The Neato Botvac Connected vs Roomba 980 Vacuum Cleaner

The Neato Botvac Connected and iRobot Roomba 980 Vacuum Cleaners are among the most sought after cleaners in the market today. As a matter of fact, they are among the latest products from their respective brands. They share a lot in terms of performance as well as pricing. In case you are in a dilemma on which one to go for, we have decided to help you out. We are going to review these two products and see how they battle out in this exclusive war between the Neato Botvac Connected vs Roomba 980. First, we will start with a brief description of each model.

iRobot Roomba 650 Robotic Vacuum Cleaner
Cleaning different Floor Types
Low-Profile Design
D-Shape Design
Navigation System
iAdapt 2.0
Cleaning System
AeroForce Cleaning System
SpinFlow Power Clean
Filter Type
High-Efficiency Filter
Ultra Performance filter
Cleaning Modes
Has no elaborate cleaning modes
Eco mode AND Turbo mode
Dirt Sensors
Boundary Marking
Carpet Boost
Charge and Resume
Multi-Room Cleaning
Wi-Fi Connectivity
Voice-Activated Control
LCD panels for easy control
Battery Run Time
120 minutes
90-120 minutes

The Neato Botvac Connected

The Neato Botvac is a robotic vacuum cleaner from Neato Robotics. It features a simple D-Shape design with CornerClever Technology for cleaning deep walls and walls. It comes with the effective SpinFlow Power Clean system and Ultra Performance Filters to guarantee detailed cleaning. Other notable features of this vacuum cleaner include LaserSmart Navigation, boundary marking, two cleaning modes, Wi-Fi connectivity, voice-activated control among others. Besides this, it is ideal for cleaning all floor types.

The Neato Botvac Connected

The iRobot Roomba 980

On the other hand, the Roomba 980 is manufactured by iRobot, a renowned brand in the manufacture and distribution of robotic appliances. This vac boasts of the famous AeroForce 3-stage cleaning system and High-Efficiency Filters for optimized cleaning. When it comes to navigation, it has the iAdapt 2.0 Navigation system for precise navigation as well as multi-room cleaning. Other features include laser barriers, Wi-Fi connectivity, Carpet Boost mode, voice-activated control, a high-performance battery and so on. Just like the Botvac Connected, it is ideal for all floor types.

roomba 980 key spec

The Botvac Connected vs. Roomba 980

Here, we are going to do a deep analysis on how the Roomba 980 matches the Botvac Connected. We are going to focus on the features and specifications.

Botvac Connected vs. Roomba 980

Floor Type

Homeowners have different types of floors. For this reason, it is important to make sure that you get a vacuum cleaner that suits your floor. When it comes to the Roomba vs Neato battle, both cleaners are ideal for cleaning all floor types. They are made to adjust their brush heights depending on the floor type. Personally, I’ve used the Botvac Connected on a wooden floor as well a tiled one and the performance was great. We also tested the 980 on different floors and the results were impressive.

Low-Profile Design

The height of a vacuum cleaner really matters. A good robotic vac should have a small height to ensure it maneuvers under furniture, beds, in deep corners and so on.

Both Neato and iRobot acknowledge this and have built both vacuum cleaners with a low-profile design. While the Botvac stands at 3.9-inches tall, the Roomba 980 is just 3.6-inches.

D-Shape Design with CornerClever Technology

The shape of a vacuum cleaner is equally important. It should be shaped in such a way that it allows the vacuum cleaner reach the tightest corners for a comprehensive clean in corners and also, walls.

One of the most popular and effective vac shapes is the D-Shape. These two vacuum cleaners differ in their design. The Neato Botvac Connected has been designed in a D-Shape design with CornerClever technology. This allows it to perform a thorough cleaning of your house.

On the other hand, the Roomba 980 sports a circular shape that was not intended to help execute deep cleaning.

D-Shape Design for Precise Edge Cleaning

Navigation System

Robotic vacuum cleaners move around your house by themselves. They have elaborate navigation systems that enable them to map your home. In fact, they understand your house’s layout just like you do. There are several different navigation systems. Let us look at how the Botvac Connected and Roomba 980 compare in terms of navigation.

The Roomba 980 employs iRobot’s unique iAdapt 2.0 Responsive Navigation with Visual Localization Technology. This system has full suite sensors to fully navigate your entire house for entire level cleaning.

iAdapt 2.0 Responsive Navigation

On the other hand, the Botvac Connected uses the Precise LaserSmart Navigation Technology. This navigation system uses sensors to map out your house first.

LaserSmart neato

Cleaning System

Different vacuum manufacturers use different cleaning systems. There are those cleaning systems that are unique and patented while others are just general. The cleaning system of a vacuum really matters as it dictates where it can be used. For example, there are cleaning systems that are ideal for general home use while others are deemed fit for both general house cleaning and also pet hair and allergens. The Botvac Connected uses SpinFlow Power Clean while the Roomba 980 uses the AeroForce Cleaning System.

