Nest is offering free thermostats to select electric company customersBy Shawn Knight
Nest makes one of the better connected thermostats on the market but at $250, its price tag is cost prohibitive for many. If you happen to live in Ireland, however, you can now get a Nest Learning Thermostat absolutely free through a new partnership with Electric Ireland.
Former Apple executive and current Nest CEO Tony Fadell announced the partnership at the Web Summit tech conference in Dublin. To qualify for a free thermostat with installation, Fadell said, new customers will need to enter into a two-year service agreement with the utility company. Existing customers can get a Nest for €99 ($123), or roughly half price.
As CNET points out, deregulation has opened up Ireland's electricity market over the past decade. By subsidizing a Nest, Electric Ireland can guarantee that a particular customer will stick with them for at least two years.
Full terms of the deal can be found on Electric Ireland's website. If you're paying for electricity anyway, there's little reason not to get a free thermostat out of the deal - assuming of course that Electric Ireland offers competitive rates versus the competition.
Fadell pointed out that Ireland is just the start and they hope to bring the deal to many more countries.
Just a few days ago, Google began rolling out a major software update for the learning thermostat that includes a revised algorithm that helps the device pick up on schedule changes faster than before. Nest claims the tweak can help save up to six percent more on heating and cooling bills.