The world of Artificial Intelligence (AI) is demonstrating a hopped-up momentum since past few years. Name it, and the robots have done it. Be it unmanned spaceships, aircrafts or navy vessels, driverless cars, factories and even houses, AI companies are building smarter and more powerful robots that can work flawlessly and at times way better than humans.
No wonder then, that this technology made its way in the cleaning industry too. The robotic vacuum cleaners hit the market in the early years of the 21st century. A quick peep into the history of vacuum cleaners brings to light that the Swedish company, Electrolux, was the first one to launch these intelligent cleaners. The trend was later on followed by companies like Dyson, iRobot, Kohl, Philips, Kent and many more.
So, what are robotic vacuum cleaners?
As the name suggests, these are vacuum cleaners that work on the concept of intelligent programming. They are also called “Robovacs”. They navigate effortlessly in the house and clean dirt and cobwebs that are out of human reach.
Vacuum cleaners have come a long way from being bulky, noisy and unmanageable to being smart, sleek and independent cleaners.
These cleaning champs basically work on sensors. They have many sensors embedded in them which enable them to move around seamlessly. The basic sensors include cliff sensors, bump sensors, wall sensors and optical sensors which direct and instruct the robovacs about the movements.
They usually come in round or D-shape which makes cleaning floors and carpets easier for them. They store the dirt in bins that can be emptied later. These robovacs work on batteries and need to be recharged later.
Which are some good Robovacs?
This robovac, produced by Neato Robotics, boasts to be the best performer. It comes with a remote control and is one of the costliest, selling at $700.
iRobot Roomba 880
Selling for around $650, this is famous for being the “minimum maintenance” cleaner. It has innovated “brushless” technology. It lacks the ability to sweep clean pet hair.
Dyson 360 Eye
It is a very powerful robovac with a simple app for remote access. It is highly efficient in cleaning a lot of dirt but comes at a very hefty price of $999. Other robovacs offer similar efficiency levels at a cheaper rate.
Why should you buy a robovac?
Here we have researched and found the best 5 reason for buying a Robotic Vacuum Cleaner for your home.
- They are simple and smart. You don’t need to sit around and wait for the cleaning to happen. Once programmed, they can complete their task even if there is no monitoring.
- State-of-the-art robovacs are engineered on the idea of “insects”. Insects like “ants”, follow simple set of rules to decide their course of actions, and this same principle is applied in robovacs.
- A sequence of behaviors or rules like “spiraling on a dirty spot”, “bouncing off in another direction”, “walking straight”, “rotating to change angles” and more is followed by these robovacs.
- Using robovacs makes cleaning a hassle-free task and people can keep at bay health issues like arthritis and back pain arising out of cleaning activity.
- They can truly keep your home spotless and dirt-free.
What can discourage you from buying?
However , there are some reason too, which discourage the people to buying these smart cleaners..
- Though they are automatic, there are many areas which they simply fail to detect.
- They cannot perform well on dark floors.
- They need to be frequently charged. Once the robovac is fully charged, it can work for two – three hours at the most.
- They are not fully qualified to climb stairs or descend them. They may be enabled with accessories that help in cleaning upper sides of the house, but it is not fool-proof.
- They are known to have less suction ability than regular vacuum cleaners.
- They need a clear arena to work. If you place a heap of clothes or wires in the room, it will negatively affect the efficiency of robovac and sometimes it may even eat up anything that comes in its way.
- They are quite expensive and way beyond reach of many people.
- They require frequent maintenance.
Watch out for these when you buy Robotic Vacuum Cleaner
- Battery – Good quality battery is of prime importance in robovacs. Basically there are two types of batteries available for robovacs i.e. Lithium – Ion and Nickel – Metal hydride batteries. Both types are rechargeable. Lithium – Ion batteries work for a longer time than Nickel – Metal. They can work for 120 – 150 minutes continuously and are less expensive than Nickel – Metal. But Nickel – Metal batteries have a longer life than its Lithium counterpart.
- Size – Always try to go for a short robovac, for the simple reason that the shorter it is, the better is its reach. Usually the height of a robovac varies from 3.5” to 6”.
However the flipside to this is that shorter the robovac, smaller is its dustbin, which means lesser is the capacity to hold the dirt. This would require frequent emptying of the bin.
- Dust Bins – Almost all robovacs have smaller dust bins compared to the standard vacuum cleaners. They do not have bag inside them. Standard size id 12 – 14 oz.
- Filters – Robovacs, generally have only single filter. Having a double filter which will clean the air further before evacuating is always a better choice, but it comes at a cost.
- Accessories – One should always opt for a robovac equipped with all the accessories like brushes, remote controls, cleaners for brushes, storage bags, extra set of batteries etc…
Future of robotic vacuum cleaners
It is safe to believe that robovacs have an exciting future. The leading companies are now making them even more techno-friendly by adding some more features like Internet connectivity, home surveillance and air-purification. So don’t be surprised if your robovac downloads movies or bakes a cake while vacuuming!