The Story of Nest and Tony Fadell
Nest Labs introduced it’s first product, a beautiful and intelligent thermostat in the fall of 2011. The design cues were as good as an Apple product, no wonder given the two co-founders Tony Fadell and Matt Rogers were former Apple employees who also happened to work closely on the iPod. The Nest Learning Thermostat connects to WiFi, adjust temperature for itself and can be operated remotely, while also saving energy and there by money, all automatically. Selling at $249 a piece, it is also considered as one of the first Internet of Things (IoT) devices contributing towards a smart home.
After two product iterations of it’s thermostat and a new smoke detector in the form of Nest Protect, Nest Labs was acquired by Google in Q1, 2015 for a hefty sum of $3.2 billion, making it the second largest acquisition for Google after Motorola Mobility. This set huge ambitions for Google in the smart home area, beating Apple to the market. Google also acquired DropCam for half a billion dollars and turned it into Nest Cam, there by expanding it’s reach in a connected home.
Although Nest Labs was provided with unlimited funding and had it’s own identity within a later restructured Alphabet Inc, it failed to deliver new products and expand at the speed Google hoped for. Then the downfall of Nest Labs started with product malfunctions, management issues, employees leaving the company in dozens within the past few months and on June 3rd, Nest Labs CEO Tony Fadell anounced in a blog post that he is leaving Nest after leading it for six years, leaving behind the revolution it started and also as another failed acquisition by Google.