The popular Roomba robot vacuum has a new trick: mopping. iRobot's Roomba Combo j7 Plus is the first model built for homes with carpets, rugs and hardwood or tile floors, and it can tell the difference between the two so as not to get water all over your carpet, the company announced Tuesday.
However, you'll have to pay for those smarts: The Roomba Combo j7 Plus will retail for $1,099, far more expensive than our other picks for(though none of those include a built-in mop). It's available for presale today on , and will ship starting Oct. 4.
I got a first look at the Combo j7 Plus in New York City earlier this month. In a demo in a hotel conference room, I watched as it mopped the hardwood floor, and then retracted its mop arms as it lifted itself up onto a carpet and began vacuuming, leaving the carpet dry. It could then travel back to its base and, like other recent Roomba models,into the base.
It was impressive, and I could see how it might be useful in particular for apartments or to keep on a busy main floor of a home -- especially compared to the previous option from iRobot, which was to purchase two devices, ato do the vacuuming and a $499 to do the mopping.
And iRobot says that unlike other 2-in-1s, the Combo j7 Plus will vacuum carpets and rugs first, and then vacuum and mop hard floors at the same time, cleaning the area in a single job. But would it be useful enough to justify the $1,099 price tag, particularly when there are otherfor far less (though arguably with less advanced features)? We'll have a better sense once we've had a chance to run some more exhaustive comparison tests with devices like those.
The Combo j7 Plus runs with iRobot OS 5 and its Precision Vision Navigation system (which includes a camera and sensors that help it see and identify objects around it). It can identify more than 80 household objects and clean around them, including litter boxes, toilet bowls and dishwashers, according to the company. You can also pair it with your voice assistant (it understands 600 voice commands) to direct it to clean specific rooms, or customize the clean (like which rooms should be mopped and vacuumed or just one or the other) on the iRobot Home app.
If you're looking for a robot vacuum that is not a Roomba, we've tested the.