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Nest Protect Wants to Monitor Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Levels in Your House, Not Annoy You Either

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As you guys are fully aware, I’m a big fan of the Nest Learning Thermostat. In fact, I reviewed it randomly back in April and am still fully engulfed in all things Nest to this day. It continues to be my favorite Android accessory, as it allows me to save money (though I’m not sure how much just yet) on heating bills while also giving me the ability to remotely control the temperature of my house from anywhere in the world (including the couch or on a cold Saturday morning in bed). It’s also not bad looking. Actually, it’s an incredibly well-designed piece of home technology. I can’t recommend it enough.

So today, the folks at Nest announced their newest product called Nest Protect. Nest Protect is their take on a smoke alarm and carbon monoxide monitor that looks as pretty as their thermostat and can be controlled via Android (or iOS) app, yet introduces a new take on how your home should be protected. 

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Most importantly, the Nest Protect is a multi-criteria detector with heat, CO, and smoke sensors, (photoelectric smoke sensor, CO sensor, heat sensor, light sensor, ultrasonic sensors and activity sensor to be exact) so you aren’t getting a low-end detector here. But where it takes home protection out of the box is how it alarms you. Rather than chirping with low batteries or falsely activating at 4AM on a Tuesday night, it notifies you via app or with a subtle early warning of potential danger. Should an alarm actually sound off, you can silence it with a simple wave of your hand in front of it. That means no more opening of windows and running wild through your house with towels while the headache from the smoke alarm only grows deeper.

It can act as a night light, by activating a gentle light as you walk underneath it. You’ll see a green glow as you turn out the lights to let you know that your batteries will last you through the night or red in case you need to change it for more peaceful sleep. You can even set it to use vocal alarms, since kids have been known to sleep through beeping alarms.

And if you already own a Nest thermostat, the new Nest Protect works perfectly with it. Should a carbon monoxide alarm go off, your Nest thermostat automatically turns off your gas furnace, as they tend to be possible sources of poisonous carbon monoxide leaks.

Overall, it sounds like another amazing product from Nest. With that said, each unit will run you $129, so assuming you have more than one or two rooms in your house, you may be looking at quite the substantial bill to outfit them all.

The Nest Protect will be available in November in both black and white.

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Nest Protect: The Smoke + Carbon Monoxide Alarm Reinvented

Safety Shouldn’t Be Annoying, Nest Protect Addresses Nuisance Alarms and
Low-Battery Chirps to Help Keep Families Safe

Nest Labs Expands to the United Kingdom

Palo Alto, California — October 8, 2013 — Nest Labs, Inc. (www.nest.com) announced today breakthrough innovation that redefines what people should expect from their smoke and carbon monoxide (CO) alarms. These products should keep us safe, not annoy us. Nest Protect: Smoke + Carbon Monoxide™ does much more than just sound a shrill alarm when there’s danger in your home. It speaks to you, telling you where the danger is and what the problem is. And before it sounds a piercing alarm, Nest Protect gives you a friendly Heads-Up warning that you can silence with a wave of your hand – no more swinging towels or brooms to try to quiet a false alarm. It integrates with your mobile devices and even messages you if the batteries run low, avoiding that all-too-familiar midnight low-battery chirp.

“With our first product, the Nest Learning Thermostat, we set out to help people reduce home energy use,” said Tony Fadell, Nest founder and chief executive officer. “Now, we’re turning our attention to something that’s also important: keeping families safe in their homes. We’ve all experienced the smoke alarm going off while we’re cooking or searched for the source of that incessant low-battery chirp in the middle of the night. Every time a smoke alarm cries wolf, we trust it a little less, and then – in a moment of frustration – we rip the batteries out to stop the beeping. And that leaves us and our families at risk.”

According to a study by the National Fire Protection Agency of smoke alarms that failed to activate during home fires, 73 percent of them had dead, missing or disconnected batteries. Nuisance alarms were the leading reason for disconnected smoke alarms.

“Safety shouldn’t be annoying,” said Matt Rogers, Nest founder and vice president of engineering. “It was unacceptable to us that almost two-thirds of home fire deaths resulted from fires in properties without working smoke alarms. These products are required by law and are supposed to keep us safe, yet people hate them. We wanted to change that, so we created Nest Protect: Smoke + Carbon Monoxide.”

