iPod Creator Tony Fadell's Next Quest Is to Revolutionize Thermostats

Jeff Robbin and Tony Fadell were the co-leads behind the development of the original iPod. Now, 10 years past the iPod's introduction, Jeff Robbin is reportedly in charge of Apple's effort to remake the television. But what of Tony Fadell? He promised Steve Jobs that he wouldn't make anything that would compete with Apple products and instead started a new company, Nest Labs, to remake the thermostat.

From TechCrunch's post introducing Nest's Learning Thermostat:
Fadell got the idea designing his green home in Tahoe. He was shocked there wasn’t a single attractive thermostat on the market so he decided to build his own. The size of the market and the potential impact on the planet convinced him it was a great business. And if he didn’t do it, who would? The unit uses the guts of a smart phone and required someone who knows how to build drop-dead-easy user experiences.

The Nest Learning Thermostat is connected to Wi-Fi and can be remotely controlled by a iPhone app or a laptop. The thermostat will retail for $249 when it goes on sale in mid-November.

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41 months ago


The Nest Learning Thermostat is connected to Wi-Fi and can be remotely controlled by a iPhone app or a laptop.


Come on people think a little bigger - how about home-devices combined with the [presently hypothetical] Siri third party API?

"Siri, it's a little warm in here"
"Siri, set the living room to 70 degrees whenever I'm home."
"Siri, when I leave for work set the house to 78 degrees for 6 hours."
Rating: 19 Votes
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41 months ago
If you watch the promo videos, and the installation support videos on the nest website you'll see that this a pretty amazing product. In fact, I've been waiting for something like this for years. I'll be ordering one as soon as it's available.
Rating: 14 Votes
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41 months ago
The woman in the video is so damn annoying! "mhmm...mhmm...mhmm"
Rating: 12 Votes
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41 months ago
This guy just gets no love! Remember when the iPod came out? No one thought it would be successful. You could literally replace the words in some of the above comments with iPod, and we're back in 2001. This guy's going to make a ton a money on this, definitely one of those markets people thought didn't need change.
Rating: 12 Votes
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41 months ago
The problem I see is that it will learn from people in the house adjusting the thermostat, which at least in my house will NOT be the optimal settings for energy savings. With an "old fashioned" adjustable thermostat I set it up for energy savings and it stays that way. Even if my kids turn up the heat, it is only for the current time segment. The Nest will learn that it should be warmer during that time slot and adjust its settings, thereby eroding the energy savings. That being said, Honeywell could learn a lot about the thermostat interface from the folks at Nest.

Right, but it also learns via presence when you are not there, and turns the heat down. So the point is to make it comfortable when you want it, and then to save energy when you are not there. All automatically.
Rating: 10 Votes
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41 months ago

This "Learning Thermostat" won't fit my house unless I decide to replace all my furniture and detailing with IKEA stuff.


Maybe there's an aftermarket for themes and skins. I might go for a classic brass and teak "Nautical" theme, but others might want "Steam Punk", "My Little Pony™", or just "Beige".

And for the learning part to be turned off, that would be the "Dropout" theme.
Rating: 8 Votes
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41 months ago
i'm all for this because i'm all for saving energy, reducing waste, and other green living alternatives we can do each and every day...

but boy do i love living in america, where all these energy hungry fools don't give a crap about reducing their impacts. :rolleyes:
Rating: 6 Votes
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41 months ago



The interviewer is so aggrivating. She does the "mmm, hmm" about 500 times. It was so distracting and all I did was focus on it.


That's Sarah Lacy, she ALWAYS does that.

Anyway, the thermostat looks interesting, I've often thought to myself the same thing, that current thermostats always suck and could be designed a lot better. That said, his pitch was a little weird...incident light reflecting...hmm, yeah. Well, if I ever have enough money for a big house, I'll buy one!

Next big thing for Apple should be a standard automotive interface. Could even be literally an iPad behind the dashboard (which would therefore be easily upgradeable), with a few peripheral electronics. Think about it, they have the software tech, the touch screens, music, video, GPS and mapping, text messaging, phone calls, wireless setup, upgrading and media and contact syncing, hands-free operation (Siri), pretty much everything they need.
Rating: 6 Votes
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41 months ago

That's Sarah Lacy, she ALWAYS does that.

Anyway, the thermostat looks interesting, I've often thought to myself the same thing, that current thermostats always suck and could be designed a lot better. That said, his pitch was a little weird...incident light reflecting...hmm, yeah. Well, if I ever have enough money for a big house, I'll buy one!

Next big thing for Apple should be a standard automotive interface. Could even be literally an iPad behind the dashboard (which would therefore be easily upgradeable), with a few peripheral electronics. Think about it, they have the software tech, the touch screens, music, video, GPS and mapping, text messaging, phone calls, wireless setup, upgrading and media and contact syncing, hands-free operation (Siri), pretty much everything they need.


...except for a willing car company. No car company would allow a 1024x768 display with GPS/iPhone/handsfree and one that's upgradable when they can charge $3000 for an inferior version as part of a "technology" package.
Rating: 6 Votes
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41 months ago
I think some are missing the point. As was explained in the video only around 10% of programmable thermostats are actually programmed. Most likely due to many not truly understanding how to program them properly because of traditional interfaces. The benefit of a programmable thermostat is not truly being experienced by many.

The Nest Learning Thermostat was made to make the process easier and simpler. Nice easy to understand UI that learns your habits. Traditional thermostats do not account for alterations in your schedule but this one does. It learns what you do and adjusts accordingly. Also the connectivity features are a nice addition.

It's not as flashy as an iPod but it's still innovative.
Rating: 6 Votes
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