Smart vacuums were considered an extravagance a few years ago, but now they’re finding their way into more and more homes. They are no longer just convenient to own. Smart robot vacuum cleaners have become a necessity in many homes, especially those that have kids and pets. In fact, robots are now used for mopping, cleaning windows, pools, grills, and many other home purposes. As a result, the industry is quickly integrating IoT and artificial intelligence into smart robot vacuums, making them smarter and more interconnective.
Smart robot vacuum cleaners have better suction mechanisms, offer better designs and smarter sensors. With the help of WiFi connectivity and advanced mapping capabilities, these robots can store schedules and identify areas that need more attention. They can also be programmed to tackle certain areas making home cleaning more efficient. They can be connected to various smart home assistants/hubs such as Google Assistant and Alexa making them easy to control and an integral part of modern smart homes.
Additionally, one of the major advantages of smart vacuums is they are compatible with being controlled remotely. This is essential if you want to initiate the cleaning of your floors via voice control or your phone or you spend a lot of time away from home.
But with a lot of devices on the market, it’s only sensible to do some research! However, in such a diverse market, the research can be confusing and tedious. To help you through this process, we’ve compiled a list of the best smart robot vacuum cleaners available right now.
Best Smart Vacuums
Verdict: Best Under $200
RoboVac 11S is affordable, slim, silent, and looks great. Despite its thin design, it has decent suction power and a 0.6L dustbin. You can control it through a remote and set timers and modes. The bounce navigation technology is not as thorough as smart mapping, but RoboVac 11S still offers more than expected at this price.
SpecificationsSmart Home Compatibility: No | Compatible Surfaces: hardwood floors to medium-pile carpets | Bin Capacity: 600 ml | Suction: 1300pa | Size: 17.38 x 13.71 x 4.73 inches| Weight: 5.73 pounds
- Slim design
- Large dust box for such a small device
- Decent battery life
- No mobile app
- Uses the older bounce navigation technology
Eufy’sBoostIQRoboVac is one of the most advanced, affordable smart vacuums in the market right now. Its distinctive slim design allows it to go below low couches and stands, while the drop-sensing technology ensures it does not fall of edges and stairs. For such a small device, a suction of 1300Pa is actually quite impressive. The suction is great for low to medium dense carpets, and it can amp up the fan if it goes over thick carpets. It has a 0.6L dustbin, large for its size, but you’ll still have to replace it after two or three operations.
Of course, at this price, you expect some caveats! Although the robot is not noisy at all, it is quite slow. In addition, instead of smart mapping, Eufy decided to go with the older bounce navigation. It still has modern sensors, such as infrared and proximity, but there’s no guarantee that RoboVac 11S will actually get to every part of the surface. In addition, it might get stuck in some corners. The bounce navigation is also a reason why the robot is so slow.
Some people don’t like phone apps and would rather just plug in the device and get down to business. But for a smart robot vacuum, we can argue that a mobile app would be welcomed by all. Eufy doesn’t seem to think so, or perhaps couldn’t pack mobile phone connectivity into this budget. You get a remote, which can be used to set time or certain modes.
iRobot Roomba 694
Verdict: Best Under $300
iRobot’s Roomba 694 offers double-shape brushes, excellent navigation, and Alexa or Hey Google compatibility at a very reasonable price. You can create cleaning schedules through the mobile app, plus this robot is smart enough to detect certain areas as more worthy of attention. This means Roomba 694 is particularly adept at handling pet shedding, pollen deposits, and high-traffic areas. All these capabilities seem even more impressive when you look at the price.
SpecificationsSmart Home Compatibility: Alexa, Google Assistant | Compatible Surfaces: hard floors and carpets| Bin Capacity: 350 ml | Suction: Not specified by manufacturer | Size: 13.4 x 13.4 x 3.54 inches | Weight: 6.8 pounds
- Zone-based cleaning allows it to tackle high-traffic areas
- Multi-surface brushes enhance cleaning performance
- Voice commands through Alexa and Hey Google
- No mapping
- Small dustbin
iRobot Roomba 694 offers a solid cleaning profile and enhances its capabilities through better navigation and mobile app connectivity. Few robots provide these features and still fall below 300$, and iRobot Roomba 694 is the best of that lot in our opinion. It has dual-shaped brushes that allow it to tackle more dense and thicker carpets. Its smart navigation also ensures it gets around objects efficiently and is more thorough.
Roomba 694 is especially great for homes with pets and specific high-dust areas. In fact, the mobile app allows you to chose modes that tackle shedding season, while its smart algorithms make it sensitive to regions with more dust and debris so that the robot can visit those areas more. This means it is better adapted to handling shedding, pollen deposition, and high-traffic areas. The smartphone app can also be used to control its operation and create weekly or daily cleaning schedules.
Roborock E4 Robot Vacuum and Mop
Verdict: Best Under $400
Roborock’s E4 offers strong suction, a large dustbin, and excellent navigation features, making cleaning efficient and thorough. The integrated mop can be used simultaneously with the vacuuming. This robot also connects to Alexa via WiFi, or you can use the phone app to completely control it remotely. You can set schedules, monitor cleaning progress, customize suction strength, or chose pre-installed modes through the app.
