Is the lighting industry going the way the computer industry did?

GE, Osram, Sylvania and Philips are some of the big names of lighting business. Look at how the market for modern energy efficient lamps is developing and one wonders if the lighting Industry is going the way the computer industry did.

When computers burst on to the scene, they redefined efficiency measures. A new computer was a considerable investment but it more than made up for its cost by increasing productivity or by reducing cost. Companies using computers could also use this fact as a branding tool – defining themselves as progressive corporations.

The demand for energy efficient lighting products has meant that incandescent bulbs now belong in a museum and not in homes and offices. LED lighting technology is quickly decimating old records of energy efficiency and long service life. The improvement in this technology render peak light output data obsolete every year. Energy efficient LED bulbs and tubes cost more up front but like computers more than make up for their cost through energy savings, lower maintenance costs and green branding.

This is how the computer business unfolded.

Given its strong technological capabilities, IBM was once the undisputed leader in computers. Then IBM made a decision that some call a strategic blunder. They outsourced their software development to Microsoft, which was then a small start up. Chip development became the forte of Intel. Soon IBM clones flooded the market. It was possible to buy chips, software and other components from different manufacturers and assemble them. These conditions created a fertile ground for entrepreneurs and many computer assembling and selling businesses came up quickly. Simultaneously, a host of software companies came up for developing specialized products like desktop publishing and anti-virus programs. Consumers benefited but IBM lost its dominance of the computer market.

Look at what is happening in the lighting industry.

This is how the LED bulb you love reaches your light fixture.

1.       Scientists in Universities, government funded labs and private companies work to break new ground in light output and longevity. They experiment with new semiconductor materials and manufacturing technologies to produce the best product at the lowest price.

2.       Using the knowledge generated in the labs, specialized companies like CREE produce High luminous output LEDs.

3.       Companies like ‘Seesmart’ excelling in fixture design assemble high quality LEDs into fixtures of suitable wattage and light output. They ensure that operating temperatures are low and light spread is even by marrying the best LEDs, optical diffusers and heat management systems. They also ensure that the lights are in accordance with UL testing guidelines.

4.       MyLEDLightingGuide understands LED lighting and brings these super efficient lights to buyers. We sample lights from multiple manufacturers and select those that make for the best price performance combination.

5.       Our secure e-commerce platform enables consumers to choose the product best suited to their needs from the comfort and safety of their homes and offices. They do not need to go through tons of brochures printed on paper or drive down to retail outlets. The chosen product is shipped to the buyer and helps him improve the performance of his/ her business or reduce home energy bills.

As with computers, new tech companies are coming up with pioneering technological products for remote lighting management and intelligent lighting controls. The parallels are too many and the business will probably develop as the computer industry did – adding efficiencies, earning foreign exchange and establishing world leading best practices in the bargain.

That LED light bulb manufacturers shall be the stalwarts of the new age of eco-friendly lighting is beyond doubt. GE, Sylvania, Phillips, Osram and other big names of the lighting industry are trying their hand at marketing LED lights. However, these big name lighting companies are going to face a lot of competition from smaller manufacturers and customer focused retailers like MyLEDLightingGuide. The reach of our E-commerce platform renders their distribution muscle redundant negating one the main advantages enjoyed by these big players. Intelligent customers do not choose brand name products blindly. Instead they like to see, study, analyze and understand evidence about the benefits of the product they have chosen to invest their money in. This is where our ROI calculator, data analysis and knowledge articles prove to be of great value.

The world of lighting seems ready for democratization.

 


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