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Samsung - POWERbot™ R7065 App-Controlled Self-Charging Robot Vacuum - Satin Titanium-Front_Standard

Customer rating

Rating 4.3 out of 5 stars with 114 reviews

89%
would recommend to a friend

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  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Decent Upgrade from iRobot, Could Use Some Work

    Posted
    Shawn
    • Tech Insider NetworkTech Insider Network
    • My Best Buy® MemberMember

    I had acquired this vacuum to see if something could possibly do a better job than my iRobot Roomba 690. It was always loud and lately the amount of wall bouncing it has been doing has been getting on my nerves. My apartment is not that big (officially, 674 square feet - not counting space allocated for furniture) Out of the box, this PowerBot checked a number of the requirements, so I decided to bite on getting it and testing it out. The challenge was made, the arena was set - could this Samsung PowerBot R7065 possibly take on the name that is iRobot? Turns out, the more expensive vacuum can do a better job and this PowerBot does win by a margin. What it does well: The Roomba sounds like the size of vacuum that it is - it’s tiny and loud and whines just as so. Not so with this PowerBot; this truly sounds like a real vacuum when set to “normal” mode. The device has three different modes: quiet, normal, and turbo. I can’t accurately measure CFM or dB of the steps, but with my non-scientific tools available, I found that there was a variance of around 10 dB, though truthfully it sounded like each one was way louder than the last. As for where the device meets the dirt, this vacuum has a pretty decent setup. The seems to be of decent quality and the filter is completely washable. Both of which are decent checks when compared to the incumbent that requires regular replacement at a decent markup. My opinion is that buying a vacuum shouldn’t be buying into a filter of the month club. It should be maintain as needed with reusability in mind. The unit itself is very similar in height profile to a typical Roomba, about four inches high. Where Samsung has excelled here though is through the inclusion of a full sized beater bar that extends beyond the edges of the main center ‘orb’. This enables the vacuum to get to the edges under furniture that a ton of other units would simply fail to reach, with the added benefit that dirt can be picked up on both the left *and* right sides of the unit! As a self-controlled device, it generally seems to have a pretty good handle on itself. Every movement is methodical and purposeful to the point that it looks almost as if the device is really thinking. It generally seems to hold to a grid system - starting with horizontal lines then followed up by vertical lines, splitting up the grid into odd chunks of the space as one would divide up the board in a game of Qix. It claims to be able to do this through the use of a camera that sits at the front center of the unit. I’m not 100% convinced, but it might does seem to be getting some help from it. Through the use of this and other positioning sensors, the vacuum does one thing very well; each obstacle presented is considered and lightly touched upon. Each is approached slowly, tapped lightly (if at all), then edge cleaned (if the sensors recognize it as a ‘border’ with flat edges). The PowerBot had gotten stuck at one point in time while I was testing. To its testament, it fought (gently) to escape and didn’t give up - to the point that I actually said “wow” out loud to an empty apartment in amazement. What it could do better: I talked earlier how every action seemed to have an intention behind it and the device was amazingly methodical. It is - but this also seems to be one of its bigger downfalls. One thing that I have noticed with the wall approach consideration is that sometimes it will become too cautious and miss a wall by a good foot. This might be something that improves with use as it learns about the space it has to clean. I gather this as when it had to return back to the charging base at the end of its second cycle, it immediately drove to the charging base. Which brings us to the charging base. The base itself is not tiny and has instructed users to put it firmly against the wall. This is all understandable, but then Samsung shipped the dock with an in-line charging brick like you’d find on a laptop that is not small. No matter where you put it, this is going to get in the way. Their assumed reasoning is clear - they can ship it to multiple countries, just changing the power brick for each country. That’s great and all, but adding the brick into the base would also add weight and remove a relative eyesore. (What’s funnier is that it came with a space to wrap the cord on the back for some reason). Were this the Roomba, I’d be more concerned about the charging cable getting in the way - that particular device would run over the cable and not think anything over it. What I could do in that particular instance would be setting up a “virtual wall” - a device that fires what I’m going to refer to as “magic wall particles” which prevents the device from going beyond a certain point. The PowerBot does not do that; instead, it comes with a stretch of “boundary markers.” What does it look like? Magnetic tape (which it probably is). I can’t say I’m in love with anything about this approach. Taping magnetic tape to my floor so the device can not go somewhere feels very much like an extreme choice in fashion - not to mention that I’m curious if the tape is strong enough to go through carpet or if it would need to sit on top to function properly. Assuming it works in any condition, the manual doesn’t even casually mention what it’s made of or how to get more - leaving users to guess or search online and making it seem like pure “unobtainum.” Keep in mind that this same tape needs to be run around every drop-off per the manual. Hope you like some extra texture around your stairs! I live in an apartment; something that makes the above implementation detail even more fun. Taping things to my floor is one thing, but the way the floor/wall meeting is styled is the source of my next set of complaints. My apartment was built in the past three years; one of the styles common to current design is floorboards with ¼” rounded trim. “Why is this a concern?” you may ask. The problem here is that the rounding is a _perfect_ ramp for the PowerBot. Meaning that edge detection is a bit hit and miss, even when it is literally cleaning up and down the wall. The result of which is that edge detection is pretty hit and miss. Finally, as mentioned in earlier revisions of this product, the battery is pretty disappointing. The incumbent automatic vacuum can spend an hour bouncing around my apartment, hit every corner, and still end with at least 25% battery. The first time the PowerBot ran the apartment it had to stop, charge for an hour, then resume running for another hour. The space existed in the unit for the battery to be made larger, it just seems like the developers made the choice to keep the same battery and make it charge more often. Things that bother me but weren’t taken into account for purposes of this review: I’ve got a little area rug that has relatively high shag carpet. The PowerBot will choke over this carpet like nothing else and make a slightly concerning noise. I am not docking the unit anything for this as, while the Roomba can do this, these devices are not adjustable and the carpet can overwhelm a normally powered vacuum. Just is disappointing that I needed to pick it up and move it and now that I have to tape off an area of my floor so that the vacuum doesn’t clean it. Personally, I’m not of the opinion that one should change their decor to comply with the wills of technology. I’m not quite sure how this device determines when it is done cleaning. On one occasion, it ran out of battery, recharged, then cleaned for another hour. On another, it hit two rooms, then said “I’m good” after an hour. The last time I ran it, it hit one and a half rooms and bailed. My guess? Samsung has developed the technology to make it only touch on certain areas every time it runs. (See the picture attached for a few runs mapped out) Finally, the unit comes with a remote (which honestly, I didn’t think I’d end up using ever, but I love) and will connect to wireless. Wireless G that is. It’s 2018 and at least two new standards have been released since the 802.11G standard first ratified in 2003. This seems like it was a conscious decision in picking the cheapest chips possible. Were this a device at a sub $150 range, cool. But for the MSRP of this thing, my expectation is that the chip provided should be Wireless N compatible with G support. So what are my thoughts overall? The Samsung PowerBot R7065 is a nice vacuum. It has some great features that show true advancement from their previous iterations. That said, while they have grown, they haven’t learned from all their mistakes. It still has a lot of things that feel like they “cheaped out” on (when compared to the base MSRP of $549 as of this writing). Basically: “Good, but has room to grow.”

