I’ve checked out a variety of smart light switches since I built my very own smart home in 2007, but Brilliant’s Brilliant Control is essentially the most exciting lighting control I’ve seen since I’ve been able to regulate my lights with Amazon’s Alexa.
This one works with Alexa, of course—in fact, Alexa Voice Service is built in—but it also has a touchscreen; Wi-Fi and Bluetooth radios; a motion sensor; an integrated camera and microphone; and it could possibly control far more than simply lights.
Brilliant co-founder and CEO Aaron Emigh said he was within the midst of renovating his own home in the pre-Amazon Echo days when the inspiration for Brilliant Control struck. “I was taking a look at various smart home options. I wanted an a la carte option, because it suits my hackerish background. Systems like Crestron involved putting holes in your walls and depended on professional installers, and the next tier down was centered around security, which wasn’t the lens I used to be looking through for a smart home. I was going to end up in a weird situation where I used to be dependent on my smartphone to control anything. So I assumed to myself ‘why not put a screen and a microphone where the light switches are, so there’s one in every room??I was shocked to find this didn’t already exist.?/p>
The Brilliant Control that may come to market in late summer consists of a 5-inch, 720×1280 touchscreen that mounts to an electrical module that fits inside your existing electrical box, replacing a dimmer or switch. In situations where you have got multiple dimmers or switches clustered in a row (up to four), you’ll be able to replace those other switches with a module that has touch-sensitive grooves. Along with touch, the Brilliant Control will even respond to voice (tapping Amazon’s Alexa Voice Service, so you won’t need an Echo) and motion control.
Being equipped with Wi-Fi and Bluetooth radios, it is going to be able to discover and control other systems, comparable to a Sonos multi-room audio system, a Nest thermostat, or a Ring video doorbell, according Emigh. It may also be incorporated into broader smart-home systems, including home-security systems, and with smart-home hubs akin to SmartThings and Wink. The built-in motion sensor might be programmed to show lights on automatically while you enter a dark room, or to show lights off in an empty room.
The Brilliant Control’s built-in camera and microphone will enable it to function as a room-to-room video intercom system. A built-in slider can cover the camera when it’s not in use for added privacy. The camera “has opened up a variety of conversations with partners for future uses,?Emigh said, “such as a house security camera.?And when the touchscreen display isn’t showing smart-home controls, it might probably display personal photos and even animated gifs. Brilliant says it will offer seasonal and holiday themes on a monthly basis.
There’ll also be a version of the Brilliant Control that may fit into multi-gang electrical boxes to control more than one light.
Brilliant is taking pre-orders now on the discounted price of $149 for the first 1,000 customers. After that, the worth will increase to $199 per unit (the corporate has not disclosed prices for the multi-gang models). If you reside within the San Francisco Bay Area, you will get an in-person demo on the Target Open House on 4th Street when it reopens on February 10.