Comcast 'dynamic ambient lighting' technology ties home theaters to smart light bulbs

Comcast (Nasdaq: CMCSA) has developed technology that could use table lamps and other lights in a subscriber's living room to deliver special effects to enhance TV shows and movies watched by its cable subscribers, according to a recent patent application titled "dynamic ambient lighting."

The nation's largest cable MSO recently announced that it would begin selling smart light bulbs with Osram Sylvania later this year, and it showed prototypes for the energy efficient bulbs last month at The Cable Show convention in Washington, D.C. While an image of a light bulb in the patent application looks similar to the Comcast prototype, Comcast and Sylvania haven't yet announced plans to use the smart light bulbs to enhance a home theater system with special effects.

Comcast may be able to use the system to receive data containing instructions for delivering synchronized lighting effects, according to the patent application. "Lighting effects may refer to a predefined sequence of one or more lighting primitives that, when executed in sequence, causes the one or more light sources in the ambient lighting system to generate a predefined visual effect (e.g., flashing lights on a police car, sunrise, sunset, moonlight, explosions, fire, search lights, etc.)," Comcast writes in the patent application.

Comcast names one of the tech vendors that it could work with on the dynamic ambient lighting product, noting that a Marvell Technology Group processor could be configured to control light strands used by the system.

For more: 
- see the patent application

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