Google acquires smart thermostat maker Nest for $3.2 billion in cash, Father of iPod now Google employee


Google has confirmed in a press release that it is acquiring Nest Labs, the company behind Nest smart thermostats and fire alarms started by Father of the iPod Tony Fadell. Earlier reports were quickly confirmed along with the transaction price of $3.2 billion in cash in an official announcement posted on the company’s Investor website. In the statement, Google said that Fadell will be staying on board as a Google employee and continuing to run Nest:

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Larry Page, CEO of Google, said: “Nest’s founders, Tony Fadell and Matt Rogers, have built a tremendous team that we are excited to welcome into the Google family. They’re already delivering amazing products you can buy right now–thermostats that save energy and smoke/CO alarms that can help keep your family safe. We are excited to bring great experiences to more homes in more countries and fulfill their dreams!”

Tony Fadell, CEO of Nest, said: “We’re thrilled to join Google. With their support, Nest will be even better placed to build simple, thoughtful devices that make life easier at home, and that have a positive impact on the world.”

The news follows reports last month that Google was testing smart thermostats of its own similar to Nest and leaked screenshots showing a related app dubbed EnergySense.

Google had already invested in the company through its Google Ventures arm, but the purchase means Nest will officially become a part of the company. In its statement announcing the acquisition, however, Google noted that Nest will continue “its own distinct brand identity” and that Fadell will continue to run the company. 

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  1. danbridgland - 9 years ago

  2. jspence77 (@jspence77) - 9 years ago


    • Too late for that. This would’ve been a great acquisition for Apple to get into the home automation side of things.

      • rogifan - 9 years ago

        Is it really worth $3B.

      • When you factor in the leadership team, some of whom obviously have experience at Apple, the engineering team, brand recognition and future growth potential of home automation, I think it is.

  3. cm477 - 9 years ago

    Great for the founders and investors of Nest, but I guess it means I will look elsewhere when it is time to expand or replace my Nest thermostat.

    • Dimitri Kyriakis - 9 years ago

      So just because Google bought Nest, you will drop from buying Nest products. That is a little silly isn’t it? What it Apple bought them, oh wait you will still have Nest or go buy a Nest product because its owned by Apple but not from Google?I find that a bit silly.

      Also Apple lost their chance on getting Nest. Apple has the money & could have used Nest but decided not too. That’s not Google’s fault here. Google give Nest owners the money they wanted & that’s it. Nest CEO is still going to be the CEO& everything will be the same, just that Google owns them. That is all.

      • Your response sounds silly and childish…

      • MaRico NoHands Spikes - 9 years ago

        Silly by far, everyone has their right to their own opinion, personally I don’t like android but I’ll use, just cause google knows everything, I think Google has the heart of Samsung and they go hand and hand with one another. But back to the point yes Apple could’ve bought Nest but how do u know that’s were Apple wants to take the company in that direction, IMO Apple seems to want the iPhone/iPod/iPad to be the main focus, all the side devices are more gimmicky and not used like they are suppose to be used all the time. Apps and software are left to third partiers to focus on because it really comes down to personal preference and where that said company wants to take it. Apple provides some of the most universal devices to control third party hardware and software( yes so does plenty other companies but Apple focuses on the bettering of their products instead of making a new body for the same device that a lot of other companies do). Apple not gonna just make a gadget/device that hardily gets used, they are gonna make a device that gets used by the masses. Nest is a great company but honestly I won’t be buying a talking thermostat in the next 2 years. Plus Apple is a semi-entertainment business, Music, Movies, TV shows, photography, art & design. I can see them making a standalone pocket cam before they focus on a thermostat or an alarm clock or just anything else in the home, besides a TV I believe will come when TVs are do for an upgrade in the next year or 2, you have to figure life cycles out on TVs to know when’s the best time to put out an awesome TV. Just because you have 600billion+ in the bank doesn’t mean you need to by your ideas.

      • Brad Burke - 9 years ago

        Yup, I was in the process of ordering one and cancelled it. I am not going to let Google into my home. The evil empire is rising.

    • His response is reasonable considering how much data Google is collecting.

    • I feel exactly how you do. I’ve got enough of Google spying into my world, why the hell would I invite more of their habit-recording, personal-info-to-sell-to-their-advertisers software into my home? People, Google isn’t making life easier for us, they’re making your life easier for them to monitor so that their advertisers can get further into your psyche.

