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My Favorite Tech Toy This Year


My Favorite Tech Toy This Year
A review of the iRobot Roomba 690

Ok...it's no secret I'm a tech nerd. My Amazon Alexa can turn on and off my lights, heat up my crockpot, dim my vanity lights, pre heat my curling iron, and even turn on my aromatherapy diffuser when I'm feeling stressed.

But one thing she wasn't able to do? Clean my house.

Until now.

If you are anything like my friends and family, you are probably ready to start an intervention for my laziness....but hear me out.

I have been looking into investing in a robotic vacuum for quite some time now. My parents have had one for a few years, and while it had its downfalls, it helped reduce pet hair and dirt exponentially.

So when Black Friday came around and I saw an Amazon deal for the iRobot Roomba 690 with Bluetooth, I was intrigued. I loved the idea of simply saying, "Alexa, turn on iRobot" and watching my Roomba go! Even better, the app would allow me to monitor everything from any room in the house.


So I took the plunge. Soon my new toy arrived and the set up began. After registering on the app, and syncing my Roomba to my Echo Dot, we were in business!

One of the great features included in this set is the "invisible barrier wall". It comes with the option to block off a room using a straight lined laser, or with a circumference around the tower. I opted for the circle surrounding a house plant. As the Roomba approached, it quickly turned around and moved on its way.

So what are the downsides? Not many, really.

Occasionally my Roomba would find itself wrapped around a string from a rug in my bathroom, or stuck on a sheet in the bedroom, but truthfully those should have been picked up before it started its cleaning cycle. I found myself occasionally placing it in a different room if it spent too much time in one area, but it probably was a matter of preference.

Once my Roomba decided it was time to recharge, it automatically found its way back to the docking station (something my parents robot never could do). On only one occasion did it not make it back, and that was due to an obstacle on the floor. I'll give it a pass.

Overall I found the 690 model to be exactly what I needed. If you aren't in need of the Bluetooth/ Alexa feature, you could opt for the 650. Or if you are really feeling a splurge you could jump to the Roomba 960. For my budget and living space though, this was exactly what I needed.

If you're thinking about taking the (kinda-lazy-but-super-necessary) plunge into the world of robotic vacuuming, check out the products mentioned above here....