Now that the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) is underway, announcements about cutting-edge innovations are rolling out fast and hard. Nest got a head start with some Internet of Things-related news, which is expected to be a main theme at the Las Vegas show this week.
On Monday, Nest, a Google-owned company, announced 15 new partners for Works With Nest. More than an on/off switch, Works With Nest aims to drive conscious homes by making it possible for Nest devices to securely interact with the things consumers use every day, both inside and outside of the home.
Work With Nest launched about six months ago with five partners. Now, companies including LG, Whirlpool, Automatic ( adapters) Philips Hue (lights), and August Smart Lock are supporting the platform.
Not Just Sci-Fi Anymore
Nest offered some examples of what is possible with Works With Nest: a car charging station that lets you know when energy prices are high; a washer and dryer that automatically run on a quieter mode when you’re home; and a phone service that automatically forwards calls to your cell when you leave the house.
“Things that magically happen around your house aren’t just sci-fi anymore. They’re real-life Works with Nest connections. And they’re already being used by 1 in 10 Nest customers, in 90 countries, just six months after launching,” said Matt Rogers, Nest’s founder and head of engineering. “We’ll be showing off our latest connections at the Consumer Electronics Show this year in over a dozen booths and meeting venues around the event. You can’t miss us.”
Overcoming ‘Smart’ Challenges
We caught up with Greg Sterling, vice president of Strategy and Insight at the Local Search Association, to get his take on the announcement. He told us this is part of Google's larger move to create a new hub or network for the smart home.
“The announcements will make Nest more useful but they also create a kind of ‘ecosystem’ to enable devices to talk to each other,” Sterling said.
As he sees it, one of the problems with emerging smart home devices is that they don't communicate with one another. Works With Nest starts to change all that and bring integration to the smart home, he said.
“From a consumer standpoint it's not clear whether this will boost sales of Nest devices including Dropcam or of compatible appliances,” Sterling said. “It will still take some selling to convince people to buy all the new smart home appliances, lights and other devices.”