Google Nest Thermostat (2020) Review

A Simple but Stunning Option

Google Nest Thermostat (2020) Review
By Brendan Frye
May 2, 2021

Google Nest Thermostat (2020) Review

SCORE: 8/10


I have always been a sucker for minimalism in design. From the way I decorate, to the devices I am drawn too, simple concepts are what seem to always catch my eye. This is why I was originally drawn to the Nest Thermostat when it appeared on the market. It promised a simple way to control heating and cooling, and it managed to do so in a clean, minimalist package. It is no surprise I was so impressed with the latest Google Nest Thermostat. It manages to deliver on the promise of the Nest, in one of the most striking designs and simple new user interfaces I have seen, and I am in love with what they are doing.

The new Google Nest Thermostat is a fully redesigned offering that streamlines the process of using your Thermostat. Now priced better than ever, the new Nest feels like the evolution of everything the brand has been doing up to this point. It takes out all the superfluous gimmicks, extra features, delivering a device that looks great, stays out of your way, and saves you money on pesky utility bills.

New Design

Google has overhauled the Nest from top to bottom, and I for one love the end result. Gone is the moving dial, many menu deep settings, replaced by simple capacitive side buttons that give a much simpler way to use the device. The mirrored display gives just enough details to let you know what is going on, and the new plastic look fits in place on the wall without standing out as a centerpiece in any room. It manages to feel modern and subtle at the same time, feeling very in-line with much of the other tech Google has been releasing over the past few years.

Google Nest Thermostat
Google Nest Thermostat

The right side of the unit now acts as the dial, with swipes and presses replacing the old turn and click many people would know from past Nest offerings. Visually, the new Nest feels similar to the Google Nest Thermostat E at first glance, but does stand apart due to the mirrored front display, giving it a more modern, less budget appearance.

Setup

Google has managed to make an already painless setup process – as seen with other Nest products –  even more streamlined. The new Nest is compatible with 85% of home heating and cooling systems, with Google offering a handy checker should you be concerned.

Once you have the device unpacked and ready to go, the Google Home app scans the QR code on the back of the Thermostat and the app will walk you through each step of the process making it as easy and painless as possible. The mounting plate provides an easy-to-use level that makes installation simple, and the app will outline any wiring issues that you may encounter, with helpful tips on how to fix them. Sadly, there is only so much an app can do, and for any more advanced issues, it is always good to call a professional to ensure everything is done correctly, or if you are unsure during any major steps in the process.

Once everything is installed, and the setup process is over, you can let the app know your schedule, what you like for temperatures, along with routines to ensure it can optimize the heating and cooling to best fit your needs and save you the most money possible. Using the built-in motion sensor, the Nest knows when no one is home, and can adjust things to not waste energy when the house is empty.

Daily Use

The 2020 Google Nest Thermostat is very much a set and forget it style device. Once you have your routines and settings in place, the thermostat will do its job following instructions to best fit your needs and save you the most money. Much like any thermostat, you can adjust things on the fly using the device directly or by the mobile app. You can also use Google Assistant or Alexa to make changes using your voice should you suddenly get a chill.

The Nest Thermostat will also make suggestions based on your patterns. It may prompt you to turn the heat down when you are in bed, and with a simple click of a button it sets these settings in place giving you a slight relief on your energy consumption. It feels a bit lacking compared to past Nest offerings, but it feels enough to stay out of your way while saving money.

At the end of the day Google has taken what worked with the Nest and built something that is easy to invest in and use. It is clear they boiled the device down to its essentials, but that works for me, and at the $130 price point, it is hard to deny this is a fantastic value. While it may not offer as robust an experience as past Nest products, for anyone looking to dip their feet into the world of smart home technology, and save some money, you can’t go wrong with the 2020 Google Nest Thermostat, just make sure your system supports it before making the plunge.

FINAL THOUGHTS


Google has boiled the Nest Thermostat down to its essentials, and while it at times feels form over function, it still manages to be one of the easiest and best looking smart thermostats on the market.

Google Nest Thermostat (2020) Review
  • Name
    Google Nest Thermostat
  • MSRP
    $129.00
  • Company
    Google
  • Hardware Type
    Thermostat
  • Editors Score
    8/10


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