ILIFE V8S: the new smart vacuum robot with space measurement for $254.99
At this year’s IFA (we were also there) there was a novelty that could revive the highly competitive vacuum robot business: The new flagship from ILIFE is called ILIFE V8S and comes with high suction power, intelligent planning of cleaning processes and wiping function.Is the competition in for a surprise? We tested it.
- ILIFE V8S Vacuum Roboter
ILIFE had to retrofit. The Xiaomi vacuum robot, which has long guarded the household robot throne, is priced almost weekly, leaving ILIFE no choice but to upgrade. After all, with the RoboRock, Xiaomi has already introduced another flagship model to the market – and even beaten ILIFE (and added the low-budget version as the Xiaomi Xiaowa). Furthermore, the ILIFE V8S is not to be confused with the ILIFE V8 🙂
|Suction Power||1000 pa|
|Noise level||68 dB|
|Working time||120 min|
|Charging time||4 h|
|Dust chamber||0,75 l|
|Water tank||0,35 l|
|Dimensions||32 x 32 x 8 cm|
|Features||gyro sensor, wipe function, remote control, various functions & suction modes|
Scope of Delivery
There is nothing unusual in the scope of delivery, however the remote control supplied is beautiful. It looks different from the standardized ILIFE remote controls that we always found in the other tests. Nevertheless, the basic design idea can also be found here. In addition to the vacuum cleaner, the scope of delivery also includes the vacuum cleaner:
- 0,35 l water tank
- with two microfibre cloths (+1 spare cloth)
- 0,75 l Dust chamber
- with HEPA filter (+1 replacement filter)
- Charging station with EU charging cable
- two additional brush heads (two already screwed on the underside)
- Remote control (with two AAA batteries)
- small brush or comb for cleaning the middle brush and brush heads
- Manual in German
Design and manufacturing
With the 32.0 x 32.0 x 8.0 cm large and 2.7 kg heavy V8S, the manufacturer wants to provide a meaningful answer to the growing competition. In purely visual terms, the vacuum robot is primarily reminiscent of the ILIFE A4 or ILIFE A4S. The look is of course a matter of taste, for my part I would have liked a slimmer design like the ILIFE A6.
Since in most cases you either use the remote control or the vacuum robot starts its service by scheduling it in advance, I find the many controls on the top a little too much. Here, too, a minimalist design would have been more stylish for me.
However, the individual components of the V8S are all well worked and generally the workmanship looks high-quality. The V8S doesn’t need a middle brush or rubber roller on the underside. The suction power is so strong that these elements are not even needed. However, it would be even more advantageous with a medium brush. With its large tyres it overcomes obstacles such as carpet edges and door thresholds.
The manufacturer advertises that the 0.75 l dust chamber (comparison Xiaomi Mi Robot: 0.42 l) is “the largest dust chamber ever built into a vacuum robot”, but we already had a 0.9 l dust chamber about a year ago when testing the Ainol A-S11.
Nevertheless, 0.75 litres is a considerable size which enables the vacuum to manage within a single working process without manual emptying of the chamber. Unless, of course, the floor is centimetre thick and covered with dirt. I hope that doesn’t apply to your four walls.
The current cleaning mode or error messages can be read off the large LC display on the top side made of aluminium. We know this from the ILIFE X5, for example, so the vacuum can also be operated independently of the remote control via the control elements. For example, changes to the cleaning schedule or cleaning mode can be set on the device itself.
The charging station
What makes the ILIFE V8S a typical ILIFE model is the familiar charging station that is used to charge the vacuum robot’s battery. This is where it starts and automatically finds its way back to the charging station when the battery runs low. This is the same charging station we already saw on the ILIFE A6. Why admire? The charging station is visually very appealing and more reminiscent of a launch ramp than the otherwise so dull charging stations on other models.
After a loading time of 4 h the vacuum robot is ready for use. Although the working time of 120 minutes is average for a vacuum robot, it is completely sufficient for most apartments below 100m² due to the high suction power. More on that later.
Operating elements of the vacuum robot
A large number of operating elements are located below the display, which means that the vacuum robot can also be controlled without a remote control. Press and hold the On/Off button to switch the vacuum robot on and off, press once to start or stop the automatic suction mode.
Next to the On/Off key there is a button with two crossing arrows. This is the Zigzag mode that we already know from other vacuum robots. The V8S then moves the premises in straight lines from wall to wall – the most sensible mode of the vacuum robot. Even without room measurement, the vacuum robot can run down any part of the four walls without omitting any part.
Use the two arrow keys to set the time and day on the display. But this only works if you press the key with the clock symbol in advance. This can also be used to schedule the working times of the vacuum robot directly on the device. That is, when the vacuum robot should start working.
But let’s get to the most important point in the evaluation of a vacuum robot: What is the performance of the ILIFE V8S in living rooms and the like?
Performance of the ILIFE V8S
ILIFE would like to catch up with Xiaomi again with the new models, which of course also requires a vacuum robot with many features. There have not been too many, but these few are real innovations, at least in comparison with previous ILIFE vacuum robots. The individual features in the short overview:
- gyro sensor
- wipe function
- various suction modes
The big advantage the V8S has over its predecessors? ILIFE calls it “i-navigation”: The vacuum robot plans the smartest route through the room before it starts its work. No more chaos as with his predecessors. Altogether 13 groups of infrared bumpers & gyroscope sensors (!) are found in the small vacuum, which support him during navigation and prevent him from hitting obstacles and falling down stairs.
