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Nest Family Gets An Upgrade

Palo Alto, Calif. — Nest Labs leveraged the fruits of its Google parent and its Dropcam acquisition with the launch of a new security camera and an updated smoke detector, the latter of which will now offer some the opportunity to receive discounts on home insurance.

The new Nest Cam — which is reported by Ars Technica as essentially a rebranded Dropcam Pro — has 1080p video over Wi-Fi, improved night vision and motion alerts, and a magnetic base that can be mounted to the wall or used with a tripod. Features include the ability to save up to 30 days of video history (with a subscription fee), share clips, and create Activity Zones for specific alerts. For the safety-minded, video can be streamed and stored using a 2040-bit RSA key and transmitted using a 128-bit SSL connection. It has begun shipping at a $199 suggested retail.  

Nest, which is owned by Google, also said it’s enhancing its YouTube channel to let consumers stream directly to YouTube Live from the Nest Cam. A fewparticipants have already inked deals, and Nest currently has other live streams on its channel.

The upgraded Nest Protect smoke and CO2 alarm, meanwhile, now has the ability to look for different types of fires. The design is reportedly 11 percent smaller and has a brighter light ring for path illumination. The Nightly Promise feature means an indicator will light green upon the lights turning off, indicating everything is operational, or it will turn yellow to indicate the device requires attention. It will also change colors if any other Nest Protect-compatible device requires maintenance. 

Anyone who occasionally sets off the alarm while cooking will likely appreciate the added ability to silence false alarms from a smartphone.

The Nest Protect will begin shipping next month at a suggested $99.99 retail.

Nest also announced it will partner with home-insurance companies to provide discounts for consumers who install a Nest Protect and provide confirmation it’s being used properly. American Family and Liberty Mutual Insurance are the first to sign on, but so far only in Minnesota (American) and Alabama, Illinois, Kentucky, Maine, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin (Liberty).

 Finally, Nest updated its iOS and Android app, providing the ability to control all Nest devices at once, including the Dropcam Pro and Dropcam HD. It also updated the software for the Learning Thermostat, with the ability to send smartphone alerts when a home is too hot or too cold, among other enhancements.