Nest stopped selling the Nest Protect last month after it learned that the “Nest Wave” feature, which allows a user to silence an alarm with a wave of their hand, could be inadvertently triggered during an actual fire. From the company’s blog at the time of the recall announcement:
At Nest, we conduct regular, rigorous tests to ensure that our products are the highest quality. During recent laboratory testing of the Nest Protect smoke alarm, we observed a unique combination of circumstances that caused us to question whether the Nest Wave (a feature that enables you to turn off your alarm with a wave of the hand) could be unintentionally activated. This could delay an alarm going off if there was a real fire.
Existing Nest Protect owners are urged to perform a software update on their device to disable Nest Wave, limiting the convenience of the product but ensuring proper operation during an emergency.
It appears, however, that Nest was unable to find a complete solution to the issue, as the Nest Protect units slated to return to the retail chain are the same as the initial design, but with the Nest Wave feature disabled at the factory.
Nest worked with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) to recall or update the roughly 440,000 Nest Protects in use. The CPSC’s report on the situation informs customers to connect their existing Nest Protects to their wireless networks and link them to a Nest account. Doing so will automatically deliver the software update the disables the Nest Wave feature.
Nest Protect is the second product to emerge from Nest, the company founded in 2010 by former Apple engineers Tony Fadell and Matt Rogers. The company has also launched two generations of “smart” thermostats that can work together with the Nest Protect to monitor home activity and set appropriate energy-saving temperatures. Prior to the recall, Nest Protect was priced at $129 per unit; we assume that Nest will maintain the same price once the product is back in stores.