Smart Lightings – How Do They Work?
Smart lightings are popular these days because they can be controlled through voice commands. Everyone has heard of the Phillips Hue bulbs, and now Hive and IKEA have also joined the bandwagon. Before you make an investment in smart lights it is important to understand whether they are worth the money and if this technology is going to be around for a long time.
How Do Smart Lights Work?
Smart lights are controlled via an app that can be installed on your smartphones, Android or Apple. They can change the way your house looks and are far more economical. Using the app thus installed you can alter the brightness of the lights or even change colors when you are using colored LEDs. So, you can actually have special lighting for dinner time, one while you are watching movies, and another when you are busy with a book. To switch from one to the other you simply need to pat your smartphone app, or alternately, voice your preference through your voice-activated personal assistant.
Smart lighting will make use of a mesh networking system wherein every bulb is wirelessly connected to its neighboring bulb. The entire system is controlled by a hub pluggable into your router. This automatically enables other devices in this network such as your smartphone or tablet to communicate with the lights. There are even systems equipped with an away-from-home mode so that you can control the lightings from a distance. This is especially useful when you realize that you may have left the lights on by mistake.
Smart lights may be further accessorized with add-ons like motion detectors and dimmer switches. You may also have them linked to what is called an IFTTT or “If This Then That” service so that there are special lights for special occasions. For instance, you could have a particular color when an instant message comes through or simply a glow to give the day’s weather forecast.
Smart lights are not only controlled by tablet apps; they can work seamlessly with Amazon Echo or Google Home. So, you can use these voice assistants to convey your commands. You can buy 3 types of smart bulbs, namely the candle bulbs having SES fittings, standard bulbs with bayonet fittings, and spotlight bulbs with GU10 fittings. These lights will typically use LED bulbs which will consume less power compared to traditional light bulbs. You can choose to purchase either white or color-changing smart bulbs.
Are Smart Lightings Worth the Price?
Whether or not smart lighting is worth the cost will depend on your requirements. When you cannot afford to buy these, you can simply get the non-smart LED lights and these will help you save money in the long run. However, if you can afford to spend money on smart lighting, it is a good choice as it will give your home a makeover. You can change the way the rooms look without having to spend a fortune on redecorating stuff.
Most smart lights will use regular communication mediums like Wi-Fi or Bluetooth, Zigbee or Z-Wave. The automation hub is connected using an app on your smartphone, computer or tablet. Some brands may need a special gateway and you may have to buy a special box to communicate with the smart lights and relay commands. The Philips Hue Bridge, for instance, is needed for Philips smart bulbs. More and more homeowners are trying to build a smart home in order to make their smart devices even more efficient.
Smart lighting is a new concept but it is here to stay. It is not only a fancy way to control home lighting but also can be very useful for simplifying your life. Smart lights are convenient as they can help conserve energy. It spares you of the trouble of manually switching off all the lights every day. You can do much more with these lights, like getting a dimmer light to set a mood, or changing the color to revamp the ambiance. You can even schedule the lights depending on your preferences; for instance, the lights may be set to turn on at a specific time every day and they can be made to turn off every night at a set time.
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