PHOTO: iRobot

One of our least favorite chores is vacuuming around the house. Thankfully, we live in a time and age where robot vacuums exist. Not only do they exist, but companies like iRobot keep innovating and improving upon what once felt like a frivolous purchase.

Look at iRobot’s just-announced Roomba i3+, available starting September 17 for $599 directly from iRobot.com.

The i3+ boasts a high-efficiency filter to capture 99% of pollen, mold and dust mites along with cat and dog allergens. It has a three-stage cleaning system, consisting of multi-surface rubber brushes, an edge-sweeping brush for corners and, according to iRobot, 10 times the power of a Roomba 600 series vacuum.

The Roomba i3+ comes with iRobot’s Clean Base Automatic Dirt Disposal unit that serves as a docking station, where the vacuum can recharge itself and empty its bin that’s full of dust and debris from adventures around your home. The bin is big enough to hold up to 60 days’ worth of dirt.

That dust and debris is then kept in an enclosed bag, which iRobot claims will trap 99% of pollen and mold inside. If you don’t want or need the Clean Base, you can opt for just the i3 for $399.

The iRobot Home App has a fresh new design, integrating iRobot Genius, which will provide cleaning suggestions and reminders. For example, one suggestion is to run the vacuum because it’s the time of year when pets normally shed and the vacuum can help keep fur on your floor to a minimum.

The app will also learn your cleaning routine and habits, then use that information to make more cleaning suggestions. In addition to using the app, you can also control the i3+ using Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant.

The i3+ has what appears to be a fabric ring on the top, and in pictures, at least, it looks amazing. In fact though it’s a woven molded texture. Still, it’s a nice break from the typical all-plastic housing and design that we’ve seen on nearly all robot vacuums.

The i3+ joins the i7 and i7+ in iRobot’s i-Series and is the most affordable option. The i7+, which comes with the Clean Base, is $799, or you can get the i7 without the base for $599.

The biggest difference between the i7 and i3 is that the i7 learns your house layout and creates maps you can then use to tell the vacuum where it can and can’t clean.

Is mapping and control worth an extra $200 to you? If so, then the i7 is where you should start. But if you just want a vacuum that automatically cleans your house while roaming freely, then the i3+ is a welcome addition to the iRobot lineup.