With the evolution of IoT technologies, the prefix "smart" is now present in many of the words/objects we use on a daily basis: smart-phone, smart-home, smart-things etc. In this article we introduce another new reality linked to the world of the Internet of Things: Smart Lighting. We will explain what it is, how it integrates with the IoT and in which platforms it finds its application.
The concept of Smart Lighting refers to all those Smart lighting systems that are able to operate in a more flexible, customisable and efficient manner than traditional wired and manual systems.
These are a series of technological solutions such as bulbs, switches and other devices that can create usage scenarios according to a specific context, or that can be controlled remotely at any time. This results in a more efficient and scalable lighting system that can be adapted to the needs of the environment in which it is installed, as well as lowering energy consumption and the environmental impact associated with it.
The concept behind Smart Lighting is the interconnection between the various smart devices that make up the lighting system. They all create a network that exchanges data continuously using technologies such as Wi-Fi, Bluetooth or ZigBee or Z-Wave protocols. The choice of these tools depends on the complexity of the ecosystem you want to recreate, but above all on the context in which you want to recreate it.
When smart lighting integrates with the IoT, all interconnected devices can be controlled remotely, even through voice commands, thanks to Cloud Computing services. This means that lights can be switched on, off or programmed to come on even when you are not physically present in the room, but not only that, you can manage their intensity, colour and set more energy-efficient lighting scenarios.
Among these scenarios, for example, it is possible to set a gradual switch-on in the morning, perhaps combined with the raising of automated shutters. Thanks to GPS tracking, it is also possible to set devices to switch on or off depending on the distance to a certain point.
The components that make up an intelligent lighting system are many. The main element is the network connection, which can be either wired or wireless. The system is then composed of a long series of lighting devices, sensors and other devices that concretely "give light" to domestic or industrial environments, and that can be managed and programmed remotely.
For indoor environments, the smartphone has become the key component. The latest generation of phones have all the technologies and functions needed to manage the IoT remotely. To do this, they make use of a wide variety of mobile applications that allow them to manage and control the devices offered by a given provider. In this way, lighting devices can be controlled with a simple touch on the smartphone screen, or with voice commands integrated into it. Through the apps it is also possible to set up scenarios and automations that make the management of Smart Lighting almost completely autonomous and more efficient.