How To Use Smart Lights?
Smart lights are lighting products that are designed to function with a wide range of controllers such as smartphones, to produce a much greater level of controllability and functionality around the home. Numerous different product groups fall under the category of smart lighting.
For example, smart light switches and smart light bulbs are both product types that you could easily bracket as wifi smart lighting. However, you should also bear in mind that certain automated sensors and LED lighting strips are also part of many smart homes’ lighting systems these days.
Read on to find out everything you need to know to get started with wifi smart lights and the possibilities this technology will open up in your home.
Defining Smart Lights
Because there are so many product types that go into smart lighting systems, from Wi-Fi-enabled LED arrays to one-off smart bulbs, it is worth stating exactly what a smart light is.
In effect, a smart light is any lighting product that can be controlled from a smart device or system in an intelligent way.
So, you could connect a conventional light fitting to a wifi smart plug which means you would be able to control it from a tablet over your home’s wireless network, turning it into a smart light in the process. However, for a smart light to be a true smart product, then it should have this sort of functionality built into it, thereby doing away with the need to plug it into a smart socket or plug.
In terms of controlling smart lights intelligently, how you use your smart lights is open to a great deal of scope.
- Some people will simply want to turn their lights on and off from their smartphone without needing to get up.
- Others will want to use artificial intelligence software so that the lights operate without the user needing to make any decisions for themselves.
Equally, smart lights are not just able to operate intelligently by coming on at appropriate times. Some LED smart lights can alter their colours and even their colour temperatures according to mood, for example, perhaps picking up on which playlist has been selected on your smart audio system. You can even use smart lights for decorative displays, such as you might want for a party or during the festive season.
Smart Lighting Control Systems
Before we look at the various applications that smart lights are ideal for, it is worth examining the systems that control them.
- Many smart lights are Wi-Fi enabled which means that they will communicate via your home’s router or a repeater station.
- Others use similar wireless technologies at radio frequencies.
- When you purchase smart lights, it is worth checking the control system or systems they are compatible with so you can operate them in the way you’d like.
- For some, this will be via an app they download to their device.
- For others, it will be the ability to use a voice-controlled assistant, such as Alexa or Google Nest, instead.
The Common Uses for Smart Lights Today
Smart Lights for Security
The ability to turn lights on and off even when you are not home is always helpful for maintaining security. Timers tend to be too obvious, however, so using an intelligent system or simply turning them on and off from your smartphone when you are out makes much more sense if you want to keep criminals at bay.
Smart Lights for Convenience
As well as turning your lights on to make it look like somebody is in when they are not, smart lights can illuminate your way when you get home. With the right motion sensors, your smart lights can light up your driveway as you pull up, turn on your entrance lights as you approach your front door and turn them off for you, too, without you having to do a thing. This is ideal if you are carrying in shopping, for example, and have your hands full.
Smart Lights for Energy Conservation
Turning your lights on when you want them is great but turning them off automatically when they are no longer in use will help to reduce your energy consumption. Not only is this good for the environment but it also means you will lower your utility bills over time, as well. Smart lights will also dim to the required level in many cases so that their energy usage is optimised at all times.
Smart Lights for Lighting Effects
Want an accent light for an architectural feature or good task lighting for a job around the home you are going to do? If so, smart lighting will provide you with the necessary degree of flexibility with your lights. You can even set them up to provide decoration for a festival or put them into party mode and simply have fun with them!