China: The LEDers of the Next "Green" Generation

The technological gap between Chinese LED (light emitting diode) companies and LED companies in the rest of the world has been transforming towards more economically friendly and viable solutions that will ensure a safer earth while guaranteeing economic developments for the past several years. The LED industry worldwide has been growing alongside various other optimal, energy saving, green solutions such as solar power, wind power, and other renewable resources. Stronger companies in the SSL (solid-state lighting) supply chain have emerged, and China is a unique focal point in the LED industry because the accelerated development in the region has impacted the entire globe’s industry completely. 
The general use of LEDs has seen a steep rise over the past few years due to several factors. LEDs are significantly more efficient than traditional incandescent, fluorescent, and HID (high-intensity discharge) lights. They have an exponentially longer lifetime, increased durability, smaller size, and are a the much more viable “green” solution in terms of lighting for companies across the spectrum – from car headlamps to advertising billboards to cameras and smartphones – LEDs are the practical solution for the lighting future. Not only that, but they’re getting cheaper as technology allows for the improvement of quality too.
The cost of LEDs now compared to years ago are astronomical: before only higher-end products, luxury cars, and other commodities had LEDs integrated into their products. Now as costs are being driven down by Chinese LED companies, accelerated adoption of SSL accompanied with the fact that companies in China have an enormous domestic market of consumers has caused the LED market to blossom worldwide.

Global Smart Lightning Market Revenue

Source: www.ledinside.com

The global smart lighting market has been developing exponentially due to a variety of reasons. “In 2017, the global smart lighting market has entered rapid development driven by the technology development, maturing products, active promotion by manufacturers, and the popularity of smart lighting concepts. The market size has reached close to $4.6 billion with an annual growth rate of 95%. The market is expected to continue the growth in the next few years, reaching $US13.4 billion by 2020” according to LEDinside’s statistics.

Market dynamics in China have slowly been shifting away from an ideology of “as fast as possible, as cheap as possible” mass production with lower quality to a demand for higher quality products. With this shift in manufacturing comes a handful of problems, such as research and development, product application and testing, quality control, and brand control [www.wellmaxgroup.com]. 
Compared to the past, Chinese manufacturers are not only dedicated to being at the forefront of LED product manufacturing but are also striving to produce the most quality products possible.
As the Chinese economy continues to grow and the standard of living rises on the mainland, a various number of factors are driving the lighting market to grow. Urban functional lighting, industrial and commercial lighting, consumption and shift towards smart lighting, and a very important feature is environmental protection and energy conservation [www.china-trade-research.hktdc.com]. 

At the head of this LED market in China is the panel of annual LED exhibitions (SIGN CHINA, LED CHINA, DIGITAL SIGNAGE) in China that features new technology, resources, equipment, new media, and information for international businesses in the lighting industry. Applications beyond that of smart lighting are beginning to emerge, and the LED market is still in its infancy. With a company wanting to enter the market, participating in these exhibitions gives an indication of how the industry is developing and what target markets will be developing. 

From the manufacturer to the consumer, the LED market has the potential to change the entire world as we know it. As technology continues to improve, LED lighting will improve as well. From medical applications to consumer electronics to state of the art OLED lighting and digital signage, the LED market is more than light now – it’s digital data.