  4. hmurchison - 9 years ago

    Excellent acquisition by Google. This isn’t just about Thermostats and Smoke Detectors. Nest’s Cloud has gathered a LOT of data about how people heat their homes and more. As Nest brings more products online the data will become even richer. Apple is a company that doesn’t care about this data as much as Google and thus I’d expect to see Google buy Nest versus Apple.

  5. No words. :-(

  6. Yep… what has Apple “Next Big Thing” lately… “ABSOLUTE ZERO!” and pun intended to the thermostat. All they have lately is just a refresh of products they already have. Google looks like is making a case for the “next big thing”…

    • Greg Kaplan (@kaplag) - 9 years ago

      …”in being creepy.”

    • Nashwan Peter - 9 years ago

      You don’t know what is going on inside Apple campus.
      “All they have lately is just a refresh of products they already have”, all companies do that every year. There is no company come up with totally new products every year

      • MaRico NoHands Spikes - 9 years ago

        Agreed, except companies refresh at least 6 months to try to stay ahead of Apple, which is pretty sad

      • Nashwan Peter - 9 years ago

        Yes right. Apple does that once a year

    • Tallest Skil - 9 years ago

      So you’re just an imbecile or what’s wrong with you?

  7. Steve Grenier - 9 years ago


  8. c1ce091b - 9 years ago

    I wonder how long it will take before Apple stops selling Nest products at their stores?

    • It shouldn’t affect it at all. Nest’s products integrate well with Android & iOS plus the fact that none of their products compete directly with any of Apple’s products.

    • MaRico NoHands Spikes - 9 years ago

      The current Nest will prolly stay until an updated version comes out, then I don’t see Apple restocking. If Jobs was around I don’t think Nest would be in any Apple Store by he end of the night, he hated Google with a passion.

  9. Greg Kaplan (@kaplag) - 9 years ago

    well that’s not terrifying at all…

  10. bxstrmn - 9 years ago

    I have 2 nest thermostats and a protect, I was hoping to continue to expand my protects throughout the year. While I would prefer apple over google, I’m not looking at this as certainly a negative thing, but hopefully it can enable nest to bring out better products, only time will tell

  11. aeronperyton - 9 years ago

    Interesting how Nest is remaining autonomous in this deal.

    Why not absorption? It’s almost like Google wants to have a little of Apple’s creative genius but are afraid to be too controlling. Best to let Tony work his magic and let his success be their success.

  12. hodar0 - 9 years ago

    So, Nest went from a fairly innoculous smart thermistat company, to an active spying gadget that can monitor and track my energy usage, household bandwidth, work-schedule and vacations.

    • Mike Murray - 9 years ago

      Put more simply. Google will now know when you’re home, or away. I’ve got three Nest units in my house. I’m pretty sad.

      • Dimitri Kyriakis - 9 years ago

        I could have said the same thing if Apple or any other company would have bought Nest. Its not only Google that does this.

    • danbridgland - 9 years ago


  13. PMZanetti - 9 years ago

    What a shame. I actually considered getting one…that’s now over.

    Any chance this had at being GOOD in the next few iterations…that’s over.
    Any chance this has at being not just another smart device to spy on citizens…that’s over.

  14. rahhbriley - 9 years ago

    Good thing I read this while on the toilet bc I would have $hit my pants!

    Dissapointed. Always dreamed Apple would buy then. ;(

  15. cyberdragon666 - 9 years ago

    Almost bought a Nest thermostat this weekend and I’m glad I didn’t now.

    Allure Energy here I come!

  16. RP - 9 years ago

    The connected home is the future, but I think Apple is better served better by working with the likes of Honeywell, LG, Whirlpool, GE so that their API’s and devices work seamlessly with them.

  17. Paul Nielsen - 9 years ago

    wow, another blown call by Apple. Remember when Apple failed to acquire Waze and Google bought them for 1 billion last summer.

  18. Theresa Strange - 9 years ago

    Sad commentary on how innovative tech companies being absorbed by bloated, uninspired corporate monoliths with no inclination of what they are about. Truly a sad day. (I am a Nest consumer in the truest sense of the word! I early adopted all their products.)

  19. Terry Dean - 9 years ago

    Google needed to do something like this because it looks good to Wall Street and investors. Will it make them money? I don’t know. My gut says no. I suspect when more cheap knock offs start flooding the market and edging Nest out Fidell will haul a**.
    Just my 2 cents.

  20. Scott Sterling - 9 years ago

    This is all about ecosystem. Google is trying to attract people into its ecosystem. Because of integration, people who value home automation will now lean toward other Google products, from Search to Phone to Tablet to Chromebook, plus whatever the future holds.

