Electrical Monitor

Smart Lighting Solutions to light up your household

EM NewsMonday, June 11, 2018, 15:09 Hrs  [IST]

What is Smart Lighting

Gartner Research defines smart lighting as “a lighting system that is connected to a network and can be both monitored and controlled from a centralized system or via the cloud.”

The three essential components of smart lighting are quality of light, control and communications, and awareness and sensing. In addition to being energy efficient, companies are making them “smart” to keep up with the technological revolution that’s underway. Artificial Intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IoT), Wi-Fi, Bluetooth – you name it and it has been incorporated to make our lives a lot easier as compared to yesteryears.

Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT)

Defined by TechTarget, the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) is the use of Internet of Things (IoT) technologies in manufacturing. IIoT incorporates machine learning and big data technology, harnessing the sensor data, machine-to-machine communication and automation technologies that have existed in industrial settings for years.

In simple terms, IIoT can be defined as the integration of physical assets (machines, buildings, etc.) with sensors, control networks and intelligent software. The value propositions of the IIoT are analytics, remote access and management, collaboration, speed and accuracy of intelligence, and the easy capture and transfer of knowledge, not just data.

Although the IIoT market is relatively young, it is already valued at just over $102 Billion USD according to a report by Markets and Markets.  By 2020 the market will be worth over $150 Billion USD indicating a significant global interest in IIoT technologies.

“A big part of the Internet of Things isn’t so much about smart devices, but about sensors. These tiny innovations can be attached to everything from yogurt cups to the cement in bridges and then record and send data back into the cloud.  This will allow businesses to collect more and more specific feedback on how products or equipment are used, when they break, and even what users might want in the future.”  Bernard Marr, Forbes

This quote pretty much sums up the IIoT in a nutshell.

Current Trends

Wireless network controlled systems bring smart lighting with control strategies such as task tuning, daylight harvesting and scheduling to deliver demand-based lighting optimized for each zone. 

Although these solutions seem expensive at the beginning, smart lighting is convenient to use and are beneficial in the long run. They even last longer than conventional lighting solutions. Apart from the convenience factor, smart lighting has various other benefits. They help conserve energy, thereby helping the environment. They also enhance the safety and security of the property they are in. For instance, one can pre-program the lights to go on and off at certain intervals simulating the presence of humans while actually they’re away on a vacation, thus keeping thieves at bay.

The current generation of consumers is smart and they’re influencing even the older generation to adopt energy-efficient solutions around the house. We have everything on our palms literally, thanks to smartphones and their versatility. Interior décor-conscious youngsters are adopting smart lighting to improve the look and ambience of their homes. The trend towards tunable, attractive, customizable lighting has driven many residents to adopt it into their homes.

 However, not all manufacturers are “smart” manufacturers. Traditional lighting manufacturers have difficulties adopting smart trends and developing smart products. In order to achieve their goals of producing smart appliances, they have to undergo an extensive R&D process which is both time-consuming and extensive. Compatibility issues and difficulties in the global application of smart products also remain huge challenges for businesses.

A China-based IoT company has stepped into the arena to help traditional industries overcome these challenges and establish smart products of their own. The company provides AIoT platform for many traditional lighting companies and is transforming standard lights to AI-powered products with high efficiency, helping manufacturers reap the benefits without having to make their own investments in IoT R&D.

The company is bringing a one-stop-shop solution to device manufacturers, to turn any standard ‘dumb’ device into a smart one, ready for production in less than two weeks. Currently working with more than 10,000 customers around the world, it is already providing smart modules, smartphone app templates, and access to its Cloud.

The process is so fast that the controlling app can be built in a few minutes, the module developed and installed in one day, and production is ready in two weeks, the company said. It is the only smart IoT platform that connects leading smart voice assistants on a global scale and has the fastest response time to an app or voice commands of any cloud platform.

Since its founding in 2014, the IoT platform provider has developed its AIoT platform and is selling its technology in devices in more than 200 countries. It already has a data center in Portland, Ore., joining its other datacenters in China and Frankfurt. The company is also working with major American retailers, providing them with a smart product library of thousands of products.

What the Future Holds

From beautifying to utilitarian, smart lighting is no longer a thing of the future. It is right here allowing us to control our homes like never before and it is here to stay longer than anyone can ever anticipate (unless someone comes up with something even more progressive than smart lighting).

Gartner sees the next steps required by major lighting vendors as the addition of analytics and predictive modeling, in order to really make these bulbs smarter. With the emergence of big data, the internet of things and connected digital lighting, smart lighting is going to bring much more intelligent functionality into our lighting systems. Hence, this trend will play an important role in making cities more livable, more enjoyable, more safe at the same time making it more economically sustainable.