It’s official, Dyson will be releasing their much anticipated first robotic vacuum. After years of development, Dyson will finally enter a marketplace of competitors like the Roomba and Neato. But will the years of development make up for lost time? In this post, I will preview everything we know about the new Dyson and whether or not it will be disruptive to the robot vacuum market.
- “Most” Powerful Suction: This is arguably the biggest feature of the new Dyson Eye 360. Dyson promises that the suction power on their new robot will be more powerful than all other competitors currently on the market. This is a bold claim. As a traditional vacuum manufacturer; however, Dyson does have the engineering chops to back up this claim. If the new Dyson’s suction is indeed better than the Roomba and Neato, this will be a significant disruption to the marketplace.
- V2 Engine: To be more specific, the new Dyson will come with the same engine found in upright vacuums. Most robotic vacuums cannot utilize this type of horsepower due to battery restrictions, so it will be interesting to see how they balance this with battery life.
- Dyson “Eye”: The “eye” will capture a panoramic view of the room before deciding on the optimal cleaning pattern. This will be combined with data from infrared sensors and a frame rate of 30 frames per second. This is the second most interesting promised feature. Mapping technology is the key to an effective robot vacuum. It is something that all the other major companies have struggled with over the years. This might be a more problematic area for Dyson as mapping technology is not one of their core competencies. If they can provide comparable or better mapping than the other leading robot vacuums than this would be an even more impressive coup for Dyson.
- Full “App” Integration: This is something that we have already seen in the smart thermostat market, but Dyson wants to allow the same type of control for remote users. Dyson says there will be both an Android and iOS app for users to manage their Dyson remotely.
Overview of the New Dyson
Dyson has set the bar pretty high with the lengthy development time. By promising not to release a robot vacuum until it was “perfected”, customers will now expect a vastly superior product. I’m not entirely sure that it can displace the Roomba as the best in class vacuum; however, if any company were to do this, it would be a company with the resources and know-how of Dyson.
I will be watching the following key indicators to see how serious Dyson is about entering the robotic space…
- Price Point: In short, what will this thing cost? There have been past rumors that Dyson is looking at a significantly higher price point, possibly to avoid cannibalizing sales from its traditional vacuum market. If the cost is 2-3x more than the top line Roomba and the technology is anything less than perfect, this will likely remain more of a niche novelty item than a market disrupter. How the device is priced will ultimately be emblematic of where Dyson is headed i.e. will they embrace robotic technology or merely appease it to protect their core business model.
- Mapping Technology: As alluded to earlier, Dyson may be the king of superior suction but the same cannot be said about their mapping technology. This is what makes a robotic vacuum a true “robot”. If the new Dyson cannot effective navigate, it will be dead-on-arrival. I actually think this is the largest challenge facing Dyson. If they can match iRobot and Neato in this area, then they have a winner. If not, it will likely be a work in progress for years to come.
- Battery Life: This is the Achilles heal of high-powered robotic vacuums. With the powerful V2 engine under the hood, I will be very interested to see what the average run times will be and how Dyson manages power supply (and re-supply). This could be another make or break feature. If it’s comparable to the leading brands then I think Dyson is safe. If not, watch out!
- Size: From the videos and early images, I’m a bit skeptical about whether the Dyson could get under common household furniture like the Roomba and Neato (think couches). Its all well and good to clean my carpet, but there is a lot of dust and dander build-up under my couch. This is an even stronger need for pet owners.
Watch this article! We will continue to update it as we receive more information and details about the new Dyson vacuum.