What is SMART lighting:
SMART lighting is lighting technology designed for energy efficiency, precise control and ease of use. This may include high efficiency fixtures and automated controls that may be able to make adjustments based on certain conditions such as occupancy or daylight availability. This varies from manufacturer to manufacturer.
A few years ago SMART lighting was expensive and complicated but the technology has developed, and continues to develop strongly. Customisation and ease of use have made this a preferred lighting option.
There are a number of different approaches to SMART lighting.
SMART lighting generally uses mesh networking where each SMART light (bulb, strip lighting, downlights etc. ) connects wirelessly to each other and to the controlling source. The control can be by remote, sensor or by an App on your smart phone or tablet. This gives a large degree of flexibility in controlling the lights as they can be set up individually or in groups; each light able to belong to multiple groups. It enables dimming (no wall dimmer required) and adjustment of the light colour within a range from warm to cool, even RGB (full technicolour).
Why SMART lighting:
SMART bulbs offer control options and interactivity you just aren’t able to get with traditional lights, like scheduled timers and remote control option. They’r also more convenient as it’ easier to tap on a SMART phone/table than to get up and walk over to a wall switch. Smart lights also have built in dimming which not only provide the ideal lighting level, but also reduced costs without the need and cost required for additional dimmer switches.
Things to consider:
1. SMART lights are more expensive than the standard non-smart LED lights. However, a mix-and-match option is a good solution.
2. Put SMART lights in areas where you want customised effects like living areas, main bedroom, patios etc. Decide if coloured (RGB) or shades of white light are preferred – or a mix of both.
3. Is WiFi or Bluetooth a better option for the circumstances? What are the benefits to each type of technology?
4. Is compatibility required for SMART devices such as Google Home, Apple Home Kits or Amazon’s Alexa?
5. The upfront investment can be more expensive, however, most SMART lighting will save you money with its energy-efficient capabilities. For example, you can schedule and adjust the lighting in your home which will reduce costs on your energy bill. These products will also increase the resale value of your home.
6. Make sure that you research products and talk to experts who can guide you to finding the best solution for your particular scenario.
7. Cost of installation – SMART lights should cost the same to install as normal lights. Some systems, however can costs 1000’s extra to install which is now not only unnecessary, but is more expensive to fix, replace or add too later.
8. Do not assume that all lights can be automated.
9. The safety, security, convenience and adaptability which SMART lighting offers together with the high energy savings often make it the smartest choice.