Neato Robotics has been developing robotic vacuums for 13 years, and their current models, the D80/D85, D3, D5, D7 and Botvac™ Connected, offer the latest in innovative technology and simplicity. With Eco and Turbo modes, Ultra Performance Filters removing particles to 0.3 microns, LaserSmart™ Navigation, Auto Charge and Resume, not to mention the larger bin capacity, the Neato vacuum is really making an impression in the industry.
This review will compare and evaluate the latest Botvac™ models ranging from the D80/D85 which is not WiFi enabled, through to the Botvac™ Connected range, featuring the D3, D5, D7 and the Botvac™ Connected.
And yes, note that the Botvac™ Connected is a different robotic vacuum cleaner to the D3 Connected, the D5 Connected and the D7 Connected!
Table of Contents
Neato Connected Series Vs the D80/85
Neato Robotics offer a none WiFi connected model labeled as the Botvac™ D85. It may also be referred to as the Botvac™ D80, but the only difference being the number of filters that are shipped with the D85. Three for D85 in case you are wondering (1 installed, 2 extra for replacements). The D80 only gets one High-Performance Filter installed!
The Neato Connected Series offers WiFi connectivity and this is a major game changer. Not only are you able to schedule and control your vacuum cleaner from your phone, Alexa, Facebook Messenger Chatbot and Google Assistant, but you get detailed information regarding the last 20 runs that the Botvac™ Connected Series has made. From floor plans to cleaning efficiency.
The Botvac™ D80/D85 though does the job required. It has LaserSmart™ Technology and Auto Charge and Restarts functions. Both enable the robotic vacuum to clean your home efficiently. The D80/D85 can also be scheduled for a 7-day program directly from the top of the vacuum using the digital display.
A major difference though is the filter efficiency between the D80/D85 and the Botvac™ Connected Series. As Neato has been improving their technology so they have been improving the quality of the air that the vacuum leaves behind too. Less dust and pollen particles in the air also mean that allergy sufferers have a better environment in which to breathe.
The D80/D85 is equipped with the High-Performance Filter, while being highly effective, is not as effective as the Ultra Performance filter found on the D5, Botvac™ Connected and Botvac D7™ vacuum cleaners. The only other robotic cleaner in the connected range is the Botvac D3™, but this is only fitted with the Standard filter.
Another features that the D80/D85 has as standard is the Combo Brush and Spiral Blade Brush (Not to be confused with the higher quality Spiral Combo Brush found on the Botvac D7™ Connected), these can be changed and used dependent on floor type to suit your requirements.
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Neato Connected Series Comparison
The Botvac™ Connected Series are all equipped with WiFi and this enables the user to see far more detail and really create a Smart home in which your robotic vacuum can be controlled by the simple commands of your voice (you will need Google Assistant or Amazon Alexa), or via the SmartLife App or Facebook Messenger’s chatbot.
Let’s look at how they compare with each other:
The Connected Series has some subtle differences between them. For instance, the D3 only has the Standard filter, whereas the D5, Connected and D7, all have the Ultra Performance Filter fitted. The Botvac D7™ is the only Connected robot to be able to support the FloorPlanner™ with virtual ‘No-Go’ Lines functionality and uses both 2.4Ghz and 5 GHz WiFi connectivity, the others do not offer this advanced feature.
The LaserSmart™ navigation is one of Neato D7 primary sales features. Their robotic vacuum cleaners can see in the dark and are able to detect obstacles with ease. This technology means that with the introduction of the SmartLife App, Neato can map your home in order to clean it effectively.
In the past, Neato relied on Boundary Markers, or 13ft long magnetic strip to steer away from the Botvac™, but with the latest edition of the Virtual no-go lines, even this is no longer required, making your robot easier to control when it moves around your home. The primary uses for stopping your automatic vacuum from cleaning in an space would normally be to avoid water, like pet bowls or perhaps children’s rooms, if they haven’t been tidied yet.
This form of mapping also allows for the Botvac™ to clean more efficiently. Instead of just bumping around until the room has been cleaned in a haphazard fashion, the Botvac™ cleans in a more organized way, covering as much of the floor as possible.
