Google Nest device owners will need to pay an extra $20 to access advanced features and longer footage history for their security cameras and doorbells. Subscribers in the US have received notifications from Google stating that the standard Nest Aware subscription now costs $8 per month or $80 per year, up from $6 per month or $60 per year.
Nest Aware: Elevating Home Security
Nest Aware is a subscription service that enhances the capabilities of Nest’s smart home devices, particularly its security cameras and doorbells. Some of its key features include:
- 24/7 Recording: Nest Aware ensures continuous recording, capturing every moment around your home, providing invaluable footage in case of incidents.
- Intelligent Alerts: It distinguishes between general motion and significant events, reducing false alerts and keeping you informed about what matters most.
- Familiar Face Detection: Recognizes familiar faces, like family members or friends, and provides customized notifications.
- Emergency Calling: Connects your Nest devices to emergency services in case of an emergency, providing an extra layer of safety.
Previously, users had to purchase a separate subscription for each camera, but in 2019, Google introduced whole-home Nest Aware subscription plans. This plan provides users with intelligent motion detection, including alerts for activities like dog barking and person speaking. It also offers 30 days of video history with recorded events. Without a subscription, users can only access up to three hours of saved recordings on their devices.
There is a higher tier subscription called Nest Aware Plus, which now costs $15 per month or $150 per year. This tier includes all the features of the basic plan, as well as 10 days of continuous video history and 60 days of video history with recorded events.
The Price Hike: Understanding Google’s Decision
Google has explained that the price increases are necessary to keep up with market shifts, including inflation and tax updates. The new prices are already in effect for new subscribers, while existing members can expect to pay more on their next bill starting from November 6. Google will also provide 30 days’ notice to members outside of the US before implementing any price changes, suggesting that the price hike may extend to other regions. While this change might feel like an extra expense, several factors likely contributed to this decision:
- Enhanced Features: Google has been continually improving Nest Aware, adding features and capabilities that enhance home security. The price hike may reflect the increased value this service now offers.
- Investment in Security: Google is investing in enhancing the security and privacy of its smart home ecosystem. This includes more robust data encryption and protection measures.
- Service Expansion: As the Nest ecosystem grows with new devices and services, maintaining and improving the quality of services may require additional resources.
- Market Dynamics: The smart home market is competitive, and providers must balance the cost of service with the quality they deliver.
What It Means for Users: Weighing the Value
For existing and potential Nest Aware subscribers, the price hike prompts a consideration of the service’s value:
- Enhanced Security: Nest Aware continues to provide enhanced security features that can be invaluable in safeguarding your home and loved ones.
- Peace of Mind: Continuous recording and intelligent alerts offer peace of mind, allowing you to stay informed about what happens around your property.
- Ecosystem Integration: If you have other Nest devices, the subscription integrates seamlessly, enhancing the overall performance of your smart home.
- Privacy and Data Protection: Google is committed to strengthening privacy and data protection measures, addressing concerns that have arisen in the past.