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Nest Learning Thermostat reportedly taken off Apple Store shelves - Page 3

post #81 of 226

Bottom line:

Anybody who thinks that a home, no matter how large or how many different zones can't be more effectively and economically heated and cooled by a intercommunicating network of computers than it can from a system of thermometers and clock timers essential originating from the 1930s, doesn't have a clue.

Nest can pay for itself in months; it's all gravy ($) after that.  Wish I had one.

post #82 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by isaidso View Post

Bottom line:
Anybody who thinks that a home, no matter how large or how many different zones can't be more effectively and economically heated and cooled by a intercommunicating network of computers than it can from a system of thermometers and clock timers essential originating from the 1930s, doesn't have a clue.
Nest doesn't "intercommunicate" with anything. It runs by itself.
You can control it (if you wish) and read the settings with iOS but the idea is to plug it in and forget about it.
Edited by Chris_CA - 6/23/12 at 2:50pm
post #83 of 226

spot on! Seems like it's ahead of it's time. Perhaps he should be targeting architects, homebuilders, HVAC manufactures etc., as well.

post #84 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris_CA View Post

Nest doesn't "intercommunicate" with anything. It runs by itself.
You can control it (if you wish) and read the settings with iOS but the idea is to plug it in and forget about it.

I'm not sure I follow since you've acknowledged that you can intercommunication with it over WiFi via an iOS capable device. But even excluding that you still have to interact with it to get the software to understand your base settings. It will learn your routine which is helped along by its sensors but initial nudging seems to be required for proper calibration. On top of that you can have multiple Nest devices that can directly communication with each other, like in a multi-zone home.

PS: After first hearing about Nest I was surprised they didn't also have inexpensive Nest units that contained only sensors and WiFi that could be tied to a primary unit so it could map a home more accurately.

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post #85 of 226
It can communicate with another NEST but it will work just fine autonomously.

You don't need and it doesn't use 'intercommunicating network of computers" to control everything.
You can use wifi to set it but the smartphone/computer does not calculate everything. The NEST itself does it.
Perhaps if it phoned "home" everyday with info and "home" did all the calculations and sent it back then it would be as isaidso saidso. 1wink.gif
"no matter how large or how many different zones can't be more effectively and economically heated and cooled by a intercommunicating network of computers than it can from a system of thermometers and clock timers essential originating from the 1930s"
post #86 of 226

Note to AI:

 

Please write more articles about Microsoft Surface, Samsung lawsuits and Android on the weekends... people obviously need to vent. If this story can garner over 80 posts then think what one of the aforementioned stories could generate if posted on Saturday or Sunday.
 

na na na na na...
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post #87 of 226

This is interesting.... a quick review and installation vid. :)

 

http://reviews.cnet.com/appliances/nest-learning-thermostat/4505-17889_7-35179222.html

post #88 of 226
Didn't quote what I was responding to.
post #89 of 226

Have used one since it first came out, with this suggestion:  If you live by yourself, the only feature you will use is the ability to control it from your phone/workPC.  I had to turn off the auto-learning feature, because it couldn't anticipate my erratic schedule in getting home and leaving, and I had to manually overide it almost daily. Had to go to timed programming (turning off the auto learning feature) which is equivalent to that of all modern electronic thermostats, which sell for under $100 at Home Depot/Lowes, etc.  Now I only use it to get the heat/air going just before arriving at home, so it justifies my $250 cost (at least it is worth it to me to pre-heat/cool my house).  The whole learning thing is a smokescreen, because it really can only work for fairly steady routines, and cannot anticipate erratic schedules, so if it really works, it is actually just like using daily timers on conventional thermostats.

 

One other note; if you own pets, and need to check up on the house temperature, it may be worth it to have the wifi access. I tried out another electronic wifi thermostat, but the internet connection wasn't as smooth as it was with the Nest, and most require you have a hot-wire to run the wifi portion of the unit - not so the Nest, which has its own built-in battery and ability to charge it without having this additional wire.  This save a whole lot of money if you had to have an electrician run the other hot-wire; -- bottom line, it is more elegantly designed that any others just from an installation standpoint alone.

 

Perhaps Apple knows something about the wifi standards that are only now being talked about to control other aspects of our homes, and the industry's interest in standardizing them.  That doesn't explain Apple taking it off the shelves, but it makes you wonder if Apple plans on taking the lead in pushing for industry-wide standards, as they have done in other areas.


