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Redmi K20 Series Launch, Samsung M40 India Release Date, OnePlus 7, and More Tech News This Week

In a week filled with smartphone launches, Redmi K20 and Redmi K20 Pro’s debut in China and Samsung Galaxy M40 dominated the conversation. The India launches of Oppo Reno series, BlackShark 2, Vivo Y15 (2019) also made some noise. Additionally, we saw teasers for the upcoming Mi 9T smartphone, announcement of the India release date…

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Redmi K20 Series Launch, Samsung M40 India Release Date, OnePlus 7, and More Tech News This Week

In a week filled with smartphone launches, Redmi K20 and Redmi K20 Pro’s debut in China and Samsung Galaxy M40 dominated the conversation. The India launches of Oppo Reno series, BlackShark 2, Vivo Y15 (2019) also made some noise. Additionally, we saw teasers for the upcoming Mi 9T smartphone, announcement of the India release date for OnePlus 7, and some updates on the availability of Realme X in the country. This is not all, Moto Z4 finally became official and HMD Global sent out invites for two events on June 6.
Redmi K20, Redmi K20 Pro launch, Mi 9T, and Redmi Go 16GB variant
Starting with the Redmi K20 and Redmi K20 Pro first, the two phones made their debut in Beijing this week after month of anticipation, rumours, leaks, and teasers. While the Redmi K20 Pro will be first flagship for the Xiaomi’s Redmi sub-brand, the Redmi K20 will fill the space between Redmi Note 7 Pro and Redmi K20 Pro in the company’s portfolio. While the Chinese smartphone has said that the two phones will be released in markets outside China, the specifics are a mystery at this point.
As more and more leaks and rumours pop up, it seems more likely than ever that Redmi K20 Pro and Redmi K20 will be rebranded for the international markets. The Redmi K20 is reportedly going to be called Mi 9T, whereas the international branding for Redmi K20 Pro is unclear right now, however the phone might end-up being Poco F2 for some markets and something else for the others.
Talking about the two phones, the Redmi K20 and Redmi K20 Pro feature a 6.39-inch full-HD+ AMOLED screen with an in-display fingerprint sensor, 4,000mAh battery, Android 9 Pie-based MIUI 10 operating system. The phones also come with a triple rear camera setup, which houses 48-megapixel primary shooter, 13-megapixel secondary wide-angle shooter, and a third 8-megapixel shooter. There is a 20-megapixel pop-up selfie camera onboard as well.
While the Redmi K20 is powered by octa-core Snapdragon 730 SoC, the Redmi K20 Pro will pack the octa-core Snapdragon 855 SoC. Both phones also get up to 8GB of RAM and 256GB of onboard storage. In terms of differences apart from the processor, the Redmi K20 doesn’t get the hardware DC dimming support and 27W fast charging support, instead there is just 18W fast charging.
Redmi Note 7S Review

