iRobot Roomba 980 review (Vac To The Future!)

IRobot’s Roomba vacuums have been around long enough now that they should really be running the world – or at the very least cleaning it. When they aren’t spinning tunes anyway

We may not quite be at that point but the Roomba 980 is wasted on maintaining your flooring of muck.

And no, we do not just mean placing it in charge of the songs to your next house party. Or becoming a mini Segway for the snappily-dressed pets.

It has serious brainpower, plays nicely with your smart phone, and won’t chuck itself down your stairs like a lemming, either.


A robot vac that can not keep on top of your home’s dust and grime is simply fit for the scrap heap, but don’t be fooled – .

That shouldn’t really be a surprise, though – it costs an $1250, placing it pretty much on par with Dyson’s 360 Eye.

Installation takes over a few minutes, and that is only if you fight with the fundamentals cardboard packaging. Get it stick it on its charging dock, and press Start. That is pretty much all you need to do – it’ll be scuttling within seconds across your floors, making a map of every chamber thus it won’t always butt your furniture as it goes.

It does to a cushioned front bumper, when it will hit anything, and you can be confident it won’t make the identical mistake a second time.

Regardless of it manages to cover the floor pretty well. It is set-up for a number of surfaces, raising its sucking power when on rugs and carpets, skating over floors and using its own retractable brush to perform the boards.

There’s a built-in’cliff detector’ so it will not go flying off the top of drops or almost any staircases.

Watching it is hypnotic. It would be jazz rather than big band if there was a soundtrack to its moves, although there’s some kind of algorithm within it that governs its path.

Given that you’ll be transfixed by it the first few times it does its own thing, it’s a wonderful bonus that it looks rather handsome, too — like a puck made by a comedic.

It is not all good news, though. Deep corners a zone brushed at front are much made by that round shape. It may have a low profile, but seemed afraid of the dark – or it refused to proceed under some furniture that was low.

It was given by thick rugs the runaround too, ignoring the rest of the room and convincing the detectors.


More positively, the iRobot app is excellent — you can use it to schedule up to seven cleans or manually start it running once you’re out of the home.

The’locate’ function is neat — it will tell you if it’s sitting on its dock or should be emptied. It’s not smart enough to perform the last of those, but it can only be a matter of time.

It comes with a couple connected’virtual wall barriers’ which keep it from penetrating your pets, or prevent it.


As far as robot vacuums go, the Roomba 980 is excellent. It does not make noise, looks fantastic, disturbs quite thoroughly, and is super-simple to use. Sense or suction of leadership might not fit the all-seeing 360 Eye of Dyson, but it comes near.

You will want to keep a close watch on it for the first few outings away from the charging dock, in case an errant sock or even dangerously low coffee table decides to throw a spanner in the works, and no-one’s develop an answer for the whole”emptying it when it’s full” item, but nevertheless: it will allow you to lock your usual vac in the cupboard until it is time to get serious spring cleaning.

Once it is learned the lay of the property (or the place of the living space, instead ) you can basically leave it to get on with business.

See — it should totally be running the entire world .