LIFX offers a variety of connected bulb options with a wealth of features Image courtesy of LIFX
<p>LIFX offers a variety of connected bulb options with a wealth of features. (Image courtesy of LIFX)</p>

Beyond the Bulb: Lighting Gets Smarter

According to the AllSeen Alliance, a cross-industry collaboration intent on advancing the Internet of Things (IoT) through open-source software, innovations in lighting typically focus on building a better lightbulb—from traditional bulbs, to compact fluorescents, to LEDs. To accelerate the development of the next step—connected lighting—Qualcomm Atheros and LIFX jointly developed a turnkey, Wi-Fi-based, smart-lighting platform. The hardware/open-source software combination suits lighting manufacturers of any size.

The platform consists of a lighting connectivity module (LCM) and a complete LED bulb design. Both feature Qualcomm Atheros’ QCA4002, a low-power Wi-Fi solution that connects directly to a home’s Wi-Fi network without a hub or translator. The companies are also working with Arrow Electronics to globally distribute the solution, enabling more manufacturers to quickly develop smart-lighting products. The LCM is reportedly the first lighting product to receive “Designed for AllSeen” certification from the Alliance. As a result, smart lights using the resolution can quickly get the same certification.

The platform is compatible with the AllSeen Alliance’s open-source lighting service framework (LSF), which generally ensures interoperability with AllJoyn-enabled smart devices. Therefore, by integrating the LCM, established lighting manufacturers can easily turn their products into smart lights with minimal communication issues.

The AllSeen Alliance’s Connected Lighting Work Group aims to develop ways for IP-enabled, multicolor, and energy-efficient LED light bulbs to work in news ways with each other and the devices around them.

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