The incandescent light bulb will soon no longer be the go-to choice for lighting. It should be noted that the general LED lighting market represents around 57% of the total LED market of $25.9 billion projected for 2018. General lighting LED applications continue to gain traction in both commercial and residential markets, they are further accelerating growth.
The primary driver behind the high growth rate of LED lighting is the dramatic reduction in power consumption that LED lighting offers over traditional lighting. Compared to incandescent lighting, LEDs require less than 20% of the electrical power to provide the same level of light (in lumens).
LED advantages include a lifetime orders of magnitude higher than incandescent bulbs, which dramatically reduces replacement costs. The ability to dim LEDs using the previously installed base of TRIAC dimmers is also a major benefit, especially in residential lighting. Instant turn-on eliminates the warm-up period associated with CFLs and LEDs are not sensitive to power cycling like their CFL counterparts.
Additionally, LED lighting fixtures do not contain any toxic materials to manage or dispose of, whereas CFL utilizes toxic mercury gas to operate. Lastly, LEDs enable new very low profile form factors that other technologies could not.
Nevertheless, another contributing factor driving the conversion to household LED lighting is the fact that the 40W and 60W incandescent light bulbs typically used in the majority of American homes were banned from being manufactured in the USA, or imported, at the end of 2013. It should also be noted that the 75W and 100W bulbs were phased out in 2012.
In conclusion, the heady days of the incandescent light bulbs dominance as the go-to choice for lighting needs are waning. It has been a long time coming, but the cost structures normally associated with LED equivalents have dropped dramatically over the past 5 years or so.
So much so, that their price points are now low enough for them to be embraced not only by the consumer, but also by major industries, such as the transportation market segment. Yes, I believe the future is bright for LED bulbs.
(Source: Electronics Weekly, Why LED lighting is so important to the chip market, January 2016)