isn’t working quite right in the Hue ecosystem, and users perceive that Sense has the ability to control it, then you’re likely to get dragged into troubleshooting efforts, legit or not.

The monitoring integration, on the other hand, seems great. Might I suggest that a Nest thermostat integration would be very helpful for hard-to-detect HVAC equipment?

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All device detection involves some small amount of estimation, rounding, and filtering based upon assumptions. I wouldn’t quite call it guesswork though.

I’ll echo @kevin1 a bit here, but the benefit of the Hue integration isn’t just about tracking where those 8W went from one bulb. I live in a relatively small apartment and I have over 20 Hue bulbs. We have users here with upwards of 150 bulbs in their homes. That’s a lot of usage that was previously unaccounted for. But on top of that, Sense is also about more general home awareness. Not only can I now see how much power my bulbs are drawing, but I can see that usage historically and all from one central hub (rather than from multiple apps). And then there’s Kevin’s 2nd point: Hue is just the start.

and @kevin1 and @scorp508, I’ve passed on your reports to our Product team

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I’m glad people are getting to track their 8 watt bulbs, I am. I’m just bitter as I can’t even track my 3 biggest use items: a 12,000 btu A/C, a microwave and my toaster oven. My always on and other are pretty much 50% of my usage on a good day and other times higher. Kevin seems to be blessed in that his whole house seems to have been ‘discovered’ so he’s looking for those bits and pieces of electricity. I am not, I’m still looking for big ticket items. Sorry, it is what it is.


I agree with with willowdog. The time spent integrating 8watt bulbs makes little sense when Sense still does not recognize Electric Vehicles which at my house pull 9,600watts and 7,000watts respectively.

Please dedicate resources to the big draws first, and then do the cool integrations like phillips hue later.

Given the data that Sense has from homes, I would recommend auditing houses with large unknown loads and focus on figuring those out. The users with large unknown loads (I am 99% sure) would be glad to help with that process.

Consider this. “Works with Hue” or other big market recognizable brand name integrations may push more undecided people over the hurdle to purchase more Sense devicesed. This could possibly speed up your EV or other detections based on a larger data pool.


I have to agree with willowdog here. It’s difficult to hear about monitoring an 8W light bulb when I too have some high use devices that are undetected (2 pool pumps specifically). My “other” category also hovers over 50%. While I think the integration is cool, touting it as the start of something new doesn’t play well to current owners, many of us want the base features to work better. Wick’s idea about focusing on homes with large “other” categories sounds like a good strategy to help identify and work on device detection. I’m a big fan of sense and the technology behind it but want to see core functionality improve rather than feature additions that many aren’t able to utilize. Device detection may be actively improving but I haven’t seen it discussed much in release notes.

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I’m pretty pleased with the new integration. I have a large ‘other’ category as well. But about a week of using the new integration, I can already see it’s probably going to be easier for sense to isolate more devices by eliminating lights.

Now when my car isn’t charging and it’s just the connected tv/connected lights… I can easily pinpoint when the fan comes on or a non connected light switches on. I assume this will be the same for sense’s machine learning. The more they knock off the total the easier it should be to isolate the outliers.

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Dear Mike Phillips
Please let us know what your REAL goal with this product is. It seems very unclear.

You are adding a completely unnecessary and useless feature while core functions are still massively lacking accuracy and mostly defective. Please explain how this helps fix what’s broken? By all user accounts, your product is beta, maybe even late Alpha in functionality and accuracy (e.g. lack of). Pretty sure best practice is to NOT add features in Alpha or Beta unless they are vital to core functionality.

So Please… focus on making the core state goal, Energy Monitoring, features like detecting devices, recording run times, analytics of such data, etc… cuz none of it yet works properly (and all at for some) for most of us, let alone as promised.

highest regards,
99% of your Current User Base

Full disclosure - my HVAC devices are very messy. At one point in time after a reset in Aug 17, Sense was very accurately identifying separate furnace fans/blowers and separate compressors for my 2 HVAC systems (upstairs and downstairs). Over time Sense has mutated the identifications, deactivating a couple while adding a couple of conflated new devices that still track with the switching of my thermostat, but sometimes represent upstairs and sometimes downstairs. But every time the AC kicks in, one or more of these device bubbles show up, and when the AC goes off, they go away. But 1:1 correlation with up or down, fan or compressor doesn’t exist anymore. I’m comfortable with the existing results because it gives me a pretty good picture of my AC usage. Plus, Mike Phillips’ blog gives me insight and hope that Sense is starting to leverage smart device on/off feedback to improve detection by supplying “ground truth” information.

For all those users who eagerly want to train Sense about their specific devices, for faster/better recognition, this is how that starts - feedback of “ground truth” data for select devices / integrations.

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Why not chime in my opinion on this right?

