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Realme TechLife Robot Vacuum Cleaner Review

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Realme TechLife Robot Vacuum Cleaner Review


Xiaomi and Realme are rivals not only in the smartphone segment, but also in various other product categories that the two companies are a part of. Today, this covers audio products, televisions, streaming devices, tablets, laptops, wearables, and the smart home segment, with Realme usually entering the segment a little bit later, and almost always matching the pricing and feature set of the equivalent products from its biggest competitor. The rivalry has now extended to robot vacuum cleaners as well, giving Realme a much needed foothold in this emerging segment.

Priced at Rs. 24,999 in India, the Realme TechLife Robot Vacuum Cleaner matches up strongly against the Mi Robot Vacuum-Mop P, with laser navigation, simultaneous vacuuming and mopping, and app support among the common features that these two competitors share. Is the Realme TechLife Robot Vacuum Cleaner worth considering over the competition? Find out in this review.

The Realme TechLife Robot Vacuum Cleaner uses laser navigation, which allows for accurate mapping and the ability to work in the dark

 

What is the Realme TechLife Robot Vacuum Cleaner, and what’s in the box?

Realme’s first robot vacuum cleaner isn’t just a vacuum cleaner; it’s also capable of wet mopping, which can be done simultaneously along with vacuuming. The device has two sweeping brushes at the front, the main brush in the vacuum zone at the bottom, and space at the back for one of the two fittings – the vacuum dustbin or a combination attachment that has a water tank, mop cloth, and a smaller vacuum dustbin. These attachments can be removed and fixed in place easily, when the robot is on standby.

The robot is disc-shaped like most cleaning robots available right now, and has a raised module at the top for the laser navigation system. The front of the robot has a flexible bumper, which absorbs impact when the robot bumps into walls, furniture, and loose objects on the floor.

There are two buttons at the top; Power and Home. These can be used to control the core functions of the Realme TechLife Robot Vacuum Cleaner even without needing to set up the app, but the full functionality of the device can only be accessed through the Realme Link app. The device is Wi-Fi enabled, and will need to be connected to your home Wi-Fi to enable app-based controls.

Although the water tank attachment isn’t included in the box, Realme has confirmed that it will be provided with the device at the time of delivery at no extra charge. Also included in the sales package are a charging adapter and dock. Both vacuum dustbins have HEPA filters attached. No replacements for the consumables are included in the box, and Realme hasn’t published information on pricing and availability of these parts at the time of this review.

Realme TechLife Robot Vacuum Cleaner navigation and mapping

The Realme TechLife Robot Vacuum Cleaner uses laser navigation, which makes for accurate movement, organised cleaning paths, and the ability to work even in the dark. The robot and app can store maps, which you can use to set the order in which rooms are cleaned, or have the robot clean only individual rooms, among other functions.

Mapping was generally accurate, and navigation was acceptable for the most part, with the Realme TechLife Robot Vacuum Cleaner moving in efficient paths, avoiding most obstacles, and working quickly. You can select a Y-shaped mopping path instead of the default S-shaped path, which takes a bit longer but cleans more effectively by covering each area with two sweeps instead of one.

realme robot vacuum cleaner bottom Realme

There are two sweeping brushes on the Realme TechLife Robot Vacuum Cleaner

 

However, there were some minor issues with the navigation that I noticed during my review. For one, if I selected the Y-shaped path for mopping, this would sometimes remain active even while vacuuming. Carpet and no-go zone detection was sometimes iffy, and some rooms were on occasion ignored completely, even though they were accessible to the robot.

I was also unable to select some rooms in the room selection menu on a few occasions for no apparent reason, and could only clean the missed room by having the device automatically clean the whole house. The remote control mode – which lets you manually drive the robot to clean specific locations – was usually slow to respond to commands, and I found it quicker and easier to just pick the device up and place it in the room I wanted it to clean.

Realme TechLife Robot Vacuum Cleaner app

The Realme Link app is used to control the brand’s range of connected devices, including audio products, cameras, wearables, smart lights, and home appliances. The Techlife Robot Vacuum Cleaner works with this app on both iOS and Android, and appears on the home screen as an option alongside any other Realme devices you have linked with your account. When the Robot Vacuum Cleaner is turned on and connected to your home Wi-Fi, you’ll be able to select it and control it.

