Open source smart thermostats rise to complete with Nest after Google acquisition

Spark’s open-source thermostat, with a custom wood enclosure.

Since Google acquired Nest for $3.2 billion last week, current and prospective smart thermostat or smoke detector owners have been apprehensive about what Google might do with the company. In the last few days, a couple of companies have stepped forward with potential open source alternatives to the service and hardware that Nest offers, sans the new implications of Google ownership.

The original Nest is a smart thermostat that uses motion and temperature sensors to “learn” the routines and comfortable temperature zones of its owners. It can detect when no one is home, and it normalizes to a certain temperature range over time. Users control the Nest with an app and through a Web interface.

At Spark, four engineers set to work on an open source version of a smart thermostat using their own Spark Core, an Arduino-compatible Wi-Fi development board. They added in a humidity and temperature sensor, IR motion detector, and some LEDs and LED matrices to put together and mount inside a custom wood and acrylic enclosure.

Read 8 remaining paragraphs | Comments

via Ars Technica


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