Internet search engine and software company Google Inc. is buying “smart” thermostat maker Nest Labs Inc. for $3.2 billion, the company announced Jan. 13.

The cash deal will mark Google’s foray into the growing HVAC market for Internet-connected devices for the home.

 “Nest’s founders, Tony Fadell and Matt Rogers, have built a tremendous team that we are excited to welcome into the Google family,” said Larry Page, Google’s chief executive officer. “They’re already delivering amazing products you can buy right now — thermostats that save energy and smoke/CO (carbon monoxide) alarms that can help keep your family safe. We are excited to bring great experiences to more homes in more countries and fulfill their dreams.”

Nest will continue to be run by Fadell and will operate as its own brand, Google said.

 “We’re thrilled to join Google,” Fadell said. “With their support, Nest will be even better placed to build simple, thoughtful devices that make life easier at home, and that have a positive impact on the world.”

Nest’s Learning Thermostat, which debuted in 2011, features remote control and automatically figures out homeowners’ preferred temperature settings. It has won several design awards.