Roomba 960 vs 980 : Which One Is The Best?

iRobot is already well-known around the world with quality assured products and good services. Recently, they have launched their prides (as iRobot claimed), Roomba 960 and 980. Both belong to the latest iRobot’s robotic vacuum line which is considered as one of the most advanced series in vacuum cleaner market. The 900 series line is a masterpiece and in which the Roomba 960 and 980 top the list. They are currently have the highest ratings on Amazon and receives thousands of positive views from different sources.

Roomba 980 came out in early of 2015 and soon has become a phenomenon. It’s the first Roomba that you could operate through your smart phone and comes with lots of state-of-the-art technologies. However, with its price, Roomba 980 were out of reach for most customers. This was the reason why iRobot came up with the idea of a cheaper alternative to the Roomba 980. Around August 2016, Roomba 960 was launched and received positive responses.

After reading this, you may say: “Well, so I should go for Roomba 960 then”. Don’t make a snap decision and at least wait until the end. Roomba 980 doesn’t come with that price for nothing. Let’s dig in to see how these two differ and what they have in common.

Roomba 960 vs 980: Comparison And Review

Although Roomba 960 sounds very similar to Roomba 980, they are in two different levels. Roomba 980 is an upgrade version of the Roomba 960 so it comes with a few extras which put it in a higher position. This article is to compare two of the most expensive models in Roomba line. If your find it a bit overreach, here are better choices for you: Roomba, Shark, Bissell and Dyson.

iRobot Roomba 960 Robot Vacuum- Wi-Fi Connected Mapping, Works with Alexa, Ideal for Pet Hair, Carpets, Hard Floors,Black
  • Power-Lifting Suction delivers 5X the air power for improved pick-up performance. (Compared to Roomba 600 Series)
  • Intelligently maps and cleans an entire level of your home. Patented iAdapt 2. 0 technology with vSLAM navigation actively captures thousands of precise measurements each millisecond to optimize coverage.
  • Ideal for homes with pets. Premium 3-stage cleaning system cleans the dirt and pet hair you see and the allergens and dust you don't.
  • Unique dual multi-surface rubber brushes adjust and flex to stay in constant contact with carpets and hard floors.
  • High-Efficiency filter captures 99% of all allergens, pollen, and particles as small as 10 microns.
iRobot Roomba 980 Wi-Fi Connected Vacuuming Robot
  • Power Lifting Suction delivers 10X the air power for improved pick up performance; Automatically increases cleaning performance on carpets with Power Boost (Compared to Roomba 600 Series and AeroVac System)
  • Patented iAdapt 2.0 Navigation with VSlam technology allows the robot to map its surroundings to clean an entire level of your home, around objects, and under furniture
  • Ideal for homes with pets; Premium 3 stage Cleaning System cleans the dirt and pet hair you see and the allergens and dust you don't
  • Dual Multi Surface Rubber Brushes adjust and flex to stay in constant contact with carpets and hard floors
  • High efficiency filter traps 99 percent of cat and dog allergens

The Design

Like traditional Roombas, the Roomba 960 vs 980 still preserve the minimalistic, compact and simple design. The surface design is pretty similar, only with different color. Roomba 960 is available in combination of black and gray color, while Roomba 980 is inclined to brown as its main color. Both of them look shiny and eye-catching. There’s one large greenish “CLEAN” button with two others on each side, namely home and spot cleaning button. Also, in the middle is a camera for iAdapt Navigation technology.

The Portability

The Roomba 960 has a proper dimensions, 13.8 x 13.8 x 3.6 inches and 8.6 pounds in weight. It can fit anywhere and has zero problems going underneath furniture or bed. There’s not much difference between Roomba 960 vs 980. With the dimensions of 13.9 x 13.9 x 3.6 inches and weight of 8.7 pounds, Roomba 980’s won’t get stuck even under your TV stands, sofa and bed. In addition, both of them come with a advanced iAdapt navigation which we will dig deeper in the following section.

The Cleaning Performance

It is the most crucial factor when it comes to vacuum cleaners. Robotic vacuum is expensive and we all want products that work excellently and meet our expectation.

The Features :

  • iRobot want to cater a very large market so they make sure their machines can cover almost any floor. Roomba 960 vs 980 work well all many types of floor, including hardwood, tile, linoleum, carpet and rug. In which, the performance of Roomba 980 on carpet and rugs are unsurpassed. The reason for this is Roomba 980 comes with Carpet Boost mode which allow the unit to detect when it’s on a carpeted surface. As a result, the machine will increase the power up to 10 times to clean more thoroughly.
  • The AeroForce 3-stage cleaning system is proved to be very efficient and effective, so that iRobot still equips every units with this cleaning system. The manufacturer claims that Roomba 980 is designed with a 10x AeroForce system, while that of Roomba 960 is only 960 is 5x. As expected, Roomba 980 is more powerful than Roomba 960.
  • Both Roomba 960 and 980 boast the new iAdapt 2.0 Navigation system which is more advanced. It’s similar to traditional iAdapt system in using a range of sensors to map out your house. However, the version 2.0 also comes with a visual localization camera that helps keep track of your floor, prevent the units from hitting obstacles and guarantee that they will miss less spots.
  • iRobot integrates HEPA filtration system into Roomba 960 and 980. No need to say about these filters, right? You can only see this system in high-end product because its capability of trapping up to 99.9% of finest particles and allergens.

The Difference :

  • One more important thing, the Roomba 960 has a 2130 mAh Li-ion battery and is able to vacuum for 75 minutes. Meanwhile, Roomba 980 comes with a 3000 mAh Li-ion battery and shows a cleaning performance up to 120 minutes. Hence, the 980 is ideal for large house as with more battery power, the machine can cover more area in one pass.
  • Roomba 960 possesses an older motor which you can find in 700/800 models. Meanwhile, Roomba 980 is updated with the newer one. Moreover, Roomba 980 is different from Roomba 960 in terms of virtual barrier, 2 and 1 respectively.
  • The Roomba 960 and 980 are able to self-recharge and resume capabilities for autonomous working. To be more specific, they have capability of detecting when the battery is running low and automatically come back to the docking station for recharge. After that, they are ready to continue where they left even when you’re not home.

The Price

With all the state-of-the-art technologies, you can’t expect Roomba 960 and 980 will have low cost. The 960 is about $200 cheaper than the 980. They both have high cost which may be suitable for middle/high-income families. It depends on your budget and needs to decide which one is better.

If you like one of them, please click the following Amazon buttons to buy:

Roomba 960

Roomba 980

The Feedback

With 70% of customer rated Roomba 960 5 stars on Amazon, it proves its popularity. Customers praised it for the fantastic cleaning performance on different floors and efficient way to remove pet hair. However, they also recommended that you shouldn’t buy it if you have a large house.

Every owners were happy with their purchases. Roomba 980 won their heart by showing a fantastic job on removing pet hair and allergens. They were 100% satisfied with the quality and price. Nevertheless, it seems that someone found a fault on dark hardwood floors.

The Conclusions

Roomba 960 vs 980 are two of the best players in the game. These two come with outstanding features that everyone is looking for. Roomba 980 is undoubtedly an amazing products but don’t think low of Roomba 960. It’s a wonderful unit with cheaper price.

Will you change your mind or still be loyal to Roomba 960? Join the discussion in the comment section below.

Dear ! My name is Kendra Dibbert, a Shark vacuum cleaner expert. If you have any questions about this brand. Please contact me via the mailbox.

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