SpecificationsSmart Home Compatibility: Alexa | Compatible Surfaces: hardwood floors and carpets | Bin Capacity: 640 ml | Suction: 2000pa | Size: 13.7 x 13.8 x 3.6 inches| Weight: 7 pounds
- More bin capacity
- Large battery allows for more surface area per charge
- Mop integrated with vacuum
- Strong suction
- Thick design, might have problems getting into low places
- Can not select specific rooms from the app
The Roborock E35 has a dual gyroscopic system along with motion-tracking sensors, which allows for logical and efficient cleaning. This smart robotic cleaner features thirteen different types of motion sensors using which the E35 can comfortably sense cliffs, avoid obstacles and collisions, as well as entanglements. These sensors also make mid-clean charging possible.
Its 5200mAh battery gives this device a runtime of 2.5 hours of uninterrupted cleaning, so if you have a larger house, you might still get away with one charge. The E4 also has a large capacity dustbin to go with this battery. Along with a powerful vacuum with suction that maxes at 2000Pa, this robot can mop simultaneously. You do not need to worry about the mop leaving puddles as it sucks in water evenly while cleaning.
You can use the phone app or Alexa to control the E4. Once your device is connected to the app, you can start, stop, schedule cleaning remotely. You can also customize the E35’s settings from the app, control direction, and check the status of its accessories. Connect the robot to the 2.4GHz channel of WiFi, and if possible, turn off the 5GHz channel during initial pairing.
Shark IQ Robot Vacuum with XL Self-Empty Base
Verdict: Best Under $500
Shark IQ Robot Vacuum offers smart navigation and mapping, an advanced mobile app, multi-shaped brushes, and a reasonable price. The multi-shaped brush roll paired with dual spinning side brushes vastly improves its cleaning compared to other models. Once the robot’s dustbin is full, it finds its way to the base to empty itself on its own, relieving you of another chore!
SpecificationsSmart Home Compatibility: Vera, Alexa, Google Assistant | Compatible Surfaces: hard floors and carpets| Bin Capacity: Bagless-holds up to 30 days of debris | Suction: Not specified by manufacturer | Size: 14.69 x 10.24 x 19.37 inches | Weight: 17.51 pounds (with base)
- Can map your house and uses smart navigation
- Bagless self-emptying base
- Compatible with Alexa and Hey Google
- The battery could have been larger
Shark’s IQ Robot Vacuum is one of the more high-end models available right now, and the fact that it comes under 500$ is pretty amazing. It has a bagless base, which also charges the device. Once the dustbin is full, this smart robot vacuum cleaner will find its way to the charging station, and the bin will empty itself to a bagless base. The emptying process is quite loud, though! Once a month you’ll have to empty the base. It also has a multi-surface brush roll that can methodically clean most hardwood floors. In addition to the dual spinning side brushes that suck debris inward, Shark’s Robot Vacuum has enough suction power to ensure larger particles are sucked in from the floor and on thick carpets.
Shark IQ uses advanced navigation and mapping techniques to find its way around your house. Modern navigation allows it to go around in straight lines, remember where it has been, and ensure that no spot is left unattended. In addition, this smart robotic cleaner learns about your home’s design as it moves around, creating a virtual map in its memory to become more and more efficient. You can monitor the self-improving map and the vacuuming progress through the phone app.
The mobile app is the primary control for this device. You can adjust suction power, set up pre-installed modes, and target certain areas of your home through the app. The app also allows you to divide your home’s map into sections such as kitchen and living room and then instruct the Shark IQ robot to go to those areas. In addition, you can also set up daily and weekly cleaning schedules.
iRobot Roomba i7+(7550)
Verdict: Best High-End Smart Robot Vacuum
Roomba i7+ is a self-changing vacuum robot that has smart navigation, automatic mapping, and wireless WiFi connectivity. The powerful vacuum suction makes it a great vacuum for many types of floors, while its low profile helps it get into tight spaces. The i7+ can be controlled through a mobile phone app, which also allows you to set up cleaning schedules.
SpecificationsSmart Home Compatibility: Vera, Alexa, Google Assistant | Compatible Surfaces: hardwood floors and carpets| Bin Capacity: Automatic disposal for up to 60 days | Suction: Not specified by manufacturer | Size: 13.34 x 13.34 x 3.63 inches| Weight: 7.44 pounds
- Can self-change dustbins
- It is not as noisy as other self-changing models
- Excellent navigation and can map your home as well
- Low profile helps it get into narrower places
- Performance is not the same in corners
- Relatively expensive compared to other robot vacuums
iRobot Roomba i7+ comes with a disposal station that can be plugged into any socket. Its AllergenLock dirt bin can hold up to 2 months of hair, dirt, and dust and comes with 4 layers of anti-allergen material. When the robot’s dust bin is full, it returns to its stations where the dustbin is replaced, and the robot can charge itself too. This smart robot vacuum cleaner comes with two rubber brushes that won’t get entangled with hair and adjust their position to stay in constant contact with the surface they are working on.It also has a low profile which is great for getting into tight spaces but is a problem while climbing.