With SpinFlow Power Clean, the Botvac Connected blends its potent suction power and high precision brushes which guarantee an immaculate clean. First, the cleaner comes with a Turbo Suction system that boosts suctioning, an integral part of the cleaner. Second, there is an elaborate and versatile brush system that ensures all-around cleaning. This brush system picks up small debris and even pet hair. For pet hair and allergens picking, the combo brush does it while the spiral blade brush has been optimized for deep cleaning.

SpinFlow Power Clean Botvac Connected

The Roomba 980 on the other hand, has the AeroForce Cleaning System which is a systematic 3-stage cleaning process. In the first stage, the cleaner sweeps the corners and edges. These brushes are inclined at 27-degrees to enable it to catch all dirt and debris from corners as well as edges. In the second stage, the dual counter rotating brushes work hand in hand to grab and remove dust, dirt, and debris from the floor. Thereafter, in the final stage, the dirt and debris collected are suctioned and filtered out. It has a powerful motor that has been optimized to offer high power vacuuming for suctioning both dirt and allergens including pet hair.

Filter Type

The type of filters used in a vacuum cleaner is also a major determinant when it comes to a robotic vacuum cleaner’s performance. The Botvac Connected and Roomba 980 use different filtration technologies.

The Roomba 980 uses the High-Efficiency Filter that has the ability to capture 99% of dirt and debris. In fact, it captures debris as small as 10 microns and also dust mites and allergens like pollen.

Roomba 980 High-Efficiency Filter

Meanwhile, the Botvac Connected uses Ultra Performance filter that has an included filter screen for easy cleaning. On opening the box, we discovered that there is an extra filter provided by Neato Robotics.

Botvac Ultra Performance filter

Cleaning Modes

Different vacuum cleaners come with different cleaning modes. These cleaning modes are set depending on your cleaning requirements. Because we can’t discuss all the available cleaning modes, we will only focus on what the Botvac Connected and the Roomba 980 offer.

The Botvac Connected has two cleaning modes that are set depending on your cleaning needs. First, there’s the Eco mode that is ideal for normal cleaning. The Turbo mode comes in handy when the room is very dirty. It is worthy to note that Turbo mode uses more energy.

On the other hand, the Roomba 980 has no elaborate cleaning modes. However, you can switch to Carpet Boost, Cleaning Pass, and Edge Cleaning mode.

Dirt Sensors

Dirt Sensing is a pretty new technology. This technology uses sensor technology to detect where there’s more dirt. It then concentrates the cleaning on these areas for detailed cleaning. This feature is available on the Roomba 980. We tested it and it actually worked by spending more time in the area where we had scattered more debris. This is a major plus for the Roomba 980 when it goes head on with the Botvac Connected.

Boundary Marking

Also known as barriers, boundary marking is also a new development in the world of robotic vacuum cleaners. This technology enables homeowners to restrict the cleaner from reaching certain areas that are deemed dangerous on unnecessary to clean.

The Botvac Connected and Roomba 980 have different barrier technologies. The Botvac Connected uses magnetic tapes to mark areas where you don’t want the cleaner to reach. These tapes are manually placed to mark the areas where the cleaner shouldn’t reach.

Botvac Connected uses magnetic tapes

On the other hand, the Roomba 980 uses a more advanced technology; laser barriers. This technology employs small six-inch towers that send laser beams which mark areas where the cleaner should not reach. We tested this feature and found it to be more accurate and easier compared to using magnetic tapes.

laser barriers roomba 980

Carpet Boost

Carpet Boost is a unique feature that is ideal for deep cleaning of carpets. In this mode, there is more suction power provided by the motors to ensure proper suctioning.

Unfortunately, only the Roomba 980 has this function. It provided 10* more power compared to when working in its normal mode.

Carpet Boost Roomba 980

Charge and Resume

The Charge and Resume function is a cool and convenient feature in all robotic appliances and not only vacuum cleaners. Robotic vacs with this feature will automatically go to their charge base whenever their battery level goes down beyond a set limit. After it gets fully charged, it then goes back to where it left cleaning and resumes automatically.

Being among the latest vacs in the market, both the Neato Botvac Connected and the iRobot Roomba 980 have this feature.

Charge and Resume neato vs roomba

It is worthy to note that older models may have the auto-recharge feature but they lack auto-resume capabilities. With this in mind, the auto-resume function here gives both vacuum cleaners a plus.

Multi-Room Cleaning

There are those cleaners that only clean a single room at a time. This can be very hectic especially for those with tight schedules.

