When you think of a thermostat, what comes to mind? I picture an old, off-white colored box that’s dusty and sort of works. You know the kind I’m talking about that exists in American homes which nobody gives any thought to.
Nest Labs, ran by Tony Fadell (of Apple iPod fame), just introduced their new thermostat on Techcrunch.
Did I ever think I would be posting about a thermostat? No, but this one has obvious iPod inspired DNA.
The Nest is simply a giant circle that you can turn left or right to decrease or increase the temperature. Oh yeah, it has one button on the screen in front. Does that sound familiar?
Also, the Nest appears to have a proximity sensor and has smartphone level guts. The latter (smartphone processing power) doesn’t do much to set itself apart on today’s market.
I don’t know what the current market for expensive thermostats looks like. Price-wise, the Nest is surely an expensive luxury product compared to your Vanilla off the shelf thermostat. But then the dollar amount for the Nest is relatively insignificant when it comes to your home’s central heating & A/C system. If you’re renting or selling your house, the Nest would be an easy way to increase the overall value of the property by more than the cost of the Nest.
While the Nest is nice, I don’t see people running out and buying it if their current thermostat is in an OK working condition. But as discussed in the previous paragraph, it could be a relatively inexpensive investment to set your home apart if you’re doing extensive renovations anyways.
I’m not in the target market for the Nest, but it’s nice to see startups target hardware. With Square, Fitbit, and Nest, it’s nice to see startups tackle “market disruption” via a non-CRUD web app.