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Nest Acquires Home Automation Hub Revolv, but Will Stop Selling It

Whether or not people are buying smart-home hubs, there seems to be a market for the companies.

Vjeran Pavic

Nest today said it had acquired Revolv, the smart-home automation device maker, for its developer platform.

The deal closed this morning with undisclosed terms. It wasn’t about adding the Revolv home automation hub to the Nest shelf — as Nest did with its $555 million Dropcam buy in June. Instead, this acquisition seems to be primarily based on the Revolv team’s expertise in home wireless communications. Nest itself was bought by Google for $3.2 billion earlier this year.

The $300 Revolv home automation hub will no longer be available for sale, Nest said. It was an expensive option (though well-functioning, according to our reviewer Lauren Goode) that doesn’t seem to have sold very well, if you look at the small numbers of downloads and reviews for its companion apps.

But while smart-home hubs may not yet be taking off, there does seem to be a market for these companies. Revolv competitor SmartThings was just bought by Samsung for $200 million.

Here’s how Nest co-founder and VP of engineering Matt Rogers put it in a phone interview today. “We are not fans of yet another hub that people should have to worry about. It’s a great team, an unbelievable team. There’s a certain amount of expertise in home wireless communications that doesn’t exist outside of these 10 people in the world.”

Boulder-based Revolv, formerly known as Mobiplug, was a graduate of the TechStars startup program and was backed by Foundry Group. Members of the Revolv team, including co-founder Haley Taylor, had previously worked at Ember, the seminal wireless networking company.

Revolv was one of the first partners for Nest’s “Works With Nest” program. Five other partners are being announced today: Ivee, Life360, Pebble, SNUPI Technologies and Rachio.

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