There is a clear divide between cheap robot vacuum cleaners that navigate your home in random paths and the more advanced models that map your home for room-by-room cleaning among other features.
With so many robot vacuum cleaners on the market and various types of mapping capability, it can be confusing to decipher which ones are the best. In this guide, I’ll run through the top robot vacuum cleaners with mapping and share the features that make each stand out.
- Quick Summary
- Which Type of Mapping is Best?
- Best Robot Vacuums with Mapping
- Comparison Chart
If you’re in a rush, here are my top three devices to consider. Keep reading below for the full list and reviews of each.
Best Overall: Ecovacs DEEBOT N8 Pro+• Accurate mapping with superior obstacle avoidance
• Comes with a self-emptying base
• Well priced given its features
Best Self-Emptying: Roomba i7+• Self-emptying base stores up to 30X the onboard dustbin
• Set advanced settings and schedules for each room
• Uses camera-based mapping instead of lidar which takes longer to create maps
Best with Mop: Roborock S7• 2-in-1 vacuum and mop with sonic vibrations to scrub the floor
• Upgraded brush design for improved cleaning performance
• Mop lifts up when not in use
Which Type of Mapping is Best?
There are two types of mapping technologies used in robot vacuums in the UK right now, these are vSLAM and Lidar.
- vSLAM stands for visual simultaneous localization and mapping. It uses visual cameras to map out the room using both the roof and key landmarks it finds along the way. The benefit of cameras is that the data can be processed by AI to help with object avoidance and it’s also the cheaper of the two technologies. However, it is less accurate and can be fooled by dark areas.
- Lidar uses spinning lasers which are usually found in the turret of the device to map out the home. This is more expensive tech to incorporate into robot vacuum cleaners and is the same technology used in self-driving cars. It’s very accurate and creates the floor plan very quickly.
See my full guide to vSLAM vs Lidar for more details and the benefits/drawbacks of each.
Best Robot Vacuums with Mapping
Here are the 6 best robot vacuum cleaners with mapping in the UK:
- Best Overall: Ecovacs DEEBOT N8 Pro+
- Best Self-Emptying: Roomba i7+
- Best with Mop: Roborock S7
- Best Cleaning Performance: Roomba S9+
- Smartest Features: Ecovacs DEEBOT OZMO T8 AIVI
- Best for Thresholds: Dyson 360 Heurist
- Affordable Pick: Proscenic M7 Pro
Below, I’ll share my full review of each recommendation along with the pros and cons that you should keep in mind when making your decision.
You’ll find a full comparison table with all the specs at the end of the article.
Best Overall: Ecovacs DEEBOT N8 Pro+
|Value for Money||8/10|
The best robot vacuum with mapping is the Ecovacs DEEBOT N8 Pro+. This is a newly launched device from Ecovacs that comes with both a self-emptying base and an integrated mop.
Although it’s not the highest spec device from Ecovacs, I considered value for money when choosing the best devices and the N8 Pro+ scored 8 out of 10 in this category which is why it’s taken the top spot in this guide and in my list of the overall best robot vacuum cleaners in the UK.
It uses Lidar (spinning lasers in the turret) which is highly accurate and fast to map your home. Once mapped, you can see a floor plan in the app and will be able to set no-go zones. One of the downsides to the mapping is that you can only save two floorplans so you might want to look at an alternative vacuum for mapping larger homes such as the Roomba i7+ below.
Its cleaning performance is decent on all floor types, although hair tangles are common in Ecovacs due to the design of their bristle brush on the bottom.
One of the biggest selling points of the N8 Pro+ is its obstacle avoidance thanks to the addition of three lasers on the front of the vacuum. It’s excellent at avoiding small obstacles and will rarely even bump into them as most other vacuums will.
The base is a new addition from Ecovacs that can hold up to 30 times the onboard dustbin. Unfortunately, it’s not the best self-emptying base and can get clogged easily by pet hair. This is because the onboard dustbin has been designed differently to accommodate the mop tank.
Speaking of the mop, it has an onboard 240ml water tank. You need to attach the mop whenever you want to use this function which isn’t as seamless as I’d like. You can set different levels of water flow in the app and you can set no-mop zones in the app.
Best Self Emptying: iRobot Roomba i7+
|Value for Money||7/10|
The next robot vacuum with mapping that I highly recommend is the Roomba i7+. Unlike the Ecovacs vacuum that took the top spot, Roomba use a mapping system called visual simultaneous localization and mapping (vSLAM).
