If you’re Apple all the way and have invested heavily in a home ecosystem that’s centred on your iPhone, it can feel as though your choices are limited when it comes to compatible smart home devices that Apple itself doesn’t produce.
Take robot vacuums, for example. Voice control is one of the great features of newer robot vacuums. There’s nothing quite as satisfying as asking your robot to go and clean the kitchen – without lifting a finger yourself. And what if you could be even more specific and ask it just to vacuum under the kitchen table, or mop the bathroom floor?
While Alexa and Google Assistant users are well served by the majority of brands, Siri users have much less choice. Although there are good robot vacuums that offer Siri voice support, buyers will find themselves limited to a couple of brands.
But there is another option. There’s a way for Apple aficionados to be able to use voice commands on their robot vacuum – and it doesn’t involve Siri at all.
ECOVACS’s Flagship robot vacuum, the X1 OMNI, can give Apple users another choice. And now is the time to buy, with ECOVACS offering a huge £600 discount on the X1 OMNI for Amazon’s Prime Early Access sale on 11 and 12 October.
The X1 OMNI has a first-of-its-kind inbuilt voice assistant, YIKO, that’s ready to use straight from the box. There’s no need to connect to another platform or app. What’s more, YIKO uses the latest in natural voice recognition technology to parse and respond to dozens of requests.
Used in combination with ECOVACS’ editable, in-app 3D technology, which allows the user to add specific pieces of furniture to their home map, you can even give targeted commands, like: ”Okay YIKO, vacuum under the kitchen table.” And the X1 OMNI will go and do just that.
As its name suggests, the X1 OMNI brings together all the key features available in robot vacuums right now. Its 5,000PA suction is best in class and will be effective on both hard flooring and carpets. Plus, the surface detection feature will identify what kind of surface it’s on and adjust suction automatically, saving battery life for when it’s needed. Although, as it has a maximum battery life of 4 hours and 20 minutes, it’ll probably run out of floor before it needs to recharge.
But it’s hard to have proper, hands-off cleaning if you have to empty the bin each time. When the X1 OMNI returns to its charging station, its bin is automatically emptied by suction. Not only does this free users from the unpleasant scrabble of clearing the onboard bin, but it’s a huge plus for allergy sufferers, who won’t have to come into contact with dirt and dust at all. The bag inside the station will only need to be swapped out every one to two months.
That means you can go into the app, set up a cleaning schedule and let the X1 OMNI get on with a daily vacuum – or even a more complicated programme of cleaning individual rooms at different times. It’s easy to designate no-go zones as well: it’s just a matter of selecting an area on the map, and users can ensure that the X1 OMNI will stay out of entire rooms, or even just a section of a room, where there may be papers out, or clothes, or kids’ toys.
The X1 OMNI doesn’t just vacuum. It mops as well, and not in the slightly disappointing way that most hybrid robot vacuums do. Often, it’s a case of dragging a damp cleaning pad across the floor, which means that robots can’t exert enough pressure to offer a deep clean. But the X1 OMNI’s dual spinning mop system is a new design that gives floors a proper going over.
And when the floors are shining and the robot returns to the dock, it’ll automatically be washed and dried, ready for its next trip out – another job you won’t have to worry about.
There are some other unusual features as well. The X1 OMNI’s high-quality onboard camera will allow you to monitor cleaning when you’re away, or check in on your pets and see that all is well at home.
Both the robot and its auto-empty station were designed in collaboration with the Danish Jacob Jensen studio, proponents of modern, minimalist design, so the X1 OMNI is a great option for design-conscious Apple users.
If you’re tempted, the time to buy is now. It will be discounted by a massive £600 from its original price of £1,499 to just £899 on Amazon. Between 8 and 10 October, you can get the full £600 discount by adding the code X1SAVE200 to the existing £400 discount. During Amazon’s Prime Early Access sale on 11 and 12 October, you can just click to buy.