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The Botvac D6 and the Roomba 960 are both robot vacuums from quality manufacturers. While the Roomba may be a bit more well-known, Neato isn’t a beginner in the game, and they equip their vacuums with performance and features that may beat out Roomba. Only you can say.
Contents (Jump to)
- 1 Neato Botvac D6
- 2 Why Buy the Botvac D6
- 3 The D6 Verdict
- 4 Roomba 960
- 5 The 960 Verdict
- 6 Comparison Chart
- 7 Last Word
Neato Botvac D6
Neato’s series of Botvac D robot vacuums come in a distinct D-shape that allows them to maneuver and more easily clean corners. The D6 (read my full review here!) is the same, and it features many upgrades over the previous iterations of Botvac D series vacuums.
The Botvac D6 effectively cleans corners, like all of its predecessors. Its short, wide profile allows it to sneak under low furniture, but it can struggle between chair legs and other tight spaces.
One improvement over other Botvac D series vacuums is its bigger brush. It lifts more dirt and pet hair than previous models. The brush is easy to remove so you can clean it with the tool that Neato provides, making it a snap to cut off things like hair that get stuck around it.
It is equipped with a side brush to sweep in dirt from the side. It pulls dust from corners and edges to give you a more comprehensive clean. The Ultra Performance Filter eliminates allergens from the air along with the debris. Using the smartphone app, you can replace the filter when it’s time, making this an excellent vacuum for people with severe sensitivities or allergies.
Press the power button on top of the D6 once, and watch it clean your whole house. It can avoid stairs and obstacles on its own with built-in sensors. Double-tapping that same button sets the spot-cleaning mode in motion, and the vacuum will focus on a small square area. This feature is especially useful if you need to clean up a spill in the dining room or kitchen.
The Botvac D6 is Wi-Fi enabled to allow for a more streamlined user experience. It is easy to connect, and connecting multiple robot vacuums to Neato’s app means you can monitor the vacuum that you have on each floor of your home.
Creating floor maps before cleaning allows your vacuum to roam through your home and learn its landscape, giving you an easier time when it comes to creating customized maps and cleaning schedules.
You can program three maps at a time, and by starting at the docking station, your robot vacuum will be able to follow the map and clean whatever it is you set it out to clean. After setting up maps, you can mark off-limits areas to protect your robot and your home.
In addition to specifying areas you don’t want your D6 to clean, you can also place the magnetic tape provided around the room to mark off certain sections like the rug. This gives your D6 virtual restrictions.
Setting up these restricted areas only works if you start your cleaning cycle using the smartphone app and your vacuum is docked. If you created a map with your docking station in a different location, moving the docking station to where the map was first created will allow your vacuum to use maps and avoid restricted areas.
If your D6 has a problem finding its location, it will ignore any maps or restricted areas you have set up and explore off the grid, so to speak. It will avoid obstacles, but it will clean anything in its way. The lasers that the Botvac D6 uses for its navigation also allow it to work in the dark.
The Botvac D6 includes a Turbo cleaning mode and an Eco cleaning mode. In Turbo cleaning mode, high-powered suction and a faster brush speed clean stubborn spots. The Eco cleaning mode is silent and less efficient but works great for routine or scheduled cleanings.
Schedule routine cleanings while you’re not home and you won’t be annoyed by a vacuum in your path every time you turn around. You can start and stop your cleanings from the smartphone app, no matter where you are, so you can clean apart from your normal schedule.
The Botvac D6 does well on both bare floor and carpet. It cleans edges and corners superbly. It can even pick up tiny particles like sprinkles or flour for even the biggest messes in any room of the house.
These spills don’t happen every day, so scheduled cleanings pose no problem for the D6. However, it gives you peace of mind knowing that it can handle the tough jobs when you need it to.
The Botvac D6 works with Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa, and IFTTT. Use your voice to tell your smart home assistant when to have the D6 start or stop cleaning. In the event that you have more than one Botvac, you can tell it which one you want to start, and it will.
IFTTT increases your Botvac D6’s usability. Trigger specific tasks based on actions you take, the time of day, or calendar events. If you want the D6 to start cleaning when you leave, set up an IFTTT event based on your geo-location. You can also set it to pause when the phone rings or return to its dock with you come home. The IFTTT options are endless.
The Botvac D6’s floor mapping technology is fantastic. Laser navigation allows it to see in the dark and you can use Gentle Navigation to navigate obstacles with more care if you have fragile objects or your D6 seems to be less sensitive than you’d like.
With its wide base, you may need to pull kitchen chairs out from the table to help your Botvac navigate these areas with ease. It can climb easily from bare floors to carpets and back with no trouble, and the drop sensor ensures it won’t fall down the stairs.
How much maintenance your Botvac D6 needs depends on how often you use it. Neato has manufacturer recommendations for your product to give you an idea of when to replace parts. Your side brush and air filter may need more frequent changes if you have pets or allergies.
