Exclusive Interview: ‘Works with Nest’ at the Centre of The Smart Home

It’s been less than 18 months since the ‘Works with Nest’ program was launched and Nest say they’ve already signed up more than 10,000 developers.

Their devices have connections up and running to other brands of smart home equipment in one out of every eight Nest homes.

Now their sights are firmly fixed on expanding those numbers, using their Cloud API to become the centre of the smart home.

We interviewed Nest’s Head of European Product Marketing, Lionel Guicherd-Callin and asked him about the tech they use, securing our data and where the future is headed for their developer program.

Lionel Guicherd-CallinHi Lionel, we see you’ve partnered with Yale for the new Linus smart lock that’s coming in 2016, can you tell us a bit about it?

The Linus Lock by Yale is the first Works with Nest product to use Nest Weave, a communications protocol that allows developers to connect directly to other devices in the home.

Available in the US in 2016, the Linus Lock by Yale is the most advanced door lock – inside and out it. It provides the ability to lock the door from anywhere, set up separate entry access for family members and guests, and auto-lock so people will never again have to worry about forgetting to lock the door.

It’s also integrated into other Nest products, for example the doors will automatically unlock in the event of the Nest Protect alarm being triggered to aid evacuation, or pre-warn you before entering your front door of high carbon monoxide or smoke levels. Never before has a door lock offered this much security, convenience or insight about who enters the home.

 

Yale Linus Smart LockWhat other partners are you working with and what future products are we going to see that work with Nest?

In just a year, more than 11,000 developers have signed up to work with Nest, and one in eight Nest customers have accessed a Works with Nest connection.

Partners today include companies like Philips Hue, who have created an integration that will see your lights flash red when your Nest Protect smoke and carbon monoxide goes off for example. It’s those types of meaningful interactions, versus simply controlling a device from your mobile phone, that we want to enable. Other partners in Europe include Mercedes, Osram, Withings and Bosch Siemens for example.

We’ve also just opened up the Nest Camera API which allows developers to connect with Nest Cam for the first time. August, Mimo, Petnet, Philips Hue and Skybell have already launched Nest Cam integrations and we have some really exciting partners in development since the announcement a few weeks ago.

In terms of what is next, we are very much focused on the home – so look around you and think about how those products can be improved to become more thoughtful.

In a conventional home automation setup users can manually build macros using logic (IF the house is unoccupied, THEN turn off the lights). Is there a way to do this in the Nest world or are all responses learnt?

Absolutely. One of my favourite integrations is with IFTTT. With this consumers can create their own connections with one simple statement – “if this then that.” For example, “If my Nest Protect detects smoke, then send a text message to my neighbors.”

That said we don’t believe the ​majority of consumers want to create macros for products to work together, they want this to happen seamlessly in the background – a home that take care​s​ of itself and the people inside it​ versus the other way around​. Nest products learn from you and your environment – what you like, what you don’t, what’s happening around you. And they work together – talking, comparing notes, and doing more together than any of them could do on their own.

 

Google’s machine learning is already bringing exciting advances to our lives, but with warnings on its threat to mankind, how is Nest keeping things in check and securing our data?

Home is a safe haven. It’s where we get to decide who we invite in. It’s where private moments stay private. At Nest, we value that trust above all else. And we work hard to make our products a safe place for your data. With Nest, you’re in control of your information. We build industry-standard, bank-level security measures into every stage of our design and development process so you can feel confident your information is safe.

In addition, we have our own team of white hack hackers who regularly test our products against the latest threats to make sure we continue to lead the market when it comes to security in the home. We also give our consumers control, it’s not artificial intelligence but more intelligence assistance in our products, which means that consumers are always fully aware and in control.

Nest-Weave-Logo

Can you talk about the whole 802.15.4 / 6LowPAN / Thread / Nest Weave world and explain to our readers how these all fit together?

Existing wireless networking approaches were introduced long before the Internet of Things gained ground. Thread was created due to existing networks suffering from lack of interoperability, inability to carry IPv6 communications, high power requirements that drain batteries quickly, and “hub and spoke” models dependent on one device. Thread is a low-power, IPv6 based mesh network for the home.

However whilst Thread allows products to connect to each other, Nest Weave defines application-level communications, down to the semantic level, so a Nest Weave-enabled light switch can tell a Weave-enabled light bulb to turn on/off or dim to 75% percent. It can also allow the lightbulb to get a software update from the Nest service, and also talk to a Nest Protect, so the light bulb can flash in case of a smoke/CO event in the home.

 

Will Nest offer a bridge to allow it to connect to and control other smart home technologies like Z-Wave?

We can’t comment on future plans however through the Works with Nest program, developers are able to create solutions for consumers to interact and transition from their installed systems to the next-generation of connected products.

 

The ‘Works with Nest’ program obviously aims to become that glue we’re always talking about that allows all the aspects of the smart home and IoT to work together. How comprehensive can this go in the future and what other areas of our lives do you see this tech moving into?

The Works with Nest program was launched less than 18 months ago and it is today recognised as the most comprehensive developer platform in the market, with over 50 integrations available today.

From connected lighting, plugs and switches, to access control and appliances, we believe there are various opportunities to make the home more thoughtful. Whether through our cloud API or Nest Weave, we are enabling devices to learn and interact with each other in meaningful ways, making homes take care of themselves and the people inside them.

 

Many thanks for taking the time to talk to us today Lionel. Where should our readers go to learn more about the Works with Nest system?

Thank you so much. Please check out our developer page at:​ ​https://developer.nest.com/

nest.com  :  Meet Nest Cam

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1 Comment on "Exclusive Interview: ‘Works with Nest’ at the Centre of The Smart Home"

  1. Great article! I love what Nest are doing with the Weave stack and am really interested to see how this develops in competition with Apple’s HomeKit. For us as consumers, it will only make for better integration around the home.

    The Yale lock integration is really clever, and will hopefully be intelligent enough to not unlock the doors if a wanton intruder drops a smoke-bomb through the front door while we’re all on holiday!

    Should we be concerned that Nest Weave opens up the camera in our house to their 11,000 developers! ?? I wonder what assurances will be built in around privacy?

    All in all, great steps from a great innovator! ++excited to see what comes next!

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