 
Meanwhile, Xiaomi India has started teasing the impending launch of Mi 9T in the country. If it indeed turns out to be a rebranded version of the Redmi K20, it will be a fairly mid-range smartphone. There is no word on the pricing at the moment, however the Redmi K20 starts at CNY 1,999 (Rs. 20,200) in China, which is a good indicator of the India price of the phone.
In other Xiaomi news, RedmiBook 14 debuted as the first laptop under the Redmi brand. It packs a 14-inch display and is powered by up to eighth-generation Intel Core i7 processor. Other highlights of the laptop include DTS audio support, a new cooling system, and Intelligent Unlock 2.0 feature.
The RedmiBook 14 has been priced starts at CNY 3,999 (roughly Rs. 40,300) for the base variant with Intel Core i5 processor and 256GB SSD storage, while its 512GB SSD model comes at CNY 4,299 (roughly Rs. 43,300). There is also the top-end model with eighth-generation Intel Core i7 processor and 512GB SSD at CNY 4,999 (roughly Rs. 50,400). It goes on sale in China on June 11, however there is no word on the global availability.
The company also launched the 16GB variant of its Redmi Go smartphone in India earlier this week. It joins the already available 1GB + 8GB variant. The new variant also houses just 1GB of RAM, which is not surprising considering that Redmi Go is an Android Go smartphone. The 16GB variant of the Redmi Go will retail at Rs. 4,799.
The Chinese smartphone has also started the open sales for the Redmi Note 7S smartphone. The smartphone was only sold via a flash sale two times before getting the expanded availability. The phone carries a price tag of Rs. 10,999 for the 3GB + 32GB variant and Rs. 12,999 for the 4GB + 64GB variant. It can be purchased via Flipkart.com, Mi.com, Mi Home Stores, Mi Studio outlets, and Mi partner brick-and-mortar stores.
Samsung M40 launch date, specifications, teasers
Moving on the Samsung Galaxy M40 news, Samsung announced this week that it will be introducing the fourth smartphone in its India-first Galaxy M-series this month. Dubbed as Samsung Galaxy M40, the smartphone will be launched on June 11. It will be joining the Galaxy M10, Galaxy M20, and Galaxy M30 smartphones in the company’s portfolio. Samsung Galaxy M-series has gotten decent amount of traction and the company revealed that it has managed to sell 2 million units of the Galaxy M-series phones since launch.

 
Samsung M40 will be the most expensive smartphone in the Galaxy M-series until now and it will carry a price tag around Rs. 20,000, Samsung India’s Asim Warsi told Gadgets 360. He also revealed that the Galaxy M40 will be powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 675 SoC, run on Android 9 Pie, and will pack a triple camera setup with a 32-megapixel primary shooter. Additionally, Warsi noted that the Samsung M40 will pack the company’s Screen Sound technology, which enables the AMOLED screen to act as a speaker.
In the run up to the June 11 launch, Samsung has published various teaser websites for the Galaxy M40 and in one such website, the company published a full render of the phone, giving us a look at what we can expect later this month. The teaser revealed that the Samsung M40 will spot a hole-punch (or Infinity-O camera). In other specifications, the phone is said to be coming with a 3,500mAh battery and a 16-megapixel selfie camera.
As it prepares to unveil the Galaxy M40 with Android Pie, the Seoul-based company started rolling out the Android 9 Pie update for all of its existing Galaxy M-series – Galaxy M10, Galaxy M20, and Galaxy M30 – smartphones. The update for each phone is now live over-the-air and will gradually reach all units. The Android Pie update brings the company’s One UI, among other changes.
OnePlus 7 India sales open June 4, OnePlus 7 Pro Nebula Blue now on sale
OnePlus revealed this week that OnePlus 7 will be available in the Indian market beginning June 4. The phone was announced alongside the OnePlus 7 Pro but has not gone on sale until now. OnePlus 7 will be sold via Amazon.in, OnePlus.in, and OnePlus offline retail stores from next week, however the OnePlus partner physical retailers like MyJio outlets, Croma, and Reliance Digital will get it on June 14.
OnePlus 7 has been priced at Rs. 32,999 for the 6GB + 128GB variant, going up to Rs. 37,999 for the 8GB + 256GB variant. The 6GB RAM variant will only be available in a Mirror Grey colour variant, while the 8GB RAM variant will be available in both Mirror Grey and Red colour variants.
Meanwhile, OnePlus has opened the sales of the Nebula Blue variant of the OnePlus 7 Pro in the country. The Nebula Blue colour variant, which is being offered in two storage configurations – 8GB + 256GB and 12GB + 256GB – is now available for purchase from Amazon India, OnePlus.in as well as a variety of brick-and-mortar retailers. OnePlus 7 Pro price in India starts at Rs. 48,999 for the 6GB + 128GB model, however the Nebula Blue variants with 8GB + 256GB storage and 12GB + 256GB storage are retailing at Rs. 52,999 and Rs. 57,999 respectively.
Best Phones Under Rs. 15,000, June 2019 Edition

