Robots take on more Aussie jobs, Roomba 980 and Braava now available


    iRobot has shipped over 15 million robots into the world and now their latest and greatest, the Roomba 980 is now available in Australia.

    The new model has some serious intelligence upgrades, including the ability to control the vacuuming robot with WI-FI connectivity. This allows you to manage your cleaning schedules easily and is a dramatic improvement over the relatively clunky, on-device settings which wasn’t far from setting an alarm on a 1990’s model bedside clock.


    The iRobot HOME app is available for Android and iOS and allows you to also see the current cleaning status on your phone. If you’re a particularly dirty household, you can now schedule the Roomba to perform two passes, great if you’ve got guests coming over.

    Probably the most important upgrade is the change to how Roomba sees the world. It now has intelligent visual navigation technology (vSLAM) on-board, allowing it to efficiently navigate your home while keeping track of its location, therefore logging where its been and the path back to base for a recharge. This battery will last up to 2 hours of cleaning, so even large houses will be suitable. With the new updated (more logical) pathing, the clean time should also reduce compared to previous models.


    iRobot are also pretty proud of their changes to carpet cleaning. The Carpet Boost feature will blast air into your carpet and rugs to loosen dirt ahead of sucking it into their 3-stage cleaning system inside Roomba, known as Aeroforce.


    This top of the line model, doesn’t come cheap with a price tag of A$1,499 RRP. I encourage you to shop around, with so many retailers, there’s bound to be a bargain out there. It is worth remembering that with the right technology, it could mean you never pick up a vacuum cleaner ever again.

    The Roomba 980 is available for purchase online at or in store at Harvey Norman, The Good Guys, Betta, Myer, JB Home, Bing Lee.

    As a Roomba owner who was tired of waiting for the 880 to reach Australia, I imported one and for the most part, its fantastic. What really needs improving is the Roomba’s intelligence when it comes to bumping into internal doors that result in them being nudged closed, trapping Roomba inside, only for the battery to eventually run out. There’s no official confirmation if the 980 fixes this issue, but we’ll try and get a review model to test this and report back.


    The company also brought the Braava 380t to Australia, a super quiet mopping robot also with iAdapt 2.0 tech to track where its been and where it needs to go. It uses a either dry or damp cloths to mop hard-surface floors, keeping dust, daily dirt and smudges under control automatically.

    As someone building a house with timber laminate flooring, this is definitely on the radar. Having vacuuming taken care of is great, but if you then need to spend your time mopping, the robots haven’t really solved your cleaning woes. 

    To add this guy to your growing robot fleet, you’ll need to part with A$599.00 and is also available now.


    Jason Cartwright
    Jason Cartwright
    Creator of techAU, Jason has spent the dozen+ years covering technology in Australia and around the world. Bringing a background in multimedia and passion for technology to the job, Cartwright delivers detailed product reviews, event coverage and industry news on a daily basis. Disclaimer: Tesla Shareholder from 20/01/2021

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