It really goes without saying that the D-shape design of the Botvac™ is genius. With each improvement, the Botvac™ has managed to design a brush which nearly stretches the entire length of the straight edge meaning a closer clean to skirting boards and with CornerClever™, it can reach into corners easier than other automatic vacuums. With the exception of the D3 Connected, all the other models have a side brush fitted too, so there is barely any edge left untouched.
The later models of the Connected series have also had their SpinFlow™ Power Cleaning System improved too. The Botvac™ Connected and the Botvac D7™ Connected now both have Eco and Turbo modes enhancing the cleaning functionality of the automatic vacuum. The Eco mode is ultimately more efficient with power from the High Capacity Lithium-ion battery, allowing the Botvac™ to run for up to 120 minutes, but being able to increase the suction of the vacuum in Turbo mode, with only a slight performance drop in battery life, of up to 90 minutes, means your home will be cleaner than ever.
The air quality is also greatly improved in the Botvac D5™, Connected and D7 by the use of the Ultra Performance Air Filter. These remove up to 0.3microns of dust and pollen particles from the air exiting the vacuum making this a great choice for those who suffer from allergies. Note; the Botvac D3™ only comes fitted with the standard filter.
Neato has tried to improve their brush system and today there are three types of brushes available. The Combo Brush, the Spiral Blade Brush, and the Spiral Combo Brush. According to reviews, the Spiral Blade brush is the noisiest brush you could use and though it cleans very effectively the noise is almost unacceptable. The Spiral Combo brush is the best of both worlds though. Neato’s ‘Highest-performing Brush’ is sold with the homeowner with pets and those sensitive to allergies in mind.
Pair the Spiral Combo brush and the Ultra Performance Filter together and you have an excellent vacuum capable or removing debris and dirt from your home and improving the air quality too! It should also be noted that these brushes are interchangeable and easily purchased through the Neato store. So, purchasing the D3, D80/D85, D5 and Connected vacuums will all be capable of using the Spiral Combo brush as an additional purchase to the brushes that are supplied as standard.
The size of floor area that needs to be cleaned varies between these models too. The D3 only manages to clean up to 1800 sq ft and that is on one cleaning cycle with up to 3 cleaning runs where the Botvac™ will return to base to recharge and then continue where it left off.
The Botvac D5™ Connected manages an impressive 4500 sq ft and the Botvac™ Connected and Botvac D7™ manages up to 5000 sq ft, again using the Auto Charge and Resume function up to three cleaning cycles (Two recharges). This is highly impressive, and Neato boasts of its larger bin capacity too, so after the first few weeks of cleaning you will begin to see a dramatic improvement in cleaning ability from your automatic vacuum.
A final note needs are made on the Neato SmartLife App functionality which is available to all the Connected series. They all can be started and stopped from your smartphone or by voice activation (via Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant). They can show cleaning history and provide you with a cleaning coverage map. However, it is on the Botvac™ Connected and the Botvac D7™ Connected that can be controlled manually. In other words, using the SmartLife App, the Botvac™ Connected and Botvac D7™ and be steered using the SmartLife App to a place in your home you need to be cleaned. Using the App as your remote control for them.
What’s the difference between the Botvac D3™ and the Botvac D5™?
If you are going to the budget option Botvac™ then the D3 Connected will be your option, but what are you losing out on between the D3 and the D5 Connected?
There is a large price jump here, but does it really warrant it? The Botvac D3™ Connected really is the smaller home. It can only cover up to 1800 sq ft (see above on how it manages this), and it is shipped with the Standard Filter. The battery is a Lithium-ion battery too, so you are losing out on the High Capacity Lithium-ion battery here.
The Botvac D5™ Connected has the same features as the D3, but does boast the improved High Capacity Lithium-ion battery and Ultra Performance Filter. It is also equipped with the Find Me functionality which gives you the location of your Botvac™ within your home should you lose it under a sofa or inside a cupboard, saving you the fun game of finding the vacuum when you get home.
