If you contrast what the lighting industry was a decade of ago to what it is today, I think most of you would agree that it is experiencing an unprecedented transformation and disruption. Especially with the growing adoption Internet of Things (IoT) technologies, there is greater need for personalized control, network connectivity, remote monitoring, and data analytics. As the result we are witnessing more technological innovations, a new business model (i.e. lighting as a service), and a mind-boggling number of lighting control solutions. To put this in a better context, for the North America market, the number of networked lighting control (NLC) solutions that are listed by Design Light Consortium (DLC) in its Qualified Product List (QPL) has grown from 34 entries a year ago to 39 entries this year—a 15% increase. Being on this list matters a great deal because all the qualified NLC solutions are eligible for additional utility rebates, which make those eligible products more affordable. This list does not even include all the NLC solutions that are commercially available today for the North America market. I know this because a couple of the third-party partners I’m working aren’t on the list yet!
With this dynamic and fast change of pace we are witnessing (raise your hand if you agree with me the metaphor “changing at the speed of light” is appropriate here), you may be wondering how can anyone—lighting manufactures, specifiers, agents, distributors, installers, end customers—keep track of all the various lighting control solutions that are out there?
This is where Henry Ford’s quote about working together came into sharp focus for me. This mindset is what I’ve experienced firsthand with the North America luminaire OEMs and lighting control companies that I am working with. Many of them, including Signify, are embracing a shared vision of common technical standards to ensure interoperability between luminaires and different control systems. It doesn’t matter if the NLC is intended for basic room-based control or the fully automated indoor and outdoor applications, every luminaire OEM, every lighting control company, and every buyer and every customer can benefit from greater collaboration.