 
Oppo Reno, Oppo Reno 10x Zoom India launch, Oppo Reno Z China debut
Over six weeks after their debut in China, Oppo’s Reno and Reno 10x Zoom smartphones with Shark Fin side-swing selfie camera made their way to India. The two phones will be available in the country starting June 7. The Oppo Reno has been priced at Rs. 32,990 for the 8GB + 128GB variant, whereas the Reno 10x Zoom edition will retail at Rs. 39,990 and Rs. 49,990 for the 6GB + 128GB and 8GB + 256GB variants, respectively.
Oppo Reno features a 6.4-inch full-HD+ panoramic AMOLED display, Qualcomm Snapdragon 710 SoC a dual rear camera setup, and a 16-megapixel selfie camera. Oppo Reno 10x Zoom edition, on the other hand, packs a 6.6-inch panoramic AMOLED display, an octa-core Snapdragon 855 SoC, a triple rear camera setup, and a 16-megapixel selfie camera. As the name suggests, the Oppo Reno 10x Zoom edition’s one camera offers 16-160mm full focal length coverage to enable 10x lossless optical zoom.
Oppo also expanded its Reno lineup in China earlier this week with the launch of Reno Z. The new smartphone ditches the Shark Fin side-swing selfie camera for a shooter housed in a waterdrop-style notch. Other specifications of the phone include The dual-SIM (Nano) Oppo Reno Z runs on Android 9 Pie with ColorOS 6.0. The phone also packs a 6.4-inch full-HD+ AMOLED screen, octa-core MediaTek Helio P90 SoC, up to 8GB of RAM, and a dual rear camera setup. There is no word on the phone’s launch outside China right now.
Realme X India launch details, Realme 2 Pro Android Pie update
Turns out Realme X is unlikely to launch in India in the first half of this year. Realme India CEO Madhav Sheth stated on Twitter this week that the phone is expected to be launched in the second half of 2019. The Indian variant of the Realme X is said to be different from the China variant. The company is also bringing the Naoto Fukasawa collection of the Realme X with Onion and Garlic finish to the Indian market.
Realme X China variant features Android 9 Pie with ColorOS 6.0, a 6.53-inch full-HD+ AMOLED display, octa-core Snapdragon 710 SoC, up to 8GB of RAM, a dual rear camera setup, a 16-megapixel selfie camera, and 3,765mAh battery that supports VOOC 3.0 fast charging technology.
In other Realme news, the company has started rolling out the Android 9 Pie update for its Realme 2 Pro smartphone. The update started popping out on select Realme 2 Pro users’ phones earlier this week and will gradually reach everyone. The build number for this update is RMX1801EX_11.A.20, it brings the May 2019 Android Security patch, and ColorOS 6 to the phone.

 
Black Shark 2 India launch
Black Shark 2 gaming phone also debuted in India this week. The phone was originally unveiled in China in March this year. Black Shark, which counts Xiaomi among its investors, will be selling the Black Shark 2 via Flipkart in the country. The sales open June 4. Black Shark 2 price has been set at Rs. 39,999 for the 6GB + 128GB model, whereas its top-of-the-line variant with 12GB RAM and 256GB onboard storage will retail at Rs. 49,999.
Black Shark 2 sports a proprietary Liquid Cool 3.0 technology that is designed to increase heat dissipation by 20 times. There is also Qualcomm’s Snapdragon Elite Gaming to deliver an upgraded gaming experience while on-the-go. Further, the phone has a pressure-sensing Magic Press technology.
Flipkart Flipstart Days Sale: Here Are the Best Tech Deals, Offers
Moto Z4 with Moto Mods support
This week also saw the introduction of Moto Z4 smartphone. The smartphone has only been launched in US right now and will be gradually making its way to other markets over the coming months. Like previous Moto Z-series phones, the Moto Z4 also comes with Moto Mods support. It runs Android 9 Pie and packs a 6.40-inch full-HD+ OLED display. Among other specifications, there is an octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 675 SoC, coupled with 4GB of RAM, a 48-megapixel rear camera, and a 25-megapixel selfie camera onboard.
Moto Z4 will retail at $499 (roughly Rs. 34,900) for its lone 4GB + 128GB variant. It goes on sale next week and will be offered in Flash Grey and Frost White colour variants.

