x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 27 July 2017

LG hopes new robot will help it clean up

The Life: A new robotic vacuum cleaner has rolled into the emirates, claiming to outsmart its battery-powered, round competitors.

The Hom-Bot 2.0 by LG sells for Dh2,199 in the country.
The Hom-Bot 2.0 by LG sells for Dh2,199 in the country.

Cleaning the floor just got a little easier, and a lot more high-tech.

The latest robotic cleaner to roll into the UAE promises to outperform its electronic predecessors with newfangled features.

LG has introduced the Hom-Bot 2.0 here, for Dh2,199 (US$598.67). It relies on two separate cameras as well as ultrasonic and infrared sensors to navigate for "minimal collisions".

The cameras and sensors communicate with so-called decision-making software to plot courses that maximise efficiency while saving homeowners time.

All of this new gadgetry is now necessary when it comes to electronic cleaning contraptions because, LG says, its market research has shown that consumer expectations are "very high" within this sector of the tech market.

The Romba, arguably the most well known battery-powered circular cleaner, first came on to the scene a decade ago claiming to be a "smarter way to vacuum". In an old advert for the device, it was shown sneaking under a bed as evidence that it could get to places people often did not reach.

Companies such as Black & Decker, Evolution Robotics and Neato Robotics have since come out with their own offerings such as the ZoomBot, Mint and XV-11. Some manufacturers sell robotic cleaners for swimming pools and gutters.

LG claims its floor-cleaning technology is superior to other robotic systems, particularly because many models are "plagued" by a "bump-and-retreat" action.

LG, by contrast, says its Hom-Bot's electronic brain can identify obstacles in real time while remaining stable on tilted different surfaces.

Like some robotic lawn mowers, the Hom-Bot automatically docks to a battery charger when its low on energy to recharge.

Whether it looks appealing in a pinafore is another matter.

The Quote: Expectations are very high when it comes to robotic vacuum cleaners. - HS Paik, the president of LG Electronics in the Gulf

nparmar@thenational.ae