LG HOM-BOT SQUARE

Nu­mer­ous clean­ing modes. My Space lim­its de­vice to a fixed area. Misses low-ly­ing ob­struc­tions. Sweep­ing brushes prone to get­ting tan­gled.

HWM (Singapore) - - Test -

The Hom-Bot Square is eas­ily the most dis­tinc­tive ro­botic vac­uum cleaner in this shootout thanks to its glossy candy red chas­sis and its square de­sign. Ac­cord­ing to LG, the Hom-Bot Square fea­tures a square de­sign so that it can bet­ter clean hard to reach cor­ners with its long sweep­ing brushes.

The Hom-Bot Square also has a highly ad­vanced sys­tem of sen­sors that in­cludes three front-fac­ing ul­tra­sonic sen­sors, cliff de­tec­tors near its sweep­ing brushes, and a top-mounted cam­era and bot­tom-mounted op­ti­cal sen­sor that is to­gether known as Dual Eye 2.0. This ar­ray helps the de­vice to cre­ate an ac­cu­rate map of its sur­round­ings and pin­point its po­si­tion in a room. The top cam­era takes as many as 30 pho­tos a sec­ond, whereas the op­ti­cal sen­sor can scan the sur­face up to 2,000 times a sec­ond.

The de­vice of­fers four dif­fer­ent clean­ing modes: “Cell by Cell”, “My Space”, “Spi­ral” and “Zig-Zag”. The first two are ar­guably the most use­ful. In “Cell by Cell” mode, the HomBot Square di­vides the house into smaller blocks and then pro­ceeds to clean each block be­fore mov­ing on to the next. There is also an additional “Turbo” mode that is au­to­mat­i­cally ac­ti­vated when the Hom-Bot Square senses that it is vac­u­um­ing car­pets.

In “My Space” mode, users can spec­ify the area to clean by first di­rect­ing the Hom-Bot Square to draw its bound­aries. It will then pro­ceed to only clean the area within these drawn bound­aries. This is use­ful be­cause users can di­rect the Hom-Bot Square to ar­eas that re­quire more at­ten­tion and also keep it away from ar­eas that it might get stuck in.

On the whole, we were pleased with the Hom-Bot Square’s clean­ing abil­i­ties. While it was amongst the qui­etest, that does not mean that it has sac­ri­fice on suc­tion power and we found that it was able to clean thor­oughly. Main­te­nance is also very easy, sim­ply open the top lid to re­move its dirt bin. How­ever, since its uses a brush roller at the bot­tom, users would need to clean it reg­u­larly to pre­vent dirt from ac­cu­mu­lat­ing and restrict­ing its vac­u­um­ing per­for­mance.

On the nav­i­ga­tion front, we were pleased to find that un­like other ro­botic vac­uum clean­ers, the Hom-Bot Square does not gen­tly bump into ob­ject to see if it could ac­tu­ally go through them. It du­ti­fully avoids any ob­struc­tions that its front-fac­ing sen­sors pick up and only at­tempts to get as close as pos­si­ble to clean around the ob­struc­tion.

Sadly, de­spite its ad­vanced sen­sors, we found that the Hom-Bot Square would some­times miss low-ly­ing ob­jects and was prone to get stuck in cer­tain sit­u­a­tions. For ex­am­ple, since it was pro­grammed to go as close as pos­si­ble to ob­struc­tions, we found that clean­ing the sides of walls, its sweep­ing brushes of­ten got tan­gled with wires. The sweep­ing brushes would also get tan­gled up in other ob­jects such as light rugs and even loose fibers from car­pets.

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