Edited by Bagman - 6/23/12 at 6:09pm
post #90 of 226

They weren't offering that for free at the time.

post #91 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris_CA View Post

It can communicate with another NEST but it will work just fine autonomously.
You don't need and it doesn't use 'intercommunicating network of computers" to control everything.
You can use wifi to set it but the smartphone/computer does not calculate everything. The NEST itself does it.
Perhaps if it phoned "home" everyday with info and "home" did all the calculations and sent it back then it would be as isaidso saidso. 1wink.gif
"no matter how large or how many different zones can't be more effectively and economically heated and cooled by a intercommunicating network of computers than it can from a system of thermometers and clock timers essential originating from the 1930s"

@Chris_CA "You don't need and it doesn't use 'intercommunicating network of computers" to control everything."

You're right, it doesn't; it "IS" an intercommunicating network of computers. That is what I meant.

Does it have a CPU? Does it have a ROM? does it have an upgradeable OS? does it have networking between others of it's kind (and the internet?)

It's a networkable computer. And it's capabilities are only in its infancy.

 

edit: and most importantly; is it capable of learning?

post #92 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by isaidso View Post

edit: and most importantly; is it capable of learning?

"Am I a thermostat?"

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post #93 of 226
"I cool, therefore I am (a thermostat)."

Of course there'll be an existential crisis come winter when it has to learn how to heat.

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post #94 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

"Am I a thermostat?"

"Sorry Dave but I can't let you lower the temperature any more ..."
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post #95 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post


"Sorry Dave but I can't let you lower the temperature any more ..."

 

LOL. Machine logic:

Minimal utility costs when A/C not used.

Humans want A/C.

If no humans, then no A/C needed.

Therefore, to minimize utility costs, all humans must be eliminated.

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post #96 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sensi View Post

Well I love domotics but a $250 thermostat is just a ridiculous price to start with...

 

 

 

true.

 

i got a $29 programmable thermostat at Home Depot that can follow my daily schedule as well. the price of the nest is just ridiculous. 

 

 

 

***EDIT***

 

sorry, $24.99

 

http://www.homedepot.com/Building-Materials-Heating-Venting-Cooling-Thermostats/h_d1/N-asjhZ5yc1v/R-202024248/h_d2/ProductDisplay?catalogId=10053&langId=-1&storeId=10051

 

it takes, literally, 60 seconds to run through and program wake/leave home/sleep for seven days. when i am home from work on vacation, i don't need my thermostat to learn about it, i can simply teach it in less time that it takes me to make my morning coffee. 

 

Nest is fancy, but far too expensive for what it does. 


Edited by sandor - 6/23/12 at 7:45pm
post #97 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris_CA View Post


Nest doesn't "intercommunicate" with anything. It runs by itself.
You can control it (if you wish) and read the settings with iOS but the idea is to plug it in and forget about it.

 

Actually it does.  It is aware of local outside weather conditions (temperature and humidity) which it pulls from some Internet source, and uses that to decide when just activating the blower might be advantageous. If you have multiple Nests installed, they are linked together for away and auto-away (although that is through a connection across nest.com, not locally).  They also maintain a connection to nest.com for usage reporting purposes, and updating firmware automatically.  A connection to the Internet is required for full functionality.  It will work without an Internet connection, but many of the features are compromised.

post #98 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by sandor View Post

 

Nest is fancy, but far too expensive for what it does. 

 

It's a hard call to say something is too expensive if we don't know the cost of the pieces and the labor to build it. 

 

As for the Nest itself, it's fantastic that you don't need something that fancy but some of us might such a thing useful. My job can have a day that was supposed to be 8 hours but goes to 12 while we are in the middle of our work. That $25 perfect thermostat of yours would be running up my heating or cooling bill for hours that I'm not home yet. So for me, the ability to override the controls while I'm late at work and the back when I leave set actually has use. 

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post #99 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by charlituna View Post

 

It's a hard call to say something is too expensive if we don't know the cost of the pieces and the labor to build it. 

 

As for the Nest itself, it's fantastic that you don't need something that fancy but some of us might such a thing useful. My job can have a day that was supposed to be 8 hours but goes to 12 while we are in the middle of our work. That $25 perfect thermostat of yours would be running up my heating or cooling bill for hours that I'm not home yet. So for me, the ability to override the controls while I'm late at work and the back when I leave set actually has use. 

