With the recent winter heat wave in much of the US safely behind us, now’s the time for all the social media posts complaining about the bitter cold. But the reality of winter set in accidentally for Nest users, many of whom awoke to find the heat shut off in their homes.
A software glitch in a recent update didn’t make an appearance until this week. The glitch, which drained the batteries of Nest thermostat devices, left users without any temperature control. While it’s an easy fix–plug in the USB cable, folks–it’s actually a serious matter to any users who weren’t home to correct the issue when it occurred. Users who may have been traveling, who work night shifts, or other scenarios that take them from home at off-hours could return to frozen (and even dead) pets, burst water pipes, or worse.
In rarer cases, the opposite occurred, as users took to the forum to complain that the battery drain left the residences’ thermostats adjusting to the highest heat setting, meaning they paid a lot of money to overheat their homes to uncomfortable levels.
“We are aware of a software bug impacting some Nest Thermostat owners. In some cases, this may cause the device to respond slowly or become unresponsive. We are working on a solution that we expect to roll out in the coming weeks,” the Google-owned company said in a statement.
While charging the Nest device will correct the problem right now, it does mean resetting your device. But without correcting the software bug, the issue will simply repeat itself and your device’s battery will die again. Instructions for correcting the problem are HERE, although Nest now says more than 99% of the devices are back in typical operation.
Security and tech experts have warned that this particular issue is only likely to increase across IoT-enabled devices. Software bugs are just a reality, and the more removed a device is from human input, the more likely it is to experience issues with lack of real-time adjustment from human input.