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ILife vs. Roomba – A comparison of the two robot vacuum cleaners

Robot vacuum cleaners have made our lives a whole lot easier. They keep our homes clean, require minimal supervision and are often reasonably priced. We can easily schedule the cleaning routine before we leave for work and by the time we get back, the robot vacuum cleaner would have spotlessly cleaned the floors. They are good at dealing with carpets, hardwood floors and even pet hairs, making these cleaners quite popular among today’s masses.

However, there are so many different varieties and brands to choose from that it becomes increasingly difficult to make the right pick. To make your job easier, we have provided a brief overview of two of the most popular robot vacuum cleaner brands – ILife and Roomba.  Hopefully, by the end of this article, you will have a clear idea of which smart cleaner you want for your floors. So, let’s get started!


When we go to a market to buy something, one of the most important parameters that we look at is pricing. After all, the thing we buy needs to be in our budget. The same philosophy holds good for robot vacuum cleaners too.

If you are looking for a robovac which is affordably priced, then you will be better off with ILife’s range of robot vacuum cleaners. ILife robot vacuum cleaners are highly affordable, starting at just $100 and going up to $320. It is worth mentioning that its most expensive robovac in the market right now is the ILife A8 cleaner which is priced at $319.99.

On the other hand, the most basic Roomba model – Roomba 614 – starts at $299.99. As you move up in the series to the latest Roomba 960 and Roomba 980, you can expect to pay anywhere between $700 – $900. Of course, these prices will bring you highly advanced features like WiFi control and custom cleaning preferences. However, if the price is the biggest factor for you, then ILife is your best bet.

Vacuum Technology

You can have the most expensive robot vacuum cleaner in the world but if it isn’t good at doing its job, then it is simply not worth it. When choosing a robovac between Roomba and ILife, you need to consider their suction power and vacuum technology.

All Roomba models are equipped with patented three-stage cleaning technology which basically involves loosening, lifting, and pulling the dirt. Its latest models – starting from Roomba 890 and going all the way up to Roomba 980 – have a suction power of up to 5 times their predecessors. In simpler terms, they are far more powerful than the previous models in the series. All models are equipped with multi-surface brushes which help the cleaners get rid of dirt, dust, and pet hair effectively.

ILife models also employ three-stage cleaning. Additionally, they come with four cleaning modes – Auto, Edge, Spot, and Max. As the names suggest, these modes, when activated, focus on only one particular task at hand. For example, if you select the ‘Spot’ mode, then the ILife vacuum cleaner will slowly clean one particular spot.

And before we forget, the ILife V series cleaners come with wet mopping mode. Yes, that’s right – this range of cleaners is equipped with a small water tank and mop cloth to clean the surface thoroughly. It is interesting to note that none of the Roomba models presently offer this feature.

Navigation Systems

Roomba robot vacuum cleaners have got significantly better navigation systems than their ILife peers. This is one of the reasons why Roomba models are often priced on the higher side.

Roomba robovacs are armed with state-of-the-art sensors and software which help the cleaners navigate and move around the house efficiently. These sensors ensure that the cleaners don’t run into furniture or fall off the stairs. The higher models – particularly Roomba 960 and 980 – are equipped with intelligent sensors and camera which map the house thoroughly for a better view and coverage.

On the other hand, the navigation system with ILife depends on the model you choose. Since they are on the lower end of the price spectrum, it makes sense that their navigation system isn’t as advanced as Roomba’s. However, these cleaners will still get the job done without falling off the stairs or running into your furniture. They operate primarily on pre-selected cleaning modes rather than visual mapping. In other words, it is quite automatic instead of trying to adapt to its surroundings.

Battery Life

With the sole exception of Roomba 980, that can run up to 120 minutes on a single charge, all other Roomba models have a run time of fewer than 75 minutes per charge. This is because they still employ nickel metal hydride batteries which are not as long lasting as lithium-ion batteries.

As you may have guessed, ILife uses lithium-ion batteries for all its models and consequently, they are capable of running for a long time on a single charge. In fact, their higher-end models – ILife A8 and V8 – are equipped with 2,600 mAH batteries. Therefore, estimated run-time can be up to 130 minutes, which for its price range, is definitely quite brilliant!

Final Thoughts

Between Roomba and ILife, ILife takes the cake for being reasonably priced and highly affordable. However, its navigation technology may not be up to the standards as some may seek but nonetheless, ILife models are quite good at what they do. On the other hand, Roomba has a better brand history and have been on the market for quite some time. The name itself is synonymous with robot vacuum cleaners and the brand is quite trustworthy. At the end of the day, it is your decision as to whether you need a better price or superior qualities.