June 3, 2023

Great Indian Mutiny

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Google announces the end of Dropcam, Nest Secure, and Works with Nest support plans

Google ends support for Dropcam and the Nest Secure home security system within one year, on April 8th, 2024. It is among the few remaining Nest products that are not brought to Google Home, and its demise also indicates that the new Google Home app may be barely be here. At least, not more than a year left. certainly.

Google is also winding down the last few old Works with Nest connections, but not until September 29th.

good looking.
Image: The Verge

Dropcam had a good run

Existing Dropcam cameras will continue to work until April 8, 2024, after which you will no longer be able to access them from the Nest app. To soften the blow, Google is offering a free wired indoor Nest Cam to Dropcam owners who subscribe to Nest Aware. Non-subscribers will receive a coupon for 50 percent off. The promotion runs through May 7, 2024, so you can keep using your Dropcam until it stops working.

Dropcam (fka Dropcam HD) came out in 2012, and Dropcam Pro in 2013. Then Google bought Nest, and Nest bought Dropcam. In 2015 Google surrounded Nest when it formed Alphabet, and for a while, Google and Nest were both of them Making smart home products. Then Google reaccommodated Nest in 2018, and there was a lot of messy business trying to integrate Nest products into the Google Home app — and killing the ones that couldn’t be integrated.

The list of “can’t be combined” included the Nest x Yale door lock and Nest Guard sensors, which Google dropped last year. Now that the Dropcam and Nest Secure have been dropped, Nest Protect smart smoke alarms are the only Nest app-only devices left, and Google promises to bring them to the new Google Home app. The updated app has been in public preview since October, and there’s still no exact date, but it must be getting close, right?

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Presumably there are people who have bought Definitely the first Dropcam back in 2010 and replaced it with a free Dropcam HD in 2015 who will now be trading that in Nest Cam. This is kind of neat from a customer service standpoint but not so great from an e-waste standpoint (though Google will ship you a prepaid recycling bin if you ask.)

Nest Secure, we hardly know you

Nest Secure was…a less auspicious and less graceful round. It was launched in 2017 and was canceled three years later, right after Google invested a bunch of money in ADT. Like Dropcam, it will continue to work until April 8th, 2024, but Google will definitely want you to upgrade before then. Google’s statement says,

We’ll be contacting eligible Nest Secure customers on Friday with an exclusive offer for a free next-generation security system from ADT (up to $485 worth), or $200 to use on the Google Store.

This would be the ADT Self Setup system Google announced last week, complete with an ADT smart home hub, two door/window sensors, a motion sensor, and a year of free monitoring. This promotion also runs through May 7, 2024. While it’s better than just a kick in the pants, I’m not sure people who bought Nest Secure are excited to be back in the arms of a traditional security company. (They might change! Google’s statement says you can cancel the $20 per month monitoring fee for the self-setting system at any time.) The ADT system has the advantage of working with Google Home, which is the whole point here.

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Doesn’t work with Nest

Google Sorta shut down Works With Nest back in 2019 in favor of Works With Google Assistant, but it’s allowed existing connections to slip away. That door officially closes on September 29, 2023. Rochi Desai, group product manager at Google Nest told the edgeAll WWN connections will be affected: eg legacy Alexa skill, legacy Google Assistant integration, all legacy Nest integrations with 3P partners (IFTTT, Lutron, etc.), individual developers who use the WWN platform in their solutions.

Most of the old Works with Nest integrations have already been replaced by ones with the Google Assistant, but not all — there doesn’t seem to be an existing Alexa skill, and not all features IFTTT integration It appears to be available for replacement. Google says the web script editor it teased in October should fill in some remaining gaps. It hasn’t been published yet — Google will just tell me “launching in 2023” — so it remains to be seen if any features will be lost in translation.

A less messy home, finally

Google previously committed to supporting Nest products for at least five years, has met this criterion. If you’ve been holding Dropcam for over a decade, it’s hard to say you didn’t get your money’s worth, I guess. And The new one is much better. Although, on the other hand, if the devices are still working, why not Memorizes a job?

If I were a Nest Secure owner, I would be mad! Nobody wants to buy a new security system never If they don’t have to, and having to get a new one from the ADT seems like the salt in a wound, even if it’s been for a year.

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It’s pretty cool that the Nest and Google Home systems are finally almost integrated. I’m sure the headwind was great! I’m looking forward to the new Google Home app when it gets here. Now if only they did something about that Nest Hub Max interface…