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Turn any boring light bulb into a voice-activated smart device with Vocca

We’ve seen app-controlled lights and motion-controlled lights, but Kickstarter project Vocca wants to let you to control any lightbulb with just your voice.

You’ll simply need to add a small device to your existing light socket, screw your bulb into that, and use the voice command “Go Vocca Light” to turn the light on or off.

Your light will continue to work using the wall switch, but it removes the need to get out of bed — for example to turn the light off — and doesn’t need a Wi-Fi connection or any other special equipment.

Vocca uses your existing light socket to transform your lights into a voice-activated lighting system
Vocca uses your existing light socket to transform your lights into a voice-activated lighting system

Vocca said: “Smart bulbs are a pretty smart gadget, but they lack one very important thing, a good user experience for everyday use. Who wants to pull out their smartphone to control lighting? VOCCA is focused on real life use rather than being ‘cool’ for a week.”

Despite their app-control slapdown, an advanced version of the device can connect to your smartphone via an app, allowing you to teach the unit your own commands and setting times to turn the light on or off.

The smart light adapter uses voice recognition technology from Sensory, Inc and Vocca Pro includes TobyRich Bluetooth Smart and Bluetooth Low Energy technology so it won’t drain your smartphone while using the app.

However, you will only be able to use Voccas with LED or flourescent bulbs, because incandescent bulbs produce too much heat for the sensitive electronics inside (it looks like they forgot to tell their illustrator).

The project began in 2012 when the first working prototype was created. It’s now up to its fourth working prototype and is due to enter production lines for the final full-scale manufacture in October.

The Kickstarter project has so far reached $35,510 (£21,000) out of its target of $40,000 (£24,000) from 517 backers. With only $4,500 (£2,600) to go before the closing date of September 28, it looks like this is one Kickstarter project that will meet its goal.

The first Voccas are planned to roll off the production line in October, with predicted prices of $39 (£23) for the standard Vocca ($99 for three), and $49 (£29) for a Vocca Pro ($119 for three) – plus delivery outside the USA.

You can see the promotional video below, but be warned: it’s pretty cheesy.


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