Nest, makers of “smart home” devices like thermostats and smoke detectors, have been met with a lawsuit. The plaintiff named in the suit claims the thermostat produced by Nest actually cost consumers money rather than produce savings, as it claims. He is asking that the case be given class action status, pointing to various message boards as evidence of Nest’s lack of performance.

The complaint is pointed at Nest’s hardware. The complaint says the baseplate heats up, causing Nest to misread the temperature inside the home. From the filing:

Nest’s base and faceplate heat up, which causes Nest’s temperature reading to be from two to ten degrees higher than the actual ambient temperature in the surrounding room. This defect prevents the thermostat from working properly. As a result, Nest users do not experience the advertised energy savings.

If true, Nest products potentially have the opposite effect on your energy bill. The suit also claims Nest products like their thermostat afford nothing more than stylish accents to the home, calling it “aesthetically “cool” like the iPod”, but adding it “fails at even the most basic function of a a thermostat: accurately gauging and controlling temperature”.

For $250, we can’t say we blame the plaintiff for being upset. What remains unknown is whether or not his unit was faulty, or if there were similar instances of a manufacturing defect. We see no instance of a replacement unit being sought in the case, so we’ll have to wait and see if Nest products are found to be nonsense, or if this case is.

Via: GigaOm


  1. I think it is nonsense. My nest thermostat has saved me tons of money. Sure, if I sit there and play with it a little bit it does heat up a little, and the air might kick on for a few minutes unnecessarily — but I am not constantly activating it, so it doesn’t get a chance to heat up and cause any problem. This user just doesn’t understand how these things really work.

  2. This is ridiculous. Since you set the temperature yourself and it learns where you like it, it doesn’t matter if the temperature sensor is off, as long as it’s relatively consistent. It could give the temperature in letters of the alphabet and as long as it knew you liked it at K when you’re normally home and reduced it to G when you’re normally away it would save you money over always keeping at the same temperature. That said, I don’t have one since I’m fine programming my own thermostat, but for people who wouldn’t normally do that it’s definitely better.

  3. This legal suit reeks of opportunism. If it’s true, I’m sure it won’t take them too long to patch up. particularly in the UK and Germany. I am surprised that people seem to be going straight for Nest and overlooking some fine alternatives.. especially in Europe where there are even smarter thermostats like Heat Genius (UK) and Tado (Germany)


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