A smart lighting control system that’s sophisticated yet simple

Some smart lighting control systems are too basic, while others are too complicated. Using Casambi, you never need to choose between performance and usability thanks in part to its excellent interface.

Looking for a smart lighting control system that’s sophisticated yet simple?

Well, there was a time when only serious tech geeks would have known – or cared – what a user interface was.

But since the rise of the web, smartphones, tablets and the burgeoning internet of things, graphic user interfaces (or GUIs) are at the heart of all our lives. Good ones help us get things done quickly and simply. Bad ones drive us bananas.

The watchword is ‘intuitive’ – meaning that GUIs should work the way we expect them to. Interfaces are increasingly visual, communicating with the user through graphics and layout, rather than words. Ideally, you shouldn’t have to think too hard or look anything up to get your head around a good user interface.

Smart lighting control systems that are less smart

The last few years have seen a boom in app-controlled ‘smart’ lamps and luminaires, particularly in the consumer market. Many of these are essentially novelty gadgets, with interfaces to match. Users can play with the colour of the lights in their home, but beyond that, functionality is limited.

Furthermore, they generally rely on Wi-Fi, with a smartphone communicating with a router, which communicates with the lights (often via an intermediate gateway device). This rather unwieldy set-up means your lighting control is only as reliable as your Wi-Fi signal.

Casambi, by contrast, has developed a professional interface for commissioning and controlling sophisticated commercial lighting schemes, designed to give lighting designers maximum flexibility.

Most apps boast about being easy enough for a child to use, and Casambi’s app certainly achieves that. But unlike so many ‘smart’ lighting products, it balances this ease of use with the power and functionality of professional lighting control.

Smart lighting control systems that are truly smart

Casambi’s user interface design team, who came out of mobile phone giant Nokia, understand what customers want from a GUI, and have built an app around that.

Based on Bluetooth Low Energy, Casambi doesn’t need to connect to a Wi-Fi network, it just communicates directly with the lights.

The app employs gesture control: tap a luminaire to turn it on or off, swipe side-to-side to adjust brightness, up and down for colour temperature, or hold to change the colour. Each screen incorporates in-screen help in case you don’t know what to do.

You can also set timers based on time and date (even taking sunrise and sunset into account) or control the lights using motion sensors. Sharing control with others is easy – you can choose to make networks available to multiple devices, and password protect them if necessary.

Commissioning and controlling multiple fittings is easy – you can easily group them and set up light scenes and animations to create the perfect ambience. For example, German luminaire maker Tobias Grau used these features to control over 100 light points for its showroom in Frankfurt. Installing and commissioning such a large number of fittings can be cumbersome and costly with traditional control systems, but Casambi makes it easy, and staff at the showroom now control the lights using smartphones and tablets.

Casambi’s unique gallery feature makes control more intuitive than ever. Users simply take photos of a space, or upload a floor plan to the app, and mark the positions of the luminaires. The images then appear in a gallery in the app, with luminaires shown, and users simply tap the one they want to control. No more having to come up with names for each luminaire and trying to remember which one is which.

Casambi provides the power of professional lighting control without the complexity of systems such as DALI, which must be planned, installed and commissioned by specialists, and often don’t work as planned, or are so tricky to use that users end up ignoring them.

It’s no longer necessarily to choose between power and simplicity in lighting control. Casambi gives you both.

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