 

so pay less than 1/2 the price of Nest, and get a wifi/web enabled thermostat:

 

http://www.homedepot.com/Building-Materials-Heating-Venting-Cooling-Thermostats/h_d1/N-asjhZ5yc1vZ1z0yhrk/R-202352449/h_d2/ProductDisplay?catalogId=2&langId=-1&storeId=10051

 

it is actually quite easy to call something expensive, regardless of the labour or materials costs. 

 

when Nest's biggest energy savings advertising blip seems to be "Only 10% of programmable thermostats are programmed to save energy, but thanks to learning, 99% of Nests have schedules that reflect their owner's lives." it makes me think of VCRs blinking 12:00. Maybe I'm just not $225 lazy.

post #100 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by sandor View Post

when Nest's biggest energy savings advertising blip seems to be "Only 10% of programmable thermostats are programmed to save energy, but thanks to learning, 99% of Nests have schedules that reflect their owner's lives." it makes me think of VCRs blinking 12:00. Maybe I'm just not $225 lazy.

Do you still use a VCR to record shows off the TV or do you have a DVR, a device that not only can intelligently see when that show you like aires new episodes or alter the day and/or time if the schedule changes, but can also recommend shows you might also like based on your viewing history?

That is what Nest. Pulling out some other thermostat that has a semi-comparable spec sheet is as relevant as comparing an iPad or Mac to some other device. There are reasons people like the experience of a nicer car, meal, home, etc. when there are much cheaper options that technically do the same thing.

Whether Nest fits your needs or not is irrelevant to whether the product is the best choice for others. Do you have any argument that shows Nest is inferior to its competitors?

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post #101 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by charlituna View Post

 

It's a hard call to say something is too expensive if we don't know the cost of the pieces and the labor to build it. 

 

 

Nah, I never consider that the basis of if something's too expensive, only if it's seems to expensive to what I need or according to the marketplace for similar products.  If something is amazing and makes me thrilled to have it, my only thought is if my budget can handle it, not if the parts and labor warrant the price.  If they charge what the market will bear it could be well above a normal markup of parts and manufacturing, but if they find a price niche that works for them, it works for them, and that especially holds for a new product.

post #102 of 226
Draconian just means overly severe and, depending on what you think happened here, is perfectly applicable. There's nothing wrong with saying a teacher's classroom rules are draconian either. I personally think it was just pulled because Apple figured out that they don't want anything in their stores that requires third party installation.
post #103 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by freediverx View Post

Purchased a Nest thermostat but had to return it because I couldn't get it to work properly with my building's HVAC system. It would either blow hot air or lukewarm air but never cold, even after changing the wiring five times per the advice of their phone support team. The product is slick and comes with clear instructions and great phone support, but it just didn't work for me, and I live in a 3 year old building so it's not a matter of dealing with outdated technology.

 

Perhaps the Nest isn't as widely compatible as originally thought and Apple had to take it off the shelves after receiving complaints? I always wondered if the limited availability of the Nest enabled the company to keep complaints out of the public eye...

 

Sounds like the wires to your HVAC system were not color coded correctly (or there is a second control panel overriding it.) Not unheardof, how many people actually check the colors of their wiring in their home after stuff is installed? Back in the 90's I've run into places that had the Ring and Tip wires reversed on their phone lines, so every time they tried to use a dial-up modem, all their phones would ring, and nothing would connect.

 

What is most likely the issue, is that either people were buying it, damaging it, and returning it, or they were being shoplifted. Apple doesn't have a way to verify that the device works at the store if it's returned, so they must be shipped back to the manufacturer. It's not a cheap item. 

 

Then again, the Apple store is not Home Depot. People who buy it at the Apple store, can't ask for help installing it. People who buy it at Home Depot probably know what they're doing to install it, but not how to program it. AFAIK, the only people buying it are those that are familar enough with HVAC and Wireless kit to do it themselves. Depending where you live, you might not be able to use it at all (Like most of the Pacific Northwest that doesn't have AC and only baseboard heating.)

post #104 of 226

Correct.  It is at best "name" synergy.  Truth be told Apple has to be careful not to look "looks trendy only."  Its products should provide synergy for real.  

post #105 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by sandor View Post

so pay less than 1/2 the price of Nest, and get a wifi/web enabled thermostat:

http://www.homedepot.com/Building-Materials-Heating-Venting-Cooling-Thermostats/h_d1/N-asjhZ5yc1vZ1z0yhrk/R-202352449/h_d2/ProductDisplay?catalogId=2&langId=-1&storeId=10051

it is actually quite easy to call something expensive, regardless of the labour or materials costs. 

when Nest's biggest energy savings advertising blip seems to be "Only 10% of programmable thermostats are programmed to save energy, but thanks to learning, 99% of Nests have schedules that reflect their owner's lives." it makes me think of VCRs blinking 12:00. Maybe I'm just not $225 lazy.

