Emberlight lets regular light bulbs join the Internet of Things
By Stu Robarts
August 5, 2014
Smart lighting requires that either the wiring and infrastructure or the bulbs themselves are able to be connected to the web. Philips hue, LIFX and INSTEON bulbs all take this latter approach, but buying new smart bulbs can be expensive. Emberlight is an adapter designed to make any bulb smart without the expense.
Like Spark, the Emberlight sits between a light fitting and a bulb and connects to the user's Wi-Fi network to allow the remote control of the light from a smartphone, tablet, or computer.
However, unlike Spark, which missed its crowdfunding goal on Kickstarter leaving the company to focus on providing an open-source operating system for the Internet of Things, the Emberlight has been more successful. The device has already hit its Kickstarter target with another month left to go.
Installation of the Emberlight adapter is simply a case of screwing it into a light fitting as you would a bulb. The bulb then screws into the adapter. Users need then only pull up the Emberlight mobile app and connect the device to their home Wi-Fi network.
Once the Emberlight adapter is set up, it is possible to manually raise and lower the brightness of a bulb, set bulbs to fade up or down at certain times, set and load lighting mood presets, have lights automatically come on when you are within a certain distance and control lights at home when you're elsewhere. The company also suggests that users can save energy by slightly reducing the brightness of lights throughout their home and notifications will tell a user if they have left any on.
Emberlight works with incandescent, halogen, dimmable CFL and dimmable LED bulbs. The device is designed for use with Edison screw bulbs, although adapters for bayonet bulbs are available. Emberlight is also planning to release actual bayonet versions of the device for counties where this format is used.
Pledges for the Kickstarter campaign start at US$49 in order to receive an Emberlight, assuming all goes to plan with their production.
The Emberlight video pitch can be viewed below.