Why Google Buying Nest Could Change Everything

Jan 15

Written by: Heather L. Sidorowicz
1/15/2014 8:42 AM  RssIcon

“…our products make our homes a little brighter, a little warmer, a little more welcoming.”

Is this the new CEDIA tagline or maybe the new slogan for a custom audio video firm? No, this is a quote from Tony Fadell’s January 13 blog post regarding Goggle’s $3.2 billion-dollar acquisition of Nest Labs.

"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 this announcement comes right on the heels of the 2014 International CES show, and I’m guessing, not on accident.

Fadell and Nest…We all know the history. Fadell is the father of the iPod, he leaves Apple to go create new products that make our lives’ better. Just last year he was the most popular keynote speaker at CEDIA EXPO, pressing upon us the importance of keeping it simple and that “just because we can… doesn’t mean you should.”

What Nest has created that Apple has not are devices that give you information without asking. More than information, their products learn your life and adapt to it, for they are things that “know.” Nest also plays well with others and now has more than 25,000 certified partners (I just signed up last week). Can we say the same for any other automation products on the market?

Their smart products surpass the ridiculous and move onto safety and energy efficiency. Who needs a washer that emails you? I own a company and have two kids, constantly struggling to do it all and find balance. Getting an email from my washer, dryer, or dishwasher does not improve my life in the least. Knowing my furnace stopped working, or my house is too cold, that is another story. This is what Fadell gets that others do not. This is what Google wanted (and needed). And their products have that Apple look to them. They have clean lines, something that you don’t mind seeing in your home.

Google, which incorporated in 1998, is known to the general public as a search engine, and it currently does a billion searches a day. In 2010, they partnered with Sony to bring us Google TV and then Android@Home in 2011. We’ve watched them add on features that incorporate life with Google Now and Google Wallet. Google has been breaking free from the computer and jumping onto other devices for years. They’ve done this by launching their own smart devices in tablets, phones, and even glasses (the beginning of wearable tech). Is it any surprise they would now connect all the information they know about us (think of everything you’ve ever Googled), and connect that information with proven products that have made clients happy around the globe?
 
 

Some say the connected home will never exist, for there is no one way for devices to communicate, no one player pushing the concept forward. Today, the story has changed. Instead of creating technology to sell products (TV manufactures, I'm looking at you), we have two powerhouse companies filled with free thinkers who want to make our lives better, and sell more products because of it. This is what made Apple, which raised Fadell, which Google just purchased. See the importance? Needless to say, as a custom AV integrator, watch, listen, and pay attention to this partnership. They have the power to change the course of the AV world and the connected home as we know it.Heather Sidorowcz
 
 
 
 
Heather L. Sidorowicz is project manager/designer for Southtown Audio Video in Hamburg, NY.

11 comment(s) so far...


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Re: Why Google Buying Nest Could Change Everything

Google is becoming synonymous with NSA. It's bad enough the government is invading our privacy; it's unacceptable that a private firm be able to accumulate so much personal data. I have stopped using Google as a search engine, have deactivated my gmail account, and will not use Google checkout. The last thing I want if for Google to have direct access to my SmartHome, where it can spy on my utility utilization, heat/cool settings, music choices, Tivo'd movies, CCTV cameras, door codes, TV packages, internet activity, security settings, and the like to tailor "choices" for me and sell my data to telemarketers. No thanks. Google has lost its way. I refuse to buy any product associated with this rapacious company.

By RJA on   1/15/2014 12:38 PM
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Re: Why Google Buying Nest Could Change Everything

I have grave concerns about this (being heavily invested in NEST). Google repeatedly buy stuff or start services (like Powermeter) and then just dump it when they feel like it. As long as NEST remain autonomous, we should be Ok though.

By mark anderson on   1/15/2014 12:44 PM
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Re: Why Google Buying Nest Could Change Everything

Just because two companies are well oiled machines does not mean it's a great merger. The only thing this is going to change is Nest's vision. One bad Google product after another (don't let me get started with Google TV) - If we can't figure out how to make anything useful let's just buy someone who can?

