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Software bug forced Nest thermostats offline

It drained the devices' batteries, and users had to manually fix their thermostats.
Mariella Moon, @mariella_moon
January 14, 2016
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A Nest software update in December came with a hidden surprise: a bug that drains the thermostat's battery and ultimately deactivates the device. Users were caught by surprise, and in the case of The New York Times writer Nick Bilton, he woke up to a cold home when his Nest switched off in the middle of the night. The Google-owned company's co-founder, Matt Rogers, confirmed to NYT that the cause was a software glitch that didn't manifest itself until January. The complaints posted on Twitter and on Nest's own forum support that statement.

Now, as Bilton noted, it might sound like something you'd roll your eyes over. The thermostat stopped working -- so what, right? Well, take for example, home owners out on vacation. If their Nests stop working while they're not home, it could lead to complications such as pipes freezing over and bursting. In this particular case, affected customers couldn't fix the issue remotely through their apps and had to plug in a USB cable to charge it and physically push the restart button before charging it some more.

That leads to the Bilton's other point: small glitches can be a huge issue for smart devices, which is something you need to keep in mind before buying Internet of Things-connected gadgets. That said, Nest believes that the issue has been fixed for 99.5 percent of all affected customers. In case you're among those that haven't had the chance to fix the problem yet, you can follow these instructions and/or call the company up for assistance.

In this article: gear, google, nest, thermostat
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