5 LED Lighting Market Trends You Should Pay Attention to in 2017
By: Michael Munoz - DUMALUX LED Lighting
A decade ago, the work of most LED lighting companies was centered on educating the public about the benefits of LEDs and how they surpassed other lighting options when compared.
The years have since rolled by and major in-roads or milestones have been made and celebrated by the LED industry and today, its importance has been recognized, as the approximately 30 billion dollars global market built around LED shows.
In this decade, the challenges to be faced are quite different and in this article, the 5 most important challenges and the LED lighting market trends they have created will be covered in the succeeding paragraphs:
1. The Rise of Bespoke Products will Yield more Profits
The market for generic LED fixtures and lights like bulbs, panels and tubes has definitely become oversaturated as more manufacturers join the “LED revolution” and price wars take place.
Therefore for manufacturers to stand-out in the LED community, a shift in design perspective is been considered by most manufacturers.
2017, is expected to see LED manufacturers provide customized products for niche industries—interior décor, hotels, bars, outdoors etc.—in order to bring in more profits.
A customization option that we believe will feature prominently in 2017 is the use of innovative designs, which allows manufacturers in the LED lighting industry to differentiate themselves from each other.
These customizable LED fixtures will provide manufacturers with enough flexibility when setting prices for their LED lights.
2. The Smart Lighting Sector will Spearhead Innovation in the LED Industry
The euphoria that greeted the introduction of Smart LED fixtures to consumers is slowly waning due to a lack of innovation in the sector.
But there are still great strides to be made and successful innovations in this sector could be the difference between achieving profitability or going bust for LED manufacturers and vendors.
It is also important to note that the ability to dim lights and tune lighting colours are played out which means fresh innovation is needed to breathe light into the smart LED lighting sectors.
Recognizing these challenges, a couple of LED manufacturers have taken the bull by the horns. And the example of TVilight, a smart lighting startup that produces LED systems is a testament to this.
In the Dutch city of Eindhoven, this startup installed smart LED systems with the ability to determine how busy a street is in order to produce adequate lighting for commuters.
This system illuminated busy pathways and switched off when these pathways were empty. TVilight’s successes have led to the further integration of its smart LED systems in countries across Europe.
TVilight’s successes are just a sneak peek into what smart LED systems can do—in terms of saving energy, beautifying cities etc.—for today’s society. 2017 will see more start-ups commercializing smart LED systems for both domestic and commercial consumption.
3. LED to Make In-roads in the IoT Community
The Internet of Things (IoT) concept which is based on seamless interconnectivity across all facets of human life has a new target… And this target is the LED lighting community.
The global pursuit of interconnected smart devices and systems has created an enabling environment that LED manufacturers—interested in developing smart systems—can ‘leverage’ on.
Here, the term ‘leverage’ means manufacturers can develop IoT-enabled LED systems as a means to achieving profitability.
Through to form, the LED community has accepted this challenge and manufacturers are beginning to integrate LED systems into IoT in unique ways.
A great example is the case of Tridonic’s—a supplier of lighting solutions—collaboration with EON Reality Inc.—an augmented reality firm—to create LED lights controlled and supported by augmented reality applications.
Its aim is to create lighting systems that can be controlled and maintained with AR applications. Such systems can then be deployed in greenhouses, airports or other places where the need to maintain adequate lighting to increase productivity or growth is important.
Lastly, the ability to integrate these applications into home automation systems will create an avenue for IoT-powered LED lights to break into the domestic consumer space.
Getting this right will definitely increase the market share of LED manufacturers in the domestic or homeowners’ market.
4. Non-visible LED Lights Will Receive Mainstream Acceptance
The fierce competition among manufacturers in the LED community has created an environment where each vendor introduces new concepts to out-do the competition.
This competitiveness has led manufacturers to focus on LED applications in the non-visible light spectrum such as the use of UVs or IR LEDs.
In 2016, non-visible LEDs were predominantly used in the security and remote control design industries but 2017 is set to see it penetrate other industries such as; the biometrics, biomedical and agricultural industries.
Although access to the technological components that support non-visible LED lights is still not readily available to most manufacturers, 2017 may signal a changing landscape in the production of non-visible LED.
5. China’s Dominance is a LED Lighting Market Trend that is set to Continue
It is no longer news that Chinese LED lighting manufacturers backed by government financial aid, have carved out a huge chunk of the global LED market for itself and 2017 is expected to witness a continuation of this trend.
In the 4th quarter of 2016, a Chinese consortium led by MLS attempted to purchase the German lighting giants, Osram’s LEDADVANCE, in a megadeal which was stopped by the German government.
Although the German economic ministry refused to comment on the reason why it interfered, experts interpreted its interference as the countries way of halting China’s big push into the LED lighting market.
A larger offer in 2017, pushed the scale in China’s favour and Osram’s LEDAVANCE was finally purchased by the Chinese. This trend is set to continue as government-backed Chinese firms look to control the global LED market in order to push prices in its favour.
Now you have our predictions for 2017 and the question it raises to manufacturers, vendors and third-party distributors is simple:
How will your organization tackle these changes? We are interested in hearing about your strategies and ideas to beat the odds in 2017 which means that the comment box below is open to your contributions.
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Special LED journalist Michael Munoz.