Who'd have guessed there were so many ways to interact with a thermostat and a smoke detector? Nest Labs, the Google division responsible for developing the Nest Learning Thermostat and the Nest Protect smoke and carbon-monoxide detector, announced more than 15 new "Works with Nest" integrations at CES today. The devices range from smart door locks, to lighting controls, sleep monitors, and even IP telephones.
Nest Labs kicked off its 'Works with Nest' program just six months ago, announcing partnerships with Mercedes Benz, Whirlpool appliances, and several newer companies, including LED bulb-maker LIFX and fitness tracker Jawbone. Now the company says one in 10 Nest customers are accessing 'Works with Nest' connections of one form or another, and that more than 5,000 developers are in different stages of working with Nest to connect their products.
The new players
One of the most interesting integrations today involves Ooma, a manufacturer of IP telephone systems. If the Nest Protect detects smoke or an unsafe level of carbon-monoxide in your home, an Ooma Telo can call and ask if you want to contact a local emergency responder. If you happen to own an Ooma Telo, this could be more effective than something like the Leeo Smart Alert Nightlight, which must analyze the sound of your smoke- or CO2 detector going off. The Telo can also work with the motion sensor in the Nest thermostat to call you if it doesn't detect motion at a time when your children should be arriving home from school.
LG is joining Whirlpool in making its smart appliances Nest friendly. In this case, an LG refrigerator could switch to an energy-saving mode when the Nest thermostat determines no one's home to need something from the fridge, or an LG oven could send you an alert if you leave the house and forget to turn it off.
Several lighting and home-control manufacturers are joining LIFX in the 'Works with Nest' program, including Insteon, Lutron, and Philips Hue. Insteon is one of the earliest players on the connected-home market and offers everything from smart light switches to sensors and home-control hubs. It will integrate Nest control into its app so you can manage everything from one place. Lutron is integrating the Nest into its DIY-friendly Caseta Wireless lighting-control app, and Philips Hue LED smart lightbulbs will flash on and off when the Nest Protect senses something is wrong.
The August Smart Lock and Kwikset's Kevo Smark Lock will help the Nest thermostat determine when you leave home and when you return, so your HVAC system operates only when it needs to. And the Withings Aura Sleep System will set your Nest thermostat to a comfortable temperature while you're sleeping and inform the thermostat when you wake up and are ready to start your day.
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