July 3, 2015: LED lighting is forecast to reach 32% of total lamp revenue in office lighting this year, according to the latest projection by IHS, Inc. The total worldwide revenue for office lamps is projected at $3.5 billion, of which $1.2 billion is anticipated to be LED. The remainder is mostly fluorescent lighting.
LED is gaining popularity in high-end installations in developed countries. And lighting designers are increasingly eschewing fluorescent lighting in their projects, in favor of LED.
The key factors used to make decisions about office lighting installations are the following: upfront cost, running cost (i.e., electricity cost) and ease and frequency of maintenance. LED does well in most of these categories; however, one notable exception is the initial installation cost, which is higher than other technologies. In office lighting projects installed in 2014, maintenance accounted for 18 percent of project cost, compared with 51 percent for equipment, 25 percent for installation, and 6 percent for design and engineering.
Increasing use of LED lighting is only part of the story, as the lighting industry is also a shifting toward smart lighting. Smart-lighting solutions are only used in a small number of offices globally, but there are many different types of systems available. According to one U.S. lighting designer, “occupancy and vacancy sensing is essential, and depending on where you are in the country, also daylight sensing.” Smart lighting is most commonly introduced to meet legislative requirements to save energy. Where such regulations do not exist, its penetration rate is currently still very low.
Technology challenges also exist in office lighting, but none are insurmountable. One of the biggest issues today is dimming. There are a wide variety of control standards available. Until organizations have a more coherent collaboration, the market will remain inhibited. It would be beneficial to the industry to improve this in the next few years, according to the research in IHS’s new report on office lighting.