A decent home security system is essential, and quality security cameras are the backbone of any security system. Once you've decided to upgrade your home security, your next decision will be your provider.
ecobee and Nest are two great options; ecobee launched in 2007 with the ecobee Smart Thermostat, though they've since expanded into more traditional home security offerings.
Nest was founded in 2010, and the company's flagship product was the Nest Learning Thermostat, which was introduced in 2011. Like ecobee, Nest quickly began offering additional home security equipment. These are similar providers with a similar story; let's take a look at what they offer.
ecobee vs. Nest: What do they have in common?
- Self-installation: You'll need to install your own home security equipment.
- Video doorbells: Doorbell cameras are a great way to monitor your home; ecobee and Nest offer video doorbells.
- Smart thermostats: Nest and ecobee offer some of the best smart thermostats. Smart thermostats with temperature sensors and automatic adjustment represent substantial energy savings.
- Professional monitoring: ecobee and Nest offer professional monitoring - Nest offers third-party monitoring via Brinks, and ecobee offers RapidSOS response for $10 per month.
- Cloud storage: You can store your videos in the cloud.
- HD resolution: You can purchase 1080p HD resolution cameras from each provider.
- Mobile app: You can monitor your system remotely via a handy mobile app. The mobile apps are available on iOS and Android.
- Amazon Alexa: Thanks to built-in Alexa compatibility, you can use voice control for your system.
- Google Assistant: You'll have Google Assistant compatibility with each provider.
ecobee vs Nest: What are the differences?
- Outdoor cameras: Nest offers more outdoor cameras, with weatherproof options to keep your home safe in all weather.
- Night vision: Nest's outdoor cameras offer color night vision.
- Refurbished equipment: ecobee offers refurbished equipment at a discount, and you can purchase a security camera and receive a discount of up to 60% off.
- Discontinued products: Many Nest products have been discontinued, and there are no remote sensors/motion sensors/tags, etc. Some of the best parts of the Google Nest system may not be available anymore.
- Environmental monitors: Nest offers environmental monitors, including smoke alarms and co2 detectors, but no monitoring service is available.
- Cellular backup: Nest offers cellular backup for an additional fee; ecobee doesn't offer cellular backup. Cellular backup keeps you safe in the event of a power cut or connection issue.
- Pricing: ecobee is very competitively priced, but Nest is one of the most expensive DIY systems available. ecobee even offers refurbished equipment to help you save money.
Nest - What you need to know
Nest sent shockwaves through the home security industry after being launched by ex-Google employees. They began by offering the Nest learning thermostat, which promises to reduce your energy usage and spending, before expanding into home security. They provide room sensors, motion sensors, and security cameras.
This system is perfect for DIY installation - you shouldn't require assistance, but the customer support line is responsive. The system is easy to assemble.
Wired installations are more complex but typically manageable, and you may want to consult an air conditioner professional for wired installs. You'll set up your new cameras with the Google Home app. The Google Home App is available on iPhone and Android.
The most affordable package is $399, consisting of the Nest Guard, key fobs, and two entry sensors. Individual add-ons are available and include:
- Indoor and outdoor cameras
- Carbon monoxide sensors
- Smoke detectors
- Yard signs
- Doorbell cameras
- Smart locks
- Smart lights
- Smart thermostat
Your Nest system is compatible with a variety of voice assistants (including Siri & Alexa) plus third-party integrations like Z-wave equipment. In addition, Nest has a decent amount of smart home equipment, including smart sensors, smoke alarms, smart thermostats, etc.
The exact price depends on the gadgets you choose and your video storage. But the basics are:
- Security packages: Cheapest security package is $399
- Basic alarm package with one camera: $598
- Alarm package with smart lock: $633
- Monthly costs: You can purchase flexible monitoring for $29 monthly or $19 a month if you're signing up for a contract.
- Outage Protection: Cellular support is available for $5 per month.
- Customization: You can buy a reasonable base package and add-ons, including smart home gadgets, CO2 detectors, smart thermostats, Nest tags, etc.
- Easy install: Installation is simple - you'll be walked through the process with the Google Home app.
- Price: For a DIY system, the price is pretty high; the extras can mount up quickly if you purchase monitoring, cellular backup, etc.
- Discontinued products: Many products have been discontinued.
ecobee: What you need to know
ecobee is a great provider launched in Canada in 2007 with an excellent smart thermostat; they've since offered security cameras and systems. Let's break down everything ecobee has to offer.
Your installation process varies; the ecobee SmartCamera will require some drilling to mount but can be set up quickly.
You could require a professional for the smart thermostat, as it's a fully wired install. Complete online guides are available, but ecobee doesn't supply skilled tradesmen.
ecobee offers plenty of equipment, including:
- Entry sensors
- Smart cameras with voice control
- Voice-controlled Wi-Fi smart thermostat
- Switch + Smart speaker
- Security kits
The ecobee app is available on iPhone and Android, and ecobee provides various smart home equipment, including smart speakers, thermostats, and more. Third-party integrations include IFTTT (If This Then That) equipment such as Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa.
- Equipment costs: There are security kits, including cameras, for $249, but you can purchase individual cameras for $99. You can save more by buying a refurbished camera. Popular products include the ecobee3 Lite (RRP $149.99) and the ecobee4 (RRP $249.99).
- Monthly costs: You don't have to buy ecobee Haven, but you'll have limited capabilities. ecobee Haven is available for $5 a month, but you can have ecobee haven plus RapidSOS response for $10 a month. Monthly costs are optional - you don't have to purchase ecobee Haven, but you'll have restricted capabilities.
- Refurbished products: ecobee offers approved refurbished products. You can save 60% from your usual cost by purchasing reconditioned ecobee products.
- Professional monitoring: Professional monitoring is available for just $10 a month.
- Warranty: Everything includes a 3-year warranty.
- Voice control: You can use voice commands with Amazon Alexa.
- Installation: You can complete your DIY installation.
- Smart home integration: ecobee compatibility with excellent IFTTT products, including Apple Homekit, and several smart home products, lets you design your smart home ecosystem.
- No environmental sensors: ecobee doesn't offer any environmental monitoring or safety equipment.
- Professional installation: You may require professional installation and assistance, as your smart thermostat must be wired directly into your HVAC system. You'll need an air conditioning professional to complete the installation.
- Cellular backup: Without cellular backup, you're more vulnerable to power cuts and other issues.
ecobee or Nest?
Nest was great while it lasted, but much of its home security equipment has been discontinued. Most Nest Secure equipment continued to receive through the end of 2022, but the future of existing equipment is uncertain. ecobee, on the other hand, is here to stay. Nest offered additional benefits such as away mode, occupancy sensors, and higher quality monitoring via Brinks, but ecobee is still available.
This article has been reviewed and approved by Officer Banta.
Officer Banta is the official SecurityNerd home security and safety expert. A member of the Biloxi Police Department for over 24 years, Officer Banta reviews all articles before lending his stamp of approval. Click here for more information on Officer Banta and the rest of our team.