Tag Archives: Vacuums

iRobot Announces the 800 Series Roomba with Flagship Roomba 880

iRobot Roomba 800 Series Crop

Today (11/12/13) iRobot announced the 800 Series Roomba vacuum cleaning robots. It is now available through Amazon.com.

As one would expect with a new generation of robot, there are several improvements in the 800 Series. The most significant new feature is a brushless cleaning system that iRobot has dubbed “AeroForce.” The official press release says that the AeroForce system is made of “Brushless, counter-rotating AeroForce Extractors that break down debris and dirt, while requiring less maintenance.” The system is designed with “Suction Amplification” – which iRobot explains is created by airflow acceleration.

The robots also use a new battery system, “XLife.” Here are other new features in the 800 Series Roombas:

  • No more tangled hairs in the cleaning head.
  • Dust bin size has been increased 60%.
  • In terms of “cleaning cycles” iRobot claims twice the battery life.
  • Vacuum power has been increased 5 times.
  • 800 Series remove up to 50% more dirt, dust, debris, and hair.

iRobot has stated that the following technologies will continue in the 800 Series: Dirt Detect, Persistent Pass Cleaning, Full Bin Indicator, Spot Clean Mode and Power Management. The new robots can be scheduled, will automatically dock, and are compatible with Virtual Walls and Lighthouses. That’s all good news.

iRobot Roomba 880 AeroForce Rollers

There isn’t really an explanation of the AeroForce technology, besides how it’s just a different sort of vacuum. A close look at the underside of the robot, however, shows what looks like rubber rollers with ribs and little tabs or teeth. I for one am thinking that iRobot must have come up with something better than the brushes, because those are really key to how Roombas work. Eliminating the brushes should also help to resolve one of the main complaints people have with Roombas, being maintenance. You might not have to do it every time you use the robot, but sooner or later, you’re going to have to open up your vacuum’s cleaning head and clear out some tangles (especially if you’re a pet owner). Looks like that might be a thing of the past.

What’s in the box?

  • The robot
  • 1 XLife battery
  • 1 Integrated Home Base
  • 1 Remote Control
  • 2 Virtual Wall Lighthouses
  • 1 Extra HEPA Filter
  • Warranty (1 Year iRobot Limited Warranty)
  • Also, batteries for the remote and the Virtual Walls.

The Roomba 880 sells for 699.99. As mentioned above, it is now available through Amazon.com.

Neato Robotics Announces the XV-21 Pet & Allergy

Neato Robotics XV-21

Neato Robotics has announced a new model of robotic vacuum, the Neato XV-21 Pet & Allergy automatic vacuum cleaner, which is aimed at helping customers control allergens and pet hair in their homes. Compared to the older model Neato robots, the XV-21 boasts: Lower noise, a new bristle brush, and a new filter with better air flow which is designed to catch smaller dust particles. We reviewed the Neato XV-11, here.

Neato Robotics XV-21 from Top

Neato’s press release about the XV-21 makes the aim of this new vacuum clear. It mentions that the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America recommends that people who suffer from allergies can help prevent outbreaks by reducing pet dander, hair, and feathers in their home, and also recommends vacuuming frequently.

By scheduling the robot to clean automatically while they aren’t home, an allergy sufferer can reduce their exposure to airborne dust, pollen, and dander. The press release also mentions that it’s easy to schedule the robot to vacuum every day.

Besides aiming to reduce pet hair and allergens around the house, Neato has updated the look of the robot vacuum with a futuristic purple and white design, that is also kind of simultaneously retro. The new brush is designed to reduce the noise made by the robot, make it pick up hair better, and also make it work better with hard floors.

Neato Robotics XV-21 Kit in the Box

The new vacuum is expected to be available at the end of April 2012 and will have a manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP) of $429 US. Owners of past models can upgrade their robots, which will be compatible with the new features. The new filter will have a MSRP $29.99. The Pet and Allergy Upgrade Kit (which includes the new bristled brush) will have an MSRP of $59.99. To use the new items, however, earlier models (XV-11, XV-12, and XV-15) will need to be upgraded to the newest firmware, which as of this writing is 2.6.