Smart lighting or smart lights have gained popularity this decade. More and more people are opting for smart lights in their homes, businesses, offices, and other establishments. But what are smart lights? What do they do? How are they different from traditional light bulbs? And what do people get when they switch to smart lighting?
What are Smart Lights?
To put it in the simplest terms, smart lights are light bulbs or lighting fixtures equipped with smart technology, where they can interact with their environment and the users, and communicate with other smart devices within the vicinity. They are usually operated through a mobile application or software, or a main display or dashboard in an establishment.
Smart lighting is an advanced and modern technology used to light up residential buildings, homes, office buildings, and so much more. In recent years, it has become a great alternative to the traditional lighting system that people know. In 2020, the smart lighting market revenue hit approximately 11 billion U.S. dollars. It is now expected to quadruple to 44 billion US dollars by 2030.
Smart lights paved the way for better lighting in a living space or establishment. With the various benefits it brings to people’s lives, smart lighting has become synonymous with efficiency and modernity.
What are the key features and functionalities of Smart Lighting?
Smart lighting is intuitive and easy to use. This is because of the numerous key features and functionalities they bring to every user, household, or establishment. Here are some of them:
- Wireless connectivity options - Smart lighting systems have wireless connectivity options that enable them to communicate with other devices. Smart lights can connect to Wi-Fi, which is one of the most commonly used and robust. They can also connect to Bluetooth, which allows more direct communication between the lights and a smart paired device. Some smart lights can also connect to Zigbee, a low-cost and low-power, wireless technology mostly used in smart home automation. Other wireless connectivity options for smart lights include Z-Wave, Ethernet, and Thread.
- Dimming and color temperature adjustment - Most smart lights are known for their dimming capabilities as well as color temperature adjustment. Users now have the option to control the dimness and brightness of their lights. They would also be able to adjust or set a specific color temperature to set up the mood or highlight various architectural features or artwork on the walls.
- Integration with virtual assistants - Another convenient capability of smart lighting is its integration with smart ecosystems and virtual assistants. This allows for better lighting control and management, more versatile options, and better security. Integration with virtual assistants also means that lighting operations are more streamlined and efficient.
- Voice Control - Because smart lighting can be integrated into virtual assistants, this also means that it can be activated by a voice control feature. Users can control the smart lights with any verbal command, wherever they may be inside the house or an establishment. This gives people a lot of ease and more chances to save some time.
- Scheduling and automation capabilities - Smart lighting also makes it possible for users to set up scheduled or automated operations. For example, smart lights can turn on automatically after sunset. They can also turn off automatically at sunrise. Users can also modify this and input any scheduled lights according to their needs and preferences.
- Energy-saving controls - Smart lights are also known for their energy-saving capabilities. Smart lights have advanced controls that will help households and businesses save energy in the long run.
Each brand of smart lights has its own distinct features and functionalities. However, these six features mentioned above are the most common, and the best ones you can expect from smart lighting systems.
How does smart lighting differ from traditional lighting systems?
Smart lighting differs from traditional lighting in a lot of ways. This is one of the reasons why switching to smart lighting can be a big change for households and businesses. However, it also means that they are opening themselves to more possibilities in the future. Here are several points of differences and comparisons between smart lights and traditional lights.
Remote access, control, and automation
Smart lights have better access and control than traditional lights. This is because smart lighting systems can be accessed and controlled remotely. All the users need is a mobile app or software for smart lights. They’ll be able to turn lights on and off, no matter where they are in the house, set up other controls, configure any necessary automation, and more. This kind of convenience can be expected from smart lights instead of traditional bulbs.
Personalization and customization
Another big difference between traditional and smart lighting systems is the ability to personalize and customize. Smart lights can be customized to the user’s preferences. This can then be a big advantage when it comes to events or personal affairs. This is the same for businesses that want to use lighting to emphasize products, promotions, and more. Traditional lights don’t have this kind of advantage over smart lights.
More often than not, smart lighting systems have energy-saving features that allow users to be more efficient. This includes dimming and brightness controls, time-sensitive automation, motion sensors to activate lights in a specific area only when necessary, and more. Traditional lighting doesn't have a lot of flexibility like this, and more often than not, users end up consuming more energy.
Sustainability is also a big point in both traditional and smart lighting systems. Traditional light bulbs are known to leave a large carbon footprint. Incandescent bulbs, for example, create 4,500 lbs. of carbon dioxide per year. CFLs (compact fluorescent lights), on the other hand, are a bit better at 1,051 lbs. of carbon emissions per year. However, LED bulbs, which are used in smart lighting systems, produce the least carbon footprint at 451 lbs. of CO2 per year. This makes smart lights a sustainable choice for a lot of households and businesses.
Data and insights
Another advantage of smart lighting systems is that they can collect valuable data. This includes energy usage, lighting patterns, occupancy, and more. These kinds of data can be used to optimize lighting efficiency and usage, as well as monitor occupancy patterns, and more. These can help users be more informed and anticipate problems, unlike when using traditional lighting.
When it comes to cost, traditional lights have the advantage. Smart lights are a bit more expensive than traditional lights because of their technology and advanced features. Compact fluorescent lights and incandescent light bulbs are known to be less expensive. Even regular LED lights are cheaper than some smart lights.
What are the benefits of getting Smart Lights?
Here are some of the benefits of getting smart lights and the biggest reasons why people switch to smart lights for their homes or their businesses:
Integration with smart home ecosystems
Smart lights, of course, can be easily integrated into smart home ecosystems. Ecosystems like Google Home, Amazon Alexa, and Apple HomeKit can easily connect to and communicate with smart lights. This makes households or businesses more efficient, and it helps in creating a modern environment.
Smart lights are, without a doubt, flexible. They have various controls and configurations that allow for versatile lighting and moods no matter the time of the day. The personalization features also make it possible to set the lights based on who’s using them.
Aesthetics and ambiance
Smart lights provide aesthetics and ambiance like no other traditional lighting can. Smart lights are ideal for cozy and quiet nights, intimate date nights, colorful or lively parties, and more. They can elevate the surroundings, as well as the mood of the people.
Enhanced safety and security
Of course, smart lights also help enhance the safety and security of homes and businesses. Electrical systems or lighting equipment is the third leading cause of home fires in the United States. Fortunately, smart lights have advanced controls that give users the opportunity to ensure that lights are off when they’re away or sleeping.
Motion sensors also help deter unwanted guests and intruders, as they are activated by any motion. Smart LED lights also don’t contain mercury, which can be harmful to humans who are exposed too much.
Though smart lights are expensive up front, the cost savings they bring to users cannot be brushed aside. Smart lighting systems utilize LED bulbs, which have better lifespan and durability. They consume less energy than their traditional counterparts because of their advanced controls. All of these make them cost-effective solutions as well.
Smart lights just bring an overall convenience that is hard to ignore. From the advanced controls to the automation, to the lighting presets and customization, to the enhanced security—all of these can be found within smart lighting systems and all of these make a stark difference.
SOLUM Smart Lights as a Modern Lighting Solution
SOLUM Lighting is an example of smart lighting technology that can enhance lighting in residential spaces or establishments. SOLUM Group’s Smart Lights are made so that people can lead a smarter way of living. Here are some of the features you can expect from this modern lighting solution:
- High efficiency
- Built-in sensors
- Lighting presets
- Brightness and dimness levels
- Automation features
- Temperature monitoring
- Motion detection
- Fire detection
Contact us and learn more about the various SOLUM Lighting solutions you can use today.