Thursday, April 03, 2014

Nest Thermostat - Now Available in the UK

TNW reports: [edited]

The Nest Thermostat has been available in the US since back in 2012, but due to differences in the way heating systems work it has taken a year-long, 100-household trial to work out the best way to deliver it to UK consumers. Nest says the Thermostat is compatible with “almost all central heating systems” in the UK.

The Nest Thermostat 'learns' the temperature you like in your home at different times and adjusts accordingly. The result, according to Nest, are potential savings of somewhere in the region of 4 percent to 20 percent off your annual heating bill. According to its research, the average UK home spends around £1,300 per year on heating, and could save between £9 and £353 per year, depending on conditions, existing schedule and a few other variables.

As well as learning your schedule over the first week or so (it doesn’t stop after this point, but those first few days will be the most instructive), it also has features like ‘Auto-Away’, which uses sensors in the device to recognise when there is no one around and therefore not to bother switching the heating on. Users can also review their energy usage history to see when they’ve been using the most, and see if there are any savings to be had at specific times.

It’ll also encourage you to turn your heating down by rewarding you with a leaf symbol each time you are below your normal temperature. There’s a gamification element at work here too as your leaf count is tallied and your ‘performance’ reflected in your monthly energy report comparing you to other Nest Thermostat users.

Handily, if you own a Nest Protect smoke alarm, the two devices can communicate with each other. So, say for example that the Protect detects carbon monoxide, it will instruct the Thermostat to switch the boiler off.

The UK version comes with the Thermostat control itself plus a ‘Nest Heat Link’ that connects directly to the boiler. Users then have the choice of either wiring in the Nest Thermostat where the old one was, or if the old one is in an inappropriate place, using it without wiring it in.

Nest is recommending that the Thermostat is purchased alongside professional installation for a total of £249, but it’s also available to buy as a standalone product for £179 from Nest’s website. It’ll also be available to buy from Amazon, B&Q, John Lewis and Apple.

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