Google warms to thermostat company Nest Labs

Posted on January 15, 2014

 

Google has announced its plans to acquire Nest Labs, a U.S. developer of home automation systems.

The Californian web giant confirmed that the deal will likely be completed within the next few months.

Nest Labs, which is also based in California, was founded in 2010 by former Apple engineers Matt Rogers and Tony Fadell.

The firm designs and manufactures thermostat technology that can analyse the behaviour of a building’s occupants and use the data to work out whether or not it is occupied, relying on humidity, activity, light, and temperature sensors.

Google has confirmed that, once the deal is complete, Nest Labs will continue to be run by Fadell – who is its current chief executive – and will maintain a “distinct” identity of its own.

Speaking to The Verge’s Nilay Patel, Fadell said:

“For me, this isn’t about a financial transaction. It’s about the future and what we can do together, so I’m really excited about taking the vision. Because they really like the vision that we have and the product roadmap that we have and they can implement it. They’re going to allow us to — Nest can remain Nest.

“We need more capital, we always do, but when we have somebody who really understands the vision, it’s like, go.”

Discussing the pending deal, the BBC’s David Grossman said the acquisition confirms that Google is no longer focused solely on search.

The company purchased engineering and robotics firm Boston Dynamics in December last year, and gesture recognition developer Flutter two months prior to that.

However, despite its recent high profile acquisitions, Google’s largest such deal was its purchase of Motorola Mobility back in 2011, in which it paid $12.5bn.

No longer simply the domain of search engine optimisation specialists, it seems that Google’s stalwart march into other areas of the tech sphere is set to continue.

Richard Bell

Richard is a Web Content Editor at Engage Web. He has had work published in a number of independent magazines and spends much of his spare time writing short stories.

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