Thanks to the built-in gyroscope sensors, the V8S “scans” the room to be cleaned and divides it into different zones, which it cleans efficiently one after the other. This can be envisioned in such a way that the vacuum cleaner creates a virtual map of the cleaning area and divides the room accordingly. But not to be confused with the mapping and room layout of the new Xiaomi RoboRock. Originally, we hoped that the V8S would be able to compete with the Xiaomi models. But: The zoning works well.
The vacuum robot works with two brush heads, as already known from the V5S Pro or A4. The cleaning modes familiar from other models such as Spot, Wall and MAX are included again. If the spot function is selected, the vacuum robot rotates around itself in increasing circles. The Wall function only allows the vacuum robot to move down the outer walls, pressing the MAX button on the remote control increases the suction power.
The operating volume of 68 dB (approximately the volume of our voice) measured by us is relatively loud, which is also logical with a high suction power. The dust chamber with HEPA filter (High Efficiency Particulate Air filter) of the V8S is significantly larger than the last ILIFE A6 with a capacity of 0.75 l this time. This means that the dust chamber does not have to be emptied during a suction process. Unless, of course, your place looks like the absolute chaos ?
A major advantage of the ILIFE over other vacuuming robots: sensors are even fitted on the left and right sides, so that the vacuum cleaner does not run laterally against furniture blocks despite its width. This is quite fascinating and somewhat alleviates the disappointment about the lack of space measurement.
Of course, the start time of the vacuuming process can also be scheduled in advance and the V8S can work in automatic mode. A different cleaning time can be set for each day of the week. This sounds great and is also highlighted by ILIFE in advertisements, but is already an old hat for the manufacturers of app-controlled vacuum robots. Via app, the times can be set simply by swipe movement as with the IMASS A3S or also in a virtual calendar. With the V8S, this works via the buttons on the top or by remote control.
Working on carpets
In the case of vacuum robots without room measurement, it is advisable to make the apartment ” vacuum robot-friendly ” in advance. This includes removing cables lying around and putting away annoying clothes racks, but not laying away carpets. Vacuum robots often reveal weaknesses in performance on carpets. Fortunately, the V8S has a lot to offer.
The V8S easily overcomes obstacles up to a height of 2 cm, but above that it becomes difficult for the powerful vacuum robot. So you have to worry about the legs of the clothes rack, but not about most carpet edges. In our test he managed three carpet edges of different heights without any problems and the vacuum result on those was also impressive.
Unfortunately, it does not recognize carpets on itself and thus does not change its suction mode like the new Xiaomi RoboRock. However, this is only a minus point, which can be assigned in direct comparison with the RoboRock, other vacuum robots are also not yet capable of this.
If I had tested the ILIFE V8S before the RoboRock, the conclusion about the carpets would have been even better. But when you know what is possible upwards, you have to evaluate less performance differently. Cleaning the V8S on carpet is very good, but not the ultimate.
Wipe function of the ILIFE V8S
Compared to the dust chamber, the water tank of the V8S with a capacity of 0.35 l is quite small. However, this does not have to be a disadvantage if the wiping function works well. After all, you don’t want everything to be under water after a few robotic rounds.
A few things have to be done before the vacuum robot with its wiping function can plunge to the floor. But this only takes a few seconds and is easy to handle. The preparation of the water tank in a small sequence of pictures:
The wipe function is impressive: The vacuum robot loses a “healthy amount” of water to the mop and distributes the water on the floor without puddles. In Zigzag mode, the room is covered so well and really every section of a room is wiped. For my taste it could even be a little more water (usually I criticize too much water in tests).
The only drawback: The vacuum robot does not exert enough pressure on the floor (which of course is also heavy) to replace manual wiping with a mop. However, this is only a small negative point, on the whole the wiping function was done very correctly by the manufacturer.
Comparison: ILIFE V8S vs. Xiaomi RoboRock Sweep One
ILIFE, as a pure manufacturer of vacuum robots, naturally wants to show its major competitor Xiaomi it’s capabilities in the field of household robots. Unfortunately, the V8S can’t compare to the new flagship model RoboRock Sweep One. The main reason for this is the lack of space measurement of the V8S, which would make cleaning much more efficient. The gyroscope sensors and zone division of the V8S are impressive compared to other vacuum robots, but room measurement and room division on Xiaomi’s side speak a much more modern language.
Also the overcoming of obstacles and the recognition of the carpet underneath it are features that make the RoboRock look better. I was also more impressed by the wipe function. The V8S is currently cheaper and comes with a remote control that eliminates the need for WLAN to operate the vacuum robot. If you don’t need or don’t want to use an app, you should use the V8S here.
My expectations of the ILIFE V8S were very high. This is because I am personally an ILIFE fan, since the devices always came along with a very good price-performance ratio, even if they lack the technology compared to the competitor Xiaomi. With the V8S, the manufacturer made a big step forward, the chaos principle of its predecessors is a thing of the past. But: It is not the shot that catapults ILIFE to the top. Another step is still missing and that is “room measurement and app control”. I very much hope that the next model can serve this purpose.
Apart from that: An all-round solid working vacuum and wiper robot that leaves many models behind. Only the still somewhat high price may, in my view, continue to fall.
- intelligent navigation via gyro sensor
- high suction
- Processing and design
- Planning of the vacuum robot very easy
- wipe function
- high cost
- various Suction modes nice, but outdated