There are many robots that claim to be able to vacuum and mop your floors, but never to anyone’s satisfaction. For some you have to get into the system of adding a mop halfway through, for others it’s dragging a dirty pad over clean carpets. It’s a problem i robot has spent a lot of engineering resources trying to solve, saying that new Combo j7+ is the solution. Co-founder and CEO Colin Angle describes it as “the first legitimate 2-in-1 vacuuming and mopping robot ever created.”
Instead of requiring the user to make changes mid-task, the j7+ has a standard vacuum frame on top. When it’s ready, though, a pair of recessed arms pull down a mop pad placed at the top of the frame down to the floor. From there, it pulls the pad along your hard floors before pushing it back if and when it needs to cross the carpet. The user only needs to change the bag and fill with water, which can last up to 60 days at a time.
Angle and iRobot product manager Praj Dhamorikar said the idea was to make sure the mop never came into contact with soft surfaces. And that users can expect the device to do what you should expect from its description without micromanaging it. Considering the unit sits on the same footprint as the standard (poop detection) j7it required a lot of design work to squeeze all the cool new gear into the frame as well.
At the same time, iRobot wanted to showcase the power of the new iRobot OS 5.0, the latest and greatest operating system. This includes better integration with home and phone assistants like Siri and Alexa, the ability to mark more clean zones for extra vigilance and better hazard avoidance. You can also change task plans on the fly and, for example, banish your Roomba from the room where you are receiving a Zoom call. iRobot also wanted to confirm its promise to protect user data, never sell it to third parties, and that it has secured TÜV SÜD Cyber Security certification for its data hygiene.
The The Roomba Combo j7+ is available for pre-order today, and will cost $1,099 in the US, with shipping starting on October 4th. It’s available in the UK for £999, but you can also pick up a version without the Clean Base for £799, while other countries can expect it to arrive in the last quarter of 2022.
Our editorial team selects all products recommended by Engadget, regardless of our parent company. Some of our stories contain affiliate links. If you buy something through these links, we may earn an affiliate commission. All prices are correct at time of publication.