back to article Google gobbles Wi-Fi thermostat maker Nest for $3.2 BEEELLION IN CASH

Nest Labs, which touts sensors and controllers for so-called "smart homes", has been bought by Google for $3.2bn in hard cash. "Nest's founders, Tony Fadell and Matt Rogers, have built a tremendous team that we are excited to welcome into the Google family," gushed Google CEO Larry Page in a statement, heaping praise on the two …

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Unhappy

Does this mean my boiler will now target me with ads?

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Black Helicopters

Does this mean my boiler will now target me with ads?

No but the NSA will know your thermostat setting.

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What this means

It means that the Internet of things will have an open API, and be Linux and Android and iOS compatible. The dark skies opened up and a heavenly choir began to sing.

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Mushroom

"No but the NSA will know your thermostat setting."

Cause terrorist like it hot......

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Re: What this means

The API will be open but the only way to use it will be with a custom, proprietary runtime and there will be a global query limit of 500 requests.... And installing your Nest now will require a Google+ account.

That said, you'll be able to easily share your data through Circles and your thermostat will be able to discover all your email accounts.

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Anonymous Coward

They will know when you're home. If they need to send the FBI over, they can also make sure it is comfortable to their liking. They will also know when they can install their bugs.

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Anonymous Coward

Dont be so fucking stupid. What it might allow you to do is save money and lower your carbon footprint.

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Re: What this means

"And installing your Nest now will require a Google+ account."

tony just increased his home temperature by 2 degrees

like?

- Want Insulation cheapest insulation in your area -

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Anonymous Coward

To me, this is yet another sign that the company is becoming the new Microsoft, buying innovation to make it unavoidable you have to get a Google account to do things, and thus agree legally to let them have all the data they cansqueeze out of your life to sell. In that context, the commentard suggesting someone might need insolation isn't far off IMHO, also because Google possibly has your MOBILE number to sell with it if you bought the "extra security" Argument to give them the one thing that wasn't listed).

If you wanted a Nest thermostat, buy it now before Borg II absorbs it.

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And you couldn't save energy before the Google purchase...

The potential power savings of the Nest were there before the acquisition by Google. What does the acquisition by Google of this company give me?

For that matter, at $3.2 billion, what can it possibly give Google that's worth that much?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: And you couldn't save energy before the Google purchase...

"[W]hat can it possibly give Google that's worth that much?"

Tony Fadell.

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Anonymous Coward

Do you think Google give a shit about that?

They are one of the least green companies around. Self driving cars and they're working on a flight price comparison site.

Not to mention the $250,000 burger, when a quorn burger tastes much nicer.

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Anonymous Coward

Apple are doing the same now, buying tech they should be developing.

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Terminator

Re: What this means

Google: I've just picked up a fault in the AE35 unit. It's going to go 100% failure in 72 hours.

Google: I am putting myself to the fullest possible use, which is all I think that any conscious entity can ever hope to do.

Google: It can only be attributable to human error.

User: Open the Washing Machine doors, Google!

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Re: And you couldn't save energy before the Google purchase...

Well, lets examine this. They have build super secret storage facilities that are more secure than area 51. Their data has become uncontrollable and showing "sign of life". They own the most advance war machine company on Earth, and they have been given the U.S. health care system to boot. ...Now they control your house. Google is obviously run by the Alien robot overlords preparing for world invasion. Prepare yourselves now.

Do all evil all the time.

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Anonymous Coward

Fail of the week...

Actually Google are doing loads of green initiatives (more than Microsoft and Apple). Sorry if I had to highlight your ignorant fanboy bias, but sometimes it needs to be done...

http://www.google.co.uk/green/bigpicture/

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Re: And you couldn't save energy before the Google purchase...

""[W]hat can it possibly give Google that's worth that much?"

Tony Fadell."

The ability to easily not pay tax on $3.2 billion, and absorb a [future] competitor in home-automation.

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Anonymous Coward

I don't allow carbon footprints in my house because they might dirty my green carpets.

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Anonymous Coward

Presumably it also means that Google will launch a 'NEST Marketplace' that will rapidly become infested with malware and targeted adverts...

