Tony Fadell may be the father of the iPod, but you will no longer find his latest brainchild in the Apple store. Apple has removed the connected thermostat from Nest, which Google acquired last year, from its online and retail stores.
The ouster comes as a new generation of devices that take advantage of Apple’s HomeKit home automation technology reach store shelves. Among these HomeKit-compatible products is the Ecobee 3, a wireless thermostat from a Toronto company that went on sale in U.S. stores this month and competes with Nest.
Apple declined to comment on the decision, beyond noting that it constantly changes its retail merchandise mix.
Nest’s two other products — the Protect smoke detector and security camera, which launched last month — also disappeared from Apple’s shelves. But only for the time being, according to Nest. A spokeswoman issued a statement calling Apple a “valued partner” and saying those products “will be available through Apple and other retail channels in the coming weeks.” Negotiations with Apple around the thermostat, Nest’s flagship product, are ongoing, according to a source familiar with the conversations.
This wouldn’t be the first time Apple swept competing products from its store shelves as it prepared to launch its own brand of products. The company removed rival fitness bandsfrom its retail stores this spring as Apple prepared to ship its own wearable, the Apple Watch.
Apple also booted Bose headphones from its stores last fall, before the start of the holiday season. The decision came within weeks of Apple and Bose settling a suit brought by the Framingham, Mass., company, which had accused Apple-owned Beats headphones of infringing on its patents for noise-canceling technology.
Apple acquired Beats last year for $3 billion.