Google today said it would buy Nest, the ever-so-cool home automation firm co-founded by former Apple engineer Tony Fadell in 2010 for $3.2 billion.
Fadell, considered the creator of the iPod and his company introduced among other items an intelligent thermostat. The $249 Nest Learning Thermostat is round and made of brushed stainless steel that uses an iPod-like control wheel for manual setting. According to Fadell, the thermostat "learns" your daily routine via a machine learning program and can adjust itself based on your preferred temperatures and schedule. It can for example sense when you come home and push up the A/C or heat for example. And it can give you tips and feedback on your energy use.
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Google Chief Executive Larry Page said Nest will continue to operate under co-founder Fadell, Google said.
Fadell wrote on his blog: "Google will help us fully realize our vision of the conscious home and allow us to change the world faster than we ever could if we continued to go it alone. We've had great momentum, but this is a rocket ship.
Google has the business resources, global scale and platform reach to accelerate Nest growth across hardware, software and services for the home globally. And our company visions are well aligned - we both believe in letting technology do the hard work behind the scenes so people can get on with the things that matter in life. Google is committed to helping Nest make a difference and together, we can help save more energy and keep people safe in their homes.
This decision wasn't made on a whim - Google has been in the mix in some way or another for about three years of our almost four-year history. In fact, my first meeting with Google as a Nester was before we'd launched. At the 2011 TED Conference, Erik Charlton and I huddled in a corner with Sergey Brin to show him a video and an early model of the Nest Learning Thermostat - he instantly got what we were doing and so did the rest of the Google team when we showed them. In May 2011, Google Ventures led our Series B round of financing, and in 2012, Series C. Time and time again, Googlers have shown themselves to be incredibly like-minded, supportive and as big of dreamers as we are. I know that joining Google will be an easy transition because we're partnering with a company that gets what we do and who we are at Nest -and wants us to stay that way.
Nest will continue to be Nest, with its own distinct brand identity. We will continue to reimagine and reinvent the unloved products that proliferate in our homes, just as we have since we started. We are simply going to get our products into the hands of people around the world - faster. "
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