 
Vivo Y15 price in India, availability details
Chinese smartphone maker Vivo has also launched its Y15 smartphone in India. The phone has been priced at Rs. 13,990 and is now available to purchase via all major online and physical retailers. The company is offering only one variant of the phone with 4GB of RAM and 64GB of onboard storage. Vivo Y15 comes with Funtouch OS 9, a 6.35-inch HD+ display with a waterdrop notch at the top and a MediaTek Helio P22 SoC.
Among other specifications, you will get a triple rear camera setup, a 16-megapixel selfie shooter, and a 5,000mAh battery. The smartphone also has a fingerprint scanner at the back.
Nokia event on June 6, Asus ZenFone 6 Edition 30 and other news
HMD Global announced this week that it will launching something new on June 6. There is a lot of mystery surrounding the event. We do know that the company will organise an event in India on the day and there have some reports about an event in Italy as well. Nokia 9 PureView seems like a good candidate for the India launch, but we are yet to get a confirmation. Rumours also indicate that we might see the global debut of Nokia 6.2 and a new feature from the company that will improve low-light photography on Nokia phones. Thankfully, we won’t have to wait for long to get all the official information.
Asus unveiled a special edition of its ZenFone 6 smartphone to mark its 30th anniversary. Dubbed as Asus ZenFone 6 Edition 30, the phone packs a new design and beefed up specifications. According to Asus, it will be producing just 3,000 units of the ZenFone 6 Edition 30 smartphone for sale globally. This special edition phone will be come with 30 months warranty. The pricing and exact availability details are a mystery at this point.
In telecom news, Reliance Jio GigaFiber topped the Netflix ISP leaderboard for India again. It is the eighth consecutive time for the broadband provider. As per the latest Netflix ISP Index data, Reliance Jio GigaFiber provided 3.49Mbps of data speed during prime time on Netflix in April 2019, compared to 3.57Mbps last month. Spectra occupied the second position with average speed of 3.43Mbpsm, whereas 7 Star Digital took the third spot with 3.41Mbps speed. Airtel landed on the fourth spot with 3.29Mbps average speed last month.
BSNL introduced a new recharge plan this week, which targeted at foreigners looking to purchase a short-term mobile connection. Priced at Rs. 389, the new prepaid plan from BSNL offers bundled voice, data, and SMS benefits, and it comes with a validity of 30 days. It is only available in the Chennai and Tamil Nadu telecom circles right now. There is no word on when it will be expanded to other circles.
ACT Fibernet is now offering up to 500GB of additional data per month to subscribers opting for the special ACT Entertainment plans that are now available in select Indian cities. However, the extra data can be availed only on long-term plans with 6 or 12 months of subscription tenure. The ACT Entertainment plans allow the company’s subscribers to bundle their Netflix bill with their ACT bill.

