With Google’s purchase of Nest, many speculated that the division could morph into Google’s internal hardware branch. While the company focussed on connected home products, it was widely believed Google was trying to alleviate their reliance on hardware partners like LG or Samsung. News that Nest is interested in the team behind the newly defunct Nike Fuelband heightens that speculation.
Some of the Nest team was said to be in Beaverton, Oregon yesterday to meet with folks who “might have been part of” the Fuelband crew, according to TechCrunch. A flyer, which you can see below, was allegedly handed out to those believed to be part of the Fuelband crew while members of the Nest team holed up in a hotel conference room. It seems a bit cheesy to essentially create a hiring fair, but if you’re serious about making a number of key hires, that’s a better avenue than flying each down individually. Also, there’s likely no secret that those still at Nike working on the Fuelband would be looking for work away from the company.
The tipster claims the Nest team was “very cool and nice. They have big plans for future products and need as much talent as they can get — in Palo Alto only. No Portland office.” Though not all those working on the Fuelband were let go, Nike’s commitment to hardware is suspect at this point. Google’s is not.
So what will we see, should a number of Fuelband team members join Nest? We’re not sure, but the Fuelband was one of the more desirable fitness wearables ahead of the recent crop of wrist-wear (read: ahead of its time, but not anymore). It’s also important to note Nest was allegedly meeting with Fuelband team members, not Google. If true, this lends further credence to the tale of Nest becoming Google’s hardware branch.