Review Date: 6-14-2017
The setup for the Samsung - POWERbot R7040 App-Controlled Self-Charging Robot Vacuum wasn’t challenging, but I did have to read the manual, since this is my first robot vacuum. There’s an emergency safety switch on the bottom of the robot vacuum that must be flipped, otherwise, the vacuum won’t charge. Everything comes pre-assembled and you only have three components to deal with, the robot vacuum itself (which just requires you to remove stickers and protective plastic), the robot vacuum charging station (which just requires connecting the charging cable), and an included remote control. AAA Batteries are included for the remote.
The three of the key features of this vacuum is the fact that it can connect to your WiFi network with the Samsung Smart Home App, that it can return to it’s charging station on it’s own, and that it can be scheduled to turn on and go on it’s pattern at the same time every day. I honestly didn’t think that it could return to its station, but I was gladly proven wrong. It’s amazing to see the little robot finish it’s job and store itself. Scheduling can be done with the remote control and powerbot. The one thing I counted on working was the App and unfortunately, that was a total let down.
The performance of this robot vacuum was great. The area that I placed it in is the carpeted room that gets the most traffic. The furniture in the area is tall and more than spacious for the robot to go under, which it did. Turned it on and let the vacuum to it’s thing while I got ready for the day. When I came downstairs, it had gotten stuck with an area rug’s fringes. The manual says that, if connected to the WiFi network, the app should tell me that is has gotten stuck with something. The app, though, is what ended up underperforming. After downloading the app, you are given option to add a new device. I went to the robot vacuum section and I was told to press a the clock button to turn the access point on the robot vacuum on (essentially, you are making your robot vacuum into a WiFi connection for your phone to communicate with it). I did that successfully. The next step is for the robot vacuum to identify your WiFi network and for you to enter your password alongside it. The first time, it wouldn’t recognize my home network but would pick up my neighbors. The problem with this is that I wasn’t given an option to choose networks, it automatically wanted me to connect to my neighbor’s WiFi. I had to close down the app and restart the process. The second time, it recognized my own home network. Though I was able to successfully connect the vacuum to my WiFi, on the last step, I got a connection failed message. I tried it again a third time and I got the same message. I couldn’t get it to successfully connect. The process is made more frustrating because it can you can’t go back a step on the app. If you have to retread one step, you have to actually close the app and reopen it and start from the beginning.
This powerbot vacuum meets my expectations but the companion app doesn’t. Since the companion app isn’t necessary for the vacuum to function, I only deducted one star, as most will probably ignore the app. The features that the app claim to provide, though, sound great, as receiving a notification when there’s a problem can have you take care of the situation before letting time pass by thinking everything is ok. The powerbot dust collecting bin isn’t large, so I would suggest that before the first use, run a full sized vacuum through the room. After that, you can schedule it to do little details daily and you won’t have to work about the bigger vacuum unless you have a giant mess to suddenly deal with.
The price for the soundbar in terms of value is slightly high, but worth the investment. I wouldn’t get rid of my stand-up vacuum since I have a two story home with multiple rooms that are carpeted. If I wanted to take advantage of the robot vacuum recharging itself, I would have to unplug the charging dock and install it in every single room one at a time. Nonetheless, if you have an area that receives the most foot traffic, then you would do yourself a favor and invest in this.
I highly recommend this product for people who may not have time to clean a frequented area often. The powerbot has a feature that easily takes care of cornered areas and it works as advertised. Scheduling can be down with the remote or the powerbot itself, so you can schedule the powerbot to clean while you are out. It’s not too loud, but you can hear it working, so I would not advise using this while nearby people are asleep. If you don’t plan on tinkering with the app, you are going to love this.