With their Botvac “D that was marginally improve being recently released by challenger Neato ” set, it was speculated that iRobot might be following suit. Nevertheless, it continues to be a relatively long time since the Roomba 880 and 870 debuted. I actually didn’t understand what to expect. Undoubtedly, iRobot isn’t interested in ceding any market share to competitors, and rightfully so.
As with all preceding Roomba’s there are things that I don’t like and things to enjoy. It ’s going to be difficult for me to not gift a couple Roomba 980’s this year.
In this Roomba 980 review, I’ll get into the essential characteristics (what’s new) as well as the Advantages and Disadvantages. At the bottom, I’ll propose a number of alternatives and make an overall recommendation.
Key Features – What’s New with the Roomba 980
The following are some of the new, updated, and notable features on the 980:
More Battery Charge Life: The Roomba 980 is effective at running fro a complete 2 hours before needed to recharge. It’s still not Lithium ion (for those that enjoy that), but it is an improvement.
iRobot DWELLING App: For me, this really is the game changer. I’ve been waiting for robot vacuums to become completely incorporated into the house experience that is smart. iRobot is the first robot hoover firm – to my knowledge – that’s an app in this way. It’s possible for you to press on “Clean” from anywhere and the 980 will start/stop as wanted. If I’m at work or from your house, I will get things started while I’m away. The program is easy basically functions as an innovative remote control and to use. On the older Roomba’s you could have a predetermined program to run each day, but not instant control in this way!
It’s really more of an upgrade. This really is a big deal. Basically it allows the visual localization map the room and allows the Roomba to “look” out and up to help navigate. This can be the kind of groundbreaking enhancement that significantly enhances the 980 over previous versions. What does this mean practically? Less bumping into things randomly and a more organized efficient and – – cleaning path.
More Suction Power: Happily, iRobot wasn’t content with just a couple of attributes that are new. In addition they upped their game in the power section. The AeroForce cleaning system is per cleaning cycle exactly the same base technology, but 2 times more effective at picking up debris. It also has “carpet boost” which optimizes air power when it discovers a carpet or rug beneath. The end result is a traditional vacuum that is thorough clean, replicating a greater level.
Improved Virtual Wall Lighthouse: Roomba uses these small towers to indicate where to clean (and where not to clean…acting as an invisible wall impediment). The 980 has stepped up lighthouse game is ’sed by it. They have been now smaller and take AA batteries (compared to the hulking “D” batteries for previous collection). This is a nice improvement because who has extra “D” batteries?
Pros and Cons – Matters I enjoy and Things I Don’t
It means everything to me: It’s pretty easy and straightforward, although the App is Awesome. Having the ability to control my robot from my phone means the Roomba is currently part of my house family that is smart. Picking up on where tools like Ecobee smart thermostats and the Nest have left off, iRobot has really provided on a smart, net-linked, roomba vacuum. I considering the options for future integration with my various smart home programs and controllers.
Program Helps Screen Care: There’s a really trendy “diagnostics” portion of the program that tracks different parts of the Roomba and uses straightforward bars to let you know when things have to be changed or serviced (think emptying the bin, changing extractors, filters, etc…). It also tells you just how to perform the desired care requirement.
Better on Carpeting: Robots hoovers consistently have a tendency to perform better on hardwood floors and hard flooring options (tile, etc…). The newly redesigned motor is not specially bad at adapting to carpet surfaces as well. Once detected, the 980 will engage a little more muscle to thoroughly clean carpeting the way they should be cleaned. In a side by side test with my Roomba 880 (and a group of spilled crushed cheerios), both “appeared” to clean the same at a space, but the 980 truly could pick up more of the crumbs that had filtered down to the underparts of the the carpeting. It was a subtle difference, an important difference however, although difficult t tell from standing up even.
The new program, the more powerful battery and the automatic recharging/resume feature makes the Roomba 980 even more hands free than the competition and both previous versions. Slowly but surely, home robotics is living up to it’s guarantee. If you hate vacuuming – or physically cannot do it anymore – this is the alternative that is outsourced that is quintessential. Short of hiring cleaning help, the Roomba 980 is the best option out there.