Once fully set up and after the robot has mapped your home, the app displays the map with rooms demarcated, and quick controls at the bottom. These include buttons to start and stop cleaning, send the robot back to the charging station, set the suction power, and access the detailed Settings menu. You can also choose different cleaning modes including Auto, Room, Area, and Spot cleaning.

The detailed Settings menu allows you to control schedules, remote control the device, manage maps, select specifics for mopping path and suction controls, and also see the cleaning history and remaining life of consumable parts such as the brushes and air filters. You can also use the home screen to edit room arrangements, set restricted zones, no-mop zones, and virtual walls. You can even define specific instructions for the suction power and water output for individual rooms.

When the mop fitting is attached, you can choose between vacuuming plus mopping, and only mopping. The app also displays statistics such as the area cleaned, time taken, and the exact battery level.

I experienced quite a few bugs during my time with the Realme TechLife Robot Vacuum Cleaner, with a few of them coming from the app. There were times when I couldn’t adjust the suction power while the vacuum cleaner was working; the option to do so was blanked out, and even after pausing the job and making my selection, it still didn’t actually change what the device was doing.

realme robot vacuum cleaner set Realme

Although the water tank fitting doesn’t come in the box, Realme is providing it at no additional cost with the Robot Vacuum Cleaner

 

On other occasions, I simply could not connect to the Robot Vacuum Cleaner despite having no issues with Wi-Fi or my home Internet connection. I had to restart my router to force the robot to reconnect. There were a few other issues and bugs as well, which are mentioned in the next section.

Realme TechLife Robot Vacuum Cleaner cleaning

The Realme TechLife Robot Vacuum Cleaner is well equipped for the task at hand, in terms of hardware. This includes two sweeping brushes, up to 3,000pa of suction power, a fairly large water tank, and the ability to vacuum and mop simultaneously. For the most part, the Realme Robot Vacuum Cleaner is effective, and gets the job done quickly and efficiently.

It took around 45 minutes for the device to clean my 900-square-foot home, but the quality of cleaning depended on whether I was operating the vacuum and mop functions separately or simultaneously. Obviously, running both of these separately doubled the time taken, but cleaned more thoroughly. Despite having two sweeping brushes, I found edge cleaning on the Realme TechLife Robot Vacuum Cleaner to be somewhat inadequate, and I had to use a handheld vacuum cleaner to get the job done.

There are four suction modes with different levels of power: Quiet mode runs at 500pa; Normal mode at 1,200pa; Turbo mode at 2,500pa; and Max mode at 3,000pa. I usually had the Realme TechLife Robot Vacuum Cleaner running at the ‘Turbo’ power setting, but what you choose depends on the type of flooring you have and other factors such as how dusty it tends to get in your home. Naturally, the more powerful the mode, the louder the Robot Vacuum Cleaner runs, so you might want to use the lower modes on occasion.

I experienced some strange issues and bugs during my time with the Realme TechLife Robot Vacuum Cleaner, which held back the overall experience significantly. On two occasions, the device inexplicably stopped working, with the laser navigation emitter continuing to spin slowly but the robot entirely non-functional otherwise. This could only be fixed with a hard reset, which meant that I had to repeat the entire setup and mapping process before being able to use the device again.

realme robot vacuum cleaner charging 2 Realme

Once a cleaning task is complete, the Realme TechLife Robot Vacuum Cleaner can navigate back to the charging dock on its own

 

Other issues included the device sometimes detecting the mop fitting as the vacuum fitting and therefore not mopping; occasionally not discharging any water even with a full tank and the mop mode active; and sometimes losing its Wi-Fi connection for a few minutes at a time. However, once a cleaning task is in progress, the Realme TechLife Robot Vacuum Cleaner is able to complete the task based on its saved map even if it loses Wi-Fi connectivity. It can navigate back to the dock or next room on its own, and will update its progress on the app when reconnected.

Like all robot vacuum cleaners, this one from Realme needs frequent maintenance in terms of keeping the dustbin and mop cloth clean, the water tank topped up, and the brushes free of tangles. I had to go through this process at least twice a week to keep the device operating efficiently.

