Robot vacuums have been on the market for a while and most of the glitches have been fixed, while several enhancements such as connectivity have been added. Robo vacs are now equipped with technology that will remember furniture placement and map the set-up of your home as it works, which increases its efficiency during the next vac session. They know when they are running low on battery power and will return themselves to the docking station, get some juice, and then continue the task exactly where they left it.
The models that offer connectivity are even more impressive, as they can be integrated into your smart home set-up and will get to work following a remote start command. Amazon Alexa even has the capability to start the bot via a voice command enacted by the user. While all this gadgetry is fun and exciting, the most important question is do they actually work? And the answer is a resounding yes. These vacs are great at picking up dust and debris and pet hair. They are able to work under your sofa and easy chairs which lets you avoid the task of rearranging furniture.
In fact, these little machines are fairly independent and the only interaction that you will likely have with the vac is emptying the dustbin. Unfortunately, they have not yet been programmed to do this themselves, but don’t be surprised it does become a feature in the future. Robo vacs have also come down significantly in price and there are some models available that are similarly priced to their non-robotic counterparts. Depending on the size of your home, battery life will be an important consideration, with most robot vacuums lasting for 60 to 70 minutes. There is also the connectivity option that not everyone needs, although as more people move to the smart home model this feature will gain in popularity. Let’s take a look at the top robot vacs, both connected and not, and see how they compare.
At the no-frills end of the spectrum, the Eufy Robovac 11 will get the job done and lists at around $220. This model offers the basic cleaning capabilities without connectivity and it will at times need redirection. On the plus side, the dustbin is on the larger size.
If you are looking for advanced functionality, the iRobot Roomba 690 delivers compatibility with smart home systems and can also be engaged via the phone app. At about $325 it is at the low end of the connected robo vac price range.
The wifi enabled and connected Neato Botvac Robot Vacuum is the top-of-the-line robot vac. This model offers a D-shaped design that gets into corners and cleans where many bots can’t reach. You can program it for scheduled cleanings or activate the device through the connectivity feature.
This generation of robot vacuums is a lot more efficient than some of the earlier models, and even at the lower end of the price range, you can get a reliable device. The upper price points may not appeal to everyone, but if you are looking for a totally connected smart home you may find the additional cost worthwhile.