Tony Fadell and Nest team to become Google’s core hardware group

“Recently, Google acquired Nest, and TechCrunch has learned that Google has big plans for the team behind the connected device company,” Romain Dillet reports for TechCrunch. “Google will keep the Nest group intact inside the company. The new division will still work on hardware devices, but not necessarily thermostats or smoke detectors. In fact, Google would like Fadell to work on gadgets that make more sense for the company. Will it be a phone or a tablet? It’s unclear for now.”

“Nest founder and CEO Tony Fadell used to work for Apple on the iPod and was a founding member of the iPhone development team,” Dillet reports. “Moreover, Fadell managed to attract great Apple engineers when he started working on Nest. They wanted to follow Fadell’s plans and were good engineers. And that’s exactly what Google was looking for when it acquired Nest.”

“When it comes to budget, Google is willing to let the Nest team use as many resources as it needs,” Dillet reports. “In other words, the company is getting serious about consumer hardware, and Motorola was just a false start.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Our Lady of Perpetual Beta and the Apple Outcasts. Sounds like a high school band.

Related articles:
Dead to me: Apple’s Schiller ‘unfollows’ Tony Fadell and Nest after Google acquisition – January 18, 2014
Why Apple didn’t buy Tony Fadell’s Nest Labs – January 14, 2014
Feuds, funding and a fed up Fadell: Why Apple didn’t buy Nest – January 14, 2014
Did Tim Cook blow it by not snapping up Nest before Google? – January 13, 2014
Google to buy Nest Labs for $3.2 Billion – January 13, 2014
Tony Fadell introduces Nest Protect smoke and carbon monoxide detector – October 8, 2013
Tony Fadell, Father of the iPod: From Apple to Nest Labs, always a designer – July 24, 2013
Apple Store to sell Tony Fadell’s Nest Learning Thermostat, report claims – May 25, 2012
‘Father of the iPod’ Tony Fadell shows off his new project: Thermostats – October 25, 2011

31 Comments

  1. Without a Jony I’ve it’ll never work.

    Without a keen insistence on working out all the links and perfecting the process before showing ANYTHING it’ll never work.

    But have fun Tony. You’ve just been given a whole book of signed blank checks.

    1. BS. The Nest thermostat and smoke detector are very nicely designed products. And MDN’s characterization of former Apple engineers as “Apple Outcasts” is ridiculous. Just because someone doesn’t want to work at Apple any longer does not mean Apple kicked them out. Perhaps they wanted weekends, or less than 16 hour work days, or simply to do something different. Maybe Nest made them a better offer.

      1. Admittedly, but Nest’s way is very different than Google’s way. Who gets to decide how it shakes out? Does Google adopt Nest’s attention to detail and careful execution or does Nest get Googled? I predict conflict.

    2. It’s pretty clear that Microsoft is mostly incapable of designing anything people want, unless it’s something they sell at a loss, like the X-Box.

      So far Google has not been able to produce any interesting hardware in house. They bought Motorola which netted them a bunch of fairly useless patents and no hardware of interest.

      Now they’ve purchased Nest to see if they can just buy the capability to develop interesting products. Time will tell. While the Nest thermostat is an interesting product, selling 150,000 thermostats or so a quarter is a long way from selling 51 million iPhones in the same time frame.

    1. When did companies start to own people? We did away with slavery a long time ago. Engineers can darn well work for who they want when they want and believe it or not there are excellent companies like Apple out there for them to chose from. Apple this Apple that. Get a life! Apple is going to hurt as Google keeps on keeping on and no doubt Google is an attractive company to work for. Apple once again sued for infringing on patents suggests that Apple is not righteous and Apple fans need to learn this.

  2. I really thought Fadell was classy until he jumped in bed with a bunch of thieves and whores. Maybe he outlived his usefulness at Apple. I really respected Nest until this.

    1. This is an infection point where, Character, Validity & Trust make or break relationships. Apple has, & more importantly retains, A Players. Apple (AAPL) has Character, Validity & My Trust. Time to clean house and get rid of the dead wood.

    2. And who are you? Nothing more than a self-righteous fool is what you and all the people who 5 star your comment. Apple fans are by far the worst when it comes to self proclaimed righteousness. Tony is a class act who helped Apple get to where they are today via the launch pad called the iPod.

