Robot Vacuums: Roomba, Smarbo, And Now The Smartphone-Controlled RoboKing

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“Respect Explorer’s Heritage”

When did the robot-vacuum world become such a crowded space? It’s starting to sound like a monster movie: RoboKing versus Smarbo II: Electric Vuumaloo. But it makes sense, when you think about it. We already have “robots” that wash the dishes and make our coffee. Cleaning the floor is just a different set of problems for a machine to solve. And after the smash success of the Roomba, everyone wants to be the next big cleaner bot. Just last week Toshiba introduced the Smarbo, yes Smarbo, and now LG is entering the game with the RoboKing Triple Eye. Yes, the RoboKing Triple Eye.

The Roomba does its job by clever but circuitous circumvention of obstacles, but these new devices are a bit more like the Neato XV-11, which actually maps out the area and plans the best route. The Smarbo adds more sensors, and now the RoboKing brings your smartphone into the mix.

It’s come to this: you can now control your robot vacuum with your iPhone. That actually makes it double as a sort of security bot, which makes its 899,000 won (~$750) price a little more palatable. As long as your wi-fi is working, you should be able to log into the robot remotely and drive it around (at 18dB it’s quiet enough to sneak up on your cats with).

It also takes voice commands, which is pretty cool. You can tell it to stop working, go charge, or tell you the current weather. O brave new world, with such vacuums in it.

[via New Launches]