Navigation is Apparently Enhanced: I can scarcely tell the difference and Sometimes new attributes are added. For cleaning in a randomized, haphazard pattern in the past, Roomba’s have had the knock. While the end result was clean floors, how it happened wasn’t fairly. Still, it was also a little wasteful. It was among the contrasts I enjoyed about most Neato versions. Now, the 980 is methodical, much more organized, and efficient.
It still bumps into matters to gain its bearings, particularly in rooms with lots of furniture. Just not nearly to the amount it did previously. On careful observation it will not keep doing it with the same wild abandon and even appears the 980 will recall these “lumps” for future cleans.
Brighter Algorithm: For all you geeks out there, this robot is actually smarter than it’s the opposition and forerunners.
In general, I found that the 980 spent much less time than both my 880 and Botvac’s (included the new Connected Botvac) pausing and calculating as it creates the map of the room.
Excellent Customer Service: iRobot remains the leader as it pertains to customers service. This more of a general “ace” and less unique to this model, but worth noting. Every time I’ve needed to replace a Roomba, I’ve had no problems. They’re also not bad at walking you through diagnosing issues.
Strong Secondary Components Market: Unlike other robot firms, the Roomba has a deluge of after market businesses specializing in creating better replacement accessories and components. For instance, I’ve been able to locate replacement batteries that are not worse in relation to the factory default ones. This can be just somewhat accurate for businesses like Neato (smaller market share) and this market is practically non existent for the other small players.
Better Suction Total: My two quasi scientific ways of quantifying this are that A) I can sense a lot more wind/air coming from the unit and B) those larger particles of determination that only high powered vacs often get are being captured in the dust bin.
Use Could be More: because I’m thrilled with the new app, This isn’t actually a legit gripe. I’d like to completely incorporate my Roomba with the rest of my smart home. It would be nice to be able to manage everything from one program (and one control like the SmartThings Hub and others). It probably wouldn’t be challenging to do and it may be something iRobot plans to do anyhow.
Not “Perfect”: It’s a definite improvement, but it not perfect. Power cords occasionally confused it and can have trouble with substantial thresholds. Once in a while it will get stuck, but once you determine the problem areas, it’s easy to “Roomba evidence” your house. It’s not quite like a human….yet.
Competition on the Way? Both Dyson Eye and the Neato Botvac Joined are rumored to be coming out “ soon. How soon? I can’t actually tell. The Botvac Connected (which features similar program managements) will likely be out occasionally this year, but no firm release date continues to be set. I ‘ven’t heard much lately about an anticipated release date, although the Dyson Eye has been rumored to be in the works for years. It could be 6-12 months away. What this means is the Roomba 980 could have some harder competition on the horizon. At this time, the 980 is the greatest robot on the market, but that could change. UPDATE: The Dyson 360 Eye has been released. Generally speaking, it’s a more powerful vacuum, but less room that is qualified -to-room navigation. It’s possible for you to read my full review for additional information.
Yet, for pitch black rooms you are going to inevitably get an error code. My simple alternative is to keep on in every room that needs it.
Only Available in One Location: So far as is frequently true for new releases – the Roomba 980 is ONLY available via the iRobot shop here. This is likely because they would like to control pricing. When it’s released like carton retailers and Amazon to other marketplaces, I’ll make sure to update this post. UPGRADE 10/8#158/15: It’s only been released to Amazon (see here for the listing)!
Cost: As always, iRobot is the cost leader. All their robots usually are marginally to moderately more expensive as opposed to contest. The 980 is no different. Actually, it’s not fairly darn cheap! At RM 4850 per unit, this is likely not something that’s not difficult to spring for. You are able to take a look at this listing for more detailed pricing information. In this instance, you do get what you buy. This generation really HAS enhanced many important facets. Hands down, this really is the best robot vacuum now accessible. Still, if this is your first robot, you may want to look into some less expensive – but still qualified – alternatives (see below)
Other Roomba 980 Options to Contemplate
If the cost is too much of a sticking point, never to stress. There are other great vacuums with contemplating.
Sometimes last years version is the best value around. Sure, it’s not the latest and greatest, but it still can offer many of the exact same benefits. You can check out my review of it here. At the time, it was the most effective robot vacuum cash could purchase. The AeroForce cleaning system that is patented is 50% more successful at cleaning up debris in relation to the 700 series. This, combined with a larger dust bin, an improved battery, and a remote control made it the most hands free apparatus at the time. It doesn’t have the use that is revolutionary, but it has all the other key features for a runner that is true up. Most of all, it’s a full cheaper compared to the 980 (check this listing for even steeper discounts). Still pricey, but a lot less so.
