protect Stories January 20, 2014


Late last September it was rumored that a smart smoke/carbon monoxide detector would join the now Google-owned Nest line of smart thermostats and was later announced in early October to a great response.

The Nest Protect, which retails for $129 in both a wired and battery powered variant, intelligently interacts with an iPhone app called Nest Home with warnings about low batteries (if applicable) and when alarms are active or about to be active. It also features a handy dismissal gesture for silencing a screaming alarm.

Some users, however, are reporting a number of unprompted false alarms unrelated to cooking or other reasonable instances. One user even reported the alarm stubbornly going off for 30 minutes in the middle of the night with no sign of smoke and ignoring prompts to dismiss the alarm after an apparent glitch in the device… expand full story

protect Stories November 14, 2013

Nest app update rolling out soon with refreshed interface, Nest Protect compatibility, and more

The Nest Learning Thermostat and its companion iPhone app are receiving up new updates soon, according to a post on the Nest blog. The updated app will get a full makeover, including easier access to certain settings and functions of the Nest thermostat. Also included in the new app is support for the Nest Protect smoke detector.

The app’s new interface will make it easier to check or set the status of your Nest thermostat.

Pretty much everything you need to know is there at first glance:

  • The temperature outdoors, visible on the top left.
  • The weather, now with animated clouds, shimmering blue skies or swirls of snow.
  • A big button that lets you instantly switch between home and away. No more tilting your phone into landscape mode to set Away manually.
  • The temperature you’ve set on your Nest Thermostat. If it’s not currently heating or cooling, the thermostat icon will be black. As heat or AC turns on, it’ll turn orange or blue.
  • An icon representing all the Nest Protects in your home. If everything’s ok, you’ll see a green ring. If you’re getting a Heads-Up or Emergency Alarm, the ring will change color to yellow or red.

The update will also introduce new features for the Nest Protect:

  • Every alarm in your home will be listed by room name, and you’ll be able to quickly scan to see if everything’s ok.
  • You’ll see basic status—green, yellow or red—for both smoke and carbon monoxide.
  • “Last update” indicates the last time your Nest Protect connected to Wi-Fi, reporting the status of its batteries and sensors. Assuming there’s no emergency, this happens every half hour in a wired Nest Protect and, to save power, every 24 hours in a battery-powered Nest Protect. If there’s a Heads-Up or an emergency, Nest Protect immediately connects to Wi-Fi to update its status and send you a message in the app.
  • “Last manual test” refers to the last time you manually tested Nest Protect by pushing the Nest button. We recommend testing monthly—it can be a regular fire drill with your family.
  • “Battery life” just tells you if you have to replace your batteries or not.

Finally, the thermostat itself will be getting a few enhancements via an automatic software update. The new software includes features such as “quiet time” mode, changes to its heating algorithm to help keep energy costs down during the winter, and more.

  • Quiet Time is a brand new 4.0 feature that allows you to set times when noisy stand-alone humidifiers and dehumidifiers won’t turn on, regardless of the humidity. That can keep the house quiet in critical moments, like your kid’s afternoon nap.
  • Heat Pump Balance is getting an upgrade, making Balanced and Comfort settings more efficient and using multiple stages of heat for pre-heating.
  • Your Nest Thermostat is now smarter about when to switch between fuel types in dual-fuel systems in order to better protect your system and provide more consistent heating.
  • Your Nest Protect and Nest Thermostat can now connect to improve the Auto-Away algorithm and shut down your heating system if there’s a CO emergency.

The updated app will be rolling out in the iTunes Store in the next few days. The software update on the thermostat will be applied automatically.

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