 
Airtel has listed new prepaid and postpaid plans for Airtel 4G Hotspot customers on its website. The two new plans can be availed through the website or the My Airtel app. The Airtel 4G prepaid plan listed on the website suggests that users will be able to enjoy 1.5GB of daily data for a validity of 84 days, whereas with the new postpaid plan, Airtel is offering 75GB of total data for one month of validity. The prices are of the new plans are not available on the website.
Tata Sky has revised 25 of its popular regional language channel packs. The revisions are now live on the company website. Some of the packs to get revised are Hindi Starter, Hindi Starter HD, Kannada Family Sports, Kannada Family Sports HD, Kannada Smart, Malayalam Basic, Malayalam Family Sports HD, Tamil Family Kids Sports, Tamil Premium Sports and English, Tamil Regional HD, Tamil Telugu Basic, Telugu Family Sports HD, and Telugu Kannada Basic. Tata Sky has either tweaked channel count or the price of the pack or both.
WhatsApp has finally released its consecutive audio message playback feature on the stable version of its Android app. Same feature has been available to the iOS users for some time. The continuous voice message playback feature removes the hassle of manually tapping the play button on the next voice message once the previous one has ended. An update to the Android version of WhatsApp that was pushed earlier this week also included a fix for a security vulnerability.
X-Men: Dark Phoenix Release Date in India, Cast, Trailer, Timeline, and More
Fortnite is now available for download in India for Xbox One. The game is over 15GB in size and is available for a free download, however it requires Xbox Live Gold subscription. The new development comes several months after Epic Games formally confirmed the delay in bringing the Xbox One version of Fortnite to the Indian market.
Microsoft is bringing the Xbox Game Pass subscription service to PC. The subscription service for PC will simply be called Xbox Game Pass, and will give consumers access to over 100 PC games from developers like Bethesda, SEGA, and Paradox Interactive. Microsoft has roped in 75 developers and publishers to bring their games to Xbox Game Pass for PC.
Microsoft is also throwing in some benefits for Xbox Game Pass for PC subscribers. PC gamers will receive a discount of up to 20 percent on games and up to 10 percent on DLCs and add-ons. As of now, it is not clear when Xbox Game Pass for PC will arrive and how much it will cost.
In other news, Apple refreshed iPod touch for the first time in four years this week. The new iPad touch packs Apple’s A10 Fusion chip, which is also found in iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus, and a 4-inch screen. It will support Group FaceTime calls and ARkit. The new iPod touch will reach India this month in six finishes. It will be priced at Rs. 18,900 for the 32GB variant and at Rs. 28,900 for the 128GB variant. The new 256GB iPod touch will retail at Rs. 38,900.

 
T-Series became the first YouTube channel to cross 100 million subscribers mark this week. With this milestone, the channel has also entered the Guinness World Records. PewDiePie was the first YouTube channel to reach the 50 million subscriber mark globally, but the it has left behind in the battle with T-Series and is yet to 100 million milestone. At the time of writing, PewDiePie had 96,316,134 subscribers.
Amazon unveiled its smaller Echo Show 5 smart display, which includes a 960×480-pixels screen, 1-megapixel camera, and a single full-range 1.65-inch speaker. It comes with pretty much the same features that you can expect a regular Echo Show. Amazon Echo Show 5 has been priced at 8,999 and will be available in two colour options – white and black. It is now listed for pre-orders and the shipping will begin on July 18.
Lastly, YouTube brought its student plans for YouTube Music and YouTube Premium to India this week. The standard YouTube Music subscription in India costs Rs. 99 per month, but the Student Plan for YouTube Music will be available at just Rs. 59. Similarly, the YouTube Premium Student Plan will be available at a monthly fee of Rs. 79, down from the standard subscription fee Rs. 129 per month fee.

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Acer’s new smart speaker is a colorful contribution to the market – CNET

Acer’s new smart speaker will be available in early 2021. Acer If you’re interested in smart speakers, but not impressed by what you’ve seen from Amazon, Google or Apple, there are third-party speakers out there. Acer on Wednesday announced the Acer Halo, a $109 smart speaker with DTS sound, LED display and more.The Acer Halo sits…

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Acer’s new smart speaker is a colorful contribution to the market     – CNET

Acer’s new smart speaker will be available in early 2021.
Acer
If you’re interested in smart speakers, but not impressed by what you’ve seen from Amazon, Google or Apple, there are third-party speakers out there. Acer on Wednesday announced the Acer Halo, a $109 smart speaker with DTS sound, LED display and more.The Acer Halo sits on a base lit up by RGB lighting you can customize. The glowing lights can sync with streaming music, too. That music streams from a speaker with DTS sound designed to project in 360 degrees to fill the room.