That looks $150 cheaper in the quality of presentation.

Given they use an LCD out of the 90's, I don't know if I want to see or use their web interface, their human interface looks crummy and ugly. It looks like something slapped together and with that sort of look, the software probably isn't any good.
Edited by JeffDM - 6/24/12 at 5:37am
post #106 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris_CA View Post


Nest doesn't "intercommunicate" with anything. It runs by itself.
You can control it (if you wish) and read the settings with iOS but the idea is to plug it in and forget about it.


It doesn't? Does sending data up to servers count as intercommunication?

post #107 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by wozwoz View Post

It might looook cool, but it's just more wireless junk unnecessarily radiating your brain in your own home ... I need it like a tumour. No wireless in my house.

so good of you to stick to your convictions! So....you don't have WiFi? You don't have a cell phone? You don't have a microwave? You block radio waves? The list goes on.....

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post #108 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post

That looks $150 cheaper in the quality of presentation.
Given they use an LCD out of the 90's, I don't know if I want to see or use their web interface, their human interface looks crummy and ugly. It looks like something slapped together and with that sort of look, the software probably isn't any good.

I found a review. For the price it doesn't seem bad and their iPhone app looks much better than their monochrome LCD but I'd gladly pay for Nest any day. The big issue is the Filtrete thermostat doesn't learn. It's programmable and you can access it remotely but you can't "set it and forget it."



edit: I certainly don't spend a lot of time researching home thermostats but I doubt many companies have this level of support.

Edited by SolipsismX - 6/24/12 at 7:27am

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post #109 of 226

I love the idea of learning software, but don't think it's really appropriate in the case of a thermostat. At first glance it seems like an obvious application, but what you really want in this interconnected world is something that integrates with the mobile phone of each person living in the house. For example Apple could make a thermostat that runs iOS and receives geofencing events whenever an occupant is approaching the residence.

post #110 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by ascii View Post

I love the idea of learning software, but don't think it's really appropriate in the case of a thermostat. At first glance it seems like an obvious application, but what you really want in this interconnected world is something that integrates with the mobile phone of each person living in the house. For example Apple could make a thermostat that runs iOS and receives geofencing events whenever an occupant is approaching the residence.


I think learning is better than simply being reactionary. I do like your idea of a device that is aware of when its occupants are approaching and when they leave as routines do alter but I think that general learning is an overall better option.


PS: I'd like to see Nest, or another brand, evolve into something more complete than just being a thermostat.
Edited by SolipsismX - 6/24/12 at 7:38am

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post #111 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post


I think learning is better than simply being reactionary. I do like your idea of a device that is aware of when its occupants are approaching and when they leave as routines do alter but I think that general learning is an overall better option.

But why try to predict when you have access to the raw facts, i.e. you are actually tracking everybody? Certainly once someone is home, learning could kick in to determine the precise temperatures everybody likes. But actual on/off should be done purely with geofencing.

post #112 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by ascii View Post

But why try to predict when you have access to the raw facts, i.e. you are actually tracking everybody? Certainly once someone is home, learning could kick in to determine the precise temperatures everybody likes. But actual on/off should be done purely with geofencing.

But I don't want the thermostat to kick in once someone is home. I want it to kick in so the temperature is ideal as close to when, but before, someone gets home.

Here's a scenario: Let's say I work all day and then have somewhere else to be for many hours in the evening. Let's say my evening destination takes me past my house so this geofencing will sense me coming home every time I drive in the direction of my home. I assume the next argument is that I can then manually disable the system but I don't want to do that each time.

I want it to primary learn patterns and then predict when those patterns will most likely hit so it can activate based on programmed and learned behaviour, not because I'm somewhere closer to it.

Then you have issues where not everyone has an smartphones which is really the only way to this. What if you have kids who come home after school or a babysitter or maid or many other people who won't be tied to your system with a linked smartphone? Like I said, I like the idea but not as a primary feature. Nest is on the right track.

