Anyone who’s been around robotic vacuum cleaners probably knows how big of a deal Roomba i-series robotic vacuum cleaners are. They’re several times more powerful than their predecessors while sporting high-tech navigation capabilities to clean your entire home in neat, efficient rows. Today, we’re going to compare the i4+ and the i6+ to see which of the two is the better Roomba.
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The Roomba i4+ is an excellent vacuum robot that picks up all sorts of debris, including embedded pet hair in carpeting, in just one or two passes. In all honesty, everything that the i4+ comes with, the i6+ has, but with improvements. Let’s take a look at what the i4+ has to offer.
3-Prong Cleaning System
First of all, how does the i4+ clean? This compact robotic vacuum cleaner has two multi-surface brush rolls with rubber fins instead of bristles. The fins perform much better at pulling dirt and debris out of carpets than standard bristles while also maintaining excellent, non-marring vacuuming capabilities on bare floors.
In addition to the dual brush rolls, the i4+ also comes with a side brush (with bristles this time) that help draw in debris from baseboards, corners, and around furniture the legs of furniture. When it comes to dealing with large-sized debris (think cereal), the side brush does more scattering than it does drawing in, which isn’t uncommon for robotic vacuums.
High-Tech Floor Tracking Sensors
As previously stated, the i4+ doesn’t come with cutting-edge navigation software. However, the high-tech floor tracking sensors are nothing to scoff at. Sensors build beneath the robot don’t just keep it from jumping off of cliffs, but they also help the i4+ find its way around your floors.
The i4+ uses floor tracking sensors to create a digital layout of your home, which it accesses to create the most efficient row-by-row cleaning route possible. You can access the map to see how far the robot has performed its cleaning duties and how much is left to go. Sadly, there’s no way to create no-go zones—for that, you’ll have to rely on the much-improved i6+ model.
Something that might surprise you is how responsive the i4+ is. Even though it follows a pre-programmed cleaning route after mapping your floors, it can notice newly made stains on the floor, which prompts the i4+ to leave its cleaning path and focus on the nearby mess before continuing.
Learns Your Habits
Another feature that demonstrates the i4+’s responsiveness is how quickly it can learn your habits. The i4+ keeps track of every time you command it to start vacuuming, either manually or based on a cleaning schedule.
After a while, it’ll send cleaning recommendations to your phone, reminding you that you might have accidentally forgotten to start your i4+. What’s even more awesome about the self-learning robot is how it reminds you that allergy season is here.
It’ll suggest increasing vacuum-cleaning frequency to get rid of pollen, dander, and pet hair to keep you from suffering from excessive sniffles and sneezing.
Great for Pet Parents
Both the i4+ and the i6+ are designed to help pet parents everywhere get rid of stray fur and dander flakes. Not only do they come with a multi-surface brush roll that virtually eliminates the risk of tangling, but built into these robots are high-efficiency filters that are designed to trap as much as 99% of microscopic allergens for up to six months before needing to be replaced.
If you’re wondering what the plus symbol means in the Roomba i4+ and the i6+, it means that the robots come with a self-emptying base. The self-emptying base is pretty much a vacuum for your robotic vacuum cleaner. Whenever your robot is recharging, or when its dustbin is full, the base will suction all of the contents out of the robots, leaving them ready for the next heavy-duty vacuuming session.
Both of these robots’ self-emptying bases have a storage capacity of up to 60 days, though your results may vary depending on how often your robot cleans and how dirty your floors are. When the base can’t take any more debris in, you’ll have to tie off the filter-lined bag and insert a fresh one (sold separately).
Roomba i6+ vs. i4+
|3 Stage-Cleaning System||Premium||Premium|
|Cleaning pattern||Neat rows||Neat rows|
|Runtime||Smart charge & resume||Smart charge & resume|
|Intelligent navigation||+ Smart mapping||+ mapping|
|Navigates obstacles & stairs||+ Visual navigation||Yes|
|Personalized cleaning recommendations||+ Custom Cleaning Options||Yes|
|Smart home connectivity||Yes||Yes|
|Tangle resistant rubber brushes||Yes||Yes|
|Teams up with Braava jet m6 Robot Mop||Yes||Yes|
|Clean by specific rooms or objects||Yes||n/a|
|Clean Zones & Keep Out Zones||Yes||n/a|
*Compared to Roomba 600 Series AeroVoc System.
