There’s no shortage of connected thermostats currently on the market but let’s be honest: few (if any) look as nice as the Nest Thermostat. And let’s face it: aesthetics are flat out more important than features to some buyers, especially when it comes to the home.
While Nest has no doubt garnered the most media attention, it wasn’t the first Wi-Fi connected thermostat on the block. That honor goes to a Canadian company by the name of Ecobee but odds are, you may not have ever heard of them. Their latest creation, the Ecobee 3, hopes to change that with a revolutionary new design and a game-changing feature to support its good looks.
The thermostat is a black square with rounded edges – a far cry from previous models that looked bland at best. Instead of a dial to adjust temperatures, the Ecobee 3 relies on a virtual knob that can be adjusted via the device’s 3.5-inch capacitive touchscreen. The same interface is also present on the mobile app.
Aesthetics aside, the Wi-Fi connected Ecobee 3 comes with an ace up its sleeve: remote sensors. These sensors are designed to be placed in the room (or rooms – you can have up to 32 of them… you know, to cover your mansion) of your choice and relay information about said room’s temperature and whether or not people are occupying it via motion sensing.
The idea is that the system can adjust for what room you are in versus simply sensing the temperature near the thermostat in the hallway, for example. As you know, it’s not uncommon for it to be cool on one side of the house and much warmer on the other, or vice versa. It can't heat / cool rooms individually, mind you, as that would require a pretty complex HVAC system or the use of multiple smart vents but it's the next best thing.
The Ecobee 3 installation kit includes the thermostat and a single remote sensor for $249. Additional remote units can be purchased in pairs priced at $79.