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Aerelight sees a flat future for luxury lighting

Aerelight's OLED desk lamp offers wireless phone charging, capacitive-touch controls, and a steep price tag.

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Aerelight

OLEDs aren't just the stuff of high-end flatscreen displays -- in a few years, we could be lighting our entire homes with them. Big players like Philips, DuPont, and Konica Minolta are already making moves in the space, and LG has even gone ahead and dreamed up an OLED table lamp. The problem, however, is that the costs of OLED lighting are still prohibitively high, with single fixtures often selling for thousands of dollars.

OTI Lumionics' Toronto-based design studio Aerelight wants to help change that, with a fancy-looking OLED desk lamp that retails for $240 (available for just under £150 in the UK; Australian availability has not yet been released). With a futuristic, high-end design, capacitive-touch controls, and Qi-powered wireless phone charging capabilities built right into the base, the Aerelight seeks to prove that OLED lighting's time has come.

OLED stands for organic light-emitting diode; the one in the Aerelight is 10x10cm and just 0.2mm thick. As for brightness, the team at OTI Lumionics doesn't believe lumens are an accurate representation of light output, and instead claims that the Aerelight gives off 1,000 lux of 2,900 K illumination at peak brightness, while consuming a maximum of 7 watts. Like most LEDs, the Aerelight's OLED promises to last well over 20 years.

The lamp's anodized aluminum body bears a brushed finish and natural wood accents, and comes in red, black, or silver. The entirety of that body is capacitive, too -- tap anywhere to turn the light on, or tap and hold to dim it up or down.

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The base of the Aerelight acts as a wireless phone charger. Aerelight

In addition, the base of the lamp also acts as a wireless phone charger. Place a Qi-compatible device such as the Google Nexus 5 or the Nokia Lumia 930 on the lamp, and Aerelight claims it'll charge roughly as fast as it would using a standard wall charger. If you're using the right case, the Aerelight will charge other phones, too, including iPhones and Samsung Galaxy devices.

All that said, this is still a desk lamp we're talking about, and $240 is obviously an awful lot to pay for one. At any rate, we look forward to testing Aerelight's OLED desk lamp out as soon as we can get our hands on it -- expect a full review at that time. Meanwhile, if you're tempted to go ahead and splurge, the Aerelight is available for preorder now and expected to ship out early 2015, for now just to the US, Canada, Luxembourg and the UK.

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