So, you have finally decided to invest on an iRobot Roomba? Congratulations, for cleaning, is now going to be a child’s play. Your next step is choosing the right model for your home and needs. The Roomba 890 and 960 are popular best-selling models from the stables of iRobot. But, when it comes to Roomba 890 vs 960, which one should you pick and why? Read on for a comprehensive comparison review of two of the best Roomba models on the market.
The iRobot Roomba botvacs are designed to make floor cleaning automated and hassle-free and the models are aimed at users with varying budgets and cleaning needs. The users with customized cleaning needs usually pick the models from the Roomba 800 and 900 lineups. An analysis and comparison of Roomba 890 vs 960 models will make things easier for such buyers. There are several advanced cleaning features and convenience add-ons in both the models and they have thousands of loyal users. However, you will need to assess the budget, usage patterns, and customized cleaning provisions to make the final call. This will help you decide which is the best robotic vacuum for your needs.
iRobot Roomba 890 vs 960 : An comprehensive Comparison Guide
The Roomba 890 sits at the top end of the 800 line-up while the 960 serves as the entry-level model of the company’s costlier 900 lineup. They share a lot of common features and do not look very different as well. However, on closer analysis and comparison the differences come into the picture.
iRobot Roomba 890 vs 960 — Notable Differences
The major differences between the two devices are:
- The Roomba 890 model is equipped with the tried and tested, but aging iAdapt mapping and navigation technology. The Roomba 960 is powered by more advanced iAdapt 2.0 technology.
- The Roomba 890 botvac does not have a clean map report feature which is present in the Roomba 960.
- In the Roomba 890, once the dust collector bin is full, it has to be emptied or else the device will not clean. In the Roomba 960, the full bin indicators will alert you about capacity exhaustion but it still continues cleanup.
- The Roomba 960, owing to its more advanced navigation tech is capable of entire level cleaning, but that is not the case with the 890.
- Those who prefer cleaning the edges of rooms thoroughly should opt for the Roomba 960 which has an inbuilt edge cleaning feature. This feature is absent in the Roomba 890.
- In terms of battery life, the Roomba 960 outshines the sibling 890 by a margin. The former has a rated runtime of 75 minutes on a single recharge while the 890 runs for just 60 minutes post a recharge cycle.
- Once you switch the device on and start clean mode, the Roomba 890 will run over the designated portion in one pass. However, you can make the 960 make a double pass on the same spot to clean dirtier zones better.
- To aid the device in detecting objects and navigate through the rooms, a camera is positioned atop the Roomba 960. The Roomba 890 gets only sensors and no dedicated camera.
- The Roomba 960 has multi room cleaning feature which the 890 does not have.
- The Roomba 890 does not have an auto resume function which is included in the pricier sibling 960.
iRobot Roomba 890 vs 960 — Things in Common
The major resemblances between the two devices are:
- Both the botvacs are equipped with the company’s AeroForce vacuum tech to clean multiple types of surfaces without hitch.
- Both the botvacs can be controlled through your smartphone by using Wi-Fi connectivity.
- The Roomba 890 and 960 both support digital assistants like Amazon Alexa and so you can enjoy using voice commands with both the devices.
- Both the devices support accessories like 2 mode virtual wall barriers for customized cleanup of floors.
- Using the iHome app, you can set both the devices for scheduled cleanup.
- Both these robotized vacuum cleaner models are equipped with full bin indicators to let you know when to empty them.
- The botvacs come with recessed integrated carrying handles. This comes in handy when the devices run out of battery power or cannot return to the charging dock. You can lift and carry them easily in such situations.
- Both these robotized vacuum cleaners come with rechargeable lithium-ion batteries.
- The devices monitor battery capacity while cleanup is in progress. When the battery is near depleted, the devices return to the charging dock automatically to recharge.
- Both the botvacs come with a spot cleaning mode, which lets the devices clean up dirtier spots on the floors without hassles.
Also Read: 7 Best Roomba Replacement Batteries for 2019
iRobot Roomba 890 vs 960 Comparison : Robotic Vacuums Comparison Chart
Feature Wise Comparison of iRobot Roomba 890 vs 960
The Roomba devices are known for their circular, low profile design and both the botvacs stick to the same profile.
The Roomba 960 and 890 features a circular body with low height and they weigh almost the same as well. The color scheme is a tad different. Build quality is pretty good for both the devices.
Winner: Here, it is a tie with both devices faring on the same level.
2. Mapping and Navigation Technology
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Like all Roomba devices, the Roomba 890 and 960 are also laden with the company’s iAdapt navigation and mapping technology. It helps the devices detect objects with the usage of sensors and cameras and clean floors without knocking around things.
The Roomba 890 botvac uses aged iAdapt version 1 technology for navigation. It relies entirely on the sensors to detect objects. The pricier sibling aka Roomba 960 gets a dedicated camera for advanced navigation. It is laden with newer iAdapt 2 with Vslam technology. Camera based navigation is definitely better than sensor guided navigation.
Winner: Clearly, the Roomba 960 with its dedicated camera and newer version of navigation tech wins.
3. Edge Cleaning
Those buying robotized vacuum cleaners are often skeptical about the capacity of the devices to clean edges of the rooms and alliances kept at the side of walls etc. The Roomba 960 and 890 both have side brushes to clean the edges of rooms.
While both the devices can make use of their side brushes to clean edges of walls and belongings placed on floors, the 960 has a lead over the 890. It comes with a special edge cleaning mode. This can be used to cleanup the room edges very well.
Winner: Again the Roomba 960 takes the cake here. However, the edge clean mode does take a toll on the battery, more so for large sized rooms.
