Nest Labs, best known for selling high-end thermostats and smoke detectors, is joining Google’s hardware division. After the merger, Nest is no longer a standalone entity and instead will be part of Google. Marwan Fawaz, the current CEO of Nest, will report to Google hardware SVP Rick Osterloh. Back in 2014, Google bought Nest for $3.2 billion. At that time, it was decided that Nest would be a separate company.
Google’s blog post says the merger will combine “hardware, software, and services” between the two companies. The move to combine Google and Nest comes at a time when the competition in the smart home market is at its peak. Google’s arch-rival in this space – Amazon has recently announced its Alexa-enabled home security device, dubbed the “Cloud Cam”. The e-commerce giant is also in the business of selling smart speakers under its Echo lineup.
“Since Nest joined Google four years ago, the team has experienced incredible momentum. The company doubled its hardware portfolio last year—selling more devices in 2017 than the previous two years combined. Meanwhile, Google has sold tens of millions of products for the home in just the last year, as more people use the Google Assistant to listen to their favorite music, control their connected devices, and get useful information about their day, Osterloh wrote in a blog post.
Over the past few months, Google has been strengthening its hardware unit. The company is putting more resources in its hardware arm to creating products that range from the Pixel 2 smartphones to premium Google Home speakers. Last week, Google announced that it had paid $1.1 billion to acquire HTC’s hardware talent. Nest has shipped over 11 million products since 2011.