Product Features

  • High-quality smoke and carbon monoxide alarm. Nest Protect is a multi-criteria detector with heat, CO, and smoke sensors that work together to detect danger.
  • Heads-Up. If Nest Protect sees that smoke or CO levels are rising but have not yet reached emergency alarm levels, it will give you an early warning so it can avoid crying wolf.
  • Nest Wave. No need to wave towels or climb on chairs. Nest Protect lets you silence nuisance alarms with a wave of your hand.
  • Mobile notifications. Connect Nest Protect to your free Nest account using Wi-Fi and you can receive low-battery alerts, Heads Up and emergency alarm notifications on your smartphone or tablet. In an emergency, the What to Do feature will remind you of recommended actions and give you one-button access to an emergency phone number.
  • Nightly Promise. Sleep safe and sound. Before you doze off, Nest Protect shows you its sensors and batteries are working with a quick green glow after you turn off the lights so low-battery chirps don’t rattle your dreams.
  • Pathlight. Nest Protect offers more than just smoke and CO warnings. Its LED lights can be a night light in your home. When it’s dark, Nest Protect will light your way as you walk underneath it.
  • Vocal alarms. According to a study by Victoria University, children can sleep through beeping smoke alarms. So in addition to alarm sounds, Nest Protect uses female Voice Alarms to help wake sleeping children in case of emergency.
  • More sensors, more features. Nest Protect’s sensors include a photoelectric smoke sensor, CO sensor, heat sensor, light sensor, ultrasonic sensors and activity sensor. Together, they analyze smoke and CO levels, see when you wave, and light your way at night.
  • Wireless interconnect. If you have more than one Nest Protect, they connect so you’ll hear alarms from all Nest Protects in your home, even if the danger is in only one room.
  • Design. Nest Protect introduces a distinctive square shape with a white sunflower pattern. A black version will be available only atwww.nest.com.
  • Multiple languages. In the U.S., Nest Protect offers voice alerts in both English and Spanish. Simply select your preferred language during setup.

Better Together


For families that have both the Nest Learning Thermostat and Nest Protect, a free Nest user account allows the products to work together. If Nest Protect’s carbon monoxide alarm goes off, your Nest thermostat automatically turns off your gas furnace, a possible source of poisonous carbon monoxide leaks. In addition, the Nest Protect activity sensors improve the Auto-Away feature of your Nest thermostat.

New Nest App

The Nest app on iOS, Android and the Web can be used to set up, control, and get alerts for both Nest Protect and the Nest Learning Thermostat. Available in English, Spanish and French, the Nest app will be updated with a new design and new features when Nest Protect ships.

Pricing and Availability

Nest Protect: Smoke + Carbon Monoxide is expected to be on sale in November at Amazon, Apple, Best Buy and The Home Depot for a suggested retail price of $129.00 (U.S.). It will be available in two versions – wired (120V) and battery-powered – and in two colors: white and black. To be first to experience the benefits of Nest Protect, go to www.nest.com to reserve yours today. Independent testing to demonstrate compliance with U.S., Canadian, and European smoke and CO standards is underway at leading test agencies. A version of Nest Protect that will be compatible with wired security systems is expected to be available in early 2014. Nest Protect will also be available in Canada and the U.K.

About Nest

Nest reinvents unloved but important home products, like the thermostat and smoke alarm. The company focuses on delighting customers with simple, beautiful and thoughtful hardware, software and services. The Nest Learning Thermostat™ and Nest Energy Services offerings address home energy consumption, and Nest Protect: Smoke + Carbon Monoxide™ will help keep people safe. Nest products are sold in the U.S., U.K. and Canada, and are installed in more than 90 countries and the Nest Learning Thermostat has helped save more than 1,000,000,000 kWh of energy to date. Nest is privately funded and based in Palo Alto, Calif. For more information, visit www.nest.com.

