General Electric on Monday announced that it will cease production of coiled compact fluorescent lamps for the U.S. market and focus on LED bulbs.
GE officials noted that LED sales grew 250 percent last year and accounted for 15 percent of U.S. light bulb sales. By 2020, its share of the market is expected to exceed 50 percent.
"These LED lightbulbs are starting to replicate what the electrical filament has done for over 100 years — providing that look and warm ambience that people are used to,” said GE Lighting COO John Strainic. “The time for LED is now.”
Both CFL and LED lights were among the alternatives to incandescent bulbs needed in the wake of new federal lighting efficiency regulations.
Consumers, however, complained about harsh lighting, flickering and lengthy warm-up times for CFLs, and new federal lighting specifications mean that those bulbs will no longer qualify for the government's Energy Star rating.
Sales of CFLs declined from 30 percent of the market at their peak to 15 percent last year.
LED bulbs, meanwhile, were initially too expensive to compete with CFLs, but their cost declined from $40 in 2012 to just a few dollars today.
LEDs are also able to work with connected home applications that allow homeowners to shut off or dim lights from their smartphones.
“We are seeing a complete transformation of the lighting business as we move to intelligent-lighting solutions for cities, offices, hospitals and schools,” Strainic said.
GE said that it would work with retail partners to implement the shift to LED lights.