Control a Nest with Amazon Echo and SmartThings?


(Nathan Parker) #1

I’ll be getting a Nest thermostat within the next month, and I’ve already got the custom device type code published in the IDE and the instructions for integrating my Nest thermostat into SmartThings when I get it.

I’m also considering getting an Amazon Echo soon. Is there a way to control the Nest thermostat using the Amazon Echo if I have the Echo integrated into SmartThings, or do I need to go a more “direct” route to connect the Nest thermostat to the Amazon Echo so I could control it with the Echo?

I did run across this thread which seems to mention something about it as well:

Thanks!


(Dan) #2

Off topic a little but curious what made you chose the Next vs. Ecobee3. I have been seriously thinking about getting the Ecobee due to Nest’s (Google) privacy issues


(Nathan Parker) #3

We’re launching a new program at WeatherBug (see weatherbughome.com). We will be integrating with both the Nest and Ecobee thermostats. I did some unofficial polling of both smart thermostat owners and tech specialists. The majority of the responses came back recommending the Nest over the Ecobee (in one of the polls I did, 100% of the people recommended the Nest over the Ecobee). The only person that recommended the Ecobee over the Nest was a tech specialist on another website, and he did it because he likes using the Ecobee with Siri on his iPhone and having the additional temperature sensors around his house (since I already have the Nest Home and Google Now apps on my iPhone since I have a Dropcam Pro, as well as I’m already using SmartThings for temp sensors around my house, I don’t see this as a major ordeal). He did say he felt the Nest’s hardware was better than the Ecobee, he just liked those features of the Ecobee better.

Since the data from my Nest will be integrated with what we’re doing at WeatherBug, I’m not too worried about privacy issues since my data is already going to be going somewhere. And if Google wants to know what I keep my thermostat set on, more power to them. :smile:

The Ecobee does have some nice features (the sensors and HomeKit integreation), but the Nest feels more solid in terms of hardware, and since I use Nest Home already, it would seem to integrate into my environment better. Plus the polling I’ve done definitely seems people like it over the Ecobee.


(Dan) #4

Thanks man! I have gone back and forth on which one to get. Part of my might wait until January. We are expecting our second little one and my wife will be on leave until then. So basically the house will have to be the same temp during the day as it is at night. We are in cold MN! Do you see any benefits for getting a smart thermostat now while i can’t really use the benefits just yet?

PS - Good luck on your Nest/Echo integration. I am really curious how this plays out and will quit hijacking your thread haha. I really appreciated the detail reply


#5

I have an ecobee3 and I couldn’t be happier with it. Having said that, it collects just as much data as the Nest (possibly more due to the included additional sensor) and ships it up to ecobee. I don’t really care about that, but if privacy is your concern, understand that both of the systems you’re considering rely on cloud services.


(Dan) #6

Nah, privacy isn’t really a concern of mine. I would prefer to get the better product. I have nothing to hide and if a company really wants to know how i manage the heat in my house so be it…


(Nathan Parker) #7

We keep our thermostat at the same temp right now as well, so we really wouldn’t even be looking into a smart thermostat if it wasn’t for my job at WeatherBug and me having to test one out. Since I’m getting one free from WeatherBug and have to test one, how can I resist. :slight_smile: It will be interesting to see if some of the away features and other features save us any money on our energy bill since we haven’t really thought about it.

The one benefit of the smart thermostat would be you could see or change the temp from away via your smartphone if you wanted to, plus track your energy usage. The other benefit is you could do install a Dropcam or Nest Cam in the baby’s nursery and be able to see the video feed when out of the house and have everything integrate together.


(Darc Ranger) #8

Using a couple of smart apps and using virtual dimmers/switch and momentary, I can control several thermostat features like Thermostat Mode[Heat/Cool/Auto/Off], Theromstat Fan[FanOn/AutoFan] and change the Thermostat Setpoints[Heating/Cooling]. I can use the Amazon Echo/Alexa to change things, the only quirk is finding the right name for each switch that works for you. I have a different theromstat, but I have been told it also works Ecobee. I needed to modify the coding for setpoints for Ecobee. I am not sure how Nest currently handles setpoints in there device type code.


(Tasmin) #9

Can you describe more about what you set up as virtual momentary/dimmer switches for changing the thermostat set points? I have Nest, ST, & Alexa and am too much of a noob to handle the other thread about setting up the server. I’d primarily like to tell Alexa to make it warmer or cooler.


(Stephen Blankenship) #10

I have the Samsung Smartthings Hub and have the Nest connected to that hub and I have the Amazon Echo connected to the hub as well; however, I either don’t know the verbal commands or my Echo is unable to communicate to the Nest. How can I get this to work?

I saw this post: Control a Nest with Amazon Echo and SmartThings?

But that doesn’t seem to provide any answers.


#11

There is no simple or easy way to do it.

Echo does not recognize thermostats at this time. That’s true no matter what controller you’re using.

And there is no official integration between smartthings and nest.

So it’s not like the Phillips hue bridge, which has an official integration with both echo and smart things, where you just run a discovery and you’re done.

There are two methods that people are using. Both require a lot of custom code.

Basically, first you have to have some way of connecting nest to smart things (which, by the way, violates your terms of service with nest so that’s just something to be aware of)

Next, you have to create a “virtual dimmer” so the echo will think that it’s controlling a dimmer light switch when it’s actually controlling the thermostat.

So, a few people are doing it, not many. And it’s pretty technical.


(Stephen Blankenship) #12

I’ve actually found that IFTTT is now the best method and requires no violation of TOS.


(Bernd) #13

Hi dear Smart Home Users,

it is possible to control Nest with Amazon Echo and Smart Things.

Maybe you can get help on our smart home plattform. There you can inform you about the compatibility of Amazon Echo with Nest. You can start a discussion about the products with other users and experts plus find out with which products they are compatibel.

https://devicebase.net/en/product/nest-learning-thermostat/854448003075

devicebase enables you to discover connected devices and their compatible products, stay tuned for updates, bugs, and features of your devices and find support in a strong community ranging from beginners to power-users.

Bernd