We tested this feature in the Roomba 980 and found it to be effective. It uses the iAdapt 2.0 Navigation System with Visualization to navigate through different rooms. It has a low-res camera that blends with the iAdapt 2.0 to help it navigate through the rooms.

On the other hand, the Neato Botvac Connected has LIDAR sensors that spin above the robot sending laser beams to locate the rooms. The 360-degrees visualization, on the other hand, helps the robot know where it is.

Wi-Fi Connectivity

Unlike older models, the new robotic vacuums have been engineered with better connectivity. They come with Wi-Fi to allow them to be operated remotely via Apps. This inclusion has proved to be very worthy as it gives homeowners the freedom to manage their vacs remotely. On the App, users can issue commands like start & stop cleaning, see battery levels, schedule cleanings and so on. Both the Botvac Connected and Roomba 980 have this cool feature. While the Botvac Connected can be operated on the Neato App via Wi-Fi, the Roomba 980 is operated on the iRobot HOME App. However, the Neato App is more advanced thus making it superior to the Roomba 980.

wifi neato roomba

Voice-Activated Control

With the advancement in technology, you can now have control on almost all your appliances and electronics with voice-activated control systems like Amazon’s Alexa and Google’s Assistant. Both vacs are compatible with these two popular voice-control platforms. We tested the Roomba 980 with both Alexa and Google Assistant and it worked perfectly fine. Nothing is so magical like instructing your vacuum cleaner to go and clean and it promptly does so. When it came to the Botvac Connected, we tested it with both Alexa and Google Assistant. The results were positive with Alexa but not Google at first. However, in the long run, it also worked with Google Assistant.


Many new models of vacuum cleaners come with LCD panels for easy control. The Botvac Connected has a small LCD where users can see some settings. The Roomba 980, however, lacks this feature.

neato lcd

Battery Run Time

Many homeowners ignore battery life when purchasing their vacuum cleaners. This is perhaps because the cleaner has self-charging. However, it is still worthy to consider battery life to reduce the number of times you will have to charge it.

During our tests, the Botvac Connected lasted for about 120 cool minutes in Eco mode and 90 minutes in Turbo mode.

On the other hand, the Roomba 980 also lasted for about 120 minutes.


Warranty is a major factor when purchasing any item. For vacuum cleaners, there are two types of warranties; robot warranty and battery warranty.

Neato Robotics offers a 6 months warranty on the battery and a one-year warranty on the robot.
Meanwhile, iRobot has a one-year warranty on both the robot and the battery.

What We Liked About the Botvac Connected

  • Design – It boasts of a D-Shape design with CornerClever Technology, a feature that the Roomba 980 lacks. This design enables the Botvac Connected to clean deep corners and along walls. This is among the reasons why the Botvac Connected gives the Roomba 980 a run for it’s money.
  • Cleaning Modes – Unlike many other vacuum cleaners, the Botvac Connected allows you to choose a cleaning mode depending on your cleaning needs. There is the Eco and Turbo mode. The Eco mode is for light cleaning whereas the Turbo mode is for intensive cleaning.
  • Battery Efficiency – I would say that the Botvac Connected is more efficient in terms of power management. Ideally, it lasts for 120 minutes when on Eco mode and 90 minutes when in Turbo mode.

What We Liked About the Roomba 980

  • Navigation – One amazing feature of the Roomba 980 that beats the Botvac Connected hands down is the navigation technology. We found iAdapt Responsive Navigation Technology to be more accurate and precise than LaserSmart Navigation Technology which often made the robot to get stuck.
  • Carpet Boost – This is also another feature that is in the Roomba 980 but the Botvac Connected lacks. It guarantees 10* more suction power to make sure even the deepest parts of your carpet are vacuumed.
  • Dirt Sensors – The Roomba 980 has acoustic dirt sensors that detect where there’s more dirt. After detection, the robot spends more time cleaning such areas to ensure no dirt is left behind.
  • Laser Barriers – Unlike the Botvac Connected that uses physical magnetic tapes, the Roomba 980 uses laser markers to restrict the robot from reaching certain areas. Laser barriers are more accurate and easy to use compared to magnetic tapes.

Botvac Connected Vs. Roomba 980, Which One Is Best?

Now that we have reviewed these two vacuum cleaners, it’s evident that they match each other to some extent. The Botvac Connected is designed to do what the Roomba 980 can’t do in terms of cleaning corners and walls. Its battery is also efficient and has two cleaning modes. However, the Roomba 980 is superior in terms of features and ultimately, performance. It has unique features like Carpet Boos, laser barriers, and dirt sensors. When it comes to price, the Botvac Connected retails at a few hundred bucks lesser.

Final Words Both the Botvac Connected and Roomba 980 are great vacuum cleaners. I would recommend you go for the Roomba 980. However, if you are on a budget, the Botvac Connected is still a worthy purchase!

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