Not sure how we let this one pass us by, but just under two weeks ago Nest announced the launch of its Nest Protect smoke and carbon monoxide alarm. As Nest founder and CEO Tony Fadell noted in the company’s press release, “we’ve reinvented the smoke alarm, because safety is too important to be annoying.”
Nest has made a name for itself by ‘reinventing’ somewhat lackluster-ordinary household systems — i.e., the thermostat. Not only has the everyday household thermostat disappeared in the wake of new and flashy Apple-like design, but it’s functionality and user-friendliness has increased near-exponentially.
So it is with no real surprise that Nest has its sights set beyond just the old thermostat.
“The Nest Protect smoke and carbon monoxide (CO) alarm was born one night when I lay in bed, sleepless as usual, watching the smoke alarm blink,” wrote Fadell. “It blinked and blinked and I realized I had no idea what that meant.”
“Was it working? Broken? Was it going to wake me up with low-battery chirps? Or go off for no reason? The smoke alarm was a black box painted beige. I trusted it with the safety of my family, but my first instinct was to tear it off the ceiling every time it made a noise. And we’ve all been there.”
Nest started from scratch in designing its own smoke alarm, knowing that there had to be more to the device than being set off every time you leave the chops in the griller too long.
Instead of only howling about danger, why doesn’t it tell you that you’re safe? Why can’t you go to bed knowing you’re protected? And why can’t it message your phone if something’s wrong? Why can’t it be better?
The Nest Protect has a range of new features which have me drooling, can made your household safety an enjoyable experience. From the Nest press release:
Nest Protect quiets down when you wave—no more swinging towels or brooms.
Once it’s hooked up to Wi-Fi, it’ll message your phone when its batteries run low or the alarm goes off.
Nest Protect lights up in different colors and speaks with a human voice, telling you where and what the danger is. And it won’t just start yelling at you—Nest Protect gives you a friendly Heads-Up before turning on a loud alarm.
It tests itself constantly and lets you know it’s working before you go to bed. Just look for a quick green glow when you turn out the lights.
You can check battery or sensor status from your phone or learn what to do in an emergency.
Nest Protect lights your way at night and dims as you pass.
It senses carbon monoxide and connects to your Nest Thermostat through your Nest Account. So it can automatically shut down the furnace, a possible source of CO poisoning, when the carbon monoxide alarm goes off.
All in all the Nest Protect is a new way to protect your house and your family from the dangers of fire and carbon monoxide. And as with the Nest thermostat, other companies are soon going to have to fall in line and redevelop and develop their own new smoke alarms which do more for your safety than your sanity. Instead of having to keep a pillow located near-to the smoke alarm for when it inevitably goes off anytime you want to cook some red meat, there’s more of a chance that you’ll actually enjoy the usefulness of the Nest Protect.