IRobot may apply mapping system someday – –2012 CES Forum Meeting
iRobot did not develop any new product at the past CES, merely attended some commercial activities, like forum meeting. The life cycle of Robot is much longer than consumer electronics such as PC. Robot 700 series should still be counted as the modern one, it looks that there is no reason to change it.
One of the problems of 500 series is that the inner clean module will be covered with fur and hair after a long time usage. Gerry Carton, the Product Manage Director emphasized another alteration to avoid the entry of fur and hair to gear case. The new final design prevents more fur and hair from going into pillow and finally gear case. The improvement looks effective, because there is no fur or hair in gears after a few weeks’ intention test.
Another problem: why doesn’t iRobot increase another side brush to help collecting dust from both sides. Caron referred, side brush cannot wide the path effectively to prove that increasing side brush and the higher cost is appropriate according to his experience. The effective clean is only on the area where it passed, since Roomba passed the same area several times in the progress of cleaning, the increase of the side brush will not help a lot. Furthermore. The duty of side brush is to clean floor along the edge of wall and furniture, only one side of it face against the wall, so one is enough.
As to the systematic coverage of floor, Mr Caron mentioned: IRobot tried varies mapping tech in the past, but they didn’t find any tech can be effective enough for the plan which emphasis fulfilling the task as soon as possible. But for iAdapt, it is designed for repeating the same place from different direction. Mapping robot usually deviates from the right path slightly and leave the narrow unclean shred. These robots often focuse on speed not absolute clean. Caron said:”Navigation is a cool thing. We may apply it someday, but on account of the benefit it brings to iRobot, not only its tech” Mapping robots don’t often contact the intensive space, however every corner is possible for Roomba which can move freely.
In addition, Caron referred:”We have an imagination of autonomous family where it is not you who take care of family, but the family who take care of you. This care could be cleaning floor, swimming pool or waterway, even help you with your parent.”