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Technology is a compelling resource when it comes to minimizing the chances of covid-19 transmission. While the usefulness in the medical realm is evident and would require a separate discussion, the main focus of our current discussion will be IoT-empowered lighting solutions. Most of the manufacturers dealing in lighting solutions are opting for smart accessibility to minimize human contact.
Implementing smart lighting solutions will allow us to access the appliances without having to touch the switchboards. Besides eliminating touch and physical interactions, smart lights can offer a host of other relevant benefits to the early adopters.
The concept of connected LEDs does instill confidence. However, before we delve any deeper into why and how companies are embracing smart lighting solutions, we need to understand a bit more about the digitalization and the introduction of new services. Post covid19, individual inclinations are expected to change. Instead of opting for massive setups, preferences will be more discretionary in nature, when it comes to using home lighting solutions.
For instance, individuals in regions where the sun goes down late would require curated lighting solutions, precisely to avoid unwanted usage. Similarly, lighting solutions in the near future can be suggested to the customers based on air-conditioning preferences, daylight saving, and behavioral attributes. The digitalization of lighting services would mean the adoption of models like Light as a Service or X as a Service, where every solution can be tailored based on requirements.
Digitalization eliminates downtime issues, lowers investments, and makes use of the IoT technology for making sure that all the appliances work in synergy to conserve energy while achieving desired functional efficiency levels.
Smart lighting isn’t only about internet connectivity. Manufacturers interested in driving large-scale adoption must also include sensors, lighting controllers, user-interfacing solutions, cohesive database, and LED Luminaries. These components, when paired together, work in cohesion to help users control and automate lighting operations.
If and when the concept is extrapolated, smart lighting systems can also be included in a home automation network, with other gadgets feeding off each other’s intelligence to function better.
Let us start by ascertaining the future of smart lighting. Any technological implementation is viable only if the trends hint towards a global adoption, in the coming time.
As per expectations, the Smart Lighting arena is expected to be valued at almost $38.68 billion, by the end of 2026. Moreover, the CAGR of almost 21 percent is also an optimistic figure.
Keeping the trends in mind, it would be easier to answer the ‘Why’ associated with Smart light solutions. With the Internet of Things as the powering technology, predictive appliance maintenance is expected to ease out with time. Other notable perks include the ability of the user to create customized scheduling of resources. For instance, with IoT-powered devices, it is possible to send across instructions where they turn off at a specific time, especially at night, to save energy. One such product from Vont has already started making inroads in the technological landscape and deserves some attention courtesy of the innovative motion-sensing abilities.
In addition to that, smart lighting can empower users further by adding motion and proximity sensors, where the lights and connected devices turn on only when there is somebody in the room. These innovative lighting solutions also have the ability to send across HVAC maintenance and cleaning intimations, based on dust, temperature, and particle analysis. In the Post-Covid19 word, automation will be the key, especially when we are looking to minimize interactions with high-contact surfaces like lights.
Smart lighting devices are also capable of evaluating the presence of gases while making way for weather updates based on external factors. Embedding security cameras is also possible while converting the same for a single source of interaction in case of emergencies and remote monitoring, even relevant in the post-pandemic world.
Now that we have addressed the essential pointers, it is necessary to decipher the smart lighting ecosystem while talking more about the anatomy in general. To start with, granular data capturing via sensors embedded into the luminaries is the first process. Lighting sensors are ubiquitous and better equipped when it comes to offering all the necessary info required to make use of data analytics.
The next thing is to consider connectivity. Internet of Things thrives on wireless connectivity as the additional wiring costs are eliminated. Only the select bandwidth standards are to be considered while, in turn, minimizes complexities. In most cases, the 5GHz band is preferred to connect lights with other devices within a shorter range.
Data churned out of the endpoints need to be processed via edge computing technologies to minimize the wanted pressure on the database. All the necessary information is extracted at this point, which is then sent across to the cloud. Massive chunks of Big Data are stored in the cloud regularly. APIs and SaaS parameters, therefore, work in cohesion to make the data accessible to other systems.
Last but not least, the smart lighting manufacturer who puts all the technologies mentioned above in place must also account for the user interface. The simplest way to put together an interactive UI is by making the KPIs available to the user. A simplistic Graphical User Interface or GUI is the way to go for the manufacturers who are also considering app integrations to make IoT more rewarding in nature.
When it comes to the adoption and possibilities, smart lighting is still in the stage of infancy. However, over a while, manufacturers will concentrate on pairing IoT-powered lighting solutions with Artificial Intelligence. This approach will ensure hyper-connectivity and is expected to bring forth the concept of intelligent illumination and auto-dimming flexibility.
The inclusion of AI will make way for safer home automation solutions with open source gateways leading the path towards innovation. With this innovation, data wouldn’t require cloud repositories but will be processed at local gateways, making smart lighting faster, especially for automotive interiors and vertical farming establishments. Moreover, with a majority of us revisiting our finances, AI and smart lighting will also add transparency to electricity billings, something that has been a cause for concern in the times of Covid-19.