I’ve been using Sense since February 2018. A bit over a month ago, I started over with a new monitor as the original seemed to suffer an overheating issue as summer rolled in here in Arizona and my breaker panel is outside in the sun. 2nd monitor is mounted inside the house with the cables passing through the wall into the panel. I’m just beginning to get “most” of my original detected devices back with similar confusion and lack of accuracy on the HVAC.

Obviously I didn’t purchase sense to track 1-11 watt light bulbs. But it stands to reason that if sense is watching power usage on my mains and while it’s attempting to learn my large draws, I’m walking around my house turning lights on and off and watching TV or using my computers that those small fluctuations could likely get pulled into the larger device models.

If the “ground truth” analogy is helpful to the machine learning then I’m all for it. Hopefully Hue really is just the beginning. Please bring on Smart Plugs and Wink/Smartthings, etc, so we can get ground truth on our other “noisey” devices thus hopefully helping improve the larger models.

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Let me do my best to address everyone’s concerns here.

First, this is a device detection update, ultimately. LED bulbs have been notoriously tough to track and this is a step forward there. In addition, as Mike, our CEO stressed in his blogpost (read here), this Hue integration has laid the foundation for future related integrations with smart thermostats, automation hubs, and so on. Hue was a relatively easy barrier to cross, so it was a good first step in this direction and now we have the infrastructure and processes in place to develop further integrations which, just like Hue, will result in better, broader device detection. It’s important to stress that these integrations aren’t just about the connected devices themselves, but also the ‘dumb’ devices controlled by those smart devices: so, a smart thermostat integration won’t just give you insight into the usage of the thermostat, but will lead to better detection of your entire HVAC system. You can probably imagine how helpful a smart plug integration would be. This is 100% tied to improving device detection, the core function of Sense. Hue is another step forward. As @kevin1 mentioned, this should please the users who are concerned about machine learning being our sole approach to device detection. With integrations like Hue (and with our related network identification work), we’re gathering ground truth data from the devices themselves.

Second, while we’re a small company still, we function like most tech companies in that we have teams and then those teams are broken down further. Hue was not an ‘all hands on deck project’ that sucked up all of our resources, but was dispersed across teams. The project in no way took away from our efforts with EV detection, HVAC detection, cycling heat detection, and so on. Work on those continues.

I also think this is a really important point. We’ve been good at announcing software updates and new, highly visible features. We’ve been less good at announcing device detection improvements. Part of the reason is that it’s ongoing. There usually aren’t major ‘releases’ here, but incremental updates that get pushed to your Sense monitors routinely. And, like Hue, these still target particular devices or classes of related devices. There is no single update where we can suddenly detect every single EV, nor is there one where we can detect all HVAC systems. One of the biggest challenges here is that all of those related devices can look very, very different to Sense (this is a place where can integrations can really help). Still, we’ve made some awesome strides recently in certain high-use devices like refrigerators, dryers, HVAC, and EVs. We will work hard on a way to share this with you as soon as possible.

We’re also planning on doing another Community webinar (like we last did in February). This should come in August, but we’re still ironing out the details. I really hope everyone in here will join us as we can go into a lot more detail about device detection updates and the integration roadmap.


I am SO glad I’ll be able to see my Hue bulbs now! Thanks!

The next integrations that would have a big “bang for the buck” would be the smart thermostats, like Nest and Ecobee. (I’d request ecobee first, because that’s what I use.

HVAC is a big component of power usage, so getting Sense to talk with the thermostats would be a great way to take big chunk out our “unknown” bubbles.


Ben W.


I agree with @benwisdom except I have 3 Nest thermostats, so…

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I agree with @jasonemoyer except i have zwave thermostats… perhaps an open API so that we could just tell sense when a device toggles on/off and the details of its state. I’m positive there are some talented and motivated people that own sense that would help build out some integrations…

And I’ll double agree with Ben about the Ecobees since I have 2.

I’m not going to promise anything here, but stay tuned for the Webinar announcement as we’ll be able to talk more about upcoming integrations there.

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Well, I connected my Hue lights to Sense and have found it to be a less than overwhelming experience.

Turn on one light in a room using the Sense app and it turns on all the Hue lights in a room. Turn on the lights individually, Sense reads them as all the same light.

I can turn them on individually using Apple’s Home app or the Hue app but Sense still sees them as the same light and just lumps the power consumption reading and control together.

That is not as useful as I had hoped. Am I missing something?


Do you have lights grouped by “room” in the Hue app and HomeKit ? I use both and have organized my Hue bulbs by room in the Hue app. Bulbs in the same “room” are grouped together in Sense, at least for me.

I have also noticed the Sense integration may have introduced more rigorous consistency checking between the Hue app and HomeKit with respect to room designation. I used to be able to overload the Hue room designation in HomeKit for better logical alignment with my rooms, but now the Hue app checks and encourages me to resolve the differences.

Yeah I’m really curious why Sense isn’t respecting my Hue groups/rooms and is only showing individual bulbs. :confounded:

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