You’ll find more overlapping specs and features between the i4+ and the i6+ than you will find differences. However, in the ways they differ from each other, the iRobot Roomba i6+ Roomba i6+ (6550)[/caption]
The i4+ does a pretty decent job of getting around your home, but its navigation system pales in comparison to the i6+’s. The i6+ comes with vSLAM Navigation technology, which uses cameras to learn the layout of your home before creating a digital version.
This camera system is better than regular floor tracking navigation in many ways. The most beneficial factor is how cameras can help in creating more accurate, true-to-life maps of your home, allowing the i6+ to create a more efficient cleaning path on its first go-around.
But there’s another upside of having a visual representation of your home and floors. The i6+’s advanced mobile app doesn’t just show status and progress reports, like the i4+’s app does. The advanced app lets you give names to different rooms, identify the locations of obstacles (that the robot might’ve missed), and create no-go zones.
Perhaps the best thing about being able to give names to different rooms is how you can tell your i6+ to clean a specific portion of your home instead of vacuuming your whole house. This will come in handy when you need high foot traffic parts of your home cleaned before guests arrive.
Smart Recharge and Resume
Recharge and resume is pretty much standard in all high-end robotic vacuum cleaners, such as the i4+ and the i6+. However, the difference between the i6+ and other robots is how long it spends in the charging dock/self-emptying base.
The i6+’s battery supplies enough power for 75 minutes of cleaning per charge. However, with smart recharge and resume, your i6+ won’t wait for a full battery before heading out. As soon as its battery is filled enough to complete its cleaning session, the Roomba will dismount and resume exactly where it left off.
Personalized Recommendations with Custom Cleaning Settings
Similar to the i4+, the i6+ learns your habits the longer you use it. The robot will suggest more vacuuming during allergy season. The difference is that the Roomba i6+ also suggests customizable cleaning options, such as cleaning rooms with carpets more often since common allergens can stick onto the fibers more easily than bare floors.
Auto-Adjusting Brush Roll
Another thing you should know about the brush rolls in both of these Roombas is that it automatically adjusts to the surface they’re cleaning. They come with floating brush rolls, which lift or lower, depending on whether your robot is cleaning carpets or bare floors. An auto-adjusting brush roll also reduces the amount of suction power needed to extract dirt from thick carpets since the rubber fins always make contact with your floors.
All of the best robotic vacuum cleaners offer Alexa and/or Assistant support, and these Roombas are no exception. If you don’t want to lean down and press buttons, or if you misplaced your smartphone, all you have to do is shout orders at your smart speaker, which will relay them to your i4+ or i6+.
However, there are more voice commands for the iRobot i6+ than there are for the i4+. This is due to the fact that the i6+ has a customizable map that you can access and modify via the iRobot Home app. So, if you want your Roomba i6+ to, say, clean your bedroom, just yell, “Alexa, ask (Roomba i6+’s name) to clean my bedroom.”
Tag-Team with the Braava Jet m6
You might have noticed that we never mentioned the word “hybrid” or the phrase “mop bot” at any time. This is simply because neither of these Roombas has mopping capabilities. They aren’t compatible with water tanks, and you can’t mount a microfiber pad on the robots’ underside to wipe away wet stains.
But what these Roombas can do is team up with the iRobot Braava jet m6 mop bot. When your Roomba i4+ or i6+ has finished its vacuum cycle, it’ll automatically communicate with the jet m6 and send it on its way. While this tag-team relationship is neat and unique, it also means that you’ll have to pick up the jet m6, which is sold separately.
- 20% LARGER BATTERY* – Larger battery for extended runtime. *Compared to Roomba i3/i3+ Robot Vacuum
- CLEANS UP AFTER YOU, AND ITSELF - Forget about vacuuming for months at a time with the Clean Base Automatic...
- POWERFUL PERFORMANCE AND POWERFUL PICK-UP - Pulls in stubborn dirt and messes with a Premium 3-Stage Cleaning...
Last update on 2021-09-23 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
Roomba i4+ vs. i6+: Which Roomba Should I Get?
Seeing what both of these Roombas have to offer, it’s pretty fair to say that from a purely performance standpoint, the two are virtually indistinguishable.
However, thanks to vSLAM navigation, simply because it has a lower risk of missing parts of your floors while scanning and mapping the layout. That said, we can’t emphasize how much less work there is when you can command the Roomba i6+ to clean specific rooms or avoid certain parts of your floors.
So, if you can get by without the premium add-ons of the iRobot Roomba i6+, then the i4+ is the more cost-effective solution. If you want more frills in your robotic vacuum cleaner, the i6+ is definitely the way to go.
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