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Google Acquires Nest Labs for $3.2B

The battle of "a conscious home" begins
1/14/2014 11:38 AM EST
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Max The Magnificent
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You must be joking!!!
Max The Magnificent   1/14/2014 11:58:46 AM
My wife is a realtor -- the builder she works for offers a Nest system controlled by an iPad mounted in the wall.

It's not a bad system -- easy-to-use, looks "tasty" -- but having the iPad built into the home boosts the expense.

But $3.2 billion for an easy-to-use thermostat and a smoke detector ... give me a break. For only $1 billion I would have been happy to set up a team and deliver them something even better.

With all the talent at Google -- are you seriously telling me they couldn't have developed somrthing like this in-house?

My mind is well and truly boggled.

junko.yoshida
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Re: You must be joking!!!
junko.yoshida   1/14/2014 12:55:41 PM
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Max, I think everyone's mind was boggled! But it goes to show how the name talent (fadell et al) is valued in Silicon Valley.

dougwithau
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Re: You must be joking!!!
dougwithau   1/14/2014 1:30:56 PM
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Yes, boggled.

In 2012 I was at a company doing IoT. They have downsized a lot since. We had the phone app controlled thermostat, outlets, and power monitoring in devices.

The Nest seemed like a prettier version of our products. Ours looked like a thermostat.

This sounds more like a "who you know" than "what you do" aquisition. Nest was privately held so no numbers are available. The founders are from Apple and Google, so they had the inside track. Maybe Google is blocking Apple or Cisco?

Kudo's to the founders for a nice exit. We are just jelous because we did not think of it first, or did and could not get the fat payoff.

any1
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Re: You must be joking!!!
any1   1/14/2014 2:04:41 PM
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Three billion does seem a lot for what must be the meager earnings of Nest right now.  But Google is speculating that Nest has a much brighter future ahead of them.  And they may be correct, especially if they can leverage Google resources into future products.  Nest will need to produce Android apps for their thermostats as well as ios :-)

selinz
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Re: You must be joking!!!
selinz   1/14/2014 2:24:55 PM
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The fact that your wife is already plugged into the Nest marketing hype says quite a bit. I wonder how much of it is "let's switch all the nest stuff over to Google phones." rather than a quest for technical know-how. The concept is pretty simple. This is a marketing decision...

junko.yoshida
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Re: You must be joking!!!
junko.yoshida   1/14/2014 5:05:10 PM
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@any1, Nest surbsequently did add Android apps.

alex_m1
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Re: You must be joking!!!
alex_m1   1/14/2014 5:22:43 PM
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Max,

Nest has a few hudnred patents to it's name:

http://techcrunch.com/2013/12/11/tony-fadell-says-nest-has-100-patents-granted-200-filed-and-200-more-ready-to-file/

And google did have a home products division which did quite poorly.

But me ,same as you could have developed something better for $1billion, But it would be less in the field of home products and more about how to flee very fast with all that money :)

Max The Magnificent
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Re: You must be joking!!!
Max The Magnificent   1/14/2014 5:31:36 PM
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@dougwithau: Kudo's to the founders for a nice exit. We are just jelous because we did not think of it first, or did and could not get the fat payoff.

Kudos indeed -- it's not everyone that wangles $3.2 billion for a thermostat (no matter how cool it looks). I know that if I had been one of the founders, I would be walking around with a great big smile on my face round about now LOL

rick merritt
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Re: You must be joking!!!
rick merritt   1/14/2014 5:53:17 PM
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$3.2 BILLION for Nest!?! I'm breathless, skeptical and a bit paranoid about Google in the future automated online home.

I'm no valuation expert but to me this means Google has more ambition and money than cents ;-)

Bert22306
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Reminiscent of a Jacques Tati 1958 comedy
Bert22306   1/14/2014 6:06:57 PM
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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mon_Oncle

Our family went to see this movie one Sunday afternoon, as I recall. It's coming to life!! Egad!

Well, we've seen sci fi movies depicting talking appliances, for decades now. Some of these ideas are probably not bad. Some remote monitoring and control makes sense. Others are just forced. For example, a refrigerator has absolutely no reason to wonder whether you're going on vacation, or just going to work. Design it right, and it will save power whenever it gets a chance.

Much like the article on cars, sometimes the marketing types just get too ambitious to make a lot of sense.

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