Cracking Open the Nest Egg

I’m convinced that Google bought Nest Labs to enable journalists to publish theories why Google bought Nest Labs. Everyone seems to have one. The NYT explains that both companies want to understand you. Slate suggests it’s all about getting a solid foothold in the soon to explode Internet of things. The Atlantic theorizes that Google bought Nest because it is, at its core, a robotics company. Wired concludes that it’s about “what you can create when you take all the smarts of the smartphone and build them into everything else.” John Gruber makes the point that it’s all about the hardware: “Google’s Nest acquisition has very little to do with selling thermostats and smoke detectors in particular. Instead, it’s about Google having the ability to do consumer hardware right, in general.” Quartz supports that assertion with its list of the 100 Apple employees Google just acquired by buying Nest. Here’s my take: For $3.2 billion, it better be all of the above. And one other thing to note. When the deal was first announced, nearly every early adopter in my Twitter stream brought up the issue of privacy. That’s not the knee-jerk reaction Google (or any big Internet player) wants when they announce a deal.

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