Are you only satisfied with having the best Roomba available? We’ve looked into the high end ranges of the iRobot robot vacuums to find out which one is the best.
These are the most technologically advanced models, with great overall performance and some really cool specs. It wasn’t an easy task, but we’ve gathered useful data so you can make an informed decision. Keep reading to know more.
Let’s start by looking at the main difference between the Roomba 980 and the Roomba 981 and between the Roomba i7 and the Roomba i7+
Regarding the 980 vs 981, the only difference is the colour. For this analysis we’ll focus on the 981 model. As for the i7 vs i7+, the latter includes the Home Base charging station, so we’ll only mention the i7.
1) The iAdapt 3.0 Navigation technology
If you like order at home, then you should look at how these Roombas move. Both models use vSLAM technologyto understand their position, while creating visual references to avoid obstacles and enter rooms, thanks to the built-in camera. But while the 981 uses the iAdapt 2.0 version, the i7 has the new iAdapt 3.0. The new version adds learning abilities to the robot, in an AI kind of approach, for improved movement and a smoother cleaning experience.
2) Interactive smart mapping and memory
These robot vacuums create maps while they’re cleaning your house, so they can know where they are and where they’ve been, but the Roomba i7 is the only one of the two that can save up to 10 interactive maps in the mobile app.
3) How can you personalise the cleaning sessions?
You can use the interactive maps generated by the i7 to manage the cleaning sessions, picking the order of the rooms or denying access to specific areas. With the 981, this option isn’t available.
4) Automatic Dirt Disposal
If you have a Clean Base – iRobot’s discharge station – and you connect it to the Roomba i7, you’ll avoid having to empty the bin every time it’s full. The robot will do that for you. The Roomba 981, on the other hand, lacks compatibility with Clean Base, so if you are looking for a more autonomous robot, the i7 should be your choice.
5) How much volume capacity do they have?
The Roomba 981 wins this particular battle with a 600 ml bin, against the 400 ml of the Roomba i7.
6) “Power Boost” mode
This special mode is particularly useful if you have rugs or especially dirty areas, because it allows the robot vacuum to use more power to clean those specific zones. The i7 does not have Power Boost, so the 981 might be a better option if this is something you think will help.
7) How long does the battery last?
There is a big gap in terms of what these two robots can last while vacuuming. The 981 has a battery duration of 120 minutes, while the i7 only lasts for 75 minutos before it goes back to Home Base to recharge.
8) Price differences
The less evolved Roomba 981 is cheaper than the Roomba i7.
And what’s similar between the Roomba i7 and the Roomba 981?
1) The suction power
Both the Roomba i7 and the Roomba 981 have 10 times the suction power of the Series 600 Roombas (the base reference for iRobot).
2) Braava compatibility
They can work with a Braava jet mop robot, to combine floor cleaning and washing.
3) App and WiFi connection
Just grab your phone and control your Roomba. With an intuitive app and internet connection, it’s easy to start, pause and stop any action, as well as schedule cleanings and check the cleaning history of your robot.
4) Voice control
If your phone is in the other room or if you want to impress your guests, just say the magic words and your virtual assistant (Alexa or Google Home) will command your Roomba for you. The set up is easy and quick, and you’ll have even more control.
5) Aeroforce 3-stage Cleaning System
This system consists of multi-surface brushes that lift and remove even the toughest dirt, while the suction power takes care of collecting all of it into the bin. Both these Roombas have it.
6) Recharge and Resume
This feature greatly improves the effectiveness of these robot vacuums, because running low on battery doesn’t mean leaving the house as it is anymore. With the Roomba i7 or the 981, you’ll know that your house will be fully clean, because they retreat to charge and then resume cleaning where they’ve left off.
7) Dirt Detect Technology
With acoustic and visual sensors, it is easy for these robots to find the areas of your house that need cleaning the most. That’s what the Dirt Technology does and it helps the Roombas with their tasks, by prioritising dirtier areasbefore moving to others with less particles.
So, what’s the final verdict: Roomba 981 or Roomba i7?
One tough decision. The Roomba 981, as well as the 980, is much more limited when it comes to smart decisions – it doesn’t move as well as the i7, it can’t save interactive maps and it lacks personalisation of the cleaning tasks. But, when it comes to cleaning, it’s a beast, with great suction power, Power Boost mode, a long lasting battery and a big bin. Also, the price is substantially lower when compared to the i7.
But if you’re a techie and you want to add intelligence to a cleaning robot with tremendous power, the i7 is for you. With iAdapt 3.0, it moves smoothly and systematically. It creates and saves interactive maps, to help you decide how to clean best. And you can make it even smarter if you add a Clean Base to your home.
In short, if you want technology and smart cleaning, choose the i7. If you prefer to have a more powerful robot for deeper cleaning, then the 981 is the best option.