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Nest Learning Thermostat vs. Ecobee SmartThermostat with Voice Control

Nest or Ecobee? Which smart thermostat is right for you?

Megan Wollerton Former Senior Writer/Editor
3 min read
$199 at Amazon
Nest Learning Thermostat


  • The $249 Nest Learning Thermostat has a larger display, a better resolution and a far-field sensor for viewing time and temperature information from a distance
  • It works with Google Assistant and Alexa -- and Nest *finally* sells a temperature sensor as an optional accessory.

Don't like

  • The Nest Learning Thermostat isn't compatible with Apple HomeKit.
$249 at Ecobee
Ecobee SmartThermostat with Voice Control


  • The Ecobee SmartThermostat adds features to its built-in Alexa speaker
  • It has a redesigned temperature sensor and works with Google Assistant and Siri -- all for the same $249 price.

Don't like

  • Depending on where your thermostat is located in your home, it might not be in an ideal place for an Alexa speaker.

The Nest Learning Thermostat and the Ecobee SmartThermostat with Voice Control share a lot of features and functionality. Both smart thermostats cost $249, both work with voice assistants and both are compatible with remote sensors. But there's also a lot that separates these two competing models. Below we'll compare the Nest and Ecobee smart thermostats so you can decide which one is right for you.

Read more: The best smart thermostats


The Learning Thermostat is Nest's inaugural product, first released in 2011. Nest has added additional Nest thermostats, security devices, smart speakers, smart displays and more over the past decade. But the $249 Learning Thermostat that helped launch the brand's initial success is still sold today as an updated, third-gen model

The Learning Thermostat has a sturdy metal dial you turn to change the temperature and make other settings adjustments. The dial is sold in seven color finishes, including stainless steel, mirror black, polished steel, brass, white, black and copper. Your purchase includes a trim kit, which you can use to cover old paint or holes -- or you can install the thermostat without it.  

The Learning Thermostat is compatible with the Nest app and the Google Home app and supports Alexa and Google Assistant voice commands. The thermostat has a proximity sensor to determine if you're home or not, as well as a learning algorithm that gets to know your schedule over time and adjusts your heat and air conditioning for you. 

This model works with Nest's remote temperature sensor, available for $39 each or in a three-pack for $117. 

Read CNET's review of the Nest Learning Thermostat..

Chris Monroe/CNET

Like the Nest Learning Thermostat, the Ecobee SmartThermostat with Voice Control costs $249 and comes with a trim kit to cover any old paint or holes. But instead of the Nest's turn dial design, this model has a touch display. Just tap the screen to change the temperature and other settings.

The thermostat also works with the Ecobee app and has a built-in Alexa speaker, supports Spotify and can connect to Bluetooth speakers. 

The Ecobee SmartThermostat with Voice Control supports Google Assistant and Siri voice commands, but you'll need a separate Google Nest or Apple smart speaker. This model has an integrated occupancy sensor. The occupancy sensor adjusts the thermostat's home and away modes automatically based on whether you're home or away. 

The thermostat also comes with a remote sensor. The sensor has an occupancy sensor, as well as a temperature sensor. Place the remote sensor in a room that runs warmer or cooler than the rest of your house and use it as the default ambient temperature for your house instead of the temperature where your thermostat is located. 

Extra remote sensors are sold in an $80 two-pack

Read CNET's review of the Ecobee SmartThermostat with Voice Control..

Nest or Ecobee?

If you're searching for a premium smart thermostat, both the Nest Learning Thermostat and the Ecobee SmartThermostat with Voice Control should be in the running. The Nest Learning Thermostat has a more sophisticated design, including seven color finishes to choose from. 

The Ecobee SmartThermostat with Voice Control has more features and accessories. It has a built-in Alexa speaker and comes with a remote sensor (instead of having to buy it separately). In addition to its integrated Alexa speaker, the Ecobee model also works with Google Assistant and Siri. The Nest Learning Thermostat only works with Alexa and Google Assistant and doesn't have a dedicated built-in smart speaker like the Ecobee thermostat. 

The Ecobee SmartThermostat with Voice Control has an edge over the Nest Learning Thermostat due to its many included options. But you should always consider your home's heating and cooling priorities and go from there. Would you actually use the Ecobee's built-in Alexa speaker based on the location of your thermostat? Are you more interested in coordinating your thermostat to your home decor? The design-forward Nest Learning Thermostat might be a better option for you. 

Want to learn even more about Nest and Ecobee thermostats? Check out this comparison of the Nest Learning Thermostat and the Nest Thermostat and this one comparing the Ecobee SmartThermostat with Voice Control to the Ecobee3 Lite

Read more: How the Nest Learning Thermostat started a design revolution

Watch this: Ecobee's new thermostat is part Alexa speaker