Rather than using lasers, vSLAM uses visual cameras that identify key landmarks in the room and use them to navigate and create floor maps. vSLAM tends to take slightly longer to create the initial map and can cause problems if there are dark areas of your home or if you’re hoping to vacuum at night.
Similar to the N8 Pro+, the Roomba i7+ is a self-emptying robot vacuum that can also hold 30 empties from the onboard dustbin. However, the base performs more seamlessly than the N8 Pro+ and you’ll hardly ever need to intervene except when the base is full.
Compared to the N8 Pro+, you’ll get a slightly better clean, especially on high pile carpet and it’s great at picking up small particles from deep in the carpet. The i7+ is iRobot’s second-best device, only exceeded by their top-spec Roomba S9+ which I’ve also included below.
Best With Mop: Roborock S7
|Value for Money||7|
If you’re looking for a robot vacuum with mapping and mopping, the Roborock S7 is a product to look out for. At the time of writing, it’s not been launched in the UK just yet, but I’m expecting a release at some point in 2021 since it’s already on sale in other countries.
It’s the best Roborock launched to date and pulls in some of the great features from the S5 and S6 series such as recharge-and-resume and great mapping features.
The S7 is another robot vacuum that uses lidar to map your home. Once the robot has mapped your home, the app has all the features you’d expect including setting names for each room or zone, adjusting the schedule and settings on a room-by-room basis, and setting virtual no-go zones. It can store 4 different floor maps which is more than the N8 Pro+, although still not on par with Roomba.
It has the same 2,500pa of suction power that was featured in their powerful S6 MAXV, however, the cleaning performance is significantly better on all floor types thanks to a brand new floating brush that creates a tight seal by maintaining a close distance to the floor. The new brush is also better at dealing with hair which is ideal if you have pets.
When it comes to mopping, there is a 300ml water tank that attaches to the vacuum which is one of the biggest on the market, however, the big upgrade is the sonic plate that vibrates 3,000 times per minute to scrub the floor.
Another excellent feature is that the mopping plate can lift up when it’s not in use so that you don’t need to remove the mopping pad when in vacuuming mode. This is made even better as the robot can detect carpet by itself and lift the mop plate automatically. No other robot vacuum and mop hybrid has this capability at the time of writing.
Best Cleaning Performance: Roomba S9+
|Value for Money||6/10|
When it comes to cleaning performance, the Roomba S9+ is about the best you can get. This is iRobots highest-spec robot vacuum.
The S9+ is the only Roomba to have a D-shape which makes it much more effective at reaching corners and edges than all other Roombas. That’s not all, it has 30% more suction power than the i7+ and the side brushes have been improved to help them vacuum lighter debris more easily.
It has Roomba’s patented anti-tangle rubber rollers rather than traditional brush bristles, however, the D-shape has allowed them to be placed nearer the front of the vacuum and they’re wider than the rubber rollers on the i7+ which improves their ability to pick up pet hair without tangles.
Like the i7+, the Roomba S9+ has smart imprint mapping which allows you to name the rooms in your home as well as zones and specific objects. You can then use advanced Roomba commands for Alexa such as “Alexa, tell [robot name] to clean around the kitchen table.”.
With iRobot genius, the app will start to make recommendations with you such as setting no-go zones in areas where the vacuum often gets stuck.
Of course, it also comes with the same self-emptying base that is coupled with the i7+. However, being one of the most expensive vacuums on the market, the absence of a mop puts it at a disadvantage to other top-tier devices such as those from Ecovacs and Roborock.
Instead, Roomba recommend pairing it with their Braava Jet M6 robot mop because the two devices can talk to each other to coordinate vacuum and mopping cycles.
Smartest Features: Ecovacs DEEBOT OZMO T8 AIVI
|Value for Money||6/10|
The DEEBOT OZMO T8 AIVI is the highest spec robot vacuum from Ecovacs and also the most expensive. It has many of the same features as the N8 Pro+ which secured my number one spot, however, there are also some additional features that are unique to this device.
Like the N8 Pro+, the T8 AIVI also maps your home for room-by-room cleaning. However, it’s one of the few robot vacuums on the market that uses both lasers and cameras to map and navigate your home.
Its AIVI system (Artificial Intelligence and Visual Interpretation) uses artificial intelligence to recognise household objects that obstruct its path and avoid them. It’s one of the best vacuums on the market for avoiding obstacles like wires, slippers, socks, etc. However, the DEEBOT N8 Pro+ that I mentioned earlier also does an excellent job at this, despite not having the AIVI technology onboard.
