Nest has just acquired Boulder, CO-based Revolv, one of the most flexible smart home platforms on the market. It's a big move in the growing smart home market, which has two main battles: the individual devices and the platform they run on to make our homes smarter. Nest, with its popular smart thermostat and smoke detector, is in a strong position in the first category. Buying Revolv (and the team behind it) positions it strongly in the second. Terms of the deal aren't being disclosed, but the Revolv team will stay in Boulder in a new Nest office there.
"It's a super strong group," says Nest co-founder Matt Rogers. "When it comes to home wireless and home communication, this is the best team out there. They've been in this industry for about a decade."
"We'll sell more Nest products into a richer ecosystem."
And it's really the team that Nest is after — it's immediately discontinuing Revolv's product, which was sort of a smart home Rosetta Stone that connected devices from multiple brands across multiple radio standards, from ZigBee and Z-Wav to Bluetooth and Wi-Fi. "We'll continue to support customers," says Rogers, but the plan is for the Revolv team to turn their focus to the Works With Nest platform, the part of the company responsible for working with developers to add compatibility and capability between Nest and third-party products. The deal closed today; the Revolv team is starting first thing on Monday. They'll join the team from Dropcam, which Nest bought in June, in making the Nest ecosystem even more powerful.
Revolv's team is joining Nest immediately
"We've been working with about 30-40 companies closely and three to four thousand developers," says Rogers. "We've noticed that there's a lot of interesting working with Nest, and we've brought in these guys to help build that. We would like to get Works with Nest to the point where the ecosystem is much more rich."
Nest has also announced a number of new partners for Works With Nest, like the Pebble smartwatch and the ivee voice-control platform. With the Revolv team on board, those partnerships should increase in both number and capability. And in the smart home, at least, success is all about working together. "It isn't about turning Works with Nest into a business," says Rogers. "It's about building the platform so other people can build their businesses on it. We'll sell more Nest products into a richer ecosystem."