Smart lighting certainly has a lot of appeal, but what if you invested in incandescent bulbs that promise decades of lifespan? San Francisco-based startup Emberlight thinks it has a solution, with an intellectual adapter that promises to make your existing bulb stock smart.
Basically, the Emberlight is a smart light bulb without a light bulb. You screw it in, then you screw it on whatever bulb you want – LED, CFL, halogen, you name it. Emberlight takes it from there, offering smart scheduling, neighborhood detection, and full automation control through a Wi-Fi and Bluetooth LE connection directly to your Android or iOS device – no middle ground. center.
Emberlight is looking for its capital through Kickstarterwhere the campaign has already surpassed its $ 50,000 target even though it’s still over a month away. Emberlight’s suggested retail price is $ 60, which translates to around $ 35 or AU $ 65 (orders outside the US will need to pay an additional $ 15 for shipping). At launch, the Emberlight will only be available in the Edison 26/27 screw base configurations, but bayonet and downlight-style models are also said to be coming soon. And it is designed to operate with the different primary voltages and frequencies used around the world.
That’s not a hefty price tag – especially if you’re planning to have plenty of lights indoors. However, there is a lot to like about the concept of adding à la carte smart devices to existing bulbs.
One obvious benefit is that by keeping the light bulb separate from the smart device, you won’t need to throw away (and replace) the smart hardware just because the bulb is damaged or burned. The fact that you’ll be able to add smart features to the specific bulb of your choice is another good perk, and possibly the music fits anyone’s ears picky at the look of the lamp.
That said, the Emberlight looks like it will add a good inch to the length of your bulb, which could prevent it from fitting tight fixtures. Even if the bulb matches, it’s more likely that it will protrude more clearly than before, which seems to be something some consumers might find annoying.
Emberlight is slated to be delivered to Kickstarter backers in February 2015. If you don’t want to wait that long, consider it.or recently announced , two smart lighting options are relatively inexpensive.