It’s been a while since we’ve heard much from Nest — they bought Dropcam, then went a bit quiet.
Today, they’re breaking the silence at a press conference in San Francisco. The first new product out of the gate: a second generation of its smoke alarm, the Nest Protect.
So what’s new?
Here’s what we know so far:
- It has what Nest calls a “split spectrum” sensor, which the company says detects smoke/fire earlier whilst also throwing less false alarms.
- Through a feature they’ve aptly dubbed “App Silence”, you can now stop your smoke alarm with your smart phone — just open an app, hold a button for a few seconds, and it’s silenced.
- There’s a built-in microphone that will automatically self-test your smoke alarm’s speaker/horn, ensuring that it’s actually emitting an alarm. This can be done manually, of course — but once a month, the Protect will do it automatically “when you’re unlikely to be home”
- It’s 11% smaller than the last one
- The previous generation of Protect needed to be replaced after 7 years; this generation will last for 10.
- It’ll cost $99 (the same price as the last generation, after Nest dropped the price following the discovery of potentially nasty bug) and will ship next month.
Externally, the device looks about the same. Internally though, a bit has changed: they’ve tweaked some of the curves to help smoke flow into the device more efficiently for faster detection, but added a mesh filter to keep bugs from poking their way inside.