Google purchased Nest back in 2014 for $3.2 billion, and since 2015, it has operated as its own subsidiary under the corporate Alphabet umbrella. However, it was announced today that Nest will be “coming home” by rejoining the Google hardware division.
The announcement was made by Google Hardware SVP Rick Osterloh and Nest CEO Marwan Fawaz, and acknowledges that smart devices are becoming an increasingly integral part of our everyday lives. Devices like the Google Home and Nest Cam should be co-developed under the same team, not in separate silos.
Nest in particular has been on an upward trajectory over the past year, as it sold more hardware in 2017 than it did in 2015 and 2016 combined. Likewise, Google Home had a stellar Holiday 2017 with regards to sales as it attempts to gain ground in the smart AI speaker market. By meshing the two hardware teams together, Google hopes to bring more innovative products to consumers and give it a better shot of taking on powerful competitors like Amazon and Apple.
"To build on this momentum, we're excited to bring the Nest and Google Hardware teams together. The goal is to supercharge Nest’s mission: to create a more thoughtful home, one that takes care of the people inside it and the world around it," write Osterloh and Fawaz.
"By working together, we’ll continue to combine hardware, software and services to create a home that’s safer, friendlier to the environment, smarter and even helps you save money—built with Google’s artificial intelligence and the Assistant at the core."
What does this mean for the future of smart home devices from Google? Will see Google Assistant-equipped Nest Thermostats and other more advanced AI-tinged devices that bring the best of both worlds? We shall see; perhaps as soon as Google I/O in May.