iRobot Roomba robot vacuums are easy to spot and come with a very distinct design that other OEMs have started adopting. We get a circular robot vacuum that goes around your house and sucks in the dust - all by itself. On paper, the iRobot Roomba 3 Plus that debuted last year, seems utilitarian as it goes around collecting various debris particles and empties the bin on its own. You can control the device via the iRobot app for Android and iPhones or even give voice commands with supported smart-speakers. However, this advanced piece of tech costs Rs 39,900 (at this point), well above the Realme TechLife Robot Vacuum Cleaner at Rs 24,999 and Anker Eufy RoboVac G30 Hybrid 2-in-1 Robot Vacuum at Rs 19,999. If you’re planning to upgrade your smart-house tech with a robot vacuum, here’s what you need to know about iRobot Roomba 3 Plus.
Before we get to the functioning part, it seems fitting to explain how the iRobot Roomba 3 Plus works. Inside the packaging, we get pretty basic accessories. There’s a two-pin power cable, two AllergenLock dirt disposal bags, and a charging dock that has a dedicated chamber where all the dust gets collected once Roomba 3 Plus is done cleaning. This dedicated chamber or iRobot’s Clean Base Automatic Dirt Disposal system comes with the ‘Plus’ variants.
The iRobot Roomba 3 Plus does not have cameras and relies on sensors to navigate your home. The company explains, “Reactive Sensor Technology tells the robot where it can and cannot reach, which means less getting stuck on furniture and more knowing where to go."
At the bottom of the circular base, there are two mechanised wheels and an additional free-wheel to help the Roomba i3 Plus move more swiftly. The edges of the robot have some kind of pressure pads since the device relies on physically bumping into surfaces to map your room. There’s also a brush at the bottom to brush out debris from small corners. And of course, there’s the “AeroForce Performance Cleaning System" that comprises dual counter-rotating extractors to break down dust particles for easier suction. You can learn more about this system in this neat video.
The setting up process of the iRobot Roomba 3 Plus is fairly easy and the iRobot app helps with all the steps. The robot works over 2.4GHz Wi-Fi signal so make sure the router is set up accordingly. Before all this, find a proper spot where the charging dock (12.2-inch W x 15.1-inch D x 19-inch H) can sit nicely without being an eye-sore.
Once the setup is complete, just open the app and select Start Cleaning’. There’s a dedicated option to empty the bin too. The company says the ‘clean base’ is designed to hold up to 60 days of dirt and debris. I will still say it is ideal to empty the dust bag once every five days. Sadly, emptying the bag is a bit cumbersome as the mouth of the bag is tiny to clean.
Ironically, the iRobot Roomba 3 Plus disperses fine dust particles while emptying the clean base.
ALSO READ: Roomba i3+ Review: Proof That Robot Vacuums Are Getting Smarter But Still Cannot Beat All Laws Of Physics
Syncing the iRobot Roomba 3 Plus with Alexa or Google Assistant speakers is again fairly simple. For Alexa Echo speakers, open the Alexa app > More > Add Device > Vacuum Cleaner > iRobot. You can use commands like, ‘Alexa, ask Roomba to start vacuuming’ or ‘Alexa, ask Roomba to pause vacuuming’. Ensure that the Alexa speaker and Roomba i3 Plus are using the same Wi-Fi network.
Overall, the iRobot Roomba 3 Plus won’t disappoint and does a decent job of cleaning. The company says it works well on carpets, which I don’t use, though it sucks debris from mats quite well. However, don’t expect any deep cleaning as the robot manages to remove surface-layer dust and hair strands.
Coming to the corners, it is a hit and miss - all depending on the placement of the furniture. Because of its wide circular design, it cannot reach all corners. I’ve used the robot in a 240 sq ft room that it manages to clean thoroughly without consuming too much battery. However, if one wants to clean an entire house (say 800 sq ft), the Roomba i3 Plus takes roughly one hour to clean that consumes most of its battery. If the battery dies in between, the robot will go back to the charging station and later resume from the spot it left.
The iRobot Roomba 3 Plus can also get stuck, and users will be required to get it out from the tangled mess. It will send you a message when that happens. The robot’s sensors make it sidestep stairs and even refrigerators. You cannot map a particular area of the house with the robot as the company reserves that feature with the higher-end iRobot Roomba 3 Plus robot vacuum.
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Users must also note that the sides and the bottom of the vacuum is prone to scratch marks as the body is made of plastic. The fabric on the top did not show any signs of tearing. Additionally, the app connectivity is not always smooth. Lastly, emptying the dirt box can be extremely noisy so make sure you’re not on an important call when the Roomba i3 Plus is done with cleaning.
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