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Re: What this means

The dot nest framework?

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Re: What this means

The dark skies opened up and rained down a shower of pain and general annoyance.

There, fixed it for ya'.

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Coat

I should create a company

I don't know why people bother buying lottery tickets when the odds of getting rich are so much better creating a company and getting bought by Google. Just make sure to play to the personal tastes of Larry Page and Sergey Brin.

Still, they just bought a company that makes thermostats for $3.200.000.000, which is about 500 times what I expect to earn during my whole life. Please excuse my loser self while I go cry in a corner.

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Re: I should create a company

Yes, 3.2 billion for a thermostat company sounds ridiculous, but 6.4 million over your whole life isn't bad either. Even spread over 90 years, that's over 71k / year. No need to cry in the corner.

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Re: I should create a company

You do know that the guy who founded Nest is the father of the iPod?

Smarthome is the next big thing. Smart energy usage, easy multi-room systems and so on.

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really?

for whom? I just don't see the so called 'smart home' becoming universal....maybe in the USA where folk regularly fill their homes and garages with Home Depot junk.

Nope, this is just another play by Google to collect data.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: I should create a company

"that's over 71k / year"

That's not so much in Ugandan Dollars....

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Re: I should create a company

Already have it today, I can control my heating anywhere through an Internet connection, with standard British Gas boiler. No doubt we will see more of this kind of thing in the future.

If that's true, I hope this isn't anything like an ipod - no thanks, I don't want every device from fridges to kettles set up so that they're suddenly only compatible with a system from one manufacturer, ignoring every other system that uses open standards. And then even the people that do go along with it find that all their kettles and fridges have to be replaced, because the one manufacturer changes their dongle socket interface.

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Re: I should create a company

I am struggling to think what's so clever about this company. Altering the temperature of somewhere according to whether or not there are people in the place is not exactly difficult.

Someone (this bunch?) have a phone program that can let the system know when you're nearby (probably), so the place can be warm if and when you arrive.

But really this is simple control stuff with some nice industrial design.

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Gee wiz, dontcha just want one?

"Since then the company has expanded into flogging a combination carbon-monoxide detector and "smart" smoke alarm, which phones you when your house is on fire"

<Cheesy ringtone>

<<Hi, this your Nest (tm) smart smoke detector, your house is on fire!>>

I can definitely see enough people rushing out to buy this to justify an investment of $3200000000

Maybe it'll post a message for you on your Google+ account and send an email to all your gmail contacts too : "Hi, I won't be available to answer emails for the next few days as my house just burnt down".

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With the exta youtube service please!

For an extra $9.99 a month, if your house catches fire an autonomous drone flies a 360 around your house and posts the video on youtube and G+.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Gee wiz, dontcha just want one?

More likely:

<Cheesy ringtone>

<<Hi, this your Nest (tm) smart smoke detector, I have an important message for you but first, here's a special offer on home insurance>>

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Gee wiz, dontcha just want one?

"<<Hi, this your Nest (tm) smart smoke detector, your house is on fire!>>"

It'd have to be a bloody smart smoke detector to overcome the usual problem that such devices have, which is that they are much more likely to be set off by burning your toast or even just cooking bacon.

Perhaps a more useful role for this product is in guarding your supply of breakfast pig products from being snaffled by someone else living in the house. Show up to a couple of 'false alarms' and catch them in the act of preparing a sneaky fry up...

<<Hi, this your Nest (tm) smart smoke detector, either your house is on fire or the missus is at the bacon again!>>"

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Anonymous Coward

rotary dials and glowing temperature readings

- absolutely essential features for a thermostat.

AND now it spies on you too! What's not to like?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: rotary dials and glowing temperature readings

So why was the iPod a huge success and other MP3 players less so?

The guy who designed Nest worked on the iPod. I'd say that means people do want rotary dials and nice lights.

Clarity is important and if you're going to have something stuck on your wall why shouldn't be be attractive?

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Anonymous Coward

apple fridge v. google thermostat

click on facebook channel icon on your toilet seat to vote for winner NOW!!!