4. Spot Clean Mode
Both these botvacs come laden with a special spot cleaning mode. It is handy when you want the device to clean a particular dirty zone in the room, maybe where a party was held a few hours back!
Both the devices offer decent performance in spot cleanup mode. The pricier 960 does not actually outshine the sibling in this context. They do a nice job of cleanup except when you put them on thick piled carpets.
Winner: Here it is a tie with both botvacs performing on the same level.
5. iHome Smartphone App Support
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Both the Roomba devices have Smartphone support through the company’s iHome app, available for android and iOS devices. It lets you control the device after connecting through the Wi-Fi network, making the need for a remote controller redundant.
The Roomba 960 and 890 fare well when it comes to controlling the devices through Smartphone app. Both devices support Amazon Alexa and so you can utilize voice commands to control the device features. However, the Roomba 960 is clearly a step ahead of its sibling owing to the incorporation of the cleaning map report generation feature.
Winner: The Roomba 960 race ahead of 890 with support for Clean map generation feature.
6. Automated Device Recharge
It can be a headache to take your botvac to the recharging dock once the battery runs out of juice. Thankfully, both the Roomba 890 and 960 features automated recharging feature.
Both the robotic vacuum cleaners have inbuilt features to monitor battery depletion when they are running. Once the battery level reaches a certain percentage and will get exhausted soon, the devices return automatically to the recharging dock for another recharge.
The Roomba 960 and 890 work well here, but the 960 takes it one step ahead. It not only returns to the recharging dock automatically and recharges itself, but also resumes cleaning operation from where it stopped. In the case of 890, you have to issue the clean command once more when a recharge is completed. So, the 960 is ideal for people who want to spend less time looking after their botvacs.
Winner: The Roomba 960 once again emerges the winner owing to its automatic resumption of cleaning post recharge cycle.
Both the Roomba devices are equipped with lithium-ion batteries which are rechargeable in nature.
The batteries are similar but the runtime is what sets the Roomba 960 apart from the sibling 890. On a full recharge, the Roomba 960 runs for a duration of 75 mins approx. However, the Roomba 890 runs out of steam at just 60 minutes.
Winner: Clearly, the Roomba 960 outperforms the 890 by a clear margin in iRobot Roomba 890 vs 960 battery life test.
8. Full Bin Alert
Like most of the siblings Roomba 960 and 890 come with an inbuilt alert feature that alerts you when the dust bin is full. The dust bins inside the devices get filled with debris, fur and particles naturally, after some time of usage and it is necessary to clean it. The devices send alerts through the app to the users on their smartphones when the dust bins get filled to the capacity.
Both the botvacs send alerts to you when their dust bins get filled with debris and dirt etc. However, the Roomba 960 is one step ahead here. It lets you choose from 2 actions. You can ask it to stop cleaning and clean the bag. Or, you can ask it to complete the ongoing cleanup job at that moment. This is not possible with the sibling 890.
Winner: The Roomba 960 edges out the 890 by a small margin, owing to its options for a full bin alert.
Also Read: iRobot Roomba Troubleshooting Guide
9. Cleanup Performance
While both the Roombas feature nearly the same motor within. The extra features and advanced software used in the 960 make a difference eventually. They both use iAdapt navigation, with the 960 got a more recent version. They also feature the same types of bristles and side cleanup brush sets.
The Roomba 890 relies on the sensors to detect dirt and find obstacles on the way. It fares well, but at times, change in flooring surfaces or intricate patterns on rugs or carpets can make it stumble. That is not the case with the 960 which gets a dedicated camera along with sensors. So, it does a better job of detecting objects and identifying floor surfaces.
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Besides, the 960 can be directed to make two passes while cleaning a room which is not possible with 890. The former also has a dedicated edge cleaning mode. Owing to these features, the 960 cleans a bit better than 890 in most scenarios, despite having almost the same hardware inside. It adheres to a more methodical cleanup procedure rather than going randomly across the floor like some of its cheaper priced siblings.
Winner: The Roomba 960 beats the sibling 890, owing to its advanced cleanup features and navigation software.
iRobot Roomba 890 vs 960 : Pros and Cons
Like all devices, the Roomba 890 and 960 each comes with its own set of advantages and limitations.
Roomba 890 Pros
Roomba 890 Cons
- Capacity volume: 0.62 liter; Power Lifting Suction delivers 5X the air power for improved pick up...
- Premium 3 Stage Cleaning System loosens, lifts, and suctions dirt, dust, and pet hair; The Auto...
Roomba 960 Pros
Roomba 960 Cons
- Power-Lifting Suction delivers 5X the air power for improved pick-up performance. (Compared to...
- Intelligently maps and cleans an entire level of your home. Patented iAdapt 2. 0 technology with...
Who should buy the iRobot Roomba 890?
The Roomba 890 sits at the top of the company’s 800 series and offers enough value for money. It may not be the best Roomba vacuum cleaner, but it is no slouch either! The design and build quality is impressive and its low profile body ensures the places beneath your appliances and furniture are cleaned thoroughly. The botvac deploys the company’s iAdapt mapping and navigation technology, which is not brand new but still aces most of the cleanup tasks. It also scores owing to Wi-Fi support, automatic return to dock and bag full alert.
It will fit your bill unless your entire house flooring is filled with a thick pile carpet and you need a high level of customization in floor cleaning. While it misses out the automatic resume feature after recharge; everything else can be automated including scheduled cleaning. It is ideal when you don’t mind spending a hefty amount on a robot vacuum cleaner that cleans well minus manual intervention.