Automated robotics are increasingly supporting Smart houses with better technology than ever before. These robots get to work simply through a voice command or tap from a mobile device. iRobot CEO Colin M. Angle has already suggested that the automatic vacuum cleaner will become another appendage, to the ever-expanding range of robots, that will minimize chores which consume our time and prohibit us from getting on with life. From a company which boasts a range of robots within the 800 series, how can you choose between the Roomba 860 and the Roomba 890?
Both are automatic vacuums and both are able to carry out their purpose with exceptional efficiency, so what’s the difference?
The answer lies with the Smart house!
The Roomba® 890 is a WiFi connected robot that can be controlled by your mobile device or through voice using Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant. The Roomba® 860 is your home robot that you control manually.
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Let’s look at the Specs of each
The Roomba® 860 and 890 don’t have much to distinguish them from each other on the outside, but there is the all-important WiFi enabled the feature of the Roomba® 890 you just cannot ignore:
What’s the difference in the box for 860 vs. 890
Below table list the components and accessories in the box for 860 and 890 Roomba:
You will have already considered the color differences, the voice control, and of course ease of scheduling when choosing between these models, but how they perform is why you are comparing each.
Cleaning Performance of the Roomba® 860 and 890
The iRobot Roomba® 800 series all come equipped with Aeroforce™ 3-stage Cleaning System. So, when looking at cleaning performance, both models feature the improved Gen 2 motor with an increase in performance of up to 50% more suction as compared to the 600 and 700 series.
iRobot also recently upgraded their filters to use Aeroforce™ High-Efficiency Filters which filter particles as small as 10 micros, removing up to 99% allergens, pollen, and particles. There are after-market filters which can be purchased to reduce that even further, though iRobot warns against using such filters in case of damage to your automatic vacuum.
The improved suction also contributes to the 3-stage cleaning system improving on the 600 series by up to 5x more suction, meaning that your Roomba® 860 or 890 will bring more dirt to the surface and maintain your home to a cleaner standard.
Let’s not forget the Aeroforce™ Tangel-Free Extractors either. Specifically designed with hair and debris in mind, these rollers won’t be overpowered. They instead roll hair up and deposit it in the bin or inside the roller itself, reducing the maintenance time required to keep your vacuum running.
These features, combine to produce an effective cleaning robot that you can schedule on a daily basis, and within a few weeks, provide your lives with less manual housework and a cleaner environment. We could all do with the extra free hours couldn’t we!
A feature that stands out for the Roomba® 860 and 890 is the Anti-Tangle ability of when running over cords or tassels or even some small debris which may cause the vacuum to clog. Instead of stopping and failing to move on, the Roomba® will begin to click and almost regurgitate items that are causing it to get stuck.
Battery life is also pretty good on the Roomba®. Both the Roomba® 860 and the 890 use the effective Lithium-ion batteries, able to withstand multiple charges and are easily changed when they reach the end of their lives within 12-18 months.
Both models also use the Dual Mode Virtual Wall to navigate the Roomba® away from areas you don’t need cleaned or would prefer it not to bump into. Like areas where you may have water in a bowl for your pet, a room that would be unsuitable for an automatic robot to clean if you are redecorating or a messy play area.
The lighthouses can be placed in doorways or even between two spaces to create a 180º no-go area protecting your pet’s food and your robot’s electrical insides. Both the 860 and the 890 include one lighthouse within your purchase of a Roomba vacuum. More can be ordered through the iRobot Store or similar online marketplaces. Want to check more detailed features and cleaning performance? Check this out: Roomba 890 Review
How do you choose between the Roomba® 860 and 890?
When comparing two very similar vacuums from the same manufacturer, it is always worthwhile investigating the benefit you will receive over getting the latest model to a lower model, but here it is certainly clear that the Roomba® 890 is the better model to go for.
Both do a fine job of regular cleaning, and they both have the ability to use their navigational systems to avoid stairs and your furniture, but what they don’t both have in common is the ability to be truly Smart, and for a home looking to be Smart, then the Roomba® 860 is just that bit behind.
Now of course, if you are not wanting to be able to track and monitor your Roomba® through the iRobot App on your mobile device, and you are content with rather push buttons and manually schedule your robot vacuum to do its work, then the Roomba® 860 will do you just fine, but all those things you can do with the Roomba® 890 anyway.
You don’t need to activate the WiFi on the Roomba 890, it can be a stand-alone robot which does its work when you want it to be done. The 890 is the 860 with that bit extra.
When you go to schedule your Roomba® 890 you can do it through your iRobot app. You can check history details and error codes and even tell it to get to work when you are not at home. For those already using Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant then the 890 is a must over the 860. It has voice activation built in and you can tell your robot to begin cleaning without the slightest touch of a button.
The iRobot app also has an easy order feature too. No need to go searching for replacement parts, just open your app, and order the items to your home. From the extractors and filters to the small spinning side brush and the purchase of additional lighthouses, all done through the app.
There is no getting around the emptying of the bin, the rollers which get some debris in them from time to time, or the general maintenance to ensure the sensors are clean. That is par for the course. Your robot will be scheduled to clean every day and your home will be better for it. Even more so if you have pets.
Teething issues to be aware of
Your new Roomba® will need a bit of time to get your home up to scratch. The first few days it will more than likely be returning to its base often and beeping asking you to empty its bin. But as your Roomba® gets better at cleaning your home on a daily basis, so it will be more efficient at its clean and you will have less debris and dust within your home.
The 800 and 900 series also has a 60% larger bin than previous generations, and even though some users report it to be small initially, bear in mind that the Roomba will be cleaning more regularly. After the initial first few days, you will not have to empty the bin as frequently as your home becomes cleaner.
Don’t watch it for too long either! Honestly, your new robot will look like it has gone crazy in the way it cleans and it will frustrate you to no end. Rather leave it to get on with its cleaning program and you will find it does just the right amount of deep cleaning required.
Most users suggest keeping additional filters and extractors available so when it comes time to replace them you have them ready, keeping your Roomba in tip-top shape. Remember, the longer you run a clogged filter the more strain you place on the motor too. Keep to a regular maintenance schedule and your Roomba will thank you for keeping your home clean. The recommended life of an iRobot approved Filter is two months, but they will need to be cleaned during that time as part of the maintenance of your automatic robot.
Both the Roomba 860 and the Roomba 890 are excellent robotic vacuums that will do a fantastic job within your home. The only real consideration you need to ask yourself is, “Do you want to have a Smart home that you can control, wherever you are whenever you want?” Answer that and you will have decided on the Roomba best suited for your needs.