Nest Labs, famous for the critically acclaimed web connected thermostat bearing the companies namesake, looks to be building a next gen smoke detector, called Protect. In keeping with the Nest philosophy for taking things to the next level, it is rumored to be packed with features, including a possible (but not likely) subscription monitoring service that would alert you if smoke or fire is detected. A source states the device could communicate with the Nest thermostat, giving it a longer battery life by eliminating the need for it to have its own battery-draining wi-fi chip. There has also been talk of the ability to silence the alarm by waving a hand in front of it and the ability to detect carbon monoxide as well. The new smoke detector would be the second device in Nest's plan to build a home network device by device.
The “connected home” gets quite a lot of buzz these days. Microsoft, Google, and Apple want to help us better connect video and audio throughout our homes. Nest, and others including Crestron, are focusing on the unsexy stuff like heating and cooling systems, shades and lights. It will be interesting to see where Nest takes us next, and I for one am excited to see if the Protect is everything we would expect from the top-notch engineers at Nest.