It’s been two decades since robotic vacuum cleaners first burst onto the market. In that time the technology behind them has improved significantly, gradually moving from a novelty item seen in viral videos to a more reliable product that delivers impressive convenience for the user.
In the latest offering from Anker’s sub-brand eufy, the company promised to improve performance even further by “doubling down” on power.
The Robovac X8 model has a twin turbine that provides much stronger suction compared to the manufacturer’s predecessors. It also precisely maps out your home and allows for remote use, improving efficiency.
Bunch Of Web Sites put the new robotic vacuum through its paces.
How do I get it and what will it cost?
The Robovac X8 can be purchased directly from Anker for $799, which includes free shipping. Other retailers also stock it, including Myer.
In this review we looked at the basic X8 model. However, a hybrid version is also available at JB Hi-Fi for $1299.95. That model includes a 2-in-1 vacuum and mop.
How does it work?
The X8 is easy to use and once it’s quickly setup with the charging station, can get to work on your floors.
It uses laser navigation to get around your home, mapping out rooms and obstacles as it travels along.
To operate the vacuum you’ll need to download the ‘EufyHome’ app on your smartphone, which pairs with the Robovac through your home Wifi.
In its initial clean, it took about an hour for the vacuum to navigate through the whole home (we tested it out in a two-bedroom apartment), learning its surroundings with a few bumps into obstacles along the way.
By the end of the first run, a rough looking map appears on your app and you can begin using some of the very helpful features that go hand-in-hand with the memorised layout.
The X8 did struggle to recognise when there were slight clearances between the carpet and door frame in the bedrooms, meaning it didn’t establish a clear border line for that area on the map.
But for this minor dilemma, the app thankfully provides an option to add a ‘virtual boundary’ line where the vacuum can’t travel past.
You can also add ‘no-go zones’ for any sites that are too tricky. For us, it was a bunch of cables in a power point we didn’t want it going near. Designating that area as a no-go zone prevented the possibility of the brushes getting caught.
Our favourite feature was the spot cleaning option. Which allows you to send the Robovac directly to an area where you might have had a spill.
The vacuum also learned from its mistakes each time it went on a cleaning run, sensing new barriers and border lines to add into the map.
This was impressive, as it eventually was able to zoom straight towards an area to clean without any hesitation. One particularly confident manoeuvre under the television cabinet was enough to garner a gasp of admiration from some friends who were watching.
The eufy app also includes an option to change the suction level, meaning you can opt for a quieter level or go ‘turbo’ to get the twin turbine power to its maximum level.
While this does obviously add to the noise, the strongest option would clearly deliver. The most optimal clean, leaving the floors spotless.
There’s also a handy IQ option for suction, which automatically adapts the power function dependent on the type of flooring. When we tested this out, the adjustments were minor when moving off tiles onto carpet.
The vacuum does not empty itself in the charging station like some other robot vacuums. Instead it collects dust in the base of the device. Cleaning the device and removing dust is easy, however there is no signal or alert when the catch is full. It needed emptying after about three entire cleans of the home.
Who is it good for?
As is the case for most robotic options, this vacuum cleaner is ideal for anyone without much time on their hands who would like some extra help in day-to-day cleaning tasks.
While we’d still recommend you have a regular vacuum cleaner for tackling a deep clean of your home. The X8 is powerful enough to get rid of basic dust and mess.
It can tackle both carpeted and hard floors, making a seamless transition between the two. If you’re in a multi-level home, the app can also save several maps for each level of your home. So you don’t need to worry when carrying it up the stairs.
While this reviewer doesn’t have pets, the powerful turbines also provide a great solution for getting rid of nuisance dog or cat hair. The maker even promises it can clean “up to 57.6% more pet hair”. When compared to single turbine engines, however we couldn’t verify this claim.
What we think
This is a great robotic vacuum cleaner that takes care of a regular chore so you can focus on other routines.
One of the biggest downsides we found was the map not saving properly in the app. Occasionally, if the Robovac was sent to do a clean of the entire home. The map would suddenly disappear and we were back to square one with setting boundaries and no-go zones. It didn’t appear possible to recover the previously saved map.
So is it worth the cost? For all the satisfaction of having a robot help you out when you’ve just spilled that rice on the floor. It won’t be your overall solution to keeping your home clean.
If you don’t already own a full-powered manual vacuum cleaner, we’d recommend you invest in that first.
The Robovac, after all, is a supplementary addition to your cleaning arsenal and won’t be enough. When you want to thoroughly go through the entire property with a fine tooth comb.
But when you do want that extra help, the X8 is a superb option that brings powerful technology and a personal touch by getting to know the ins and outs of your home.
Eufy provided this publisher with a device for testing purposes. This did not affect our views on the device, and our review remains independent of the manufacturer.