The average home spends more than $2,200 per year on energy bills and roughly half of this amount goes towards heating and cooling, according to the Department of Energy.  When a programmable thermostat is set and used properly, a homeowner can save about $180 annually.  But the problem is, virtually everyone with a programmable thermostat doesn’t set or use it properly.  Nest Labs, a Palo Alto-based start-up, aims to solve this problem with a new thermostat that’s simple, sleek, intuitive, and smart.

Tony Fadell, a former Apple executive and founder of Nest Labs, said, “We’ve built the world’s first learning thermostat — a thermostat for the iPhone generation,” according to the New York Times.  It’s called Nest, and it’s going to be sold for $250.

Nest learns by remembering temperature adjustments entered over time.  It creates a custom schedule from adjustments or can be manually programmed for seven days with 20 set points per day.  Nest shows a leaf when you’re saving energy and displays the time it will take to arrive at a certain temperature.  Nest also has an auto-away mode and can be adjusted remotely through a laptop or mobile phone.

The next-generation thermostat is constructed with a brushed stainless steel ring, a built-in rechargeable lithium ion battery, and an LCD screen with a 320 px display. Nest is RoHS compliant and free of arsenic, mercury, and PVC.

Nest has a total diameter of 3.20″ and the profile is about 1.44″ thick.  The programmable thermostat has sensors for temperature, humidity, proximity, far-field activity, near-field activity, and ambient light. This video shows a simple installation:

Nest is compatible with forced air, radiant, heat pump, oil, gas, and electric systems; one or two stage conventional heating; one stage conventional cooling; one stage heat pumps with auxiliary heat or two stage heat pumps without auxiliary heat; 24-volt systems.  Nest doesn’t support conventional two-stage cooling or heat pumps with two-stage heating and auxiliary heat.

[+] Learn more about the Nest Thermostat.

Credits: Nest Labs.