Neato robot vacuum will not tread on dog's bowl

August 2, 2018 by Nancy Owano, Phys.org
Credit: Neato Robotics

Want to bring personalized robot cleaning to the next level? The promotional message from California-based Neato Robotics believes it has the answer. Neato has announced that its robot vacuum has some updates.

This is all about Neato's D7 Connected vacuum, set to perform household chores quite intelligently. The company was born at Stanford's annual Entrepreneur's Challenge.

Who is Neato after, for customers? Neato CEO Matt Petersen said some people have large homes to clean, and have to think about getting the job done on more than one .

Brian Bennett is senior editor for appliances at CNET. He said the software upgrade from Neato packs enough smarts to cover "up to three levels of a multistory house."

The updates are called Multiple Floor Mapping and Neato Quick Boost. The robot can charge and clean the whole home automatically.

(1) Neato Multiple Floor Plan Mapping and (2) Quick Boost (Charging on the Neato Botvac D7)—what do the words even mean? "Multiple floor mapping" is for anyone with more than one floor plan in a single home.

So, the software enables mapping and cleaning across multiple floors. The device can create—and remember— separate floor plans in the same home.

Credit: Neato Robotics

How? CNET made reference to "an advanced laser navigation system," where the system can go to work to map floors and rooms as well as avoid objects. The user can send the device out of survey floor plans, and then use those plans to draw no-go areas. Evan Ackerman in IEEE Spectrum said the mapping occurs with the use of a "spinning lidar sensor."

Actually, BGR found the navigation part to be a worthy plus. Chris Mills: "Its stand-out feature, compared to the other models, is the ability to map out your house and then add virtual 'no-go' zones, which you can use to make it avoid pet bowls, cables, or even restrict it to cleaning one room without virtual or physical barriers." Ackerman similarly explained how Neato's app allows you to interact with the maps, in drawing "no-go" lines for areas that you want to be off-limits to the robot.

Another attractive feature about the robot is the way it saves on efficiency and charging-as-needed. CNET expanded on this.

"If the robot needs a recharge while cleaning, it will return to base. It'll fill its battery just enough to finish its task, not perform a complete recharge. To do that, the software must calculate and balance multiple factors. These include projected run time, expected time to vacuum the rest of the floor, current battery level, charge rate and so on."

That's smart. Adrian Willings in Pocket-lint also commented on the charging mode. The robot cleaner can actually work out "how much power it needs to finish cleaning an area and return to a dock for a quick boost of power before continuing on."

"This software upgrade marks a significant step forward at Neato in our commitment to personalized cleaning," Neato CEO Matt Petersen said in a press release.

More information: www.neatorobotics.com/

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