Realme TechLife Robot Vacuum Cleaner battery and charging

Battery life on the Realme TechLife Robot Vacuum Cleaner is impressive, primarily because of its 5,200mAh battery capacity. After running it for vacuuming and mopping separately in my 900-square-foot home, the battery level dropped to 70 percent, suggesting that it can clean a much larger space in one go without needing to stop and recharge. This naturally also meant that it needed relatively little time to charge back to full after each cleaning task was completed.

From empty, the device takes around 5-6 hours to charge fully; this is a long time, but is understandable given the capacity of the battery. Of course, this will only be a factor with very large homes, and battery life won’t be a concern for most use cases.

Verdict

Robot vacuum cleaners are still somewhat unusual and uncommon in India, although the segment is growing quickly with brands such as Xiaomi and Realme entering the space. That said, such products are still far from perfect and need regular maintenance to work properly. The Realme TechLife Robot Vacuum Cleaner is a technically adept, well-priced device, but I had to deal with far too many bugs and issues during my experience, in addition to the typical drawbacks of a robot vacuum cleaner.

Its ability to clean is decent thanks to plenty of suction power, the app is excellent, and battery life is class-leading. However, the issues with the app, navigation, and general functionality are too serious to ignore. It might perhaps make sense to wait for Realme to roll out fixes for these issues before considering this model; till then, you could also look at the Mi Robot Vacuum-Mop P or 360 S7, which have similar features and functionality.

Price: Rs. 24,999

Rating: 6/10

Pros

  • Powerful suction, effective mopping
  • Decent app
  • Excellent battery life

Cons:

  • Many bugs and issues
  • Efficiency drops rapidly if not maintained regularly

Realme India CEO Madhav Sheth joins Orbital, the Gadgets 360 podcast for an exclusive wide-ranging interview, as he talks about the 5G push, Make in India, Realme GT series and Book Slim, and how stores can improve their standing. Orbital is available on Spotify, Gaana, JioSaavn, Google Podcasts, Apple Podcasts, Amazon Music and wherever you get your podcasts.
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Wakefit Brings Temperature-Control Mattress, Contactless Sleep Tracker

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Wakefit Brings Temperature-Control Mattress, Contactless Sleep Tracker


Wakefit unveiled its AI-powered sleep solution suite dubbed Wakefit Zense on Wednesday. The Zense range features Regul8, a temperature-adjustable mattress, and Track8, an artificial intelligence (AI) contactless sleep-tracking device. With these, the company said it aims to integrate technology into the sleep environment to help users optimise sleep quality and improve sleep health. Both devices come with dual-zone sensors to create a custom sleep environment on each side of the bed. The Wakefit Zense range of sleep solutions is currently available for pre-booking.

Wakefit Zense Regul8, Track8 price and availability

Regul8, under the Wakefit Zense range, can be purchased at the price of Rs. 44,999. The mattress is available in Queen (78×60 inch) and King (78×72 inch) sizes. Track8, the sleep tracking sheet, is priced at Rs. 10,499. Both devices can currently be pre-booked on the official website for Rs. 499 each, or Rs. 899 combined.

Wakefit Zense Regul8 features

According to the company, the Regul8 mattress features a water-based system to control the temperature of the mattress surface. The mattress’ temperature can be set between 15-degree and 40-degree Celsius using the companion app. Regul8 has a dual-zone temperature controller, which allows the user to set different temperatures for each side of the bed.

Regul8 also comes with integrated temperature sensors that can monitor the temperature of the mattress surface and make real-time adjustments to keep it consistent throughout the night. It also features five different presets — Neutral, Cold, Warm, Ice, and Fire — to easily set the desired temperature. Wakefit claims that the Regul8 mattress consumes 60 percent less energy than a 1.5-ton AC.

Wakefit Zense Tack8 features

Track8 is a sleep solution under the Wakefit Zense range, which can track users’ sleeping patterns and other metrics without any contact. The device, which is a thin rectangular sheet of fabric with two sheet sensors, is placed under the mattress. It has dual-zone sensors, one for each side of the bed, and can track two users at the same time. The device directly sends the collected data to the companion app, which then processes the information to present a detailed sleep report.

The company claims the device uses AI and machine learning algorithms to capture data around sleep stages, respiratory rate, movement, sleep and wake up time, on and off bed time, and snoring. Once analysed, it also offers an aggregated sleep score.



