The primary role of a thermostat is to regulate the temperature. But a secondary role, often neglected by manufacturers, is that it should look good while it's sitting on your wall. Just as most families would prefer to hang a painting by Picasso in their living room to that picture of dogs playing poker, most would also rather have an attractive, stylishly designed thermostat sitting next to the television instead of a blocky beige rectangle with an LCD display and a few cryptic-looking switches.
Smart thermostats have gone a long way toward turning a necessity (the control center for your HVAC system) into a work of art. Take a look at the Nest Learning 3rd Generation or the Honeywell Lyric 2nd Generation. Those lovely round shapes clearly have the mark of a talented graphic designer on them. Or look at the Zen Thermostat. As its name implies, it has an effortless yet pleasant simplicity to it, a look that practically cries out, "Who needs a Picasso on the wall when you've got me?"
The Zen is so simple that, on its own, it doesn't really do much. You can change the temperature settings using the touch-screen surface, but you can't program it to change the temperature according to day or hour. For that, you need to connect it to some kind of smarthome control hub, like the Samsung SmartThings or the Swann SwannOne. So your interest in the Zen Thermostat is going to depend primarily on whether you have one of these systems or plan to buy one in the near future. Without a control hub, the Zen is pretty, but it isn't particularly smart. Though if you can find an inexpensive used model, that might be enough to justify the price of an object that will look quite good hanging on your living room wall.
This is a great thermostat! After testing multiple thermostats with my SmartThings hub, this is definitely my favorite!
Really an amazing product. Syncs perfectly with SmartThings and through SmartThings its controllable with Amazon Echo.