Google's Updates To 'Works With Nest' Are About Simplicity

Google's efforts for transitioning the 'Works with Nest' accounts to the Google Assistant platform are all about simplicity, and not just for the users of products that connect to these accounts but also for the developers who are creating these third-party smart home devices.

Unity and simplification are the name of the game here and although Google announced that its Home products would be brought under the Nest banner last week during Google I/O it had yet to offer up a more involved and explanatory statement on what this all means for the user.

Google is setting out to make things more clear on this front. For starters, those with Nest products currently connected to a Works With Nest account won't be losing out on some of the most treasured features.

The triggers for routines based on home or away status that Works With Nest products already support are a good example of this as they will be making the jump over to the Google Assistant platform later this year. Triggers like having your lights turn off automatically when you leave the home, for instance.

In addition to its efforts to migrate the most popular features from one platform to the other, Google wants to ensure that users have as little disruption as possible. While it may eventually require users to migrate everything over to a Google account from a Nest account, in the meantime Google states that existing devices and integrations will continue to work with a Nest account.

However, any new features that are released for the Google accounts on the Works With Google Assistant platform will not be available to those remaining Nest account users, so that in and of itself may be a fairly big incentive to migrate things over as soon as possible.

Aside from making the transition as simple as possible and offering a more unified platform for the smart home ecosystem, Google is ever expanding its efforts to focus on security and privacy for its users.

During last week's announcement Google already mentioned that it would eventually be introducing ways for users to hold more control over their data that's being shared through these devices.

As per this change, users will be able to control which security partners can access which smart home devices that are connected to their Google account, such as viewing smart cameras that are connected on the outside perimeter of the home but perhaps not certain ones on the inside. This will of course be at the users' discretion.

Google for its part will also be enforcing a slightly tighter grip on what data it shares with its security partners as well as how the data it does share can be used by those partners. This will include security audits that partners will be required to go through to offer users a more secure experience in regards to the connected devices that may be set up.

Though there is no information exactly on new features or new custom integrations that users can expect, Google does note that they're coming and that it has plans to deploy some later this year, perhaps before and after the August 31 date of when Works With Nest accounts will stop receiving support.

While not everyone likes change, overall Google's goal here is to bring things under one platform to make things easier for both developers and users and keep things as simple as possible, thus leaving more time for focusing on how to make the platform more useful going forward.

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Justin Diaz

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Justin has written for Android Headlines since 2012 and currently adopts a Games Editor role with a specific focus on mobile gaming and game-streaming services. Prior to the move to Android Headlines Justin spent almost eight years working directly within the wireless industry. Contact him at [email protected]