Those of you concerned about artificially intelligent robots taking over the world should really be keeping an eye on robot vacuums. I swear these things are breeding. This week, two of the big brand names in the robotic floor cleaning space announced the latest, cheaper versions of their flagship robot vacuums: Ecovacs’ $1,099 Deebot T20 Omni and Roborock’s $1,299 S7 Max Ultra.
Roborock is also adding the $899.99 Q Revo to its midrange line, which does basically all the things its flagship model does for $400 less. All three models will be available to buy later this month. Earlier this year, Ecovacs added the budget Deebot N10 Plus, T9 Plus, and T10 Omni to its line. In January, Roborock launched its S8 series featuring the S8, S8 Plus, and S8 Pro Ultra.
Confused? You should be. The hugely popular — and clearly hugely profitable — robot vacuum sector is a veritable minefield for anyone looking to buy an extra pair of robot hands to help keep their home tidy. With so many options to choose from and dozens of specs to dig through, it’s daunting. That’s why you should check out my robot vacuum buying guide for the rundown.
But I’ve yet to test all these new models, so if you’re interested in the very latest bot vac tech, here’s a look at some of the new features. And while I stand by my advice to never buy a robot vacuum unless it’s on sale, some of these new releases come with preorder sales.
Roborock’s new S7 model comes with hot air
The new Roborock S7 Max Ultra is ever so slightly different from the S7 MaxV Ultra, and it comes in white.Image: Roborock
Roborock’s new S7 Max Ultra ($1,299) is a mopping and vacuuming robot with a charging base that also empties the vacuum’s bin, refills the water tank, and washes and dries the mop with warm air. That last feature was only on the premium S8 Pro Ultra model until now and helps prevent the mop from getting smelly.
The S7 Max Ultra has lidar navigation and 5,400 Pa of suction, plus the signature feature of Roborock’s high-end models: its mop can rise up 5mm when it detects carpet. This means the S7 Max Ultra can vacuum and mop your whole house in one go.
While the mop doesn’t lift as high as the new Ecovacs Deebot T20 Omni (which reaches heights of 9mm) or as ingenious as the Roomba J7 Combo (which lifts its mop up and over the robot), it’s fine if you have low-pile carpets. Also, Roborock’s mopping tech is very good. That’s why the original S7 model is the top pick for a robot vacuum that can mop in The Verge’s buying guide (and that is a great value at $400, without the dock).
If you want a hands-free cleaning experience, the S7 Max Ultra gets you that for less than the S8 Pro Ultra or the S7 MaxV Ultra
If you want a hands-free cleaning experience, the new S7 Max Ultra is worth a look. It costs less than the S8 Pro Ultra ($1,600) and S7 MaxV Ultra ($1,400) and comes with the same hands-free charging dock (that’s what the Ultra moniker indicates) but lacks the AI vision.
Discerning the differences between these three Ultra models can be tricky. Here’s a cheat sheet, but in brief, the S8 Pro Ultra is the top-of-the-line model with the most suction power, a redesigned brush system, and a sleeker look. There are a few slight spec tweaks between the S7 Max Ultra and the S7 MaxV Ultra, but the main difference outside of the warm air is that S7 MaxV uses ReactiveAI 2.0 technology to avoid clutter in your home, whereas the new S7 Max uses Roborock’s Reactive Tech.
Roborock doesn’t make it crystal clear what the difference is here, but largely, AI-powered object avoidance generally means the robot can learn specific objects to avoid, like pet waste and socks, whereas reactive tech simply avoids any object in its path.
The Q Revo is a midrange robot with high-end features
The Q Revo is Roborock’s top-of-the-line midrange robot vac and its first mopping bot with spinning pads.Image: Roborock
Possibly the most intriguing new model is the $899.99 Roborock Q Revo. This is the top-of-the-line for Roborock’s mid-range Q series. It does everything the S7 Max Ultra does and adds a dual spinning mop system — the S7 has a single flat pad that doesn’t spin. Oscillating mop pads tend to do a better job of getting stains out.
The Q Revo can also lift up its mop when it sees carpet as well as wash and dry the mop and auto-empty the vacuum’s bin. It uses the same reactive tech obstacle avoidance (no AI) as the S7 Max. From my experience with the Q Line it seems it cuts costs by using lower-end materials and a more utilitarian form factor.
Both new Roborocks will be released on June 11th, but Roborock is running an early bird offer that gets you up to $200 off by purchasing a coupon from its site.
Ecovacs adds mop lifting to its Omni line
The T20 Omni can hot wash its mop.Image: Ecovacs
Hot on the heels of launching three new models this spring, Ecovacs adds another model to its lineup with the Deebot T20 Omni. A variant on its flagship do-everything robovac, the Deebot X1 Omni, the T20 costs $1,099 and adds the ability to lift its spinning mop heads up to 9mm. This means it’s the first Deebot that can vacuum and mop your house all in one go. This was the biggest “flaw” with the X1 ($1,549) and T10 Omni ($1,199); both require you to remove the mop pads when you wanted to also vacuum carpets.
Unlike those models, the T20 doesn’t have AI-obstacle recognition or a built-in camera you can use for monitoring your home, hence the lower price point. The T20 does add hot water mop washing to the hot air drying of the Omni range, though. All three Omnis also have the unique feature of a built-in voice assistant Yiko. The T20 will be available June 13th and will launch with a $100 discount through June 30th on Amazon and Ecovacs.com.