Next for iPod Designers: World's Coolest Thermostat - NBC Bay Area

Next for iPod Designers: World's Coolest Thermostat

Heat up your house, with Silicon Valley design.



    Battle of the Bays: The Backstory You Need

    What better way to heat up your house this winter, than with the latest cool design from Silicon Valley.

    Nest Labs, nestled in tech-heavy Palo Alto, just released its first product, and it looks like what Apple or Square might come up with if those companies woke up one morning and said, "Thermostats!"  It's a smooth design, it's very eco-friendly, and it might just be your wall's next conversation piece.

    Nest co-founder Matt Rogers, whose previous gig was designing iPods and iPads at Apple, showed us around his startup, co-founded with fellow former Apple designer Tony Fadell.  On just about every wall, the device Rogers calls the "Learning Thermostat."  Learning, he says, because "it learns from you. It remembers when you leave, come home, and how you like your house.  It's that simple."

    This from a guy who used "simple" to change the entire music industry.

    But do you really need a new thermostat?  It costs 250 dollars, and few of us even know if that's a good price.  After all, how often do you change yours?  But the Nest model does something new:  It helps you save energy.  Constantly changing itself to make sure it doesn't waste any energy, the Nest crew claims it'll pay itself off in savings your first year. 

    And the design?  As Rogers says, "most thermostats today are boring boxes."  That, of course, could have been the mission statement from Apple as it launched the iMac and other models.  Yes, the Nest device looks pretty cool, but for a relatively small amount of money, this could be a game-changer when it comes to our energy output.  And that makes it a good idea.

    Not bad for a conversation piece.

    FailCon All About Failure

    [BAY] FailCon All About Failure
    A convention that teaches it's OK to swing and miss. Scott Budman reports.
    (Published Monday, Oct. 24, 2011)

    Scott feels cooler just writing this.  He’s on Twitter:  @scottbudman