New sensor-packed thermostat can cut annual heating bill by 20 per cent, Nest claims
The Nest Learning Thermostat is now available in the UK, but it is very different to its US counterpart.
The UK version comes in two parts – a box that is wired straight into a boiler and a thermostat that replaces an existing one. Nest said it had been working on the device since January 2013 and that adapting the technology for the UK had been challenging.
A standalone Nest thermostat costs £179, with installation upping the price to £249. A Nest stand, which can be used if you don’t want to fix the thermostat to a wall, costs £24. Nest is available now from the Apple Store, B&Q, John Lewis and Nest.com.
Nest has spent the past year researching and adjusting its technology to work in UK homes. While in the US most homes are heated by a hot air system, UK homes are predominantly heated by radiators, with many homes not even having separate thermostats. While most features of Nest have remained the same, the underlying technology had to be adapted.
The UK system still works in broadly the same way as its UK counterpart. Nest aims to save you money by analysing your own behaviour and the behaviour of your heating system to cut down your bills. Nest claimed that tests in the UK had shown that the thermostat can cut annual heating costs up around 20 per cent.
To do this Nest uses a number of sensors. A motion sensor works out when you’re not in the house, while Nest can also look up weather reports and adjust heating accordingly. There are also three separate thermostats to measure temperature. Nest can be controlled directly using the colour screen on the thermostat or remotely through apps for iOS and Android or the Nest website.
A partnership with energy supplier Npower was also announced, although specific details are not yet available. It therefore isn’t clear if the Nest system will be the default smart energy meter installed for Npower customers.
Nest, which was bought by Google for $3.2bn earlier this year, has been selling its smoke and carbon monoxide detector in the UK since January. Nest Protect, which costs around £110, will also link with the thermostat to reduce the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning from faulty boilers.