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Google acquisition Nest halts smoke alarm sales

Nest Labs found a potential flaw in the gadget's 'Wave' feature, which lets users turn off the alarm with a wave of a hand.
By Ananth Baliga   |   April 4, 2014 at 5:10 PM   |   Comments

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PALO ALTO, Calif., April 4 (UPI) -- Nest Labs, recently acquired by Google, has halted the sale of its Nest Protect smoke alarm to address a potential safety flaw.

The company said the 'Wave' function, a feature that allows users to turn off the alarm with a wave of their hand, had a glitch. During internal testing the company found that "a unique combination of circumstances" could lead the alarm to be unintentionally activated, delaying it from going off in the case of a fire.

"We identified this problem ourselves and are not aware of any customers who have experienced this, but the fact that it could even potentially happen is extremely important to me and I want to address it immediately," said Nest Labs CEO Tony Fadell.

While the company resolves the issue, customers with the Nest Protect connected to a Nest account will have the wave function deactivated automatically. And in the case of a fire, the alarm will continue to work. Fadell urged customers whose alarms were not connected to their Nest Accounts, to do so, so that the company could disable the glitchy functionality.

For customers who have Nest alarms without WiFi connectivity, they should disable the alarm and claim a full refund.

"We are enormously sorry for the inconvenience caused by this issue," Fadell wrote. "The team and I are dedicated to ensuring that we can stand behind each Nest product that comes into your home, and your 100 percent satisfaction and safety are what motivates us."

[Nest Labs]

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