What would you say if we told you, you could soon enjoy your preferred lighting preferences in any hotel guest room or meeting room…anywhere on the planet, the one condition being the lighting system has to be connected to the Internet and specific bulbs in place? It’s not as far-fetched as it might sound thanks to advanced programming and end-user enabled lighting specifiers and software.
In her recent LEDs Magazine article, Beatrice Witzgall, CEO of LumiFi, tips her hand on her company’s latest release in lighting designs and controls. Think mobile mood lights. Think not your home or office.
Quick disclaimer: PLANET has no affiliation with LumiFi or any other lighting manufacturers.
The lighting industry is getting ready to transform, once again, and this time it’s the specification process. What’s driving these changes? It’s the call for flexibility and personalization.
If you’ve been following the hospitality industry for any time, then you’ll know that significant changes have come, and it’s all because of the Millennials. What transformations are they, you might ask? It all boils down to one thing—personalization.
Fueled by big data and a brief window of candor before personal privacy concerns began to mist things over, millennials freely shared their propensity for personalized service with survey takers at big events. All this much-maligned demographic has ever known is the Internet and its specificity. Nobody at PLANET is passing judgment.
The result, though, is an overarching trend in hospitality toward personalization.
The emphasis now is on new functionalities and applications—in other words, software solutions accessible over a mobile phone.
Hospitality meets smart lighting
New York City hotels have been her company’s proving ground. The challenge for suppliers, now, is how they will bring these same capabilities to a broader market, and how much functionality they will offer right away.
This article will focus on these software enabled lighting controls and the kind of architecture that is required to support it.
The LumiFi LED platform can be accessed 3 ways: 1.) Profile Overview Manager, 2.) Room Profile Manager, and 3.) Profile Light Matrix.
The Profile Overview Manager
The Profile Overview Manager provides 2 things: a spacial profile and templates. The Spatial Profile defines controllable space when setting up a project offering sharable access. Multiple users with different permissions will use this to control lighting in an area. Templates allow defined settings.
Profiles have multiple users with defined permissions. What good about this is the actual people who use a space can take control of the lighting in their immediate work environment, while overall controls are reserved for facilities and IT admins to manage.
Room Profile Manager
This feature allows users to assign and manage rooms and groups across multiple profiles. This type of access is ideal for places like hotels and campuses where meeting rooms are shared across a wide range of teams. The software is highly intuitive with features like drag-and-drop for quick adjustments.
Profile Light Matrix
This table provides a centralized overview to match light settings, profiles, and templates for users to edit based upon the needs for that situation.
LumiFi mobile app
How does a hotel-guest take advantage of this feature during their stay?
First, they download the LumiFi App from Google Play or the App Store.
Then, they connect to the hotel WiFi.
Finally, scan the access or QR code.
One of the exciting things about the LumiFi LED ecosystem is the interoperability with products from other manufacturers, such as KETRA, XICATO, hue by Philips, Crestron, TCP, and volara.
Manufacturers are beginning to offer greater product interoperability, and lighting system ecosystems have begun to shift. That is to say, that it’s becoming easier to mix LED lighting components from different manufacturers. The lighting systems themselves are moving away from hardware based to a more universally accessible software base.
Interoperability prevents consumers from having to be “locked into” one manufacturer for all there lighting components, which these days are a huge deterrent.
That’s especially true where price-points run high. In the case of residential, the tendency is to keep to affordable options. In the case of business-class lighting and fixtures, purchases need to pass the scrutiny of budgetary decision makers.
In either case, this has led to smart concessions on the part of manufacturers. And, if you’re reading this blog, you already see this played out in PoE technology.
They also have additional features like voice integration to allow verbal lighting commands. That feature is sure to assist hotel guests with physical limitations to enjoy a more gracious stay.
- Personalized access, profiles, controls, and scheduling
- Portable lighting experiences
- Usage behavior
- Data analytics
In other words, the room guest can take as much or as little control over their lighting as they see fit.
Here are a couple of quick hardware configurations that show LumiFi deployment.
The components of IoT-based are different than legacy based lighting control systems. IoT-enabled luminaires, which contain wireless communication chips, may be Bluetooth or ZigBee enabled. The wireless protocol directly integrates into the LED board, chip, bulb, or driver.
No additional control hardware is needed.
Regarding the lighting ecosystem itself, the emphasis is moving away from hardware-driven to software-driven capabilities.
Lighting control software is replacing all the heavy hardware cabinets and hardware controllers. Easy over-the-air updates allow for new features and upgrades. The software is the controller – the part that used to be composed of tons of hardware racks in an IT closet and required lots of wiring. We now have the mobile apps and a whole web platform.
Beatrice Witzgall, CEO LumiFi
Additional training may be required, as technicians need to understand how wireless controls integrate into existing networks and how to commission systems. ZigBee-based installation requires an understanding of gateway placement, and the assignment of IP (Internet Protocol) addresses within firewall network environments.
PLANET doesn’t typically focus on one product. The benefit to our readers is to highlight the exceptional benefit to end users in a highly targeted industry. And, apparently, we aren’t the only ones who think so.
LumiFi won an award at the 11th annual Hospitality Design Awards in the category for mobile technologies, applications, and software design.
Not bad for a lighting company.
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