Nest's app has run into some sort of problem today that's causing it to lose control of some thermostats and smoke detectors. The error is causing Nest Thermostats and Nest Protects to appear offline within the app, leaving them out of owners' remote control.
While the app is unable to remotely control those devices right now, Nest tells The Verge that they should otherwise continue to function, sticking to existing schedules and adjusting to changes made manually inside the home. Nest says that only a "small percentage" of owners are affected.
Late July is bad timing for a thermostat error
That means the Nest outage, which TechnoBuffalo first spotted this morning, isn't quite as bad as it sounds, since homes can still be cooled and fires can still be detected. But it's nonetheless coming at a bad time, right in the middle of summer in North America. If someone had planned on manually triggering their AC before coming home from work this afternoon, they may be out of luck.
The outage is a good reminder of the challenges that come with smart home products. Many of them — like a thermostat — are critical parts of the home that first and foremost need to stay functional at all times. Nest hasn't gone totally offline, but it's easy to imagine that someone relying on its remote functionality could be inconvenienced by this.
Nest's full statement is below:
"We’re currently investigating an issue that has resulted in a small percentage of Nest Thermostats and Nest Protects appearing offline. While these devices cannot be controlled through the Nest app at this time, they are online and continue to function, including working to set schedules, allowing for manual adjustments and alerting people to smoke and CO events. We are actively working to restore remote control of these devices through the Nest app."