After each clean, if the vacuum encountered any obstacles it will send you an alert so that you can move them ahead of the next clean.
A unique feature of this vacuum is that you can see a live feed from the camera on the front of the vacuum and broadcast a voice message. This is excellent for pet owners if you ever need to check in on them whilst away from home.
Are all these smart features just to cover for a mediocre vacuum? No, not at all. Its cleaning performance is superb and works well on all floor types. The vacuum will detect carpet or hard floor and adjust its suction power accordingly. Its 175-minute runtime is the best of all those reviewed here, although with recharge-and-resume this isn’t particularly important as it will continue until the whole house has been cleaned regardless of size.
Finally, I need to mention the integrated mop. It uses the exact same mop as the N8 Pro+ which allows you to adjust the water levels from the app and set no-mop zones.
Best for Thresholds: Dyson 360 Heurist
|Value for Money||7/10|
Dyson is a household name in the UK when it comes to vacuum cleaners and their robot vacuum lives up to the name with incredible suction power thanks to incorporating their cyclone technology.
Aside from Roomba, Dyson is the only other ‘premium’ robot vacuum brand that uses vSLAM for mapping rather than lasers so it’s a great Roomba alternative. As I mentioned when reviewing the Roomba I7+ and S9+, this is slightly less accurate than lasers at mapping accuracy and takes several cleans before you get a complete map.
The original Dyson robot vacuum (Dyson 360 Eye) was notorious for getting stuck in dark places which is due to its vSLAM mapping, however, the new generation has a ring of LED lights to help overcome this problem.
Looking at the Dyson 360 Heurist, you’ll notice that it’s a different shape compared to most of the others here. Dyson have opted for a narrower but taller device. This means it is better at weaving between objects such as chair legs, however, it may not fit under your shorter furniture such as your couch since it is 120mm tall (compared to 93.6mm for the N8 Pro+ and 92mm for the Roomba i7+).
Another unique feature of the Dyson compared to other robot vacuums is its tank tread-style wheels rather than the typical wheels you’d expect from a robot vacuum. These are particularly helpful for navigating over rugs or thresholds in your home. If your home is a struggle for regular robot vacuums, the Dyson 360 Heurist is worth considering.
Affordable Pick: Proscenic M7 Pro
|Value for Money||8|
My final recommended vacuum is a more affordable choice which is the Proscenic M7 Pro. By their nature, robot vacuums with mapping are more expensive than random path vacuums so the price still doesn’t compare to other cheap robot vacuums, but it’s still excellent value for money when you consider the features.
Given its price, the cleaning performance is very good. The vacuum manages to clean both carpet and hardwood floor with ease and it can even change its suction power as it transitions between floor types like the more expensive Ecovacs DEEBOT T8 AIVI.
Its 600ml dustbin capacity is well above average and the second-best in this roundup, however, there is a compatible self-emptying base that you can purchase for just $100 extra which is well worth the investment, especially if you have allergies and want to minimise contact with dust.
Similar to some of the other devices shared earlier, the M7 Pro has an integrated mop. However, the mop tank is very small at just 110ml and you cannot set no-mop zones so you will need to find a way of closing off any tiled or hardwood floors otherwise you might end up getting carpets wet.
The M7 Pro integrates with Alexa, although the commands are more limited than others here such as start/stop/find the vacuum. You can’t initiate cleans of specific rooms with your voice as you can with the Roomba or Ecovacs.
Here is a full side-by-side comparison chart of the robot vacuums shared above:
|Ecovacs DEEBOT N8+||Roomba i7+||Roborock S7||Ecovacs T8 OZMO AIVI||Roomba S9+||Dyson Heurist||Proscenic M7 Pro|
|Best Overall||Best Self Emptying||Best with Mop||Smartest||Best Cleaning Performance||Best for Thresholds||Affordable Pick|
|Value for Money||8||7||7||6||6||5||8|
|Self Emptying||Yes||Yes||Yes (base coming soon)||No||Yes||No||Yes (base not included)|
|Run Time||110 Mins||75 Mins||180 Mins||175 Min||75 Mins||75 Mins||150 Mins|
|Recharge & Resume||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Where to Buy||Amazon||Amazon||Amazon||Amazon||Amazon||Dyson||Amazon|