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Apple’s tvOS 18 Gets InSight, Automatic Subtitles and Other New Features

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Apple’s tvOS 18 Gets InSight, Automatic Subtitles and Other New Features


Apple announced several new features for tvOS 18 – the latest operating system for Apple TV devices, at the Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) 2024 on Monday. One of the key highlights is a new feature known as InSight, which provides the user with information about the content that is currently being played. In addition to InSight, Apple announced improvements to existing Apple TV features such as a smarter Enhanced Dialogue, automatic subtitles and support for a new aspect ratio. Apple said that new screensavers will also be available to users soon.

tvOS 18 Updates

At its developer conference, Apple announced InSight – a feature which displays real-time information about the currently playing content, such as the characters, cast and the music playing. To get further information, users can select a specific actor and bring up their background and filmography page, the iPhone maker revealed.

Moreover, tvOS 18 is also said to offer the ability to add the currently playing music to the user’s Apple Music library. The Cupertino-based tech giant also announced that the InSight information can now be accessed on the iPhone while using it as an Apple TV remote.

Stan Ng, Vice President of Apple Watch, Audio, Health, and Home Product Marketing, said, “This fall, tvOS 18 and our services take entertainment in the home to the next level by bringing timely information to fans about their favourite characters and scenes.”

With tvOS, the Enhanced Dialogue feature is claimed to have become smarter, leveraging machine learning (ML) and computational audio to provide better vocal clarity. This feature can now be taken advantage of when playing supported content through the TV’s in-built speakers, Bluetooth-connected audio devices and AirPods, Apple said.

Subtitles are also said to receive improvements, with Apple claiming they now automatically appear in places where the audio does not match the device language. In addition to new screensavers such as films, TV shows, portraits and even Snoopy, Apple is also introducing support for a wider 21:9 aspect ratio for video playback on projectors.

Apple also announced updates to the Home interface, with users now able to share control when playing music through HomePod and HomePod mini using SharePlay and Apple Music. Furthermore, Live Captions will be coming to the US and Canada to read what others say during FaceTime calls when using the iPhone as a Continuity Camera on Apple TV.

The iPhone maker claims to have also introduced a new look for the Apple Fitness+ app to “help users make the most of its robust library, stay motivated, and keep consistent with their fitness routine.”


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Siri May Soon Be Able to Control Robot Vacuum Cleaners for You

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Siri May Soon Be Able to Control Robot Vacuum Cleaners for You


Apple Home will gain support for robot vacuum cleaners with the upcoming iOS 18 update, the company announced at its Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) 2024 keynote on Monday. The app enables users to control their smart home accessories such as lights and security devices, using a HomePod or Apple TV as a smart hub. When the iOS 18 update arrives, the Cupertino-based tech giant will also introduce a new a guest access feature, granting users temporary access to smart home devices located in a household.

Apple Home App Updates

At WWDC 2024, Apple announced that it will soon allow users to control their robot vacuum cleaners via the Home app. After the functionality is rolled out later this year, commands may be relayed to the vacuum cleaners via Siri. These include commands to clean floors, change cleaning modes, or check the battery status.

The core functionality of robot vacuum cleaners will be supported via the Apple Home app, according to the company. These include managing power controls, setting the cleaning mode, and performing vacuum and mop cleaning, and checking charge status.”

Guest Access on Apple Home

Device owners will be also able to provide guest access to smart home devices to those people who don’t visit their homes too often. In addition to that, they can also set schedules for when guests can access their homes with smart home keys utilising the ultra wide-band (UWB) technology, it further added.

This functionality will be rolled out when iOS 18 is released to the public, which Apple says will happen in the Fall. As per the previous trends, this might coincide with the launch of the upcoming iPhone 16 series in September.

iOS 18 Eligible Devices

While iOS 18 is bringing upgrades to existing features in addition to new ones, not all iPhones will be eligible. As per the company, only the iPhone XR and newer models up to the iPhone 15 Pro Max (as of now) will receive the update. This means the iPhone models that received the iOS 17 update last year will also be updated to iOS 18.

However, the newly announced features powered by Apple Intelligence (or artificial intelligence) will only be available on handsets running on the A17 Pro SoC, which means the iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max, according to the company.


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