Nest Labs is recalling "about 440,000" of its Nest Protect smoke detectors over an issue that could potentially delay a fire or carbon monoxide alarm from sounding, but you don't need to worry about sending yours back. The company initially halted sales of the device last month in light of the problem, and now the Consumer Product Safety Commission has formally announced the recall. But Nest Protect owners won't have to send in their device for repair or even bring it back to the original point of purchase. Instead, Nest is offering a software update that automatically disables the Nest Wave feature, which allows users to temporarily silence alerts by waving an arm near the Protect.
That feature has been directly linked to the potentially dangerous bug. (Nest says it still hasn't received any reports of incidents or injuries, however.) Once you've installed the update, the Nest Wave option will be disabled and grayed out to make sure it's not accidentally switched back on. From there, you can continue using the Nest Protect safely — without worrying about a late alarm when faced with an emergency. But if you'd still prefer to return the device for peace of mind, a safety notice confirms that all buyers are entitled to a full refund. While the recall impacts 440,000 units, we can't definitively link that to the total number of Nest Protects sold. The total figure could include devices that had been shipped to retail channels but not yet purchased.
Update May 22nd, 7:25PM: Speaking to The Guardian, Nest says that the Nest Protect will be "back on the market in a few weeks."