When the Nest came out in 2011, smart thermostats were something to get excited about. Now it's hard to remember why. Sure, it's great to be able to control your home temperature over the Internet via your smartphone and colorful touch displays are a lot more interesting to look at than the dials on those old Honeywell models that now look like something out of the last century. (In fact, they were something out of the last century.)
After a while it begins to feel like you could write reviews of smart thermostats by creating a template and filling in a few blanks for each new model of thermostat. You might not even need the blanks. Color touch screen with attractive display? Check. Day-by-day and hour-by-hour temperature programming? Check. The major variable now is the degree to which the thermostat learns as it goes. Does it notice what temperatures you set and then set them for you next time? Can it tell where you are in the house (or even outside the house) and set the temperature accordingly? Can it save electricity and environmental resources by optimizing the time at which it raises and lowers the temperature?
The Venstar T7850 isn't the most intelligent smart gadget on the market. Yes, it has the pretty touchscreen display and it lets you set temperature changes in advance. And you can program it from your smartphone. It does have an interesting feature exclusive to the Venstar line, access to Venstar's Skyport Support Services, which allow you to access a variety of different thermostats at a wide range of locations. But the Venstart doesn't learn as you go or figure out what you want before you tell it. For that you'll need something like the Nest Learning Thermostat or the Ecobee3.
But it does have a pretty display.
Worked perfectly as advertised. It's really handy to check the temperature of a home 200 miles away and know the furnace is working.
This is an excellent wifi thermostat, I love the touch screen full keyboard and full screen instructions. Much easier to program than my previous Nest plus.
Installed it myself...I already had an online account and the app installed on my phone, so changing to the new thermostat was also easy.
Features up to four heating and two cooling stages...It works with gas, electric or heat pumps and is also dual fuel capable.