Updated: Smart thermostat maker Nest announced on Thursday that it’s done one of its biggest upgrades in terms of both software and hardware since it launched its thermostat five months ago. The move shows both how Nest is still a startup, and has been reiterating its design in a field that doesn’t often do this, and also shows how much the company is paying attention to its customers — not unlike how Apple operates (the founding team hails from Apple).
Nest added new software and features, including a new ways for users to see the past ten days of their energy history on both a mobile app and a website. Another new function is called “Airwave,” which sets a target for
heating and cooling, and can shut off the HVAC system just before the target is met, as cooling a room is delivered on sort of rolling basis (for example, when an air conditioning unit is shut off it still continues to cool the room for awhile until it gradually stops).
The new Nest thermostats, which started shipping last week, also have a redesigned back plate, which moved wires out of the way of the center and made the design more simple, said Nest product marketing lead, Maxime Veron, in an interview with me. Another hardware tweak is that Nest is now including its own Nest-designed screws as wall anchors in the box to install the thermostat on the wall. Veron tells me that customers gave Nest feedback that the anchors previously used in the box weren’t doing a good enough job, so Nest decided to make its own.
Nest didn’t give me any new information on its pending lawsuit with Honeywell. Thermostat giant Honeywell filed a lawsuit against Nest in February claiming patent infringement for smart thermostat technology.
And on how many thermostats Nest has sold to date, the company was also somewhat quiet. Though Nest execs said that they did a recent survey of 10,000 of their users to work on customer feedback, so essentially they have at least 10,000 (“many more” they say).