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On the front of the speaker’s gray fabric cover, an LED light display provides visual information like weather or time. Acer is working on an app that will let you personalize the message or image displayed via LED.An LED display on the front of the speaker displays information.
Acer
The smarts behind this speaker come from Google Assistant. You’ll use the usual “Hey, Google” voice command to request music, podcasts, news and answers to questions. The Acer Halo is equipped with two far-field omnidirectional microphones to detect ambient noise and voice commands. A physical switch is available to mute the microphones.Acer isn’t the first third-party manufacturer to try its hand at a smart speaker. We’ve seen successful models from Bose and Sonos, among others. The Acer Halo Smart Speaker will be available in North America in early 2021 starting at $109. Its European price of 119 euros converts to about £110 or AU$200. 

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Google smart displays are getting a makeover, dark mode included – CNET

Google smart display interfaces are getting a new look.  Google Smart displays are just a few years old, but updates and redesigns are already in the works. Google just announced a brand new look for the user interface of its Google Assistant-enabled smart displays such as the Nest Hub and Nest Hub Max. Keeping tabs on…

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Google smart displays are getting a makeover, dark mode included     – CNET

Google smart display interfaces are getting a new look. 
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Smart displays are just a few years old, but updates and redesigns are already in the works. Google just announced a brand new look for the user interface of its Google Assistant-enabled smart displays such as the Nest Hub and Nest Hub Max. Keeping tabs on your homeThe overhaul starts with several new screens. The home screen now displays a quick glance at your day. In the morning that section is called “Your Morning” and it progresses throughout the day, displaying information like news, events on your calendar and the weather.

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Other new tabs across the top of the home screen will direct you to specific categories. Those tabs include Home Control, Media, Communicate, and Discover. Each tab holds tappable cards and widgets. On the Media page you’ll find music, videos, shows and recommendations. You’ll also be able to see and control what media is playing on other connected devices in your home. Media widgets will be customized to show content from your preferred streaming service. The Home Control tab displays a dashboard of all the connected devices in your home and tappable cards to adjust any device settings, like dimming lights or viewing the doorbell camera.The Communicate tab houses cards for video and chat settings, and the Discover tab displays ideas for things to do with your smart display like playing a game, hear a joke or find a new recipe. Dark mode and ambience settingsIn addition to organized tabs, Google-enabled smart displays are also several new ways to wind down in the evening and wake up each morning.Relaxing ambient sounds are coming to Google Assistant-enabled smart displays. 
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With dark mode on, your smart display’s color scheme changes, reducing light emission. You can set dark and light modes to activate automatically depending on ambient light of the sunrise and sunset. A selection of ambient sounds is also coming to smart displays for added relaxation options. A Sunrise Alarm feature is also making its way to smart displays, gradually increasing the brightness of your screen for 30 minutes before your alarm time. You can manage alarms on your display, set different alarms for weekdays and weekends, as well as choose alarm tones. Meetings and calendarsIn recent months, the team at Google improved Google Meet and Duo on smart displays and announced plans for Zoom to come to the device. Now smart displays will be able to link multiple Google accounts, so you can see personal and professional meetings all in one place. You can also cancel or reschedule meetings on your smart display. If you use Google Meet on the camera-enabled Nest Hub Max display, you’ll be able to move around the room while staying in frame. Google smart displays will support multiple accounts for calendars and meetings. 
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These new features and the new interface design will be rolling out in the coming weeks to all Google Assistant-enabled smart displays in Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Spain, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, Norway, Mexico, Singapore, South Korea, Sweden, Switzerland, UK, and US.  