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Best in its price range

    Posted
    emiliosic
    • Tech Insider NetworkTech Insider Network
    • My Best Buy® Elite MemberElite Member
    • Top 250 ContributorTop 250 Contributor

    This is not our first Robot Vacuum, but the first from Samsung. This review is after about two weeks of use. The vacuum itself looks the part with shiny plastic sides, a silver metallic painted plastic crown; where the top has a dark smoked plastic with a hidden LCD display, touch-sensitive controls on one side, and a video camera 'eye' on the front, with the dustbin an shiny silver painted plastic on the other side. It looks fine, but I wish it had more rugged materials. Painted plastic in appliances tend to scratch easily. Time will tell. The bottom has two large, hinged wheels and two small wheels that are not removable. On our older robot vacuum, the smaller wheel (which is four times as big as these) tends to get caught with hair and other dust, but it's removable, so time will tell how this vacuum holds up. The cleaning element is a large, single brush that goes from edge to edge, with an air barrier, squeegee-like ribbon on front that the vacuum lifts automatically on carpets and lowers on hard floors, which is clever. The dust goes to a dustbin, which has an internal 'cyclone' that's a bit hard to keep clean, where the dust gets trapped, and from there air goes to a dust filter and the suction fan is sealed internally in the vacuum. The internal section after the dust filter was already dusty with small particles after a few cleaning cycles. Out other vacuum has a simpler system where all the air flow elements are easy to clean. This vacuum is much more quiet than other vacuums we have, and it cleans about as well as regular vacuums. The front of this vacuum is flat, so its roller is larger than on round vacuums, which cleans better on corners. Round vacuums have a side brush, which is not needed here. Navigation in this vacuum is more advanced than earlier robot vacuums: Instead of going in random patterns, this tries to navigate in a grid attempting to cover the whole are. Also it's more aware of where it's supposed to be within the house but still misses several areas of the house on one cleaning cycle and goes through in others. It's very good in general at detecting objects. It does not fall over stairs. It backs off when it's front wheel looses footing. It also detects objects and either slows down or avoids them completely. Occasionally it can end up pushing a small box-sized object around but overall it works much better at detecting objects than older robot vacuums. If there is an area that needs to be avoided, it comes with a magnetic strip that's supposed with tape on one side that's supposed to be affixed to the floor. I was surprised that it does not use light beams like other vacuums. Since we didn't want to glue things to the floor, for now we have to remember to close the door to our kid's playroom. It comes with an IR remote control (of the type that have to be pointed at the thing, not RF like many new devices), which works fine for the purpose of manually navigating it around to clean a spot (As long as it's in line of sight) and for initial Wi-Fi setup. The Vacuum can also be controlled from a mobile phone or tablet via Wi-Fi with the 'SmartThings' app and a Samsung account to use with it: After creating the SmartThings account, add a new 'thing' and select the model, then the vacuum is set in pairing mode using the IR remote to set it in AP mode and switching the phone to that temporary Wi-Fi (I set it up with an iPhone, it might be slightly different with Android), then select the house's Wi-Fi, link it to the SmartThings account and then its's pretty much all set. Took me about five minutes to set up and found the proces