In May 2007 ILIFE was born and with it a host of new and innovative robotic vacuum cleaners. Since those early days, ILIFE has progressed and developed some amazing automatic vacuum cleaners and the V3S and A4S are no exception. With a price that is affordable to most, these intelligent vacuums make your life just that bit easier.
Since this is a comparison though, we will begin by looking at what you can expect to receive in the box with your new purchase first and then a side by side comparison of their features. I can tell you now that the Max mode of the ILIFE A4S may just swing your decision but let’s get the specs out the way!
Table of Contents
What’s in the Box?
The warranty is something that needs to be requested from the distributor and you should request it when ordering your ILIFE robotic vacuum. We have to note though that ILIFE has been impeccable with their customer service according to the reviews.
Side by Side Comparison of the ILIFE A4S and the V3S
Here are the specs of both models:
The Finer Details
At this point, we should note that ILIFE is aiming the V3S at the pet owner and the A4S is aimed at those with carpets and hard floors.
The major noticeable difference you will have seen above is the lack of a brush as part of the ILIFE V3S. That enables the automatic vacuum to be ‘almost’ completely tangle-free, but we will discuss this in further detail below.
Run-Time – Both the ILIFE A4S and the V3S have a run-time of around 120 minutes. This is pretty good considering an automatic vacuum is running for nearly 2 hours before it automatically returns to its charging station. This should cover the majority of homes, and as one reviewer wrote, she moves the ILIFE to the rooms she wants to be cleaned and then lets it do its thing!
Low Profile – the 3-inch profile of these models helps them reach further under chairs and tables, and with improved sensors, they are able to detect walls and furniture quicker than earlier models.
Mini-Room Mode – The ILIFE A4S has a mini-room function which improves efficiency and reduces run-time of the automatic vacuum. An intelligent function if you only want it to clean for a short while before going back to the home dock.
More efficiency – As ILIFE develops so too does its algorithms and the ILIFE A4S has the 2nd generation algorithm making it more efficient at cleaning rooms.
Tangle-free – This is meant for both the A4S and the V3S. The A4S has a V-shaped stiff brush roller which is ideal for thin carpets and hard flooring. The roller is designed in such a way as to avoid tangles from hair, though regular maintenance is required to ensure the brush is kept clean.
The V3S is closer to truly tangle-free as it does not have a roller but rather uses the side brushes to brush the hair, dirt and debris towards the suction of the vacuum and the particles are sucked up into the bin. There is very little for hair to get tangled on in this design, but then it is more for hard floors, so easier to collect from.
Hepa Filters – Both models come with HEPA filters, designed to improve air quality from the exhaust air that is vented through the vacuum. Upon sucking in the dust and debris, the ILIFE filters out airborne particles through a Primary filter (removing larger dust particles) and then through the HEPA Filter (removing smaller particles).
Scheduling – All scheduling is done through the use of the remotes that are supplied so you can have your automatic vacuum clean on a regular daily basis.
Mop Feature – The ILIFE V3S does have a mop feature and though I mention it here, do not think this is a ‘true’ mop feature. It is a cloth which sits at the rear of the vacuum and as it moves across the floor so it wipes too. It is not a proper mop, but may just remove some of the light dirt from the floor. It wasn’t a major selling point but rather a nice bonus.
Considerations of the ILIFE A4S and V3S
It is always worth asking yourself what your automatic vacuum cleaner will be required to do once you open the box. There is no point in purchasing the ILIFE V3S if you only have thick pile carpets in your home and then wondering why it isn’t doing its job properly.
The ILIFE A4S and V3S robotic vacuums are in the budget range too, but I wouldn’t consider their ability low. They are both more than capable of being able to perform a good thorough clean of your home. However, you will find that certain features available on more expensive models are not available on these.
Lack of WIFI – Now this is not a deal breaker for me because ILIFE supply remotes for both vacuums and this allows you to schedule and to also control your robotic vacuum with ease.
What this does mean though is that there is no way of checking an App to see current cleaning progress, history, or being able to control it through Amazon Alexa or Google Home. These are necessary if you want to create a Smart home and you may need to look at the ILIFE V7 to have those capabilities.
Lack of Virtual Wall – ILIFE has developed a virtual wall for other models that allow rooms to be blocked off from the automatic vacuum cleaner by emitting a signal to the robot not to enter. In this way, you can block off pet water bowls or an area with lots of cables or toys.
Again this can be remedied by placing physical barriers in the way while the vacuuming is going on, but it is not an ideal solution if you are running your robot while you are out.
Auto-recharge and continue – This is a feature that has been slowly developing within other robotic vacuums. Once the ILIFE A4S and V3S reach near 20% battery they will begin to search for their home base to recharge, but they will not auto start cleaning again until the next scheduled clean the following day unless instructed to via the remote.
Cleaning Pattern – The ILIFE cleaning pattern is very random. So for almost 2 hours, they will vacuum around rooms until the battery is nearly depleted. Note the A4S has a mini-room mode that allows for less time vacuuming a small space which is a great improvement and more efficient.
I always try to add a few small tips when you receive your new vacuum and here is no different as one recurring tip keeps being suggested.
Pick up your cables! It seems the A4S is particularly keen on chewing on a cable before shutting down and waiting, like a naughty pet, for you to come along and remove said cable. We know that this is a general rule for all automatic vacuums though, but be aware of it.
Those pet water bowls will get messy! Either barricade, reinforce or pick up the water bowls as these ILIFE vacuum cleaners do not appreciate being soaked with water. It will void your warranty and cause much heartache.
The same goes for precious ornaments on small tables that may fall off should they have a bump.
Finally, always check your automatic robot can ‘see’ your stairs and avoid falling down them. On the first couple of runs check when your vacuum reaches the stairs that it stops and turns around without falling. This should be done with all robotic vacuums.
How to Choose?
As I wrote earlier, the V3S is really suited for hard floors and pet owners. This idea that this vacuum sucks up the dirt instead of ‘beating’ it from the carpet is key to understanding that it will not be as efficient on carpets.
Many reviewers have noted it as being more than able to accomplish hard floor cleaning and many even are surprised at how much hair and debris is collected daily by the V3S. The mop feature, although present is only an added bonus for a light clean as it moves across the floor.
The ILIFE A4S has the improved motor,is quieter and has the mini-room mode as well as a max mode to improve cleaning. So if you are the owner of carpets that are short to medium and hard floors then the A4S will do the job well.
In considering between these two automatic vacuums I would be inclined to decide on the ILIFE A4S over the V3S due to the 2nd generation algorithm, max mode and mini-room options. I may have to pay more attention to the roller if I have pets, but it will at least keep my floor clean and be an effective cleaner.