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Best robot vacuum for 2020: Neato, iRobot Roomba, Electrolux, Eufy and more – CNET

It used to be that robot vacuum cleaners were only to be seen in dream homes from the future. But now they’ve become reality. In fact they’re more advanced than they’ve ever been. They boast arrays of sophisticated sensors, lasers, CPUs, even AI-enhanced software. The fact is these robots are useful tools to keep your home…

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Best robot vacuum for 2020: Neato, iRobot Roomba, Electrolux, Eufy and more     – CNET

It used to be that robot vacuum cleaners were only to be seen in dream homes from the future. But now they’ve become reality. In fact they’re more advanced than they’ve ever been. They boast arrays of sophisticated sensors, lasers, CPUs, even AI-enhanced software. The fact is these robots are useful tools to keep your home nice and tidy.Living the robot vacuum dream can set you back a healthy pile of cash — some cost as much as four figures. While you don’t have to spend that much, you do get a lot in return. That includes multiple room and floor mapping, self-emptying dust bins, powerful suction and thoughtfully designed hardware. Despite all this sophistication, however, none of these machines can really replace a mop.

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To choose the best robot vacuum, I spent over 120 hours (that’s a lot of time) torture-testing a group of 12 robotic cleaning vacuums for things like suction power, their ability to perform on carpets and hard floor and how well each performed during each cleaning cycle. Among them are brand-new models that have recently launched, flagship models and compelling options offered across numerous online retailers. I excluded older models that likely won’t be sold for much longer. I update this list periodically.

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Get smart home reviews and ratings, video reviews, buying guides, prices and comparisons from CNET.

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If someone were to give you a blank check and tell you to buy the best robot vacuum, this is the bot to get. That said, the iRobot Roomba S9 Plus costs a whopping $1,100. For that staggeringly steep sticker price though, this robotic vacuum delivers powerful suction and superb dirt and dust removal. On hardwood floors this Roomba picked up an average of 93% of our test sand, the highest amount in our test group, but it struggled a bit cleaning sand from low-pile carpeting and area rugs, earning a low average dust and sand pickup of 28%. That said, the Roomba robot vac removed an average 71% of sand from our mid-pile carpet while vacuuming. Again, this is the best result that we saw on this specific test. It also cleaned up more dog hair, pet dander and allergens than any vacuum in this test group, and the bot navigates and maps multiple rooms and floors. iRobot has also updated its app to let you designate “keep out zones” that you want the S9 Plus to avoid when cleaning. The app also lets you use voice commands to immediately clean a room using Alexa or Google Voice Assistant.The robot zipped through our test room in a short average time of 25 minutes, too. You can link the S9 Plus to the Roomba app and your home Wi-Fi as well. Best of all is the Roomba S9 Plus’ CleanBase docking station. The dock both charges the robot’s battery and empties its dustbin automatically, making cleaning even easier and keeping you from worrying about battery life. Now that’s convenient.

Read our first impressions of the Roomba S9 Plus.

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For roughly half the price of the Roomba S9 Plus, the $600 Neato’s D7 vacuums up dirt, dust and messes almost as well, making it the best robot vacuum at a midrange cost. On average this robotic cleaner picked up a greater amount of sand (36%) across low-pile carpet and rugs than the Roomba did. This automatic vacuum cleaner narrowly beat the S9 Plus for cleaning power on hardwood bare floors, too, collecting an average of 95% of the sand we put down. The vac cleaned dirt, dust and sand from midpile rugs less effectively though, notching a pickup average of 47% while cleaning. While the Neato can’t match the Roomba’s prowess at removing pet hair or empty its own dust bin, the D7 navigates more efficiently around furniture yet covers more ground thanks to smart robot vacuum built-in lidar laser navigation mapping. You can also control the cleaning robot using the Neato app as a remote control, as well as link it to Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. The app allows you to designate areas of your home as off-limits to cleaning, too.

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Here’s a robotic vacuum that proves you don’t need to blow your budget to purchase a solid robot vacuum cleaner. Even though the Robovac 11S Max costs just $227 right now, it cleans floors effectively. That’s especially true when cleaning bare hardwood floors. It managed to remove an average of 71% of our test sand from this type of surface. The bot didn’t work as well cleaning carpets, earning sand-pickup averages of 21% and 27% on low-pile and mid-pile, respectively. And thanks to this vacuum’s basic navigation system, it took well over an hour to negotiate our test room. As far as time goes, that’s a lot. Still, the Eufy used its runtime wisely. The vacuum covered the space well, cleaning up and leaving almost no spots untouched. The Eufy is also self-charging, so again, no need to worry about battery life or factor that into overall cleaning time. It’s the best robot vacuum for value.

