Smart light­ing holds a lot of po­ten­tial for ad­di­tional en­ergy sav­ing, says Tim, Head, In­ter­na­tional Busi­ness Unit, Op­ple as he talks about smart light­ing and how it goes a step fur­ther to LEDs in terms of cov­er­ing the well­ness as­pect.

Tim, Head, In­ter­na­tional Busi­ness Unit, Op­ple talks about smart light­ing which is the fu­ture of en­ergy ef­fi­cient light­ing and how it goes a step fur­ther to LEDs in terms of cov­er­ing the well­ness as­pect, in an in­ter­view with Mon­ica Chaturvedi Charna...

Power Watch India - - CONTENTS -

The lat­est buzz in the light­ing in­dus­try is the smart light­ing con­cept. Kindly tell our read­ers about the evo­lu­tion of smart lights, the po­ten­tial in In­dia and glob­ally?

Peo­ple have been talk­ing about the smart light­ing con­cept for a long time now and it can be com­pared to the tran­si­tion from nor­mal mo­bile phones to smart phones. We have been us­ing light­ing for decades now, but with smart light­ing, we are try­ing to con­nect our lights to achieve en­ergy ef­fi­ciency. It refers to in­te­grat­ing sen­sors into the lights so that there is no wastage. There are mo­tion sen­sors, tem­per­a­ture sen­sors, day-light sen­sors that con­trol the light­ing in a very smart way, giv­ing the per­fect am­bi­ent light­ing, suit­ing the needs of the cus­tomer. The light­ing in­dus­try has trans­formed in a huge way. From con­trol­ling the lights through smart phones and other gad­gets, which was the ini­tial phase of smart light­ing, we have moved on to sen­sor con­trolled au­to­matic lights. The ad­van­tage with the lat­ter is that it is not de­pen­dent on in­ter­net con­nec­tiv­ity or Wifi and that’s why we call it Lifi.

To what ex­tent does the fre­quent vari­a­tion in the light­ing af­fect the life of the light or lamp con­sid­er­ing that when­ever a per­son en­ters or leaves the room (which can hap­pen in­nu­mer­able times), the lights get switched on and off, au­to­mat­i­cally?

Tech­ni­cally, it does have an im­pact on the life of a lamp, but not a very sig­nif­i­cant one. Any good prod­uct these days would en­sure a min­i­mum life of 5 years, and ex­tend­ing up to 10 years. Op­ple Light­ing’s LED smart lights are giv­ing good re­sults in the mar­ket and we as­sure a life­time of 9-10 years for our range of prod­ucts. Our tech­nol­ogy is in sync with the cur­rent needs of the mar­ket.

In In­dia, the tran­si­tion from in­can­des­cent bulbs to CFL lights took a very long time. Com­par­a­tively, the shift from CFL to LED has been a faster one, although the mar­ket is still pick­ing up be­cause of the higher re­tail cost. In a price sen­si­tive coun­try like In­dia, smart

light­ing is many steps ahead. How do you see the busi­ness po­ten­tial?

The tran­si­tion is def­i­nitely get­ting faster and shorter and the In­dian gov­ern­ment is do­ing a lot to push LED tech­nol­ogy so that max­i­mum num­ber of peo­ple can en­joy the ben­e­fits and achieve en­hanced en­ergy ef­fi­ciency. Smart light­ing is the next step that will en­sure that con­sumers get the nec­es­sary light­ing when needed. LEDs are lead­ing to an 80% en­ergy sav­ing as com­pared to in­can­des­cent bulbs. This sav­ing can be fur­ther en­hanced by 50% through the us­age of the smart light­ing con­cept. Con­sid­er­ing the huge pop­u­la­tion of In­dia that cur­rently has ac­cess to elec­tric­ity, smart light­ing holds a lot of po­ten­tial for ad­di­tional en­ergy sav­ing. In fact, we are very hope­ful of see­ing the first smart light­ing ten­der in In­dia in the next year.

Kindly elab­o­rate on the ‘healthy light­ing’ that Op­ple is of­fer­ing.

Over and above the ex­tended life­time of our light­ing prod­ucts, Op­ple is fo­cused on the well­ness of its con­sumers in terms of pro­vid­ing them com­fort­able light­ing that is not harsh on the eye. Our prod­ucts are based on ‘flicker-free’ tech­nol­ogy, which is very cru­cial for grow­ing kids be­cause their eyes are sen­si­tive. LEDs are build on the blue ray chip tech­nol­ogy, which is not no­tice­able but is harm­ful for the eyes since it is very high on en­ergy. As per a US re­port, the dam­age of blue ray to the eyes is ir­re­versible. Op­ple is work­ing on in­te­grat­ing healthy light­ing into its prod­uct port­fo­lio and we want the cus­tomers to be able to dif­fer­en­ti­ate be­tween good lights and healthy lights.

Com­ment on the global mar­ket of smart lights and Op­ple’s share in it.

Smart lights is still an emerg­ing con­cept and as of now, Op­ple is not fo­cus­ing on the mar­ket share, but on how to ed­u­cate the so­ci­ety about smart lights and healthy lights. We want to work to­gether with big names in the light­ing in­dus­try to build the right eco sys­tem.

So, are you look­ing at al­liances with ma­jor play­ers in In­dia and do you have any man­u­fac­tur­ing base in In­dia?

We en­tered the In­dian mar­ket some­time to­wards the end of 2014 and are still new in the mar­ket. We do not yet have man­u­fac­tur­ing fa­cil­i­ties and our first an­chor point was the dis­tri­bu­tion net­work. The In­dian mar­ket is huge and the econ­omy is grow­ing very fast. We would be in­vest­ing in set­ting up man­u­fac­tur­ing here and go­ing for­ward, we would also set up an R&D cen­tre in In­dia. Op­ple in In­dia wants to be an In­dian com­pany.

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