Some helpful advancements have been made by the new “D” string, although I wasn’t overly impressed with the initial Botvac release. Notably, they’ve repaired a problem with the brush (by changing a bearing) to allow it to be less susceptible to becoming tangled (particularly with human and pet hair, in my experience). The Botvac D80 doesn’t just seem better, it also functionally performs better than previous Neato models. The suction power is the finest yet and comparable to the new Roomba 980. It relatively simple to schedule and use, although still, you won’t get the app managements. The patented laser navigation technology means more organized courses and it usually works quite well. It’s possible for you to see this listing here, where it usually sells for less than the top line Roomba’s.
It’s not still false, although it’s been around for a while. It MUCH more affordable. You are able to read my full take here. Attempt the 650 out if it for the needs to see if budget is your top concern. Yes, it’s missing a group of fine extras” that is “ but the core cleaning technology is till there. The 650 is ideal for people that have small houses, flats, or merely a small space they need consistently cleaned. On top of that, you are able to locate the 650 for an extremely affordable price at this listing.
New Robots on the Horizon?
The long rumored Dyson Eye is officially under development as I mentioned previously. Who knows when it’ll be released. As of this stage it will be unlikely to hit before the 2015 Holiday season, although they haven’t discussed release dates. The new attributes on the Roomba 980 may actually cause them to delay release until they can fit the core characteristics.
The possibility that is fascinating is the the Neato Botvac “Joined” robot which aims to add WiFi capability that is similar to the Roomba 980. It’s possible for you to read more here. They’ll have to take action soon to capitalize completely, although it’d make sense about them to release it prior to the 2015 Holiday season.
UPGRADE: See my complete review.
Presuming Cleaner Faceplate
I was a bit skeptical of this “work-around” at first, but it actually works pretty well. Thinking Cleaner was the consequence of a successful Kickstarter campaign. It functionally adds or 600 series robot and WiFi ability together. Skeptical? I was also. Essentially, you attach a “faceplate” that changes your Roomba. It’s easy to attach. You can do most of precisely the same functions in a polished” and intuitive way, merely as the Roomba 980 WiFi. The app will let you schedule slightly, alarm you when your Roomba needs help and even plays a tune if you need certainly to locate your lost Roomba and is quite sound. It’s available for just a fraction of the price of a new Roomba here.
Thinking Cleanser is working on a brand new faceplate for the 700/800 chain, but as of yet it only exists as a Kickstarter endeavor here.
Who is this a great option for? 1) Existing owners of a 500 or 600 series Roomba. 2) Prospective buyers who want WiFi ability, but can’t afford/don’t want to spend $899 on the 980. For example, buying Thinking Cleaner Faceplate and a fresh Roomba 650 will run you .
Roomba 980 vs Botvac Connected
I’ll be writing a full comparison up soon, but I desired to touch on this briefly because I’ve been getting lots of questions about it.
What are the Essential Differences? 2) The Botvac now has “Eco” and “Turbo” mode. 4) The Roomba uses virtual wall’s (invisible ray to comprise the robot) whereas the Botvac still relies on laying down “magnetic tape” to define boundaries around your home.
Both Botvac Connected and the Roomba 980 attribute WiFi enabled management. That is certainly the headline feature for both. I personally prefer the Roomba app but both are similar with regards to characteristics/usage.
UPGRADE: It is possible to read my complete comparison (recently finished) right here.
Final Call – Is the Roomba 980 Worth it?
The short answer: Yes! The longer response? This really is arguably the best robot vacuum cleaner available on the market if you might have the money. At the minimum, it’s definitely the greatest roomba version to date.
If you have a bigger house or office/company that needs to be cleaned frequently, the 980 is the best robot for the occupation. It can cover the earth and recharge on it’s own as needed. The 980 has the most power/suction and the finest cleaning technology of any robot to get the job done if you’ll need a vacuuming job that closely resembles a traditional upright vacuum clean.
However, if you might have a small flat, the 980 becomes an extravagance. One caveat: it doesn’t matter, in case you are a geek like me. This really is a MUST own!