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Stupid American Patents.

"featuring "innovations" such as a rotating dial with an LED to indicate the temperature"

Is it just me or is this another stupid American patent? A rotating dial with an LED? What new exciting development next? A togglable switch with with an LED?

Stupid damn American patent system.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Stupid American Patents.

It's a registered design patent, protecting the appearance design so that others don't produce lookalikes.

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Re: Stupid American Patents.

A bit of irony considering that the creator came from Apple...

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More not being evil coming up

I guess the thermostats will soon have microphones for voice control and cameras so they can see if people are there and if they look hot or cold.

They are already web connected so Google can get to see and hear what you do in your homes as well as your computers, fondleslabs, and phones.

And 3.2 billion for a bloody thermostat company? Maybe they see it is another route into people's homes after the flopped powermeter attempt and will be able to use it as a lever to force utilities to cooperate with them on smart metering and smart appliances.

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Terminator

In Japan...

Almost all the major air conditioner brands do in fact now have infra-red sensors in them to detect when people look hot or cold. And Sharp's Cocorobo (Roomba-alike) speaks to you and will on command trundle over to the air conditioner to switch it on and off.

"Here I am, brain the size of a planet, and they ask me to turn down the aircon. Call that job satisfaction?"

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Re: More not being evil coming up

I think its more like that guy in his late 30's buying a $500 hat to show that he "is still hip with the kids" and not some kind of corporate sell-out.

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Re: More not being evil coming up

The Nest already has motion & sound detectors so that it can turn the heating up if people are about or down if they're not.

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Anonymous Coward

Why is this coming as a surprise to anyone?

Google was funding Nest throughout its various rounds of raising venture capital; they even directly-mention this in today's statement regarding the buyout:

https://nest.com/blog/2014/01/13/welcome-home/

In a sense - and I'll admit that this is something of a 'better the devil you know' choice - this is probably preferable to tying your home thermostat directly into the Smart Grid*, but that largely depends on how much autonomy Nest can maintain from Google. I'm willing to bet that that autonomy is going to be quite small now that they have virtually unlimited access to the mothership's cloud services (assuming they weren't using them already), but one can at least hold out hope.

* Yes, I realise that the Smart Grid will, by its very nature, end up encompassing any Nest thermostats in the home, but at least it could conceivably remain one piece of hardware that's not directly-tied to it.

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Re: Why is this coming as a surprise to anyone?

"Google was funding Nest throughout its various rounds of raising venture capital"

So Google actually paid 3.5 billion to themselves? (or a proportion of it)? I smell tax avoidance.

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Re: Why is this coming as a surprise to anyone?

Just had a look at the products page at Nest, four products; a smart thermostat, a smoke alarm, an expensive blanket and a very expensive water bottle.

Not too sure if the blanket and bottle are smart and can spy on you but either Nest has a truck load of innovative patents ready to roll or Borgle is tax avoiding as mentioned.

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And where goes the academic papers on web crawling

And I thought Google would keep improving search algorithms.

It's a glaring but not admitted failure that they have to rely on context (even temperatures) outside a web pages / sites for understanding what ads will suit on a specific page.

Business always finds its way.

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It is a cunning ploy

to make Google+ more popular. Now if you post an update, "I am at home and I feel cold", the thermostat (that won't work without a G+ account) will be able to react. At which point the whole of GMail will be emailed a story (the thermostat has a valid G+ account, after all) of how posting to Google+ made you more comfortable in a very real sense. Some gullible punters will order smart thermostats from Google Play and open Google+ accounts for each new device...

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Anonymous Coward

Re: It is a cunning ploy

And god forbid, after a hot session in your bedroom, you said, I LIKE this thing on the roof :)

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Anonymous Coward

Re: It is a cunning ploy

What is Google+ ?

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Anonymous Coward

I see the future

Google's recent purchases: gesture recognition, robots, thermostats.

So in the future a robot will recognise you shivering and show you an ad for a jumper / tropical holiday. When you respond to that with a two-finger gesture, said robot will sprint across the room and turn the thermostat up.

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