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How we test robot vacuumsOur method for evaluating robot vacuums is straightforward, yet grueling. There are two types of tests we run. The first trial is to figure out how well a robot covers the floor while cleaning. We built an industry-standard testing room as specified by the International Electrotechnical Commission, just for this purpose. The IEC is an international standards body responsible for managing robot vacuum testing procedures, among other things, for vacuum manufacturers.  Obstacles in our test room mimic what robot vacuums run into in the real world.
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Inside this room are objects designed to simulate typical obstacles a robot vac encounters for navigation as it cleans. These obstacles include wall edges, table and chair legs, couches and other furniture, and so on, plus bare tile and hardwood floors, as well as carpet.  Here’s a coverage photo of the iRobot Roomba S9 Plus as it moved through our test room. You can see the Roomba S9 covered the floor well, except for one slight section in the center (left, bottom).
Gianmarco Chumbe/CNET
We mount LED lights to the top of each vacuum cleaner. The dimensions of the lights correspond to the measured nozzle width of each particular robot vacuum we test. 

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As robots move through the room while cleaning, a camera overhead captures a long-exposure image of the entire room in low light. That photo will then have a light trail, created by the LEDs, that shows the exact areas where the robot traveled (and its nozzle position) during its runtime. We can also see areas of the floor the vacuum may have missed or gotten stuck. This is the coverage pattern created by the Neato D7. Its movement through our test room was very orderly, logical and effective.
Gianmarco Chumbe/CNET
You can see the navigation results of all the robot vacuums in our test group in the gallery below.
Some robot vacuums have a better sense of direction than others
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The second type of test reveals exactly how much physical debris a vacuum is able to pick up off of the floor. To mimic dirt of small particle size, we use a mixture of play-sand and landscaping sand. For bigger particle soil, we use grains of uncooked black rice. Robots then run in straight line mode across three types of flooring (low-pile carpet, medium-pile carpet and hardwood bare floors). We test robot vacuums on three types of floor surfaces.
Tyler Lizenby/CNET
We control for the specific nozzle width of each vacuum, too. We constructed an adjustable tool to soil our test floors. It lets us lay down a strip of precise area of soil to match the nozzle dimensions for every robot. The mass of soil isn’t chosen at random either. We measure a proportional amount that’s related to the flooring material, type of debris, plus each vacuum’s nozzle width. Our custom-built tool lets us match soil area to a robot vacuum’s nozzle width.
Tyler Lizenby/CNET
We conduct three cleaning runs (at minimum) on each floor type. We also perform cleaning tests with sand and rice separately. That comes to at least 18 tests per robot vac. We weigh the robot’s dust bin both before and after each run. From there we can calculate the percentage of debris pickup for every cleaning run and the average amount of soil a machine manages to remove. Additionally we run anecdotal (visual) pet hair tests for each robot, on all three floor types.  We run robot vacuums in a straight line during the debris pickup tests.
Tyler Lizenby/CNET
The chart below shows the fine particle cleaning performance data for all of the robot vacuums we tested. It should give you a pretty good idea about their cleaning performance on different kinds of flooring surfaces. Our rice-based, medium-size particle test didn’t show enough differentiation between each cleaner, which says they can all handle larger particles without trouble. For fur removal for pet owners, we judged anecdotally. Percent soil removed

Neato Botvac D6 Connected

Legend:
Sand from low-pile
Sand from hardwood
Sand from medium-pile
Note:
Results listed are the average percentage of total material removed from test surface

Want more robot vacuum options? Here’s a list of the other robot vacuums we tested besides the models listed above. More vacuum advice and recommendations

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