Nest has gradually gone from the maker of a smart thermostat to the maker of a number of smart home products. The newest of which, the Nest Hello doorbell, is now available for $229.
The company is now looking to make its products work better together, so that it can create a sticky smart home ecosystem that you can layer onto your house. So Nest is rolling out a couple of different software updates over the coming weeks to make them work more cohesively.
The entire Nest suite will be able to work in tangent. For instance, if you unlock your $249 Nest x Yale door lock, your Nest Secure will unlock, your Cam IQ will turn off and your thermostat turns up to your preferred temperature. Nest, of course, is now a part of the Google hardware team, which means they've baked in Google Assistant and Google Home support now.
You can finally ask Google Home to arm your Nest Secure, which was one of our gripes when we reviewed it. You can also link up your Google Home to the Nest Hello, so when someone rings the doorbell your Google Home will pipe up and say "Someone's at your door." If you've got a $10-a-month Nest Aware subscription, you can even set it up so that Google Home announces who's at the door. Grandpa can finally come home in style.
Nest is also updating the Secure alarm system with much-needed features that, frankly, should have been there in the first place. There's now an instant alarm setting, so if the alarm goes off it'll go off right away, not after a set amount of seconds. Similarly, there are now door chimes. So if you're home and want to know when your spouse comes home from work, the door sensors will chime when they walk in.
Finally, Nest is announcing a new hardware product: the $39 Nest Temperature Sensor. This little puck can be placed in any room and your Nest Thermostat will be able to adjust the heating or cooling in that room specifically. If you've lived anywhere, you know that not all rooms feel the same, temperature wise. You may even want certain rooms, like those with babies, to be a certain temperature. Oh, there are also three-packs of Temperature Sensors available for $99.
We got a short demo of how the suite of Nest products worked together, and while it was a controlled environment, things went pretty seamlessly. The system unlocked and turned off cameras when coming home, then locked the door, armed the system and turned on cameras when leaving. Google Assistant had a hiccup or two in the Cam IQ, but was able to work pretty well to control the Secure.
Most impressively, the Hello's Google Home integration was tight. One of the issues with smart doorbells is they either route to your app or your mechanical chime. The actual ring in your home isn't any smarter than a regular ring, but the Hello's Google Home integration makes the ring feel smarter.
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