  • shay

    getting alert in time make all the different saving lives, if you have kids at home, we should give another thought.
    link here http://www.squidoo.com/dose-nest-save-money

  • shay

    getting alert in time make all the different saving lives, if you have kids at home, we should give another thought.
    link here

  • Francois

    I really do like the design of the nest, but there’s better options in the market at the moment in my opinion for thermostat and smoke and CO detector.
    Keep in mind that smoke detectors should be high, if possible on the ceiling and CO detectors not higher than 12″ from the floor, so this nest makes no sense.

  • S.Ober

    I have an Ecobee, its more like the android of thermostats compared to the nest is the iphone

  • radioactive2008

    $50 more than the best one. Not sure why all the bashing on the price. Nest has more features than the best out there which is going for $80.

    http://www.homesafetystore.com/store/product.aspx/productId/11041/First-Alert-Onelink-Wireless-Combination-Smoke-Carbon-Monoxide-Alarm-with-Voice-Location-Feature/?gclid=CIXhu72Ci7oCFbBDMgodCTUAPg

  • rdrizzle

    I love my Nest Thermostat and it has saved me quite a bit of money this year during the summer. The Nest Protect doesn’t have a $$ saving feature but it does seem to add life saving features that I like. Knowing where in the house there is smoke as opposed to just a loud screech from somewhere being one; turning off the furnace if there is CO, etc. I pre-ordered one and if it is as awesome as I expect, I will be getting 7 more. No price is too high for my family’s well being.

  • SA_NYC

    Nice device. For my rented three-room apartment, I would definitely go for three of these, would be worth $400 to me. I get small CO leaks from time to time, which my current detectors sometimes pick up, but those old-style detectors never exactly fill me with confidence. Being able to communicate with the thing would somehow make me feel better that they were actually working.

  • ooja3k

    Doesn’t heat (smoke) rise and CO sink??? That’s why CO alarms are supposed to be installed 36″ off the floor at the most and fire alarms on the ceiling?

    • Jack3D

      Yep, but the CO detector is able to detect lesser amounts than dangerous levels, so as soon as the CO in the air (even at ceiling height) gets above a trigger limit it will set off the alarm.

      Don’t ask what happens if you have really high ceilings…

    • WAldenIV

      No, carbon monoxide is slightly less dense than air. I think the detectors are installed at lower heights because older houses are heated with floor grates, the likely source of a CO leak.

  • http://www.youtube.com/lordstickmax LordStickMax

    looks great….just not $129 cool. especially if they want me to put one in every room of my house.

  • James Briano

    I’ve been hankering for a smoke detector with a massive logo.

    • Melissa Ja

      Who cares?

      • James Briano

        Me. That’s why I commented.

        Why did you comment?

  • Brad Truelove

    Not one of you drooled over the fact that it has a built in night light to prevent you from smashing your big toe on the door jamb. That is worth the $130 by itself… lol

    • http://www.youtube.com/user/nemesis099 Nemesis099

      Um I found nightlights do this for a fraction of the cost. They even have some that are LED and use almost no electricity.

      • Brad Truelove

        But with this I can use my phone to turn the night light off when my wife attempts to navigate back to bed from a middle of the night bathroom visit…

  • Jeff Mowbray

    I’ve had my second generation Nest for around a year and absolutely love it. I will try this product out but probably only get on. I think the night light feature is really awesome

    • Cowboydroid

      Does the second gen Nest dial turn with a physical click, or is it just audible like the first gen? I found this to be highly irritating on the first gen. I much prefer a physical click to change the temp or settings than an audible one where the precision is basically just a guess.

      • Jeff Mowbray

        You can go into settings and turn off the audible click if you don’t like it.

        • Cowboydroid

          It’s not the audible click that I find irritating. It’s the lack of haptic feedback. Turning the dial is like playing a guessing game as to wear the selection will land without any physical feedback.

          • Jeff Mowbray

            You are correct, there is no hepatic feedback on the nest 2. I understand your frustration there. Overall I love the product though and rarely use the thermostat itself. If I change the temp it’s only with my tablet or phone. That’s the beauty of the product.

  • akhnaten

    This would be a lot cooler if it would act as a remote temperature and humidity sensor for the Nest thermostat as well.

    • Royal2000H

      Was going to post exactly this! The hallway temperature is always different than the bedrooms. If we could just have a sensor in one of the bedrooms, that would be great.

