Saturday, November 5, 2011

Nest - The Learning Thermostat

Thermostats have been around for more than 125 years since its invention in 1883 by Warren S. Johnson. Almost quarter of a billion households and offices in US have them with over 10 million sold each year in US alone. So when Tony Fadell, the brain behind the iPod, launched the company Nest Labs which will make thermostats it baffled everyone.

The idea was born after Tony left Apple in 2008 and began designing his green home in Tahoe. To his dismay he couldn't find a single thermostat in the market that was smart. Looking at its wide usage he decided to turn this seemingly boring device into a gadget that people will love to use. Nest Thermostat was born.

So how is it different? By the looks it resembles the classic round thermostat but that is where the resemblance ends. Like iPod the basic control is by rotating the wheel around it. There is a round LCD at the center which turns blue when in cooling mode, and red when in heating mode. The device programs and adjusts itself monitoring various things like historical use, outside weather through its WiFi connection, turn down when you are not around by detecting through its motion sensors. You can connect to it securely from anywhere even remotely using PCs, tablets and smartphones.

Here is a video that introduces the product:

The gadget sells for $249 and can be self installed. The launch has been quite a blockbuster as it is already sold out through early 2012.

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