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Emberlight smart light system needs £67k to turn on British bulbs

If you like the look of Philips Hue smart lights but want to use UK bayonet fittings and bulbs, Emberlight needs your help (and by help, we mean cash).

Like Vocca, Emberlight uses an adaptor attached to your existing light fitting to work, with an embedded proximity sensor and WiFi connection to an app on your device for switching the lights on as you walk into a room.

Emberlight has reached its Kickstarter target of $50,000 (£30,000) with $91,000 (£54,000) achieved so far, but if they hit $200,000 (£119,000) they’ll launch a version for British bayonet fittings.

Emberlight uses any type of dimmable bulb - the fitting doesn't matter
Emberlight uses any type of dimmable bulb – even old-fashioned incandescents

Emberlight said: “We’ve been prototyping for almost a year now, and we are close to being able to do our first production run. We’ve built a team based on diverse expertise, experience, and passion. We want you to share in Emberlight’s vision to bring simple and versatile smart lighting to every home.

“We decided that we don’t need to push the mainstream connected LED product like everyone else and can build something more flexible that works for everyone.”

The project’s Kickstarter fund still has plenty of options left for backers, ranging from $49 (£30) for one bulb, up to $1000 (£595) to be a beta tester with five of the first production units, which they hope to ship in February 2015.

Emberlight uses a Bluetooth range finder to switch lights on when your phone is nearby (hopefully you’ll be with it), and a notification will tell you if you leave the area and have left any lights on. They’re hoping to extend this to other Bluetooth devices like fitness trackers and smart watches.

The device allows you to change the brightness of the bulbs using your smartphone or tablet, or turn them on if you’re away from your home – such as on holiday, perhaps.

As well as early release for the UK bayonet fitting, Emberlight’s other stretch funding goals include early release of its API to developers and IFTTT, and discounts to existing backers.

Your first Emberlight will become the WiFi master unit and control other bulbs via Bluetooth low energy, while it’s currently rated with bulbs up to 50W output – any brighter and the heat from old incandescent bulbs will fry the electronics.

It works with any dimmable bulb, whether incandescent, halogen or dimmable CFL and LEDs.

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