  • Haroon Dar

    does anyone realize that after seven years these nest protectors have to be replaced because the components have a seven year life span

    http://venturebeat.com/2013/10/08/this-is-what-happens-when-your-129-nest-protect-expires-after-7-years/

    • umbrellacorp

      I did not know that but thank you for sharing as it influences my purchase decision. Is it one of those warranty situations where they are CYA and it will last much longer or is it just seven years and they all kill themselves via poor manufacturing? Sounds just like the incremental design (failure) of all i products. 2010 specs in a 2013 phone!

    • ooja3k

      This should have no bearing on anyone’s decision making process.

      If you are looking at this website, you are likely a tech forward person, always looking for the best, newest, hottest gadget. In my opinion you have a better chance of buying the Gen 2 Protect than waiting for seven years to be up on your first. How many of us have 7 year old wireless technology in our home still??

    • ToddAwesome

      You’re “supposed” to replace CO sensors that often anyway. Should someone decide to drop $130 on such a device, well, they’re making their own bed now aren’t they.

    • Jenny R

      Yes, most people who are not idiots know that. The lifespan is no different than any other smoke or CO2 detector. In fact 7 years is longer than most.

  • jmich

    I bought my nest thermostat after reading your april review. It was the 1st gen that I got from lowes after using a coupon code w/ free shipping and cost me $169. A lot of money for a stat. I have yet to regret the purchase. Every time I walk past it I can’t help but look at it. The emailed stats are awesome. Will be considering this as well. Thanks for posting!

  • Curtis

    Love my nest. This looks enticing, if not a little pricy. The one benefit to me would be that it would extend the reach of my auto-away sensoring around the house. Potentially increasing savings.

  • Brian Menius

    I pre-ordered one this morning and will probably order a second one after I try the first one out. It’s getting to be time to replace all four, anyway, as they’re cheapies and the house is five years old… but this may be a bit much for four detectors. I’ll probably replace the two in rarely-used rooms with like-kind cheapies.

  • Guest

    Damn it Nest..

    • ninjawarren

      I don’t know, I think it’s missing two killer features: the ability to call the fire department for you, and using the heat sensor data with the Nest thermostat. I suppose they could add both of those features with software though.

      • umbrellacorp

        I don’t have a home line. I can call from my cell phone. Weee!

        • epps720

          I was listening to a podcast yesterday and I believe they said if a fire starts that it will give you quick access to 911 on your cell phone. Not sure how exactly

          • ninjawarren

            I should have been more specific; calling the fire department when you’re away from home. That is much more efficient than trying to reach you while you’re out, (though an automated service calling you to tell you your house is on fire would be nice) or relying on your neighbors to notice that your house is on fire and call 911 for you.

            This is the killer feature that would unquestionably justify the higher price tag.

          • Firein Thehole

            Yes, in addition to thousands of daily false alarms for the cops to respond to we can have firetrucks join the fun as well. Dope.

  • Dave

    I like the Nest thermostat it gives you a lot of benefits and a great design for an overpriced cost. I can understand the purchase there though. This is ridiculous though. I like that Nest is re-imagining everyday devices, but 130 for “wave to quiet” feature? pass.

    • Jeff Tycz

      did you just stop reading about the device or what because clearly that is not the only thing it does

      • Dave

        Nope, is the only thing I see unique to a normal sanely priced option. Of course all of this is my opinion. But I think the light is irrelevant as is the app integration. I’d rather they tackle surge protectors or something like that.

        • Jeff Tycz

          so I guess the detector telling you where the smoke is coming from is also irrelevant?

          • Dave

            Yes, if you can’t figure out where smoke is coming from you likely have bigger issues. 130$ for a smoke detector is ridiculous, stop trolling and move on sir.

  • FrankBoston

    The thing is huge! Ugly having a device the size of a book on your ceiling!

    • Jeff Tycz

      its the same size as a regular smoke detector just not a circle….

    • Billy W

      It will go well with the roach the size of a book on your ceiling, Frank.

      • FrankBoston

        What? Go home, your drunk!