  21. jigsaw4life - 9 years ago

    Not worth 3 billion, the products is pretty slick and makes things convenient but it’s nothing revolutionary. I’m glad apple didn’t acquire them. If apple wants to get into home automation a current team member meeting would result in a better head start in that field than this purchase.

  22. In the late 90’s I use to think that one day Microsoft would be the Skynet of the future. Now I think it’s a toss-up between Google and Facebook.

  23. I’m so disappointed in Apple (and I love them so). All they seem to be doing is sitting around counting their hundreds of billions, while their competitors take lessons from Steve Jobs and jump ahead of the game. Being the Ferrari of the computer world means you have to innovate beyond everybody else, otherwise, you’re just a Toyota; a big company, but unexciting.

  24. Mike Galicki (@mgalicki) - 9 years ago

    It’s pretty funny that everyone is up in a big stink about this yet they buy Honeywell thermostats without batting an eyelash? Honeywell makes nukes and cluster bombs that have killed people. Honeywell hasn’t’ paid corporate taxes in years.
    Read about Alliant Techsystems or Honeywell’s wiki if you want more info.

  25. Deepak Sharma - 9 years ago

    So Google accepts that they weren’t innovative and they need an acquisition from an Ex-Apple employee… The tech companies are heating up day by day… and Google, shame on you…

  26. While we know “it’s all about the money”, I still don’t like this move, but for other reasons. If we put aside the “oh but Tony was at Apple, boohoo” and “Apple failed to buy them” and stuff like that, what I find most chilling (pun intended) is the fact that Google will gain access to all this data. You do realize that even if they say they won’t touch the data, they WILL!

    I mean, heck, the latest Android devices even transmitted the coordinates and password of your WiFi network to Google. That must have helped them “map” (another pun) our life. They DO know when you are back home. All it takes is for your Android device to handshake with your home WiFi. They can see your day schedule. Now they just can see even more about your habits. What’s the next step? Grocery store freezers powered by Android, so Google knows that it was YOU that picked 2 bottles of milk on your way home? Or that the owner of an Android device stayed 1 minute and 14 seconds in the aisle with dog food? Then a Purina ad when you switch on your home PC?

    Jesus, where have we come to? Is it hot in here? (third pun)

  27. Tallest Skil - 9 years ago

    Never buying a Nest product now. Had planned to buy three.

  28. What if this has more to do with Android than Nest? What if this is a move to hire/own someone with intimate knowledge and a clear understanding of interface and software so as to improve the Android experience? Hmmmm…. Just a thought.

  29. Matthew Sims - 9 years ago

    A real shame. Not because I don’t like Google or I wish Apple had bought it instead, far from it.

    Nest could have been a powerhouse in it’s own right, autonomous from a larger parent company free to do it’s own thing, free to develop new home automation products with no loyalty to any particular ecosystem. In Google, it’s lost that freedom, at least in the long term if not in short.

  30. Pierre Calixte - 9 years ago

    The Nest thermostat is a very beautiful piece of tech and very simple in it’s beauty. not surprised that a former Apple employ developed it.

  31. Chuck Konfrst - 9 years ago

    Welcome to Google Nest. Please join Google+ if you’d like to heat your home. Thank you. Heating will begin in 2 minutes while you see this advertisement.

  32. myke2241 - 9 years ago

    this is the tale of two kinds of people. Those who put a value on their privacy and those who don’t really care. its not really about apple vs google or the next big thing. its about trust. personally i don’t buy into the whole Android thing and i also put a great deal of value into my privacy even if the data is not used for profit. another way to look at this is you own your own likeness. if you were to see your face in a ad for something you didn’t consent to or support you mite be a little mad. personal data is your digital likeness.

  33. South Jersey Droid - 9 years ago

    For anyone who is complaining about privacy, you’re either born yesterday or have been using Apple products for so long you can no longer think for yourselves. Apple collects so much of your data, and they most likely sell it to get more billions into their coffers. Yet, you don’t bat an eyelash to that. What a pity

  34. markbook68 - 8 years ago

    3.2B for Nest @@ Hope Nest’s thermostat better :)


Avatar for Jordan Kahn Jordan Kahn

Jordan writes about all things Apple as Senior Editor of 9to5Mac, & contributes to 9to5Google, 9to5Toys, & He also co-authors 9to5Mac’s Logic Pros series.