Luxury learning

Nest Learning Thermostat

Learning for less

Nest Thermostat E

The Nest Learning Thermostat learns your behavior and temperature preferences, creating an automatic schedule. It's also compatible with the vast majority of HVAC systems, works with voice assistants, and made of premium materials. But compared to the Thermostat E, you're not getting a lot more for the extra money.

$189 at Amazon


  • Learns your behavior, creating automatic heating and cooling schedule
  • Farsight technology automatically lights the display when it detects you in the room
  • Compatible with 95% of HVAC systems
  • Works with Amazon Alexa
  • Works with Google Assistant
  • Made from premium materials
  • Multiple color options


  • Notably more expensive than the Thermostat E

The Nest Thermostat E, like its more expensive sibling, learns as you use it, creating an automatic schedule for heating and cooling. It also works with voice assistants, and features most of the same sensors as the Nest Learning Thermostat, missing only those needed for Farsight. It's missing the metal casing and color options, but the real downside is that it's not compatible with quite as many HVAC systems as the Learning Thermostat.

$169 at Best Buy


  • Learns your behavior, creating automatic heating and cooling schedule
  • Works with Amazon Alexa
  • Works with Google Assistant
  • Cheaper than the Learnings Thermostat with most of the same features
  • Will work with "most" heating and cooling setups


  • No color options
  • Compatible with 85% of HVAC systems

While the Nest Learning Thermostat does have a few advantages over the cheaper Thermostat E, for most people, the Thermostat E is likely the right choice. As with anything you're going to wire directly into your home, you'll want to check the compatibility of both thermostats to make sure they'll work with your heating and cooling system.

Break it down now...

In many ways, some would say the most important ways, the Nest Learning Thermostat, and the Nest Thermostat E are the same thermostat. All things being equal (they both work with your HVAC system, you like the style of either), the most significant difference between the two is the price. The Nest Thermostat E launched for $70 less than the base price of the Learning Thermostat while delivering most of the same features, and as time has passed and sales come and gone, that gap is often much wider.

Honestly, the single most significant advantage that the Nest Learning Thermostat has over the Thermostat E is HVAC system compatibility. Spending less money on the Thermostat E won't do you any good if it doesn't work with your system, so you should check compatibility beforehand. But there's a good chance that both thermostats will be compatible, and unless you need Farsight, which lights up the Nest Learning Thermostat's display to show you information when the thermostat detects that you're nearby, I'd be hard-pressed to recommend the Learning Thermostat over the Thermostat E.

Nest Learning Thermostat Nest Thermostat E
Power Wired or Battery Wired or Battery
Wi-Fi Yes Yes
Warranty (years) 2 1
iOS App Yes Yes
Android App Yes Yes
Web Access Yes Yes
Humidity sensor Yes Yes
Accessory control Yes Yes
Annual fees No No
Remote sensors Yes (Sense temperature) Yes (Sense temperature)
Learns habits over time Yes Yes
Works with Amazon Alexa Yes Yes
Google Assistant support Yes Yes
HomeKit-enabled No No
Amazon Alexa built-in No No

Given the similarities, unless you absolutely need Farsight or a thermostat with a metal casing, and assuming that it's compatible with your HVAC system, get the Thermostat E. It's less expensive while providing most of the same features as the Learning Thermostat. And honestly, it'll likely blend into the rest of your home better, assuming that's something you want.

If you really like the styling and color options available for the Learning Thermostat, or the Thermostat E doesn't work with your system, then, by all means, get the Learning Thermostat. But unless you need to take advantage of one of the capabilities that it possesses and the Thermostat E doesn't pick up the Thermostat E.

Luxury learning

Nest Learning Thermostat

A great smart thermostat held back by its price.

The Nest Learning Thermostat is a great thermostat that will learn about your heating and cooling needs as you use it. But it's also pricing compared to the similarly-capable Thermostat E.

Learning for less

Nest Thermostat E

Almost as good for a lot less.

The Nest Thermostat E doesn't have every bell or whistle of the Learning Thermostat, but it has most of them, and at a much lower price. It would be nice if it had the same compatibility as the Learning Thermostat and more color options.

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