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New Nest Thermostat Bumps Up Display Size, Adds Furnace Check

Google-owned Nest announced a new version of its smart thermostat on Tuesday with minimal but still welcome changes. The most important is a larger, sharper screen that lets the device be read from across the room — no more getting up to check what the current or desired temperature is. It'll even turn on when you walk in the room and show what it's set at — or, if you prefer, a clock face. The device itself is a bit thinner, too.

Nest

There's also a new furnace-monitoring feature: Nest watches how the furnace shuts down and starts up, and alerts you if there appears to be a problem. No one wants to get stuck with a busted furnace just as winter descends. This feature, while making its debut on this new third-generation Nest, will also come to the earlier versions soon with a software update.

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The new version will, like its predecessor, cost $249. That predecessor, however, will cost $199 until supplies run out, so if you can live without the latest model you can save a bit of cash.