Well, that turned out to be quite the adventure! After the tribulations of getting a Hue Smart Button linked to every light in the house, the next step was to get it configured to turn all the lights off, preferably without it turning them all on first.
My initial theory was that a custom scene could be created, where every light was turned off, and pressing the button would trigger that. This turned out to be wrong; a scene created in the Hue app must have at least one light turned on. So that was a dead end.
I mentioned in the first post that the button isn’t fully HomeKit compatible. This turns out to be a little confusing, but it’s ultimately where I found the solution. The button appears in Home, and it can be set with an action on press, but this happens in addition to what is configured in the Hue app. There’s an option in the Hue app to “configure in another app”. This brings up a menu which specifically says “Home app not supported”, along with a button for any other compatible app you might have (I don’t have any other apps installed). At this point I wasn’t feeling too hopeful about achieving what I wanted.
Figuring I had nothing to lose, I decided to try out what happens if I clicked the option for configuring in another app. No app opened up, unsurprisingly, but something interesting did happen: all Hue actions and scenes were removed from the button. It was effectively a connected clicker at this point. However! The button could still be configured in Home – opening up the option to run the Home “on press” action without also running a Hue scene. This was exactly what I was looking for!
So a few taps in the Home app later, I had the button setting the status of every light in the house to “off” whenever it’s pressed, including the non-Hue bulbs. So simple and straightforward… eventually.
So in summary, this is the steps I needed to get the Smart Button to turn off all my lights (and only turn them off):
- Use the Hue app to connect the button to your network.
- Make sure the button is synced with HomeKit and appears in the Home app.
- Back in the Hue app, go to Settings > Accessory Setup > your Smart Button
- Scroll to the bottom. Tap “configure in another app”. Then tap the same option on the menu that opens up.
- Wait for the screen to reload. All scenes and actions will have been removed.
- Open the Home app, find the button, then long-press to open the button options screen
- Assign whatever devices or scenes you want to the Single Press action
The “downside” of this approach is that your button can only do one thing, and it’s not a toggle, so pressing a second time won’t set your devices back to their previous state. That’s exactly what I wanted, but it might not be what you want.