Google Buys Nest Labs for $3.2 Billion Cash

dgstorm

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In poker, sometimes you make a move that simply "buys" you the pot, or at least attempts to do so. Google's newest acquisition could be one of those times. They just announced a purchase of Nest Labs, the makers of the Nest computer controlled digital thermostats. Google laid down a cool $3.2 Billion for the company which was founded by a former Apple employee, Tony Fadell, best known for his iPod- and iOS-related work.

More than likely the reason Google snatched up this property was to grab their designs and their design talent. Now that Mr. Fadell and company will be working for Google, we can expect them to push further toward their future connected home plans. Whether the investment will be worth it in the long run remains to be seen.

Here's the full press release,

MOUNTAIN VIEW, CA – JANUARY 13, 2014 — Google Inc. (NASDAQ: GOOG) announced today that it has entered into an agreement to buy Nest Labs, Inc. for $3.2 billion in cash.

Nest’s mission is to reinvent unloved but important devices in the home such as thermostats and smoke alarms. Since its launch in 2011, the Nest Learning Thermostat has been a consistent best seller–and the recently launched Protect (Smoke + CO Alarm) has had rave reviews.

Larry Page, CEO of Google, said: “Nest’s founders, Tony Fadell and Matt Rogers, have built a tremendous team that we are excited to welcome into the Google family. They’re already delivering amazing products you can buy right now–thermostats that save energy and smoke/CO alarms that can help keep your family safe. We are excited to bring great experiences to more homes in more countries and fulfill their dreams!”

Tony Fadell, CEO of Nest, said: “We’re thrilled to join Google. With their support, Nest will be even better placed to build simple, thoughtful devices that make life easier at home, and that have a positive impact on the world.”

Nest will continue to operate under the leadership of Tony Fadell and with its own distinct brand identity. The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions, including the receipt of regulatory approvals in the US. It is expected to close in the next few months.

Source: Nest
 

kodiak799

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It is interesting that we haven't seen more home products with Android - most seem to have proprietary software (probably for a few understandable reasons) that seems to be clunky and/or cost prohibitive.

I like the concept, but I'm not going to incur even a nominal cost to replace my thermostat (though that one probably would pay for itself, eventually). Otherwise, aside from lights and alarms (maybe door locks), I'm not really sure what needs to be automated in the home (I guess a stove would be for safety reasons).
 

jspradling7

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I sort of "backed in" to Home Automation. I bought a new Trane A/C and Heating System for the house and it came with a Nexia thermostat. Then I found out that Ingersol Rand had bought Trane and some other companies in the home automation market. Once you start adding components you find all kinds of uses for it. For instance, "If a certain key code is used to open the door, turn on these lights, and those cameras, change the temp settings, and send me an email." Remote camera viewing and taking snapshots... notifications if motion is detected... you can even open the blinds remotely or on a schedule. Turn off certain receptacles that the curling iron or clothes iron are plugged into... it's endless.
 

Dusty

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I like the concept, but I'm not going to incur even a nominal cost to replace my thermostat (though that one probably would pay for itself, eventually). Otherwise, aside from lights and alarms (maybe door locks), I'm not really sure what needs to be automated in the home (I guess a stove would be for safety reasons).

I got the first generation Nest a few years ago, it paid for itself before the first year was up. I'm not big on the whole home automation thing either, but the Nest did a great job in dealing with temps and energy usage in my house. Even with rising electric and gas prices it saves me 25%-30% on my utility bills monthly when compared to before when my house had a traditional thermostat. If you have an apartment or a single zone house (I think they just upgraded the software to coordinate multiple zone homes now too) this thing is as advertized.
 
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