The future is looking bright for residential lighting control
In the past, having remote-controllable lighting in the home was something seen mainly in movies, and owned by only the few who could afford such a system. However, this is all about to change. Several lighting manufactures have demonstrated or released products that offer full lighting control for the residential space, at the right price point for consumers to take advantage of.
Insteon has announced the release of an 8-W networked LED light bulb which features dual-band technology, meaning it can transmit over a building’s existing wires (powerline) or via wireless communication. These LED light bulbs can fit into traditional light fixtures, are fully dimmable and can be controlled by a remote control that is included in the package. Alternatively, with the use of an Insteon gateway, the system can be controlled by other devices such as smart phones or tablets. These light bulbs cost as low as $29, which puts them below the price of some standard LEDs.
I first saw light bulbs with integrated connectivity technology at Smart Lighting 2012 when I saw a demonstration of Greenwave Reality’s RF-enabled CFL and LED light bulbs. These light bulbs use NXP’s JenNet-IP wireless technology to connect the bulb to a dedicated remote, or again to a third-party device such as smart phone, when utilizing a gateway.
The great benefit of these systems is that they can be fitted into traditional lighting fixtures and only require the shipped remote for advanced control. This minimizes the cost implications that most consumers would have to endure when fitting systems that require new fixtures. With full lighting control at an appropriate price point, and in the form of a traditional light bulb with installation requiring no other skills than screwing it in to the fixture, advanced lighting controls will available to even the least ‘tech savvy’ people.
With solutions such as these, you will never find yourself dwelling on the question “did I remember to turn off the lights?” as the answer will only be a few clicks on your smart phone away.