Nest today announced the $169 Nest Thermostat E, a more affordable version of its original $250 smart home thermostat from 2011 with most of the same features, but with a less conspicuous design.
Replacing the metallic look of its predecessor, the new HVAC energy-saving device features a soft-touch plastic white control ring around a black display, which lies behind a frosted screen to make the thermostat blend in to most home environments.
The display itself offers a more basic readout than previous Nest’s, showing the temperature only. When the frosted display is off, the screen is grey. When it’s on, it displays soft text and images that are designed to be easy to see and read with a slight glow. The display uses an ambient light sensor to share information at just the right brightness.
Meanwhile the unit’s innards have been simplified, which means the Thermostat E doesn’t offer the same wide compatibility with various U.S. domestic setups as the pricier device, so check before ordering.
Like the original Nest, the Thermostat E learns the user’s temperature preferences over time, smartly adjusting them on the fly depending on the circumstances. Alternatively, the Thermostat E can be set up on a simple schedule, based on an average of thousands of schedules already learned by the company’s devices. Users can adjust temperature using the control ring or via Nest’s iOS app for remote access.
The Thermostat E costs $169, while the original Nest Learning Thermostat will remain available to buy for $250. The new thermostat can be ordered from Thursday on the company’s website, with shipping set to start on September 1 and availability in retail stores from September 10.