As Critical Link blog readers know, I am a fan of the Nest Thermostat. It’s a nifty gadget, pretty useful, and out and out fun to play around with.
Much as I love my Nest, I have to admit that my jaw dropped a bit when I read last month that Google was acquiring the company for a cool $3.2 billion.
That’s an awful lot of money…
But Nest is the developer of the leading smart thermostat, and I’ve read that Nest thermostat’s are now in a million homes. And they have added to their product portfolio with Protect, a smart smoke and carbon monoxide detector. (Ok, so I installed mine last night – more on that later, probably.) And the company owns a boatload of patents (some admittedly being contested). And it was founded by Tony Fadell and Matt Rogers, who both have strong pedigrees, having worked on the first iPod while at Apple.
So while $3.2 billion may seem like crazy money, it’s not that crazy.
Certainly, from the Nest standpoint, the acquisition makes sense (and dollars):
“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.” (Tony Fadell, quoted in TechCrunch.)
On the Google end, this jumpstarts (and surpasses earlier less successful) efforts to get into the connected device world – and gives Google a gateway into the connected home. It will be very interesting to see where Google takes this.
What I especially like about this acquisition is that it confirms what we at Critical Link have been saying all along about the Internet of Things. That IoT is big and getting bigger, important and getting more important, and will sooner rather than later involve pretty much everything electronic, whether in the household, on an individual, or in the scientific and industrial applications that we work with.
Any way you look at it, this is exciting news.