Robotic vacuums are becoming very popular items. What’s not to love about a machine that does a tedious chore with very little human intervention? Well, “very little” is the key phrase. There are several manufacturers to choose from and each has several models all requiring different amounts of help. I took a close look at the Neato Robotics XV-12 Automatic Vacuum Cleaner and this is what I found.
Neato Robotics XV-12 Automatic Vacuum Cleaner
While the industry leading iRobot brand of Best car vacuum uses a nearly random method of covering your floor, Neato has developed a more intelligent method with their Room Positioning System (RPS). RPS uses a laser based vision system to map your room and the obstacles in it. This map is then used to plot the most efficient pattern to cover it, updating the map all the time for new obstacles that may have entered. This system allows the XV-12 to mark exactly where it left off if it has to return to the base to charge before finishing the room. The map also marks doorways so the vacuum can move on to the next room when it finishes one.
The XV-12 adjusts itself automatically when moving from hard floors to a rug or carpeted area. It also utilizes a bagless dust bin so there are no expensive bags to purchase.
The more efficient travel pattern saves battery power over the blindly random pattern of competing models and Neato wisely diverts this savings to the vacuum itself. It uses an compression impeller design that allows it to generate higher powered suction than other brands and actually competes with high end uprights on cleaning efficacy.
Features and Specifications
- Room Positioning System to intelligently plot the most effective pattern to thoroughly clean the room.
- It uses an advanced vacuum system to deliver enough suction to really clean that floor or carpet.
- It intelligently returns to its base if it is in need of charging and when the job is complete.
- It features a large dust bin for less emptying and more vacuuming.
The XV-12 has good but not stellar reviews. It was rated with a perfect five stars by 55% of reviewers and 73% gave it at least four stars. Praise was given for how effective it was at cleaning all different floor types. It moved from hard floors such as hardwood, laminate, or vinyl to carpet or area rugs and back again without missing a beat.
Although there is a more expensive model designed for pet owners, the consensus was that this one worked very well on pet hair and cat litter and nearly everyone claiming experience with competing models liked the XV-12’s cleaning pattern better.
There were complaints about it not getting right up against the walls or in the corners very well but I have trouble with those areas using a standard upright as well so I can’t really expect perfection from this little robot.
Others complained that the battery didn’t last as long as they thought it should before it had to be replaced, but I don’t see that as being Neato’s issue. It is a problem with our need for battery power outpacing the technology to provide it.
While I would prefer to see a higher percentage of five star reviews, the ratings are pretty good. I like the more intelligent aspects of the Neato Robotics XV-12 Automatic Vacuum Cleaner over its competitors and think it would fit right into nearly anybody’s cleaning routine.