      Apple fans should be far more concerned about Tim Cook and Ives who are slowly destroying what SJ and the likes of Tony help build. iOS 7 is ugly as are all the changes made to OSX which now renders like a garden variety OS.

    3. Just ask the engineers at Xerox PARC about Steve Jobs’ ethics. I believe that they would characterize your hero (that you seem to believe was a saint) as a thief and liar.

      Not only did Apple “borrow” a lot of the solutions that Xerox developed to make the GUI workable, Steve also hired away quite a few key Xerox engineers.

      I don’t see why anyone would expect Fadell to not take billions of dollars, particularly since Google was one of the key investors that helped Nest get off the ground. Im sure he offers Apple the opportunity.

      In light of the conspiracy that Steve Jobs orchestrated to prevent poaching of employees in silicon valley, with the express intent to restrain compensation, I would expect most engineers to have little loyalty in return.

  3. …and Motorola was just a false start.

    Not the first. Not the last.

    Google has had SEVERAL ‘false starts’ in hardware. Google has had NOTHING BUT ‘false starts’ in hardware. Google has yet to prove ANY capability in hardware or any hope to have capability in the future. Throw money, hope it lands on a lucky number. That’s a really lousy business strategy. I see nothing new here, except they BOUGHT a guy who’s had some minor ‘gee whiz’ success with a couple gadgets.

  4. Welcome aboard Fadell and team. We’ve got some good news and some bad news.

    The good news is that you’re heading up our hardware group! Now… how do you feel about Lenovo?

  5. Fadell around went after the sale announcement saying this will allow Nest to get their products more widely distributed. Good luck Tony. You have to go now and make Google stuff. Thermostats? Not so much. How long are you obligated to stay at Google?

  6. Hey Tony, can you get Google’s wait times down under several weeks for fixing essential business listing and copyright violation problems before you allow them to delve into consumer projects? We are paying $5000 a month for adwords yet cannot even get our address listed on your maps with out a weeks long pending review? You know our F$%*#ing address and that we are a real business because you have our credit card and keep charging it.

  7. No one knows outside of Apple what’s in the pipe but Apple better keep a much tighter lid on it’s engineers. If google is allowed to gain access to any more of Apple’s engineers along with their secrets, Apples fortunes could change for the worse.

  8. anyways… look at the iPOD with wheel and the NEST. when I was a kid I ripped a dial off a radio and soldered it to an atari connector and made a homemade paddle for my computer to manipulate stuff of the screen – pong much? If you know how to tune a radio, or a honeywell thermostat, you know how to use the iPod… and NEST… Fadell is an AAD work cycle and apple had going triple DDD so he was no longer a good fit. Now think of google and how they’d like to hook servo motors up to everything by remote control and you know why they acquired Tony… so if google’s hardware is remote control cars and robots and thermostats and things that can be remote controlled – then you couple this with Kurzweil’s natural language queries and google hardware is potentially different than what we are all thinking.

    1. Bingo. Not to mention plain old smartphones. A Nest designed smartphone with a Google designed proprietary fork of Android! As walled-in as iOS. Anyone see where this is going? Goodbye Samsung.

  9. Does anyone know how many significant Apple engineers have been lost to other companies over the past few years? Does this have anything to do with some of the software delays we have been seeing during this time? I understand the too many cooks in the kitchen argument and concur, but it has become a trend. With all the money, surely that isn’t the problem. What then? Perhaps the way to integrate effectively more software engineers into a project so as to move it along’

  10. The problem here is that Google can’t help but be intrusive. The people who use Google’s services are not Google’s customers. Google’s true customers are the entities who pay to gain access to those people who use Google’s services. Google’s users are Google “commodity.”

    Is this corporate culture going to change when Google starts selling hardware products? Suddenly, Google’s “users” are actual people who PAID for a physical product, not faceless minions using free services that commoditize eyeballs. That’s going to be a rough transition. Even if Fadell and his team create great products, the rest of Google has to sell those products and support customers.

    1. That is a good point to be reminded about. Google just as Microsloth hadn’t gotten into PHYSICAL products themselves, they were always the provider of stuff to go in someone else’s.

  11. MDN takes are too funny! You guys are nuts. The very basis of why Apple finally became relevant is based on the iPod…. Who designed and developed the iPod? Right…

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