The following article has been taken from the May edition of the Gadget Inspector Journal.
Smartphones aren't just smart these days, they are bordering on genius. And the genius
bit comes thanks to companies like Lightwave RF that enable your handset to control your
home. The Aston, Birmingham-based tech gurus have taken the Internet of Things â€“giving everyday objects a life online and consequently allowing them to be app-controlled â€“ to a whole new level. Lightwave allows you to control light switches and power sockets remotely. It also enables you to monitor energy usage and control devices via light and movement sensors. It works, via an app, with iOS/Android devices and a web console on PC/ Macs.
Essentially you need to plug in the set upâ€™s brains, a Wifi Link (RRP £99.95), to your router, then carry out a little DIY (or have the sockets and switches professionally installed). Despite being a tech-head, the Gadget Inspector â€™s DIY skills are decidedly limited but he was able to install a light switch (from £33.59) in several locations, with the help of Googling lighting diagrams, and a power socket (from £25) simply by following the included instructions. The socket/ switches screw into your existing back box but 25mm ones are a tight squeeze (35mm is better). Once installed you can switch lights on and off and dim them (1 to 100 per cent), from the comfort of your sofa. You can also schedule on/off timers, which work by time, or activate at dusk and dawn
- all customisable. And events â€“ you can make a socket inactive for a period, eg. to encourage kids to do their homework. Lightwave offers sensors (from £11.99 RRP) & a mood lighting control (£26.99), with master on/off switch and three â€˜moodâ€™ preset buttons. Lightwave debuted zonal heating at Gadget Show Live in April, joining its range in the summer. An issue with the first version of dimmer light switches (the 200 series) is they wonâ€™t work with some energy saving LED bulbs. But the new 400 series (due out by the time you read this â€“ look for 4xx in the product code) works with the latest LED technology. The range comes in five finishes.
â€¢ Easy to install with basic DIY skills (and Google!) and a great app.
â€¢ Ability to programme sockets/switches allows added home security.
â€¢ Modular system allows you to expand when need/finance allows.
â€¢ Instructions do not cover every scenario.
â€¢ 200 series dimmer switches wonâ€™t work with some LEDs.
Verdict: Lightwave RF provides an opportunity to revolutionise your home controls and make them fully app-enabled, which provides home comfort and security benefits and a lot of fun, with more to come with heating controls.