Honeywell Files a Lawsuit Against Nest Labs

Honeywell says that Nest's new thermostat infringes on a variety of patents.

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Honeywell's Total Connect Comfort Systems.

The Nest learning thermostat has been receiving a lot of good buzz. One company that isn’t so pleased with the company’s success is Honeywell.

Honeywell just announced that they have filed a patent infringement lawsuit against Nest Labs. The suit alleges that the start-up company has infringed on seven Honeywell patents, all related to thermostat technology.

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Filed today in the U.S. District Court in Minnesota, the company also links Best Buy to the lawsuit. Specifically, Honeywell says that Nest is infringing on the following patents:

  • U.S. Patent No. 7,634,504 – “Natural Language Installer Set Up for Controller”

  • U.S. Patent No. 7,142,948 – “Controller Interface with Dynamic Schedule Display”
  • U.S. Patent No. 7,584,899 – “HVAC Controller”
  • U.S. Patent No. 7,159,789 – “Thermostat with Mechanical User Interface”
  • U.S. Patent No. 7,159,790 – “Thermostat with Offset Drive”
  • U.S. Patent No. 7,476,988 – “Power Stealing Control Devices”
  • U.S. Patent No. 6,975,958 – “Profile Based Method for Deriving a Temperature Setpoint Using a ‘Delta’ Based On Cross-Indexing a Received Price-Point Level Signal.”

“Competition is good and we welcome it, but we will not stand by while competitors, large or small, offer products that infringe on our intellectual property,” said Beth Wozniak, president, Honeywell Environmental and Combustion Controls. “From our iconic ’round thermostat’ to the first programmable and simple-to-use touch screen thermostats, Honeywell is known for setting the standard in home comfort and energy efficiency.”

Over the years, Honeywell says it has invested “substantial” resources into the research and development of thermostats. Besides the company’s lengthy product line, Honeywell holds as hundreds of patents in the thermostat space alone.

Honeywell is seeking to recover damages caused by the infringement.

Honeywell recently filed a separate suit against Venstar Inc. and ICM Controls for infringing patents related to thermostat and combustion controls patents.

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