Philips' new LED bulbs are powered over Ethernet, provide occupancy and climate info to office managers

Get ready for a whole new generation of connected lightbulbs. Philips latest concept replaces an office's traditional electrical wiring with Ethernet, used to power LED bulbs and pass info to and from each lamp. Each fixture outputs light, but also collects information from a variety of sensors. A motion sensor can track the number of employees in a given area, for example, while a thermometer can report back on the current temperature. Facility managers can track any section of the office in realtime, adjusting lighting and heating from a smartphone app to save on utilities whenever possible. Of course, as you'll need to replace traditional cabling with Ethernet, the installation itself is sure to cost a pretty penny. Philips quotes a 50-percent reduction in installation costs for PoE over traditional wiring with new installations, however, so if you're planning to refurbish an office this is definitely an interesting option to consider.