File this under: holiday home décor goes wireless. When putting up your Christmas tree the most time-consuming step is stringing the lights. Unless you have a fake tree already strung, traditional lights require several steps. Strings have to be: tested, fixed, plugged-in, hidden and woven over the entire tree. The eRing Kickstarter project (it used to be called Aura) is saying farewell to wired lights and hello to wireless. The designers of eRing are offering us the first ever wireless Christmas tree lighting system and their project will be featured on Kickstarter until January 18th. If it becomes a reality, starting next year, wired lights may become a thing of the past.
Here’s how the eRing system works. To light the tree, simply lay down a (supplied) base ring, plug it in and hang your light-up ornaments anywhere. The wireless lights are completely encased in a glass, or plastic, sphere-shaped ornament. The idea is more holiday magic then holiday décor; here are the Pros for the everyday consumer and pros for the alternative one.
- Lights cannot short circuit or spark
- Lights give off little to zero heat unlike traditional light bulbs
- Lights are LED’s, and use less power than traditional lights
- Greatly reduces risk of fire, if not completely eliminating it
- Option for smart phone control (image above)
- eRing wireless lights last up to 20 years and one system can light up to 100 ornament lights
- Being wire free means less materials and less materials means less waste
- You’re using less plastic. Traditional string lights have plastic coating on the wires, plastic plugs and plastic holders for the bulbs.
- The wireless lights are on a PCB, printed circuit board, which is recyclable.
The whole thing works using wireless power transfer via resonant inductive coupling. The base ring contains a coil, electricity flows through the coil and generates a magnetic field. When the ornaments are placed into the magnetic field they convert the field to electrical energy which powers the LED lights.
Some people may be concerned that the magnetic field is harmful to people, but your smart phone generates a larger field than the wireless system. Another concern is the loss of energy. It is true that the system is not perfectly efficient but even with the amount of energy lost wireless LED’s are still more efficient than traditional lights.
As currently planned, ERing Wireless Lights will be offered in white and multi-color with one plastic ornament option and 3 glass ornament options (seen above). On kickstarter, a 69 dollar pledge will get you a ring, a box of 12 wireless lights and a Kickstarter-backer ornament. A 99 dollar pledge will get you the backer ornament, 12 wireless lights and a ring that has WiFi so you can smart phone link up. You can check out the Kickstarter here and even watch some videos about the product.
related: more green home decor