Tony Fadell made a splash last year with the introduction of his smart thermostat Nest, and we just spent some time with one of its competitors. Allure Energy's EverSense is a touchscreen-based thermostat with mobile app integration and streaming media functionality. The interface is laid out on the 480 x 270 display in a CoverFlow-esque row of icons — it's running Linux underneath — and setting up the usual thermostat parameters is as intuitive as you'd expect with a large screen. EverSense also connects to the internet via Wi-Fi, and in a clever feature borrowed from the company's previous line of thermostats, you can use the Allure Mobile iOS app to control the temperature while you're away. The app will even trigger automatic temperature changes based on the distance you've travelled from home. EverSense also includes a built-in stand so you can sit it on your desk, and If you've got a DLNA-capable device you can stream both music and photos to the thermostat.

Unfortunately, the tiny speakers didn't impress us with their sound quality (or maybe it was the Coldplay song loaded onto the demo unit), and while the idea of turning your thermostat into a digital picture frame is a neat trick, it's hardly what we'd call a compelling feature. That said, the base functionality of EverSense seemed quite well done, and has us very excited to see what the future holds for this new category of product. EverSense will be launching in the second quarter of 2012 at an estimated price of $349.