Want to know more detail information about D3 and D5? Click “Neato D3 Connected vs. D5 Connected” comparison article get.
What’s the difference between the Botvac™ Connected and the Botvac D7™ Connected?
The top difference is that the D7 now unveils the new feature Zone Cleaning, let you could draw the area you want to be cleaned on the neato app.
Other differences you could find in below diagram.
Here we are talking about the top of the line Neato robotic vacuums and these both have a very impressive feature list. Both feature the Eco/Turbo modes and come with the Ultra Performance Filter. They can both cover nearly 5000 sq ft on their High Capacity Lithium-ion batteries and both WiFi connects and give a great variety of options on the Neato SmartLife App.
So where is the difference for the cost?
The Botvac D7™ has four major differences to the Botvac™ Connected. Primarily the brush is superior and is fitted with the Spiral Combo Brush. The Botvac™ Connected has the Combo Brush and Spiral Blade Brush. There is the difference in Wifi Channels, meaning that the D7 has more options (2.4Ghz + 5GhZ) of connecting to your router and it has the Find Me functionality for when it gets lost behind a bedroom door or under a sofa.
However, the biggest difference and most important one between the Botvac™ Connected and the D7 is that the D7 has the new FloorPlanner™ with virtual ‘No-Go’ Lines feature. This cannot be emphasized enough! Using the SmartLife App to draw virtual lines where you don’t want your vacuum to clean and it will stay away from those areas. Previously a Magnetic Boundary Marker had to be placed down (which still works with the D7) and your Botvac™ would avoid going into that area, but with virtual lines, even the additional Boundary strips are no longer required, making your home cleaner and clutter free.
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If you are in the market for a robotic vacuum and you have narrowed your search down to the Neato Botvac™ series, you have made a great decision. But which one is the best bang for your money?
Let’s get something straight first… the brush and filters are interchangeable! There, that really will narrow your search further. Why is this important? Well, getting a cheaper version with a less effective filter or brush or both can turn it into a vastly different machine with a couple of upgrades.
Assuming you are on a budget and you are looking for a lower value option, then you would be choosing between the Botvac D3™ Connected and the Botvac™ D80/D85. Bearing in mind that the D80/D85 does not come to WiFi enabled means you cannot connect to it and gain vital data or control it. That means it cannot become part of your Smart home either. If this is not an issue for you then look to the D80/D85 over the Botvac D3™ as it has a better ability to clean your home covering up to 3000 sq ft.
If connectivity is your main objective here and your home is not too large, then the D3 is certainly the right option to go for. It is currently cheaper than the D80/D85 and you get all the functionality from the SmartLife App. The filter is Standard, but remember that it can be changed and so can the brush should you find it not as effective as you were hoping for. Both changes will impact battery life, so only consider the Botvac D3™ for smaller floorplans of up to 1800 sq ft.
Should you have a larger home, want connectivity, the Ultra Performance Filter and the Find Me functionality, then spending a little more will secure a great mid-range automatic vacuum for your home in the form of the Botvac D5™ Connected.
Obviously, if you are choosing between the higher range models you will not be as concerned by price, but by more functionality, and in this case the Botvac D7™ is the definite winner. With the latest update to include FloorPlanner™ with virtual ‘No-Go’ lines, it makes no sense to scrimp on the lower priced Botvac™ Connected. You will have a fantastic automatic vacuum, capable of cleaning a home of up to 5000 sq ft, with great connectivity and the best filters and brushes available. Certainly, the one to choose.
The Neato Botvac™ D80/D85 and the Botvac™ Connected Series are certainly contenders for excellent capable automatic vacuum cleaners. There are a variety of options to suit most households and a host of options too. The D7 really is the market leader currently and with its latest features could be considered one of the best out there.
Neato have provided the customer with plenty of useful videos and an easy website to use your new cleaner effectively and should price be an issue, they have also catered for you too, providing a WiFi enabled solution for a very reasonable price. The cherry on the cake has to be the ability to interchange filters and brushes which can ultimately make your lower budget vacuum a very good deal.