UPPER SAUCON TOWNSHIP – Alexa, meet Caseta.
Lutron Electronics Co. of Upper Saucon Township, a global lighting company, on Thursday announced its wireless lighting system Caseta is now integrated with Amazon's virtual assistant Alexa, allowing homeowners to control the lights with their voice.
Caseta, when paired with Amazon voice-control systems Echo, Echo Dot or Amazon Fire TV, gives homeowners the ability to control lights from anywhere inside or outside the home using the free Lutron app, its remote control and select third-party devices, the company said in a news release.
Consumers already using voice control know it is rapidly becoming the next big thing in connected-home technology. But Lutron's Matt Swatsky said such smart-home products are not just about the wow factor anymore.
"Asking Alexa to control your lights is undeniably powerful and can simplify things like coming home with arms full of kids, pets and groceries," said Swatsky, Lutron's director of product management. "For some people, this technology restores the freedoms once taken for granted, like freely moving about to alter the lights."
Amazon has shown an eagerness to enable manufacturers such as Lutron to tap into its Alexa voice-recognition technology.
"Using your voice to control smart-home devices like Lutron's Caseta wireless system is both easy and natural with the magic of far-field voice recognition on Echo," said Charlie Kindel, director of Amazon's Alexa Smart Home. "We're excited that Lutron customers can now control their lights simply by asking Alexa."
Lutron said the Caseta wireless system was introduced in 2014. It says the product helps customers overcome two common smart-home lighting hurdles — compatibility with LED lights and installation challenges. The company says its dimmer design does not require a neutral wire for in-wall installation, which can be a challenge for people living in homes built before 1965.
With headquarters on Suter Road in Upper Saucon Township, and facilities in 21 countries, privately held Lutron employs 1,100 people in the Lehigh Valley. The company was founded in 1961 by Ruth Rodale Spira and Joel S. Spira, who died April 8, 2015, of natural causes at the age of 88.
Priced from $99, Caseta wireless kits are available online, including at Amazon.com, and in stores such as Best Buy and The Home Depot. You can find more information at casetawireless.com or lutron.com. The Amazon Echo system costs $179.99.
Written by: Anthony Salamone
Of The Morning Call