Update: May 16, 2019 at 10:52 a.m. ET: Google has now issued a new blog post that offers more clarification on its plans to shut down the Works With Nest program. If you have third-party devices that connect to Nest products via Works With Nest, fear not: Google says those connections will continue to work after August 31. However, it will not accept new Works with Nest connections after that date.
Users with current Nest accounts will be informed if there will be any changes to their Works with Nest connections. At some point, Nest accounts will be asked to migrate to Google accounts once the new Works with Google Assistant platform is up and running. There’s no word yet on when that might happen. Google says that the Assistant program will be able to support the Works with Nest Home/Away features later in 2019. That means your smart bulb will still automatically turn itself off when you leave your house. Google also says it is working with Amazon to add the Alexa skill that lets users control Nest thermostats and cameras to Works with Google Assistant.
Original article: May 8, 2019 5:22 p.m. ET: While Google is rebranding its Home smart speakers under its Nest name, the company is also shutting down another Nest-related endeavor. As part of the Google I/O 2019 conference, the company stated it will discontinue its Works with Nest program. Google launched Works with Nest in 2014 Google as a developer program. It allowed third-party apps and hardware devices to connect to its Nest products, including its smart thermostats, cameras and more. For example, a fitness tracker could communicate with a Nest thermostat to raise the temperature in your home when you wake up in the morning.
However, as first reported by Variety, the program will be closed later this summer in favor of a new effort called Works with Google Assistant. A follow-up article on Engadget indicates that Works with Nest program will close on August 31.
Google vice president Rishi Chandra told Variety the Works with Google Assistant program will be more restrictive than Works with Nest, to offer more privacy and security for customers. He stated that those customers should be clear on how products that link with Nest devices collect and share data. The new Google Assistant program will only be used by a very small number of third-party products, and Google plans to extensively screen the companies that will share data with its devices.
One big consequence of the shutdown of Works for Nest is that products that use the IF This Then That (IFTTT) automation protocol to link with Nest products will no longer work. Once again, this is due to security concerns with using IFTTT. In March, Google announced it was shutting down many IFTTT functions in Gmail for those same reasons.