Shame on Nest for selling out, they were on to something good here!

By Vincent Bova on   1/15/2014 1:40 PM
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Re: Why Google Buying Nest Could Change Everything

Wow. It looks like I'll be dropping NEST products.

By London Loukx on   1/15/2014 2:29 PM
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Re: Why Google Buying Nest Could Change Everything

Google who has allowed the NSA to have access to your metadata, those Innocuos bits and Bytes that seem to harm nobody, yet your data is USED/SOLD/STOLEN and ABUSED and belongs in Databases that allow you to be PROFILED, your Movements tracked, your energy use profiled, your pattersn to be predicted, Autonomous little harmless Google who swore to do no harm, instead makes bank of your private communications, emails, data and sells and tracks you only second to the NSA....I thought Nest was cool, but I wont buy one, in fact Im making sure I dont buy anymore SMART appliances, my powermeter is now Smart, My watermeter, Phone and Internet....and noe Alarms systems, automation and Cameras, appliances all will talk to Google, allowing it to predict, track and SELL your data and make millions...NOPE.

By Digby Communicato on   1/15/2014 3:39 PM
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Re: Why Google Buying Nest Could Change Everything

This was inevitable. Our opinions are irrelevant. What is relevant is to celebrate the opportunities that will be created. Our businesses have always been linked to the manufacturers and service providers. This represents an increasing mainstreaming of what we offer and creates opportunities for those open minded enough to recognize them.

By Rob Gerhardt on   1/15/2014 4:28 PM
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Re: Why Google Buying Nest Could Change Everything

Definitely a very sinister turn of events. Be afraid. Be VERY afraid.

By Doc Greene on   1/15/2014 6:20 PM
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Re: Why Google Buying Nest Could Change Everything

I find you comments incredibly insightful and interesting. I've always viewed any information you provide on the internet as public. It is the price you pay for the world at your fingertips. If it isn't Google collecting your information, it is Facebook or some other site.

Isn't the entire idea of the Connected Home a house that watches us and reacts? How can we sell this feature if we are so afraid of it ourselves? (Just don't do anything wrong!) As for the collection of data, we individually are a speck of dust, together it could provide great change. However, the way to say off the grid is not to purchase these devices as some of stated above.

If nothing else it is interesting to watch...

By Heather L Sidorowicz on   1/16/2014 7:36 AM
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Re: Why Google Buying Nest Could Change Everything

Google has dropped their "Do No Evil" value element.
Usually I am not a pessimist but when it comes to Google's grab I am no longer optimistic. I am glad to see that all of the posts here are colored with the sobering reality of the situation with Google and their use and abuse of people's personal data. I am not much less interested in Nest and their product lines. Sad because they were doing so well on their own.

By Pup on   1/17/2014 4:51 AM
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Re: Why Google Buying Nest Could Change Everything

Heather, regarding your comment...
"Isn't the entire idea of the Connected Home a house that watches us and reacts?"
Yes this is a compelling capability; however, having the house, i.e. internal systems locally/closely managed by a private contractor/integrator is very different then cloud-based systems that are potentially, infinitely connected by/to who knows...
We should look to provide these kinds of features without the global security risks to our clients, and society at large.

I also am very glad to see that almost all of the comments show a sober understanding of the potential of this merger.

By Chris Kangis on   1/17/2014 1:48 PM
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Re: Why Google Buying Nest Could Change Everything

The whole debacle reminds me of a catch phrase from the first iteration of The Arsenio Hall Show..."Things That Make You Say Hmmmmm...!" I've been an active player in the home automation industry since 1991 and find this news very intriguing and worth watching closely. The choice of "bed partners" for NestLabs to cozy up with does raise a some flags for sure. I'd like to think its all on the up & up and the industry may step up to a new level of acceptance by consumers; if it proves the opposite, the backlash may injure the industry for a very long time. "Hmmm...!"

By Dave on   1/20/2014 12:43 PM

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