Top critical review
"A convenient, unessential convenience"
Reviewed in the United States on May 17, 2020
My wife wanted this to keep up with day-to-day sweeping of our first floor, which consists entirely of tile or wood floors. She sets it to run during the day. We have a relatively open floor plan and also are very diligent about not leaving things on the floor. We have no floor lamps, cords, drapes or throw rugs which will hinder it. It has free-run to do it's magic. It actually works well even around table and chair legs (it fits between all the legs) and even does a nice job around the perimeter. Now, where it can use some improvement is around the transitions. We have two wood-to-tile transitions into our kitchen. They are nothing extreme - a standard profile and not unusually high. The little booger actually scales them like a champ, but sometimes leaves a little dirt deposit where it initially ascends. I'm not sure if the bumpy transition causes dirt to come out or if its dirt that it hasn't yet sucked up that is left behind as it gets lifted off the floor. We sometimes have to do a quick dust-pan pickup at these spots (minus a star for that). By the way, when I say dirt, I'm referring to typical particles, crumbs, etc. you'd find on a floor of a house. Especially a house with a 5 year old (ie; crumbs from the following: Goldfish crackers, Doritos, Cheez-its and various other cookies, chips and crumb-inducing snacks consumed by 5 year-olds...). Once in the kitchen, it does a nice job even along the cabinet kick-plates. As for the noise level...while we run it most times when no one is home, we'll occasionally let it loose when we're upstairs for the night. It's a vacuum, remember, so expect noise. But I'd say while it's relatively loud it's less-so than a manual vacuum cleaner. I'm really amazed at how it seems to cover the entire square footage of floors - but that being said - don't expect this model to run a logical, systematic pattern - it doesn't. The analytical person I am has since come to understand it's form of logic, albeit odd. We purchased the mid-level i5 - which uses a simpler form of navigation. It will pass over areas multiple times and takes longer to complete its job. The higher-tier versions actually will perform their runs systematically, literally mapping its way through the house. We didn't want or feel the need to spend upwards of $1000+ for such a product. This one does an adequate job. Emptying the canister is pretty easy and it always finds its way back to its station. I've read that some people find a robot vacuum not worth the hassle of having to make sure the floors are obstruction-free - use that in determining if it's right for you. There's a dizzying amount of models to choose from - you can spend a few hours on iRobot's website (I suggest it so you choose the model best for you). Overall, it's an unnecessary convenience, but seems to be worth it for a two-working person household.
Update: December 2020 We typically run the unit every 2 or 3 days and recently it started to deplete its battery before it was finished (an entirely rug-free area). I believe its lack of logical navigation and constant criss-crossing uses up a portion of its run time. I'm actually a bit frustrated with it's haphazard routing. I know the higher models use true logical mapping, but as I said this convenience isn't worth a higher price tag to us. I deducted another star for the battery issue.
NOTE: I purchased this item on Amazon for full price and have no affiliation to the seller. I try to write helpful, unbiased and insightful reviews because I also read reviews prior to making my own buying decisions. I notice many reviews lack helpful information, are not well written or give poor reviews based on not reading directions, inexperience or failing to read the product details prior to purchasing. Writing valuable reviews helps pay it forward.