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That explains why I couldn't turn up the heat before getting out of bed this morning. :P At least the thermostat itself is still working fine.



With all the getting-rid-of-nest-inventory sales (Kohls, Office Depot, Home Depot, etc...) going on at the moment, as well as Google killing off some Nest products and Google's track record of killing of products and services in general, I would be very concerned about tying my house to any Nest product.

On that note, anyone have any good recommendations for Nest thermostat alternatives? I've had ecobees at my last residence and it wasn't too bad, but wondering if there is another compelling alternative?


Ecobee is the only real mass-market competition to Nest. Depending on the specific HVAC equipment one may have, there are other "smart" alternatives from the manufacturers themselves.

Generally speaking, they all offer a portal and an app in which one can adjust the HVAC settings. Also, generally speaking, these apps and portals are being developed by companies for which software engineering is not a primary function, so they're about as good as you would expect.


If you have an ecobee, take a look at beestat.io.

Ecobee's consumer interface hides a lot of the useful trend data, which is the whole point of having these, IMHO. Beestat is a vast improvement on the default.


I've been happy with my Ecobee, but I can't tell you how well it works with the app because I never configured the WiFi connection.

Remember, you can go to Best Buy, buy a bunch of thermostats, keep the one you like best, and return the rest with no questions asked.


Or, do some research, purchase what should work for you. If not, return it and use the reasons it didn't suit you to get the correct one. 'Buying a bunch', just seems shady to me. Is there anything difficult in buying a thermostat? Heating on, off, programmable. Is there something I'm missing?


They have returns for a reason. Not just because products are defective, but because no matter what they're still going to make a net profit since you're likely to buy at least one thing that you purchase. They have an entire system where returns are handled and are either placed back on the shelf slightly marked down or sent to be refurbed. There's nothing "shady" about what I described. It's exactly what they want you to do.

> Is there anything difficult in buying a thermostat? Heating on, off, programmable. Is there something I'm missing?

It's not much different than the nuances of figuring out which phone to buy. A Samsung Galaxy and a Google Pixel might sound like they both do the same thing, but one has a bunch of crap installed and the other one has less crap, but the average person might not be able to figure out the significance of this unless they actually try both.


> but because no matter what they're still going to make a net profit since you're likely to buy at least one thing that you purchase. They have an entire system where returns are handled and are either placed back on the shelf slightly marked down or sent to be refurbed. There's nothing "shady" about what I described. It's exactly what they want you to do.

I would need a source for that. I don’t see how selling 1 item and having to mark down 4 others to refurb price results in a profit.

It’s also been in the news that stores keep track of people returning items, and ban them if they cost the store too much money.


I don't know about hardware stores, but non-grocery retail that I am familiar with targets 50% gross margin (revenue from goods sold minus cost of goods sold).


And they still end up with low single digit profit margins, which means with even more returns, they'd have to try to get even more gross margin.

Best Buy gross margins are 22%, but their net margin is 3.75%. In a good quarter.

https://www.macrotrends.net/stocks/charts/BBY/best-buy/gross...

https://www.macrotrends.net/stocks/charts/BBY/best-buy/net-p...


I bought another Nest Hub a few months ago and a significant factor in that decision was the ability to make free UK landline/mobile calls.

My actual mobile spend is about £10 top-up every 90 days (mostly data/texts), I don't have a landline, and the minimum mobile contract with unlimited calls is about £5/m and 12/18 months lockin, so it's a really good deal for me.

Guess what they just cancelled with one month's notice!


I went with Ecobees mainly because they offer the easy export of your data and have an open API to interop with.

I originally planned to use my HomeAssistant install to orchestrate it a little with the Awair products I have, for example, turn the AC fan on if the co2 starts getting high to flush the air, but a while ago the Ecobee app can pair up with Awair itself, so I've had no need.


May I suggest running a small one page web app for this? I tried a bunch of scritps/solutions, but it ended up much easier to mostly build my own thing and some libraries for the tedious stuff.

Hardware was a pi and an inexpensive honeywell that was on a local network and controlled via http.


Ecobee coupled with home assistant is fantastic.


It's frustrating that Nest forces you to go through Google servers to adjust a thermostat on your local network.


Frustrating is far too mild of a word for it. Local network discovery is a solved problem.


Its 2020 and your thermostat now needs to talk to something outside your house to adjust the temperature? No thanks.


No, it still works fine offline. I just couldn't use the app this morning to preheat the house. I actually had to get up out of bed to adjust it. Which, I'm not complaining about at all.


Noticed my Nests were down earlier. They are back up now.

As far as working "fine" offline, I have another gripe about my Nest thermostats: Why is the sample rate on the temperature so damn slow? One of my zones is a small (~500 sq/ft) room and the HVAC can move the temperature there rather quickly. What always happens is the heat/cool usually stays on well beyond the desired set point. This is because the device does not sample the temperature often enough. If the mode is set to heat & cool, the heat and AC will both oscillate on and off forever unless the min and max are more than 5 degrees apart. It's not a matter of the Nest sensor lagging because of its heat capacity because I have tried a heat gun and freeze spray to observe the sample rate. It really sucks.


I think what api is referring to is there isn't a good reason why you shouldn't be able to use your phone to adjust your thermostat on your local network without leaving the internal network.


For now....


I moved into a house with a Nest and no internet connection (when we moved in). The Nest worked fine as a thermostat, it seemed to be smart enough to default into a dumber thermostat mode when it had no internet connection. This is also its behavior today with this service outage.

Now, because someone one day will decide to do a rewrite and cause a feature regression, this could change.




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