  • Jack3D

    Unfortunately, unlike the Nest thermostat which could be pitched as a “money-saving” device to justify it’s insane cost over a standard programmable thermostat, this really only has a slight convenience addon. For me, I have a 3,000ft2 house with 4 bedrooms on 3 different floor. I have 8 smoke detectors and 3 CO detectors. This would save me about $30 in CO detectors and batteries.

    Also, unlike thermostats which can theoretically last forever. Smoke and CO detectors need to be replaced every 5-10 years depending on brand/model. This is not one of those silly recommended mfg claims. The ionic detectors used in these thing really do degrade over time. Maybe I could see these selling for ~$75, but $129 is too much.

    • Jeff Tycz

      please show me another thermostat/smoke detector with similar tech for a lesser price, I guarantee you cant

      • Jack3D

        It’s not about having same tech for less price, it’s about justifying the price of the tech that is there in the first place. I never said there was anything similar to these on the market, I just question the need for them at all.

        • Cowboydroid

          So, from the comments, we can apparently conclude that this piece of tech is not marketed towards those with large houses and low budgets. But it is conceivable marketed towards those with small houses on large budgets, small houses on small budgets, apartments on large or small budgets, or large houses on large budgets.

          • decayo

            None of that matters. A product is fundamentally flawed if Jack3D can’t justify its expense. That’s just the way of the world, my friend. It’s Jack3D’s world and we are all just living in it.

          • Jack3D

            Yeah, because that’s what I said…

            And I’m sure lots of people would by 5 time as much for Acura’s, Infiniti’s and Lexus as they would for Hondas, Nissans and Toyotas.

            I’m sure some people will buy them. I won’t be one of them. And as a homeowner and a consumer, my opinion is a valid one. Again, I don’t have to justify NOT spending $1500 to fill my house with Smoke Detectors that are app-enabled (over $250 for regular ones), it’s up to the manufacturer to justify it to me.

            I’m sure everyone railing on my thoughts will be first in line, though?

          • Jack3D

            I’m not sure if that was a shot and/or purposefully meant to be sarcastic…but I laughed.

            Well played…

            Of course, I wouldn’t say my budget is large or small…it just is. And I’m comfortable with that. Just not comfortable with spending $1500 on new thermostats every 7 years.

    • Gasaraki

      Really? You have a 3,000 sq ft house but you can’t afford some $120 smoke detectors?

      • Jack3D

        Uh, well considering you have no idea where I live, how does knowing how big my is tell you what I’m able to afford?

        I’ll say that buying 8 of these is more than a mortgage payment for me… I think I’m capable of determining that the money is better put there than in gadget-y smoke detectors with no ROI.

        Unless someone can show me it’s a more effective warming than a standard snow detector…

        • Jane S

          “Uh, well considering you have no idea where I live”

          In the basement of your mom’s 3000 sq ft house, JackD?

          • Jack3D

            And once again, the well thought-out and insightful comments come out to save the Internet…

            Congratulations…here’s your sign

          • Jack3D

            And once again, the well thought out and insightful comments of today’s youth come out of the woodwork to rescue the Internet.

            Congratulations…here’s your sign.

      • http://www.youtube.com/user/nemesis099 Nemesis099

        I have a 3,000 Sq ft house as well and spending $120 per smoke alarm (7 in the house) seems wasteful as they really don’t save money like a nest thermostat will.
        I’m a frugal person which is why I could afford the house and while they do look cool they do not make financial sense in any way and will end up costing well more than a regular detector from Home Depot.

    • michael bourgoin

      Im with you – i have a similar situation. I have 9 smoke detectors and 3 CO in my house. I also have 2 wired to central monitoring something these apparently cannot do yet. I find that to be the most important feature of a smoke/fire alarm. More often than not, you’ll be woken by fire/smoke etc… but i want something that will let me know what’s going on when im NOT at home.

  • hoodieNation

    Hey thanks for reviewing that. Lol. I ended up buying one and my wife absolutely loves it.

  • https://www.facebook.com/aaron.williams.125 Champion1229

    That’s actually really cool! I really like the part where it can communicate with the Nest Thermostat to turn off furnaces in the event of an alarm, it may be something extremely simple but its one of the first steps to consumer grade home automation and situation awareness.