Battery and Run Time
In Eco mode, the Botvac D6 will last up to 120 minutes. It returns to its dock for charging when it’s low, and it will pick up where it left off when it is fully charged again. Charging takes 150 minutes.
The Botvac D6 is the most attractive of the Neato robot vacuums because of its increased functionality. It is pricey, but you get what you pay for in regard to features and cleaning power. It is worth the cost if you want something easy to use.
Why Buy the Botvac D6
The Botvac D6 includes everything you need from cleaning modes to floor plans. It offers a thorough clean with state-of-the-art technology and the ease of a smartphone app and integrations to further control your schedules.
Botvac D6 Pros:
- Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and IFTTT connectivity.
- Smartphone app.
- Laser navigation for night vision.
- Save up to three maps.
- Mark off-limits areas.
Botvac D6 Cons:
- To use maps, docking station needs to be where the map was created.
- May have trouble with some obstacles.
- Could be too tall for some low profile furniture.
The D6 Verdict
The Botvac D6 has everything you need in a robot vacuum. It provides a flexible and powerful clean with connectivity, mapping, navigation, and ease of use, making it an excellent buy.
The Roomba 960 (read my full review here!) has a number of high-quality features including memory mapping, dirt detection, advanced suction, smartphone control, and so much more. It is a top of the line vacuum and costs a bit more than other Roomba models because of all of its features. For an efficient robot vacuum with all of the bells and whistles, the Roomba 960 is a great choice.
The Roomba 960 comes in a circle like all other Roomba robot vacuums. It has a handle on the top of the unit, making it easier to carry and the built-in camera and button controls enable greater flexibility and operation.
The silver and black color combination and matte finish are like many of the other classic Roomba designs. It features a bumper ring on top, preventing damage from running into furniture or other obstacles.
The signature three-stage cleaning process is the same on the Roomba 960 as on all other Roomba vacuums. It loosens dirt and debris, lifts it, and then sucks it into the unit. Spinning brushes, dirt extractors, and powerful suction attack tough messes.
The digital camera on top of the Roomba 960 maps out directions used for navigation. It has sensors along its perimeter to help track its position, map your home, and know where it is in relation to the dock.
The Roomba 960 also features sensors that detect dirt, debris, and hair as it cleans. It can use this information to create a more efficient path of travel. It won’t bounce around the house aimlessly before it returns to its dock. It can calculate a path that makes the most sense.
Size and Dimension
The Roomba 960 is 3.6 inches tall, 13.8 inches in diameter, and weighs 8.6 pounds. It is a little heavier than other robot vacuums, but the added features contribute to the weight, and you can still pick it up and move it with ease.
Parts and Accessories
The Roomba 960 comes with a filter, a virtual wall, a spinning brush, and a charging base. You can set up the virtual wall to identify invisible boundaries and place restrictions on where your vacuum can go. You can set up radial and linear walls.
Set up is easy. After removing your vacuum from its package, simply plug in the docking station and place the vacuum on it to charge. You don’t need to assemble anything before you use it.
Once your 960 is fully charged, you can use a variety of methods to start cleaning. You can use the buttons on top of the device or connect the vacuum to the app and use your smartphone to control it.
Using the app, you can schedule cleanings, research prior cleanings, start spot cleaning mode, or start an unscheduled cleaning cycle. You don’t ever have to interact physically with the device except when emptying the dustbin.
Roomba 960 Pros:
- Built-in camera maps out your home.
- Efficient cleaning paths created with camera sensors.
- Cleans all indoor surfaces.
- Virtual barrier included.
- Mobile application provides remote cleaning capabilities.
- Easy to set up and use.
Roomba 960 Cons:
- Has trouble with smaller debris like salt or sugar.
- More expensive than most robot vacuums.
The 960 Verdict
The Roomba 960 makes hands-free vacuuming easy. It has all of the bells and whistles and is definitely the device for you if you need the latest technology. It won’t have any trouble no matter what type of floors you have, and you can control it remotely from any location. It offers ease of use and top-tier performance.
|Battery life||120 minutes||115 minutes|
|Charging time||2 hours||2 hours|
On paper, it would seem these robot vacuums are very similar. Both have excellent cleaning capacity, navigation, and smart technology. Both have spot cleaning modes, both have smartphone apps, and both provide a superior clean.
The primary difference in these two vacuums is that the Roomba is slightly more expensive, but the D6 has a unique shape. It all comes down to your preference for a well-known brand name, the design you like the best, and what you think will work best for your home. No matter what you choose, you are getting a quality product from an excellent manufacturer.
Patrick Sinclair is a geek; make no mistake about that. He runs All Home Robotics in his spare time so he doesn’t have to think about his depressing cubicle and it gives him an excuse to buy expensive gadgets to review!