Google-owned smart homeware company Nest has asked users to reset their connected thermostats after a software bug forced controllers offline and left owners unable to heat their homes.
The company has confirmed that a software update error had caused the thermostat’s batteries to drain, therefore making it unable to control the temperature. Users of the smart home device took to social media to express their anger at being left with cold houses. Some feared that the fault had put water pipes under pressure, risking burst plumbing.
One user tweeted: “I trust nest 2 keep my pipes from freezing @ 2nd home 450 miles from where I live; but nest is offline – hope my pipes don’t burst #nest #fail”
Nest, founded by former Apple worker Tony Fadell and bought by Google for $3.2 billion (approx. £2.2 billion) in 2014, has sold millions of thermostats across the U.S. and Europe. The smart system, which costs £249, learns temperature preferences and connects to the internet to allow owners to remotely manage heating and hot water from their phones.
While sales of Nest and similar smart home devices have rocketed recently, some experts have warned about relying too heavily on the products which are still vulnerable to failures and even cyberattacks.
Nest has called for users affected by the glitch to reset their thermostats following a nine-step guide. The company said that it was busy preparing a solution to the issue.
“We are aware of a software bug impacting some Nest Thermostat owners,” a spokesman said. “In some cases, this may cause the device to respond slowly or become unresponsive. We are working on a solution which we expect to roll out in the coming weeks. In the meantime, performing a manual restart of the thermostat will help until a fix is put in place.”