October 2, 2012
Nest Labs Announce New Thermostat Hardware And Software
Michael Harper for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online
The Nest thermostat, created by the “Father of the iPod,” Tony Fadell, has made its way across the Internet as something of an oddity. It´s a gadget as beautiful as it is helpful, learning the way a family cools and heats their house, to ultimately one day be able to mimic these patterns without human interaction. It does this job with elegance, a simple black, round knob with silver bezel and a small, LED display, and can even be operated with an iPhone or Android phone or online.
For all the advancements and benefits of the Nest Thermostat (the company claims it can save users up to 30% off their cooling and heating costs) it´s still just a thermostat, a device which many of us never dedicate much thought to, much less go out of the way to find a better model. No matter how cool the Nest is, it´s still a thermostat, and in and of itself, very boring.
Now, Fadell and team have announced a new version of the Nest to make the thermostat even more efficient, powerful, streamlined and, hopefully, a little more exciting than all the other thermostats.
“It took us six, seven years to get to the iPhone from the iPod,” said Fadell, recalling his time spent in Cupertino, speaking to the New York Times. “So for a little tiny company to go only one year to our next product, that´s a lot of work. “
The new Nest thermostat is 20% slimmer than the previous version with internal components which will make the new Nest compatible with 95% of low voltage cooling and heating systems in America, according to a press statement.
Just like the aforementioned iPhones, Nest is also releasing a new version of the software which powers the thermostat which can be run on older versions as well as the newest, slim-line model. The 3.0 version of the software takes advantage of new algorithms and methods to better predict when it should kick into gear.
"The new hardware expands Nest's compatibility from 75 percent of residential heating and cooling systems to 95 percent," said Maxime Veron, the head of product marketing, speaking to ABC News.
"We know our customers are among the most demanding customers, and are interested in some of the most advanced heating and cooling systems."
The new Nest 3.0 software, for example, knows what kind of system it´s being used to power. So, if a house has an older system with older pipes which take longer to heat up, the Nest will account for this and turn the heater on sooner, bringing the house up to temperature at the correct time.
Houses with radiant or heat pump systems can also benefit from Nest´s new software. The new Nest also makes use of a smarter “Auto-Away” feature. Previously, Nest would take 2 hours to shut itself off if its motion detector hadn´t picked up any movement in the house. Now, the Nest can shut itself off in only 30 minutes as it records daily analysis to predict when it´s likely anyone will be home. For instance, if a family is out of the house every Saturday morning, Nest will learn this and shut off the system more quickly.
The new Nest software is available now for existing Nest users. The new Nest hardware is available for preorder now for $250 and will begin shipping in October. The new Nest will be available later this year at Amazon, Lowes and the Apple store.