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post #113 of 226
It's simple retail economics. It wasn't selling through and the shelf space can generate more revenue per sq./ft. with other products. Let's face it, it's a $250 thermostat.
post #114 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by ankleskater View Post


It doesn't? Does sending data up to servers count as intercommunication?
What data is sent up to servers?
post #115 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris_CA View Post


What data is sent up to servers?


 

 

They send virtually every bit of data collected - usage, battery levels, temperature, humidity, ambient light, when the unit is turned on and off, data you enter during setup, specifications of your heating/HVAC system, Zip code, when people enter or leave a room, .... Based on data collected, your unit's firmware may be updated by the servers to run "more efficiently". This is a "learning" thermostat after all.

 

Easier to answer the converse - what's not sent to the servers? Not much. This is the 21st century. Every new product is or will be collecting data on you.

 

Perhaps you should understand something thoroughly before commenting so definitively.

post #116 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post


But I don't want the thermostat to kick in once someone is home. I want it to kick in so the temperature is ideal as close to when, but before, someone gets home.
 

Nest already does this, I believe.

post #117 of 226
"Lighten up Francis"
Quote:
Originally Posted by ankleskater View Post

Perhaps you should understand something thoroughly before commenting so definitively.
Perhaps you should do the same?
"This is the 21st century. Every new product is or will be collecting data on you."
Some will. Far, far more will not even be capable of collecting any data.
Quote:
Nest already does this, I believe.
Yes, this is the point that Soli was making (in reference to the geofencing suggestion).
post #118 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by Misa View Post

People who buy it at Home Depot probably know what they're doing to install it, but not how to program it.
What Home Depot do you shop at? Except for the professionals who sometimes shop there, ANY home improvement store I've ever been in is populated by the totally uninformed. The only information they have is what they saw on a cable tv fixit show, or what they found on the internet. The only thing positive I can say about the do-it-yourselfer, is that they are ambitious and will try anything. And asking someone who works there is no help either. I'm sorry, I'm not saying that the are staffed by morons, only that they don't know what they are talking about. If they did know what they were talking about, they would be in that line of work instead of warehouse sales - it pays so much better. Sometimes its a hoot just listening to the misinformation that I overhear them passing out to customers. Having said that and being the owner of a Nest thermostat, I have to say it is the easiest to install of any thermostat I have ever installed, and I have installed hundreds of regular thermostats(work related).
1) Instructions are written for the novice not the professional, so jargon-speak is minimal.
2) The wires are physically easier to connect as compared to your standard thermostat (less dexterity is required, seems simple but skill is involved to a degree).
3) It comes with several coverplates that fit behind the thermostat to cover any mismatched holes or paint that was behind the old thermostat that may have been a different size or shape than the Nest.
4) It even comes with a small screwdriver to use in removing the old thermostat and installing the Nest. No need to hunt for tools.

There is no way you could make this any easier. Oh yeah, if you think this is just a programmable thermostat, you probably still think Siri is just a voice recognition app.

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post #119 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris_CA View Post

"Lighten up Francis"
Perhaps you should do the same?
"This is the 21st century. Every new product is or will be collecting data on you."
Some will. Far, far more will not even be capable of collecting any data.
Quote:
Nest already does this, I believe.
Yes, this is the point that Soli was making (in reference to the geofencing suggestion).


You are scraping, flailing, if you're picking apart hyperbole to make a counterpoint. But that's ok :) Sorry I was a bit hard on you. I will stop here.

post #120 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by ascii View Post

I love the idea of learning software, but don't think it's really appropriate in the case of a thermostat. At first glance it seems like an obvious application, but what you really want in this interconnected world is something that integrates with the mobile phone of each person living in the house. For example Apple could make a thermostat that runs iOS and receives geofencing events whenever an occupant is approaching the residence.
Too late to be of any use, if the temperature is a few degrees off the desired temperature, it will take too long to effect the required change. This is where Nest excels, knowing what time I usually come home, what the outside temperature and humidity are (relates to effectiveness/efficiency), what the current inside temperature is, and my history of cooling times (how quickly it has cooled in the past), it knows what time to start to cool to reach the desired set point at the desired time. And remember, I don't have to tell it anything other than my desired temperatures for when I'm home and for when I'm away. So much more than programmable.

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