Compared to the Roomba 600 series, this vacuum can deliver up to 10 times the air power. Its powerful lifting suction and dual multi-surface rubber brushes help it pull dirt and debrief from hardwood floors and really get into the fabrics for carpets. The rubber brushes also ensure the carpet’s texture isn’t ruined when it’s sucking the dirt out of it!
Another impressive feature of the Roomba i7 is its detailed navigation abilities. The Imprint Smart Mapping allows it to learn your home’s map and adapt to it. Its iAdapt 3.0 technology, as well as vSLAM navigation, allows the i7 to capture accurate measurements of your home. This results in optimized coverage. Since the maps are stored, the robot does not need to be picked up and placed anywhere. It can also learn from your cleaning habits and adapt to your preferences using built-in AI algorithms. All remote control is done via WiFi.
How to determine the best smart vacuum for your home
To determine the best smart robot vacuum for you, you need to first analyze the vacuuming needs of your home. You will need to consider what smart home system you are using or plan to use such as Google Home or Alexa, your floor type, your allergy status, and the presence of pets in your home. These factors will determine the kind of features you should be looking for when shopping for a smart robot vacuum.
Smart home system
Smart robot vacuum cleaners are compatible with Smart home assistants/hubs usually have WiFi connectivity and are more expensive than their remote-controlled counterparts. Most smart devices use 2.4GHz WiFi, so make sure you have enough bandwidth in that channel on your router. Although there are devices that connect with smart home hubs, such as Smarthings or Tuya, smart home connectivity is usually offered through compatibility with voice assistants such as Alexa or Hey Google. These assistants are then connected to other smart home devices or a smart home hub to create an interconnected network where you can create routines and personalize your home’s environment.
Size of your home
The size of your home primarily affects two features of your robot vacuum, bin capacity, and battery life. Most robots can return to their charge station on their own, but if your home is big and you have only one station, a lot of time will be wasted just going back and forth. But if you have a smaller home, you can even get a manually charging bot to cover your vacuuming needs.
The dustbin is another thing to consider. How quickly a dustbin fills depends on how quickly dust and debris accumulate, but if you have a larger home, you might need to replace or empty the bin more than once a day. You can get a self-emptying robot and set up multiple stations across your house, but keep in mind that’ll up run costs.
Some smart vacuums work well on both hard floors and carpets, while others are more specific. You should also consider the thickness and density of the carpet. Manufacturers sometimes tag their device as good for low to medium carpets, which means they’ll do a good enough job on most common carpets, but thick or dense carpets might be a problem. Cleaning rugs and carpets also take more battery charge compared to hard floors. Marble floors are usually not a problem for vacuums that can take on hardwood floors, but some devices are more adept at cleaning marble or tiles. Check with the manufacturer’s website, and read reviews like ours to get more information.
Pets that shed (such as dogs and cats)
If you have pets, especially ones with furry coats, a considerable part of your robot’s capacity will be spent on collecting hair follicles. The shedding season can be especially tough. To tackle this, some robot vacuums are marketed as good for shedding. These devices usually have better brushing technology to avoid getting hair stuck in them. They also have better and more uniform suction power and larger dustbins. Nowadays, manufacturers add a “shedding mode” to their smartphone apps, which customizes your bot to catch hair more efficiently.
The most obvious factor to consider is your budget. Less expensive devices usually do not have smart connectivity to phones and voice assistants and also use simpler navigation. There are inexpensive machines that are powerful and can handle all types of floors, but their battery time might be less. In short, if your budget is less, you might have to settle without one or two features, but you can still find a decent bot! The rule is, the less money you spend, the more time you’ll have to give to the machine’s maintenance (charging, emptying, etc.).
A good vacuum requires enough suction power to get smaller and larger particles. Good suction power is especially important for carpets, where dust particles and debris might have settled in deep or might be stuck. Some bots automatically detect a carpet and amp up their motors to provide more suction. Something around 1500-2500 Pa is generally considered good for homes in the current market. In short, when you’re buying a robot vacuum or just any vacuum, keep an eye out for its suction power (usually in Pascals).
Almost all bots are powered by batteries. If you’ve got a manually charging device, battery life is important because it affects how much time you spend maintaining the bot. The size of your home also affects battery life. If you buy a self-charging station, battery life becomes a bit less important, but it is still a factor. A smaller battery would mean that your bot will have to return to its station more and hence take longer to vacuum your house. If the home is larger, you might even need to get multiple charging bases. So do consider the number of ampere-hours a robot has in it when you’re buying a device.
The air goes through a filter, and while robots are getting more and more efficient at transferring debris and hair to the bin, you will still need to clean the filter from time to time. Hair follicles are especially prone to get entangled in the filter, which affects both suction and filtration. Some manufacturers sell their own cleaning kits. After a few months of use, it’s better to open up the robot and see how clean the filter is, giving you an idea of how often you need to clean it.
Smart home robots offer various features, such as self-charging, self-emptying, smart assistant connectivity, and detailed mobile apps. Before you buy a device, make sure you’ve taken the factors we mentioned into consideration.