I’ve had a Nest since August 2012. It was an exciting first few years. Since installing my Nest I’ve saved about 30% on my electrical and heating bills. How? Well the Nest is just a smarter way of heating and cooling. Not to mention it's simple to use and program, especially compared to the horrible thermostat my house came with.
Nest was also my first “Internet of Things” device. Since then I’ve gotten Smart Locks, Dropcams and Nest Smoke Detectors. My house is getting smarter.
I’m not going to go into to much detail about why Nest is awesome, but I’ll highlight a few:
- When I tell the Nest, I want it to be 72 degrees at 7pm for bedtime, the Nest knows how long it will take to cool my house, and comes on at the right time to ensure it’s 72 at 7pm
- When I go on vacation, I can turn on my Nest before boarding the flight home and ensure the house is cozy when we arrive.
- I can tell the Nest, run my fan for 30min every hour on a schedule. This actually is the biggest money saver as what does is even out the temperature in my 3 story house. Cool air in the basement gets recirculated to the top floor. Honestly, this is the best feature.
- Nest sends an email 1x a month telling you what your energy usage was
- You can see what your last 7 days of cycle time was
- Mobile App, blah blah
However, like all technology, things are supposed to keep getting better.
Unfortunately for all of us, Google purchased Nest a few years back, and then Dropcam and as far as I can tell, they are both dead. Little to no innovation any more.
There are some critical gaps in the Nest thermostat. For one thing, if you live in a house with a single furnace/AC and you have > 2 floors, you have to deal with the reality that each floor will have a different temperature and the location of the thermostat is the only place you are going to experience the set temperature.
This is annoying. If I were building my house, I might have put in different zones or even 2 separate systems. But retrofitting my house is not an option. So I need some kind of remote sensor system. Alas, Nest does not offer such a system, even though the 3 Nest Smoke Detectors I have are recording temp.
So, the other day I was in the Apple Store and was looking at their very curated set of Internet of Things and noticed the ecobee3. It looked cute, simple, clean. I had never heard of it. It was priced pretty well ($249) and I noticed it had a remote sensor. In fact, you can purchase more remote sensors too.
I walked out to have lunch and while eating read some reviews of the ecobee3. It only took me 5 minutes to decide to go back into the Apple Store and walk out with the ecobee3. I was excited.