Nest Uses Its Data To Turn Electric Utilities Into Cash Cows


When Google acquired smart thermostat maker Nest for $3.2 billion, the startup quickly stated that it wouldn’t ever share its user data with other Google services and outside companies. Yet, according to a recent report by Forbes, the company is taking advantage of its data to create a lucrative revenue stream from electric utilities.

“Our privacy policy clearly limits the use of customer information to providing and improving Nest’s products and services. We’ve always taken privacy seriously and this will not change,” Nest wrote in the Q&A post following the acquisition.

Similarly, Nest co-founder Matt Rogers declared to Forbes that it doesn’t share actual data with the utility. But it doesn’t mean that the company shouldn’t take advantage of its customer information without sharing hard numbers.

The company has negotiated deals with multiple energy partners in the U.S. Some utility partners are willing to spend $30 to $50 per…

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